Why become a student volunteer?


Being a student isn’t just about attending lectures and partying all night. There are lots of other activities you can do and get involved with that will widen your experiences and set you up for the ‘real world’ after you graduate. One of those things is carrying out voluntary work and helping others in the community. And as this week is Student Volunteering Week 2018 (19th – 25th February), we thought it would be a good idea to highlight some of the benefits of becoming a student volunteer.

Help others
The reason for you volunteering in the first place is because something needs improving or some people require additional support. So, whether it’s litter picking in the community, putting in a few shifts at the charity shop, spending time with the elderly or providing support at the city’s charity sport event, your help and support can make a huge difference to your community and those around you.

Widen your connections
Volunteering is a great way to meet new people and widen your social circle in the process. The people you meet will also have a passion for the cause you’re volunteering for and so it’s likely they’ll share some of the same interests as you. But if they don’t, it’s not a bad thing. Meeting a diverse range of people means there’s a chance for you to learn from them. They may open your eyes to new skills, new ways of thinking and share their own experiences and knowledge with you. And who knows, someone you connect with while volunteering may have a job opportunity for you later down the line!

Enhance your CV
Not only can you expand upon your own knowledge by learning from the people you meet, but the activities and work you do while volunteering will also help widen your skill set and give that CV a boost. Specific skills will vary depending on the extent of the work you’re doing but there are many transferrable skills such as time management, organisation and communication/social skills which will set you up for work in the ‘real world’ as they can be applied to most workplaces.

You’ll feel great
Volunteering is not only good for those you’re helping, but it’s also great for your own well-being. Knowing that you’re doing something valuable for the community or lifting the burden of others, shows that you care and should make you feel pretty good about yourself.

You can find out more about Student Volunteering Week 2018 here.

Staying safe in London


As we all know, London is a big city. But even though it is big, it is also a very safe city – just as safe as anywhere else in the world. International students and their parents often wonder how safe it really is to study in another country, that they’ve never visited or spent much time in before. So, here are a few tips to help keep you safe while studying in London.

Student Accommodation
A lot of international students will stay in university halls of residence or private student accommodation when they come to London. These types of accommodation are safe options for students as they have secured entrances and exits which can only be accessed with a key card. You will also find there are manned receptions and staff on-site 24/7. Office staff are on-site throughout the day to answer any questions and assist students when needed. And then security staff takeover and are on-site throughout the night.

Your personal belongings
As a student living with us here at One Penrhyn Road, we provide you with free contents insurance from Endsleigh at no extra cost. This means all of your valuable items, such as laptops and mobile phones, are insured against theft or damage. You can find out more about what is and isn’t covered at https://www.endsleigh.co.uk/.

When out and about in London, you should avoid carrying a lot of cash around with you. The best advice would be to set up a UK student bank account and get yourself a debit card so you can easily pay for things and withdraw cash as and when you need to. Most shops and restaurants accept card payments in London.

Personal safety in London
London is a safe city, despite its size. During the day, you can walk around with friends or on your own and feel safe in London. Public transport including the underground and bus services operate throughout the day and night, but not all night.

However, it is very important to be aware of your surroundings at all times and you should avoid walking alone in the night time. We would always recommend to go home with a group of friends or even get in a pre-booked cab. Taxi companies also operate in all parts of the city throughout the day and night.

Are you still looking for student accommodation in London? We have short-term and long-term contracts available. To find out more about living with us here in Kingston, please contact us on +44(0)20 3770 9119 or at kingston@host-students.com.

Make sure your student essentials are waiting


As you count down the weeks and days until the first term of university starts and you move into your new student home for the year, it’s the perfect time to get organised.

Don’t leave everything until last minute, make the most of the remaining weeks at home and sort out everything you need ready for university now.

From pens and pads, to raincoats and sunglasses, you might have already thought about the stationary and clothes you’ll be needing to take with you – and if you’re really organised (or simply just too excited), you may have even started packing these things! But what about the essentials you’ll need to kit out your bedroom, bathroom and kitchen?

You’ve probably become so used to bedding, pots, pans, utensils and the like being available to hand in your current family home, that you haven’t even considered that you’ll need these items. But don’t panic, we’re here to help…

We’ve teamed up with UniKitOut – the UK’s number one provider of student starter kits, to make moving into your new home at One Penrhyn Road as easy as possible. Pre-order kitchen, bedroom and bathroom packs before you arrive and UniKitOut will deliver your items to our door here at One Penrhyn Road, where we’ll have them waiting for you upon your arrival.

So, head over to UniKitOut and check the items off your list in an instant, and enjoy spending your last few weeks at home without the worry of buying and transporting all the essentials to university with you. And don’t forget to add the discount code HOST17 at the checkout to receive an extra 10% off your order.

