International Guest FAQs

What is Thanksgiving?

Who can participate in the Thanksgiving Holiday Host Program?

Any current UC San Diego international student that would like to be invited to a Thanksgiving meal and celebration is welcome to request a Thanksgiving Holiday Host. Signing up does not guarantee that you will be connected with a local host/host family to celebrate Thanksgiving. Arrangements are made a on a first-come, first-serve basis.

How are Thanksgiving Holiday Student Guests matched with Hosts?

Students and hosts are matched on a rolling first-come first-serve basis.  Matches are also based on the information provided on the student and host Sign Up Forms.

How will I know if I am matched with a Thanksgiving Holiday Host this Thanksgiving?

After submitting the online Sign Up Form, if you are matched with a host you will receive notification as soon as we have a host family for you. The International Center will notify Student Guests in plenty of time so that they can begin making Thanksgiving arrangements with their host. Please know that submitting the Sign Up Form does not guarantee a Thanksgiving Holiday Host. Matches are made depending on how many participants, student and host, sign up each year.

What is the commitment as a Thanksgiving Holiday Student Guest?

The commitment is for the Thanksgiving event only. Hosts are not expected to continue hosting their Student Guest throughout the remainder of the year. However it is our hope that both you and your Thanksgiving Holiday Host will continue to stay in contact.

What are the expectations of a Thanksgiving Holiday Student Guest?

By signing up for the program, the International Center asks you to be sure to attend the Thanksgiving holiday event that your host has so graciously invited you to. The Coordinator matches 2 students with the families and if you have a friend that would like to join you, please let the Coordinator know.   It is expected that Student Guests contact their host via email or telephone to make plans and arrangements for the Thanksgiving event and make every effort to attend the meal, as the families have made arrangements for you to join their friends and family for Thanksgiving.  If you cannot attend the meal, please let the Coordinator know at least 2 days before Thanksgiving and if an emergency does come up on Thanksgiving Day, please let the host family know right away that you will not be able to attend. 

Thanksgiving holiday events occur at various times depending on the host’s plans.  Hosts are not expected to provide overnight housing to their Student Guest. 

The International Center is not responsible for assisting with making plans and arrangements between Student Guests and Hosts is not available to provide transportation for Student Guests.

Should I bring anything to the Thanksgiving holiday event?

It is tradition to bring a small gift as a token of your appreciation to your Thanksgiving Holiday Host like flowers, wine, or chocolates. 

Will my Thanksgiving Holiday Host provide housing for me overnight?

No, hosts are not expected to provide overnight housing for Student Guests.

I do not have a mode of transportation to my Thanksgiving Holiday Host’s event but would still like to be hosted, is this possible?

Yes.  While not required, many hosts offer to provide transportation for their Student Guest(s) to and from the Thanksgiving event.  For Student Guests who do not have a mode of transportation to the event, the International Center will do its best to match them with hosts who can provide transportation.  Also, students might be able to get to the event if there is a feasible public transportation option available.

When does the Thanksgiving Holiday Host Program take place?

This year the Thanksgiving Holiday is on November 28, 2013, but the date and time of the host's holiday celebration can be flexible. The event does not have to be on the day of the holiday.  For example, instead of Thursday the 28th, a holiday host may invite students to join his/her family Thanksgiving Dinner on Saturday, November 30th.

I signed up to be hosted but I was not matched with a Thanksgiving Holiday Host. Why?

Unfortunately, the International Center cannot predict how many participants will sign up for the program each year. For the last 2 years, all of the students that wanted to spend Thanksgiving with a host family were accommodated.  This year, we have an abundance of students that may result in a handful who are not matched with a Thanksgiving Holiday Host, and vice versa.  In this case, the International Center will notify students accordingly and encourage participation for the following year.