UCT International Students Accommodation / Housing

By | June 30, 2021

UCT International Students Accommodation / Housing

Housing for International Full Degree Students

Accepting your offer of study

Once you receive a letter of offer for an academic place, it is important that you confirm your acceptance of the offer, as soon as possible, in order to secure your place. Should you receive an offer for a place in UCT residence, then you ought to secure your residence offer within the specified period. A reply form is attached to the offer letter.

Arranging your accommodation

The University of Cape Town has over 26 000 students, but unfortunately can only offer accommodation in a university residence to 6 000 students. Therefore, the demand is high and by far exceeds availability.

In case you did not obtain UCT campus housing, the Off Campus Student Accommodation Services can assist you in finding accommodation offered by private landlords in surrounding areas. Please visit their website for more information. Once housing is identified, students need to liaise directly with the landlord when interested.

Housing for Semester Study Abroad Students

If you are not coming to UCT on exchange through one of the following partner programmes (Arcadia, CIEE, Ida Cooper Associates, IES or ISA) then you are eligible for housing placement through our service.

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The University of Cape Town has both on and off campus options available. Semester study abroad students may apply to be placed in one of the university’s residence halls (on-campus), or in secure, suitably furnished private accommodation (off-campus). This accommodation has been checked by the International Academic Programmes Office (IAPO) for our study abroad students and is within walking distance of the campus (or a Jammie Shuttle route – the free bus service for UCT students). Students may therefore choose between on campus or off campus housing. Please note that you will be required to pay the full rental for the semester block, and not on a month-by-month basis.

IAPO works with EduBed to manage the reservation of accommodation.

What is EduBed?

EduBed is a platform that makes finding student accommodation easy, transparent and safe. EduBed will help you find the right accommodation to suit your needs.

How does it work?

Upon confirmation of your admission for the Semester Study Abroad Programme, you will be sent a link which allows you to create a profile on EduBed. Once your profile is complete you will be able to see all the accommodation that is available to you. Browse different suburbs, scroll through photographs and read about properties until you find the place you want to call home. Then simply book using your credit card. Some houses can be paid for entirely up-front, depending on the length of your stay. For others you will only have to pay a booking fee, with the balance paid on arrival. Whatever the details, EduBed will spell it out for you in an easy way. Once you’ve booked, settle back and relax, knowing that the good times are about to start in a new city. Peruse EduBed’s information sheets about your new suburb, how to get around and the attractions in and around your accommodation.


  • If you use IAPO-secured accommodation, you are committed to the full semester lease period. You may not come to Cape Town and decide after a couple of days/weeks/months that you are going to move in with friends or make any other alternative accommodation plans. If you do this you will be liable for the full rent for the semester. Landlords will request that you sign a lease for the time you are residing in their house. The lease periods in 2017 are: 1st semester 4 March – mid July (last day of 2nd quarter) and 2nd semester 1st August – 5 December (last day of 4th quarter). These dates will change slightly each year as they are dependent on the semester dates. The dates are clearly spelt out on the EduBed site.
  • You are required to pay a ZAR3000.00 housing deposit through the EduBed site for off-campus accommodation. This is used to secure your room prior to your arrival in Cape Town. This will be deducted from your full rent figure, which is due on arrival in the house.  EduBed will also charge you a booking fee, as a percentage of your booking amount.
  • The balance of the rent owed should be paid to the landlord on arrival. Please be prepared to have this money ready within the first few days of your arrival.
  • Once in the accommodation, a refundable damages deposit of ZAR2500.00 (over and above the rental amount) must be paid to the landlord on arrival. This amount will be refunded at the end of the semester provided there are no damages or costs incurred. If any money needs to be deducted, the remaining balance will be refunded.


All accommodation is fully furnished and includes basic bedroom furnishings (bed, desk, chair, cupboard), bedding and bed linen (pillow, duvet, blanket), kitchen equipment including cutlery, crockery and cooking utensils, fridge, stove, and a furnished communal living area.

Most houses have laundry facilities and those that don’t either have a laundry service or are located close to a laundromat.

All houses are secured with burglar bars and security gates. Electricity, water and cleaning services are included in the rental amount. Some accommodation has a pay-as-you-go electricity system – in those cases electricity will not be included in the rent but will be an extra expense.

Excluded (you will have to pay extra for these items): Electricity where there is a pay-as-you-go meter, meals, telephone calls, wireless internet usage (if included in rental, the landlord will specify this on EduBed) and television rental if required.

Transport to campus: Most of the houses are within walking distance of the campus (less than 2.5km). Because of its location on the slopes of Table Mountain, the UCT campus is very steep and there is a university shuttle route that transports students from lower and middle campus to upper campus. Public transport in the form of minibus taxis is also available along Main Road.

Inter-university agreements

In terms of formal agreements with the following universities, accommodation will be billed directly to those students’ home universities or colleges and will be in the range of US$ 1 800 to US$ 2 000.

Students from these universities must still go through the housing selection process, but must not pay the booking fee themselves as this amount will be paid by their home institutions on their behalf.

  • Bentley University
  • Connecticut College
  • Cornell
  • Duke
  • Massachusetts
  • Princeton
  • Rice
  • Syracuse
  • Trinity

On-campus accommodation

You may also choose to live in one of UCT’s student residence halls on campus.  Accommodation is on a single room basis, in a shared self-catering apartment.  Further details regarding specific options, when available, will be detailed on the Edubed website.

Code of Conduct

The Code of Conduct is a document each student is expected to sign upon arrival into their semester accommodation. This document will outline the rules and regulation of your stay and the expected behaviour of each student in the residences. The rules quoted below are a summary of the document. Please note that it would be advantageous for you to read the rules and understand them, this will ensure that your stay will be a pleasant one.

General house rules

* No student shall enter the room of another student without permission.

* A student shall not sub-let any part of a student housing unit for financial considerations or otherwise.

* Students shall not have an overnight visitor in their room or in any other part of the house without the consent of the landlord.

* Students shall ensure that their visitors comply with domestic rules, and they shall be responsible for the behaviour of such visitors.

* A student shall not keep, without the prior permission of the landlord, a pet of any kind in the house or its immediate precincts.

* A student shall not leave litter in any part of the building, its garden or immediate precincts.

* A student shall not act in any manner that is abusive towards members of the household or neighbours.

* A student shall not create an environment that is intimidating, hostile or demeaning, specifically in relation to race, gender, beliefs or sexual orientation. If any student feels threatened or intimidated in any way, please contact IAPO staff for advice on how to proceed with the matter.


* A student shall not make such noise as disturbs another person, be it a fellow housemate or a neighbour.

* Music and/or loud conversation should be toned down considerably after 22h00 on weekdays and after midnight at weekends out of consideration for neighbours and fellow housemates.


* A student shall not organise or help to organise any gathering, function or party in any student house for financial benefit.

* Parties MAY NOT be held at the houses.

*No drugs will be allowed on the premises at all. Any student found using or in possession of drugs will be handed over to the police.