Looking for student accommodation in London? We still have rooms available for September 2017. To find out more about our accommodation in Kingston, please contact our onsite management team today on +44(0)203 770 9119 or kingston@host-students.com.

Short-term student accommodation in London


For a lot of students, they start the academic year in September and finish in June; staying in the same city throughout. This means they need accommodation in the same city for that whole period of time. However, this isn’t the case for everyone.

Some students may need to be in a different city for a period of time during their course because of placements or exchange semesters in the UK, and some students may be completing a short course which only lasts for a single semester and therefore don’t require a full year of accommodation. If that’s you, and you need short term accommodation in London, look no further.

Here at One Penrhyn Road in Kingston, we have a limited number of our Premium Studios available for students looking for a place to live during either your first or second semester of university. Giving you the flexibility to study and live in London, without the commitment of long tenancies.

If you’re looking for accommodation for semester one, we have Premium Studios available from 10th September 2017 until 7th January 2018 on a 17 week contract. If you’re not arriving in the city until the New Year, then our second semester contract is available from 7th January 2018 until 1st July 2018 on a 25 week contract.

No matter which semester you choose to stay with us at One Penrhyn Road, you’ll find everything you need to enjoy your student experience. Our totally self-contained Premium Studios come complete with a fully fitted kitchen, en-suite bathroom and study space. And not forgetting our comfortable and stylish social spaces for you to make the most of including a study area, games area and common area.

If you would like to find out more about our semester bookings, please contact us on +44(0)20 3770 9119 or at kingston@host-students.com.

Need a place to stay in London for summer?


Summer is here and exams are finished, which means sunshine and ice-creams! But as much as we love them, there’s more to summer than just that. So, how will you be spending your time during the summer months?

London has so much to offer, and with university finished, there’s no better time to explore in and around the city than now. Do all of the touristy things you’ve wanted to do but not yet had chance to do, discover hidden gems to take your friends to when term starts in September, or use London as a central base and venture to the other corners of the country.

And whether you’re simply enjoying your summer break in London, continuing your studies, or even working in the city, why not stay with us here at One Penrhyn Road?

We have summer accommodation available in the beautiful area of Kingston – a historic town located in south-west London and situated on the picturesque River Thames. A place where you can escape the hustle and bustle of Central London, but still reach it within 25 minutes by train when you need to.

Our accommodation at One Penrhyn Road gives you the convenience and flexibility you need to enjoy yourself over the summer months. Whether you need a place to stay for just a few weeks, or perhaps the whole of summer, we have a range of Studio rooms – all with a private en-suite bathroom and fully fitted kitchen, available now right through until the 3rd September.

Starting to like the sound of it? Well, that’s not all. One of the best things about our summer accommodation is you can stay with us for as little as £178 per person per week – that’s just £25.43 a night! Plus, all of your bills are included in that price – even the Wi-Fi and internet!

And when you arrive back to us after a busy day out exploring, working or studying, you can relax and unwind in our modern and spacious social spaces. Put your pool skills to the test in the games area, catch up with your friends in the common area or watch the latest TV shows from the comfy seating area. Fancy a night out? One Penrhyn Road is just a stone’s throw from Pryzm nightclub and Kingston’s main high street. Not to mention Richmond Park, London’s biggest open space for you to enjoy on a sunny day.

Our doors are open to all students this summer – even if you’ve not stayed with us before. If you’re a student already living with us, why not extend your stay through summer, or visit another city and stay at one of our other halls? Whether it’s work or play, we can accommodate you.

To find out more about our summer accommodation, or to book, please contact our onsite management team today on +44(0)203 770 9119 or kingston@host-students.com.

Finishing University


Students all around the country are finishing university. For some of you, it’s the end of your first year. Phew, you made it! But for others, it’s the end of your final year and your time at university. If that’s you, how are you feeling right now? Excited? Sad? Nostalgic? Nervous?

Well, you’re probably not alone. This time in your life is what we know as “the end of an era” (you may have heard the saying before, perhaps when you finished primary school and then again when you left high school). It’s the end of a journey, all of your hard work and determination has paid off; you’ve made it. No more exams, no more revision, and no more coursework – dissertation complete!

It won’t be long until you’re holding your certificate, wearing your gown and jumping in the air with your hat at your graduation. This is when the emotions really kick in. Life is changing and it’s time to move onto the next chapter of your life.

And whilst saying goodbye to your sidekicks may be difficult right now, just remember the good times you’ve had together. They’ve been by your side since the beginning – through thick and thin. You’ve lived, partied, laughed and cried with them. You’ve supported each other and been there for the selfies through the fun times, and let’s not forget the hard times, whilst under pressure – you’ve listened to one another moan and been there to cheer each other up. After all, that’s what friends are for.

