Note: This policy is subject to change at any time. Please check all AHN Policies on a regular basis for updates.
Effective: July 2008 (revised November 2017)
AHN is responsible for managing the expectations of the guest, host and other related parties with respect to maximising the opportunity for a successful homestay placement.
It is important that all parties are clear on the relevant refund and associated policies regarding these processes.
Homestay fees are generally made up of two types of payments:
- Homestay Matching Fee
This fee is paid to AHN to confirm that a placement is required. It covers the cost of host training and assessment, and the work associated with the matching process. The fee is generally paid in conjunction with a minimum period of weekly fees (usually 4 weeks).
On receipt of the initial payment AHN will review the guests profile and preferences and commence the work required to find a well matched and appropriately screened host for the guest.
The matching fee is not refundable once payment has been received.
- Homestay Weekly Fees
The weekly fees are paid to AHN to cover the payment to your host, insurance, support services and monitoring of the homestay placement. A minimum period of 4 weeks is usually required for new placements.
Weekly fees are refundable if the minimum notice period is met.
- If you cancel your placement and provide more than 10 days written notice prior to arrival your weekly fees will be refunded in full. The matching fee is not refundable.
- If you cancel your placement and provide less than 10 days written notice prior to arrival you will forfeit payment for 2 weeks plus the matching fee. Any additional weekly fees paid will be refunded.
- AHN will provide a full refund (upon receipt of the Australian High Commission / DIAC Visa Refusal Notification) for a cancelled placement if your Visa is denied and you have provided a minimum of 3 business days’ notice. If the required notice has not been provided AHN will retain the matching fee and 2 weeks’ payment. Any remaining funds will be refunded.
Pre-arrival changes or delays:
- If a guest is unable to arrive by their intended start date due to a visa delay or course changes the guest may defer their placement until visa approval is granted, or the course is rescheduled.
- If AHN is advised in writing of these changes a minimum of 3 business days prior to arrival, there will be no charge for this change. All fees will be transferred to the new placement.
- If AHN are not advised in writing of these changes a minimum of 3 business days prior to arrival the guest may be required to pay another matching fee for a new placement to be made and up to 2 weeks of homestay weekly fees.
- All other changes or delays will be subject to the same notice periods and penalties as detailed in the cancellation policy. The guest will forfeit the matching fee and up to 2 weeks of homestay fees if adequate notice is not given.
Post Arrival Cancellations:
- Once a homestay placement has commenced we do not refund weekly fees for your initial period of homestay (usually 4 weeks). The matching fee is also not refundable.
- The guest is required to provide AHN and their homestay host with a minimum of 2 weeks written notice if they intend to move out of homestay.
- This notice period cannot commence during the first two weeks in homestay.
- There will be no refund if the guest chooses to leave without serving out the required notice period.
- If a guest gives less than two weeks’ notice of their intention to move out they will still be required to pay weekly fees for two weeks following the date on which they have given notice.
Post Arrival Changes:
- If a guest is unhappy with their chosen homestay family they should contact AHN to discuss.
- AHN will liaise with the guest and host to try to rectify any concerns and assist through the ‘settling in’ period
- If the guest wishes to change homestay families after the first 4 weeks, and there are not adequate grounds for the change, the guest may be charged another matching fee for AHN to find a new homestay
- The guest will still be required to provide the minimum of 2 weeks’ notice to AHN and the original host before moving out
- Weekly fees will need to be paid a minimum of 2 weeks in advance before the transfer date in order to cover the first payment to the new homestay family
Room Holding Policy
Many guests wish to have their room held when they go on holidays. If the host is agreeable to this arrangement the following rules will apply:
- The guest must be away for a minimum of 7 nights and
- The guest must notify AHN and their host of their holiday plans at least 2 weeks prior to departure. Room holding fees cannot be issued after the date of departure
- The guest will pay 50% of their normal fees during the period they are away
- The room holding fees and 2 weeks of normal weekly fees for the return must be paid before the guest leaves
- The guest is able to leave their belongings in the room and it will not be used by the host for other purposes
- The room will be held for the period agreed prior to the guest departure
- The guests belongings will be covered by AHN insurance
- The guest must notify AHN and the host if there are any changes to their return date
Airport Pickup Refund Policy
- The guest is required to contact AHN as soon as they are aware of delays to their scheduled flight and/or their arrival information.
- The transport company tracks flights online: if they are made aware of a flight delay at least an hour before the original flight landing time, they will wait another two hours (or until the delayed plane lands at the airport.)
- If airport pickup has been booked and the guest has missed their flight or failed to provide updated arrival information then there will be no refund for the unused transportation. Afterhours this notice must be provided via phone and not email.
- There will be no charge for changes if notice is given at least an hour before the original flight landing time. Afterhours this notice must be provided via phone and not email.
- The guest will need to pay for a new booking if pick up is required at another time.
- The instructions for meeting your driver at the airport will be detailed on your arrival report. If you have not met the driver at the designated location within the expected time frame, the driver will leave the airport and the cost of your pre-paid APU will be non-refundable. A guest will be required to pay again if the driver needs to return to the airport to pick them up.
- If a guest cancels airport pickup 2 business days or less prior to arrival the student will forfeit all fees paid for the service.
- If the guest finds an alternate way to the homestay and the minimum notice period has not been given there will be no refund.
- If a guest cancels airport pickup more the 2 business days prior to arrival a full refund will be provided
Note: Business hours are between 9am and 5pm AEST.
All approved refunds will be deposited into an Australian bank account. No cash refunds will be processed. If no Australian bank account is available we will refund via telegraphic transfer, an AU$30.00 service charge will be deducted from refund total. If the original payment was made by credit card we can refund back to the same card, a 3% service charge will be deducted from the refund total.
Refunds will be processed within 2 weeks after the guest has left homestay and appropriate bank details have been received.