As you may know, most Americans carefully observe
the time that is set for people to meet. Please
try to be on time and be sure to call if you have
to change the time or have to cancel the
If you would like to bring friends along with you when
you get together with your friendship partner, you need
to ask permission in advance.
You will receive information about upcoming activities
for all members of the organization, including students
and friendship partners. You are welcome to attend all
activities even though your friendship partner may not
be able to participate. On the average, a student will meet with their
friendship partner about every 4-6 weeks.
Notify your friendship partner, as well as your foreign
student advisor, if you change your address, email, or
telephone. If you have not heard from your host for more
than two months, please notify us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Occasionally, you may wish to invite your friendship
partner to attend a university function, or you may
want to prepare one of your national food dishes for
him or her and friends of the family. Please feel free
to extend an invitation.
You will probably be invited to participate in special
holiday activities with your host. Feel free to ask
about the particular celebration, why and how it is
observed, and other questions you might have.
Discomfort With Host Friend
If you should for any reason feel uncomfortable with
the host friend assigned to you, please notify host
friend coodinators, Jon or Alana Varner, right away.
Host friends are involved in CAIF because they are
truly interested in getting to know international
students and they want to be your friends. Please
do not hesitate to ask them any questions you have
about American culture, family life, or any social
issues that you do not understand.
Americans are usually very "friendly" and will
readily welcome and help newcomers. However,
"friendship" takes a long time to develop.
Americans often indicate their interest in
others by asking questions. This indicates
an eagerness to learn about you and your
Be On Time
You are expected to be ready at the time
agreed upon if someone is picking you up at
your residence. Many Americans feel that
arriving late for appointments or events
indicates rudeness or lact of respect when
keeping someone waiting.
Everyday casual dress is appropriate for most
visits to peoples' homes. Your host should
indicate ahead of time if more formal attire
is required for a particular event.
Hand Shakes & Hugs
It is proper to shake hands with everyone to
whom you are introduced, both men and women.
Some Americans, especially if well-acquainted,
will greet each other with a hug. If you do
not wish to be hugged, extend your hand quickly
for a handshake.
When you accept a meal invitation, tell your
host if you have any dietary restrictions or
allergies. He/she will appreciate this
It is not necessary to take a gift when you are invited to dinner.
If you are a smoker, ask your host's
permission before smoking. Most non-smoking
Americans do not allow smoking in their home.
Many Americans have pets; especially dogs and
cats that are often allowed into every room
in their homes. If the presence of pets makes
you uncomfortable, discuss the situation with
You may offer to assist with household tasks
(like meal preparation, clearing the table,
etc) as a gesture of appreciation.