Don't worry for the accommodation. It is not possible to find an accommodation before arrival. You have to see by yourself, compare, choose and decide. We cannot impose you a flat, that might not suit you.
You have to know that the accommodation standards are not at the western level, but we can find something suitable.
Accommodation search is part of our package. It is not easy to find everything quickly (university, registration office, person in charge), private teacher, the accommodation (state agencies, contract), and move by yourself at the beginning. We help the students as much as we can because when they see that you are foreigner, they increase the price. We help to negotiate to have the best price.
Upon your arrival, you will spend three days in hotel (as part of our package) while we look for a suitable accommodation. We have a database of real state agents and flat owners. Few days before your arrival, I will contact them in order to know the possibilities they have. Accommodation is certainly the most difficult thing so you need patience. We will help you as it is part of our package. In all cases, you will be at the hotel during three days. But within the three days, you have to decide between the different offers we have seen and move to the house.
For the accommodation, we advise you to avoid Bab Tuma. Since two years, many students (that didn't came through Arabesk) have been complaining: dirty houses, noisy, materialistic families that only think about the money of the students, they don't take care of the students, don't help them with their learning or practising). I myself lived in Bab Tuma for four months, 6 years ago when I first arrived to Damascus and it was really nice, but people there have changed a lot and they abuse of foreigners. In Arabesk, we do our best to find a suitable flat in a nice place, in the center of Damascus, in order students mix with people.
Arabesk offers for girl students only accommodation in syrian families. This is the best way to learn the Arabic language as you practise all day long, in every day life use, know the Arabic culture, the traditions.
We have a small list of selected families. They are small families, father, mother and small children (two or three) or just females families. They live in the center of the city, or close to the university. They speak Arabic with the student and they know some English in case of necessity. It includes meals included in order students get used to the Syrian cooking.
We also have a number of modest families (in the way the house is normal, modest, or in a popular district (as Bab Tuma standards), but they are clean houses, and nice people) with meals included.
Room in homestays = We have a list of rooms in landlord homes. They live in the center of the city, or close to the transportation to institute / university.
For Boys, we offer a service "Living and Practicing accommodation" where a teacher or one of Arabesk staff shares your accommodation for the period of time you will be here, and he assists you in your studies, practices with you Arabic in everyday life situations ….This person works or studies in Damascus, but he will share your life and strength your Arabic in the times you meet at home (mornings and evenings).