Now you’ve all finished your degrees and university is officially over, you should get everyone together for one last celebration before you all leave. Saying goodbye will never be easy, but this should be a happy and exciting time, so enjoy it! And don’t worry, just because you’re leaving university, all the amazing memories, achievements and friends you made will always be there. They never change. The main thing is that as you all go off in different directions, you’ll stay in contact with the people that mean the most to you. Think of all those great reunions and get-togethers you can organise for the future!

But what about now, what will you do? Move back to your family home? Get your own place? Travel the world with friends? Move to another city for work? There are so many opportunities flying your way… Do WHATEVER makes you happy!

So, although your “uni days” are over, summer is here (which makes everything better), and so is the start of many more good times to come. There’s no exact way to feel right now, it’s a rollercoaster of different emotions. Just relax, enjoy the sunshine and wait patiently for your results – you’ve done it!

Once again, from everyone at One Penrhyn Road, well done for finishing university. Whatever you decide to do from here we wish you the best of luck, and remember the world is your oyster!

If you’re heading back to university in September, or if you need a place to stay over summer, why not live with us here at One Penrhyn Road? Contact us on +44 (0)20 3770 9119 or email us at kingston@host-students.com for more information about our luxurious studios and clean and airy communal areas.

Student living at One Penrhyn Road


Being a student isn’t just about the degree and qualifications you’ll get at the end of your course. Moving to a new city or even a new country to study, and living away from home is all part of the experience too. However, the prospect of life as a student can sometimes be daunting. But fear not. Here at One Penrhyn Road, we offer comfortable and stylish student accommodation to make you feel right at home, and we’re on hand to provide you with a welcoming, reassuring and stress-free experience during your stay. Below are just some of the reasons why our students choose to live with us…

1. Hassle-free living
Whether you’re living on your own for the first time or you’re in your final year, the last thing you want to worry about is paying the monthly bills. That’s why we make living on your own even easier by providing all-inclusive student accommodation – meaning all of your bills, from water to internet are included in your rent. With one less thing to worry about, there’s more time to focus on your studies and enjoy the freedom of being a student.

2. Independent living
Even though we take care of the bills, there’s still lots you can learn when living on your own. And living at One Penrhyn Road, you’re sure to develop your skills and become even more independent. With your very own combi oven and hob in all studio rooms, practice your cooking skills and cook up a storm in the kitchen. Then when you need clean clothes, it’s time to work the washing machines in the laundry room. And you’ll soon learn that you can’t always rely on someone else to get you up and out of bed in time for your lectures – that’s down to you now!

3. The social scene
We’ve got plenty of open, onsite communal areas for you to take advantage of. If your friends are living with us too, great – you can catch up and enjoy the space together. But if you don’t know anyone, then it’s the perfect place to socialise and get to know your fellow residents. After all, they’re probably in the same situation as you too. So challenge them to a game of pool, or strike up a conversation in the lounge. Plus, throughout the year, our team will host a number of events for you to get involved in and get to know one another better.

4. The location
If you’re studying at Kingston University or Kingston College, you couldn’t get much closer if you tried. Located in the heart of elegant Kingston Upon Thames, One Penrhyn Road is just 3 minutes away on foot from both – making it the perfect location for those students. And when you’re not in uni, the bustling town packed with shops, restaurants and bars will keep you entertained. Fancy heading into the city centre? Jump on the train at Kingston and you’ll be in the centre of London within 30 minutes.

If you like the sound of living with us here at One Penrhyn Road, contact us on +44 (0)20 3770 9119 or email us at kingston@host-students.com for more information about our luxurious studios and clean and airy communal areas.

Getting a good night’s sleep while you study


With freshers week done and the first semester in full swing, your daily routine will have changed as days fill up with lectures, classes, study sessions, assignments and revision. And as for the nights, if you’re not relaxing and taking a breather from your studies, you’re more than likely socialising and catching up with friends. These new and busy routines can affect your sleep patterns and limit the amount of hours you have to sleep.

But getting enough sleep is vital if you are to succeed through your studies; sleep is food for your brain. Without sleep, your performance, productivity and memory can be affected which will make it more difficult to concentrate, listen and learn. Below are a few ways you can improve your chances of a better night sleep.

Take a walk
It’s been found that regular exercise can improve the quality of sleep by up to 65%. So, whether it’s a gentle stroll to university or a fast-paced aerobics class at the gym, daily exercise will help you sleep better and also make you feel more alert during the day.

Avoid caffeine
Caffeine (which is found in tea, coffee and soft drinks), is a stimulant which can disrupt the body’s internal clock and temporarily prevent you from feeling sleepy. This makes caffeine the perfect remedy for getting you going in the mornings, but it’s best to avoid it later in the day and before bed, or you’ll find yourself wide awake at night.

Turn the lights off
The body secretes a natural hormone called melatonin which helps us to sleep; when it’s dark the body produces even more melatonin – making us sleepier. So, turn off the lights, turn off the TV, and put the phones and tablets down and you’ll be in for a much better night’s sleep!

