Become a Host Parent Defy Expectations and Be Surprised About the Amount of Fun You'll Have!
Are You Ready To Host An International Exchange Student?
Impact a culture? Change a life? If yes...we are looking for you! Apply Online
Change a Life, Host with FLAG!
Since 1989, over 4,200 wonderful American families have welcomed a FLAG international student into their home!
Each year, FLAG brings more than 500 students from over 51 countries into the U.S. on FLAG programs to study in high schools & universities and live with host families. Choosing to become a host parent means you are willing to accept an international exchange student into your home and provide a loving, nurturing family environment.
By hosting an exchange student, you will open yourself and your loved ones to a new world of culture and unforgettable experiences!
At FLAG, we’re always looking for outstanding host parents! Families are always telling us that hosting a student has brought an unforgettable experience to themselves, their communities, their exchange students, and our global community.
Over 60% of the time, FLAG students have come back later to visit their host families or host families have visited their students’ home countries.
By hosting, you are bringing the world together one friendship at a time!
If you are interested in becoming a host parent, FLAG invites you to complete our online host family application. On the application, you’ll be asked to write about yourself, your household, your community and your lifestyle. After the application is submitted, the host family is required to complete background checks and paperwork (*Please note that all household members aged 18 and older are required to complete a criminal background check). From there, the family will be contacted by a FLAG Local Coordinator who will assist with the entire process which includes reviewing student profiles and making a match. Afterward, your assigned FLAG Local Coordinator will also assist with the arrival, departure and support of your student, and assist you and your family throughout the entire exchange experience.
If you would like more information and learn about the hosting experience as a whole, FLAG invites you to contact us directly at 1-800-942-3524 (FLAG) or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find Your Student
Log-in to our search application to learn about the amazing FLAG students who are looking for host families for the upcoming school year.
See an international student who you feel would be a great addition to your family? Contact us to take the next steps!
You've Got Questions. We've Got Answers.
Some of our Most Common Hosting Questions:
We know that the decision to become a host parent is a commitment, and with commitments come questions. Below you will find some of the most common questions we are asked about the hosting and exchange experience as a whole. If you have any additional questions not addressed below, please do not hesitate to contact us at 1-800-942-3524.
General Hosting FAQ's
Who is eligible to host?
All types of families are encouraged to host with FLAG. There is no “typical” host family - they come in all shapes and sizes. Even single parents are welcome. Each family is unique and provides the student with a genuine immersion experience.
In a recent survey conducted by CSIET (Council on Standards for International and Educational Travel), host families across the U.S. indicated that their decision to host is largely based on the benefits the experience brings to themselves, their community, the students, and the world community. Hosting is an opportunity to introduce the world to family members who may not have had the opportunity to travel abroad but are keenly interested in learning more about the world around them. Hosting not only provides an unforgettable experience to the international students, but also brings families closer together by actively sharing their own unique family customs and traditions. Siblings take an active part in showing the student “the American way of life”. Many host families have commented throughout the years that hosting was something that changed their own children’s lives forever.
How does it work?
A personally interviewed international high school student becomes a part of an American host family for one academic year (+-10 months) or semester (+- 5 months) while attending a local high school as a full time student. The student comes with their own spending money, round trip airplane ticket, and full medical insurance.
General Student FAQ's
Do the students speak English?
Yes, all FLAG students have a demonstrated a specific level of proficiency in English. Each FLAG student comes to the U.S. with a desire to immerse themselves in the language and to improve their level of proficiency.
Who are the FLAG exchange students?
FLAG students come from more than 51 countries and are seen as role models and leaders in their home communities by demonstrating maturity and motivation to study abroad. In addition, many of these students are scholarship recipients and had to compete against thousands of students to earn this life-changing experience!
Does FLAG have rules for students?
Yes! FLAG exchange students are expected to obey all the FLAG rules and policies that are applicable while in their program. Each student receives a specialized FLAG orientation when they arrive in the U.S. for their exchange experience and a Student Handbook. Should a student break a rule, they will have their program terminated. *Host Parents are also provided with a Host Family Handbook, which contains information on these rules.
Compensation & Requirements FAQ's
Are host families paid?
Host families in the FLAGship program are not paid but are entitled to a tax deduction for each month they host.
What responsibilities do host families have?
FLAG host families are asked to provide students three quality meals a day, a place to sleep and study, and a loving and supportive environment. There is no requirement for students to have their own bedroom.
How long do students stay?
Student may participate in a semester (5 month) or year (10 month) program. There is also an option for a shorter stay with FLAG’s specialized Short-Term Programs.
What if a problem arises?
FLAG has great success in placing the right participants with the right host parents. Although, we do understand that sometimes a problem or issue may arise. FLAG provides extensive personalized support throughout the year directly to both the host family and the student. Each family is assigned a local FLAG Coordinator. However, if further issues arise or the placement does not work out satisfactorily, FLAG assumes responsibility to move the participant to another host family.
How does FLAG work with local schools?
FLAG must receive authorization from the school before enrolling the exchange student. FLAG has worked with hundreds of schools and ensures that students are in compliance with school policies. FLAG Local Coordinators work together with the host family to enroll the exchange student and maintain contact with the school throughout the year.
Can a home-school family host a student?
Yes, however the FLAG exchange student must be enrolled at an accredited high school and cannot be home-schooled with their host siblings. The U.S. Department of State regulations "require all exchange students to be enrolled and participating in a full course of study at an accredited academic institution" as secondary school students. Therefore, FLAG cannot allow an exchange student to be home-schooled.
Bringing The World Together, One Friendship At A Time.