Set an alarm
Even if you have no lectures planned or it’s the weekend, staying in bed all morning (or all day), will make it even harder for you to sleep that following night. So, set an alarm for a reasonable time to wake up in the mornings to keep your body in a regular sleep-wake cycle.

Following these few tips will promote better quality sleep, but if that’s not enough to help you get a good night’s sleep then how about a room at One Penrhyn Road? Here at One Penrhyn Road all our luxurious studios have a purpose built study area as standard and our students are able to take advantage of our clean and airy communal study areas. To find out how you can join our thriving student community please contact us today on +44 (0)20 3770 9119 for more information and to make a booking.

Kingston Freshers’ Week 2016


You done it; you got the results, you’ve moved in and now it’s time for the fun (and hard work) to begin! And as a fresher in Kingston, there’s plenty for you to see, do and enjoy. Along with enrolment and other activities your university has scheduled for welcome week, here are two events you won’t want to miss…

Freshers’ Ball: Thursday 22nd September
Every year there’s a Freshers’ ball for students in Kingston and it’s one of the biggest nights of the week – so make sure you add this one to your calendar. This year’s ball is at Przym nightclub in the centre of Kingston, and there’s a circus theme too!

With special guest DJs, a magician, circus entertainment, face painting, a photo booth and much more – it’s sure to be a night to remember. Oh, and don’t forget to dig out your fancy dress costume to really get in the party spirit.

Freshers’ Fayre: Thursday 22nd – Friday 23rd September
The biggest Freshers’ fayre in the South East returns to Kingston this September and it’s definitely one not to be missed. Taking place over 2 days the Kingston Hill Campus will be taken over by local restaurants, shops, nightclubs, and companies who will all be handing out freebies for you to get your hand on!

You’ll also be able to find out more about university life and what options are available to you as a student in Kingston – including the societies and sports clubs you can join, how to become a course or student representative, opportunities to volunteer and student jobs, plus much more.

And if all of that wasn’t enough to tempt you to visit then how about some free pizza? The fayre is being sponsored by Domino’s, which means free pizza for everyone!

One Penrhyn Road is a great location to get the very best out your student life. If you would like to find out more about our student accommodation, please call us on +44 (0)20 3770 9119.

Preparing for University this September


So, the results are in and you’re heading off to university very soon – congratulations! Whether you’re attending your first choice university or you’ve applied to another through clearing, university can be one of the most exciting experiences of your life. But while you wait for move in day and for the first semester to start, anticipation can build and you might feel nervous about the journey ahead. Sure, these feelings are expected but there really is nothing to worry about – after all, everyone will be in the same situation. But to make sure your university journey starts well, here are a few things you can do that will fully prepare you for student life.

1. Start packing
If you’re moving away from home, space might be limited in your new residence – particularly if you’re sharing with others, so pack sensibly. Of course, you’ll need the essentials such as clothes and bed linen, but you won’t need to bring the kitchen sink with you. If you’re staying in student halls or privately rented accommodation then find out if things such as a microwave, toaster or kettle are provided to prevent duplicating items. Also consider whether things such as kitchen utensils can be shared with flat mates to save on space and money. Oh, and don’t forget to pack your toothbrush – no one wants to share one of them!

2. Learn to cook
While takeaways and ready-made meals are convenient, they’re not the healthiest option – for both your waistline and your wallet. We’re not saying you need to be Gordon Ramsey, but if you can’t already cook (or haven’t had much experience of cooking), now is the perfect time to get practicing. From simple pasta dishes and healthy salads, to sweet treats and savoury snacks, there’s plenty of recipes available online which are quick, easy and cheap to make.

3. Choose your gadgets
Nothing beats a good old fashioned notepad and pen, but you’ll also need to decide which gadgets to pack for your studies. Smartphones are a popular choice (95% of students own one), as they make connecting with others and accessing information quick and easy. For researching, working on projects and completing dissertations, most students prefer to use a computer – in fact, 91% of students have their own laptop.

Don’t forget, if you haven’t got your own, the university campuses will have computers available on site for you to use, as well as printers and copiers. So before you splash out and make those big purchases, ask yourself do you really need it?

4. Connect with others
From Facebook to Twitter, social media is a great way to connect with others before you even arrive at university. Like Facebook pages for your chosen university or accommodation provider, and follow them on Twitter to stay up to date with the latest news, information and events. Search Facebook for any Groups at your chosen halls, course and even societies that you’re interested in, and then engage with those in the same location, on the same course, or those who share the same interests as you. Similarly, type a keyword into Twitter (such as Host) and see who else is talking about it and join the conversation!

Our London student accommodation at One Penrhyn Road is a great location to get the very best out of your student life. If you would like to find out how you can join them, please call us on +44 (0)20 3770 9119 to arrange a viewing.