Many people choose to spend a longer time in Edinburgh and join an English language course so they can improve their speaking and listening skills in a cosmopolitan city. Everyone who chooses to stay in Edinburgh must find somewhere to sleep! There is a wide range of accommodation available throughout the year for every budget, from modest to luxurious.

Edinburgh is a great size of city, neither too larger nor too small, the perfect town! Whichever area of the town you live in, you are never really that far from anywhere. Edinburgh is a great town for walking around, most locals walk a lot as it is often easier to walk for 20 to 30 minutes than drive or take the bus. The local bus service is a good way to go from the outskirts to the centre and then you can get off the bus and walk to most places in the Old Town and New Town.

The majority of accommodation on offer for short-term visitors, those who are staying from 1 - 12 weeks, is close to the town centre. Either in the Old Town, New Town or City Centre areas. For visitors to plan to stay longer than three months, it is worth looking at the option of a flat share, the majority of flat share is in the areas of Bruntsfield, Newington, Marchmont, Stockbridge, Canonmills, Trinity, Leith. There are regular buses available into the town centre from these neighbourhoods or it takes about 30 minutes on foot.

Budget hostels in Edinburgh

Younger visitors in their 20s are often happy to share a room if it means saving money. There are many budget hostels with shared dormitory rooms or private double rooms with en-suite bathrooms. In a hostel there is usually a communal kitchen area where you can cook your own evening meal. You can use the cooking utensils there but you must wash up after yourself.

Bed & Breakfast accommodation in Edinburgh

For something slightly more comfortable and more private than a hostel, we would recommend staying in a small, privately-owned B&B. There is a wide range of Bed & Breakfast accommodation throughout the city. Prices can range from around 28 GBP per night to 100 GBP, depending on the amount of luxury you wish to treat yourself to. At the lower price range you tend to find a simple room, usually with an en-suite bathroom but sometimes a separate bathroom. The room price often includes a kettle and tea making facilities in your bedroom and breakfast every morning. The offer of breakfast at each B&B varies slightly, however most include the option of either a continental breakfast or a cooked breakfast. Some place offer a cooked breakfast only at the weekend. In most B&Bs you cannot use the kitchen to prepare meals, so you must eat out every evening. Some B&Bs have a microwave and fridge available for guests to use.

Privately owned B&Bs tend to have from 2 to 10 rooms. Breakfast is eaten in the dining room and you have the chance to talk to other guests and the owners usually like to stop and have a chat. Staying in a B&Bs is usually a more friendly and local experience than staying in a large hotel

Hotel accommodation in Edinburgh

Hotels in Edinburgh vary in size and comforts. New hotels are opening almost monthly as the rise in Edinburgh as a popular destination for conferences and festivals increases. As an increasingly popular destination on the business tourism map, the hotel scene in Edinburgh caters for a wide range of tastes and budgets. For the visitor who plans on spending most of their time out and about and doesn’t mind a basic but comfortable hotel, a range of budget hotels are on offer around the city. A budget hotel will offer you a simple, private and secure bedroom and en-suite bathroom.

If you are looking for something more comfortable and with all the luxuries, there are plenty of 4 or 5 star chain hotels in the centre or slightly more sophisticated, boutique hotels with uniquely decorated rooms and furnishings. Many hotels have good quality restaurants or you can choose from the plentiful supply of restaurants catering to every taste the city has to offer.

Self-catering apartment accommodation in Edinburgh

If you prefer to stay in an apartment, there are many on offer around the city. There are several large agencies which rent apartments for short-term lets. You can find anything from studio apartments for one person to 6 bedroom apartments for 14 people. Apartments are available in many part of the city, it often pays to stay a little outside the centre of town as the prices are more reasonable if you are willing to walk 20 minutes to the centre. If you are coming to Edinburgh for only a few weeks, it is worth booking a flat in advance through an agency.

If you are planning to stay in Edinburgh long-term and wish to rent a flat for 6 - 12 months, it is worth doing it when you are in Edinburgh. Gumtree is an important source for flat-share or renting a flat. Always check what the rent includes, make sure to ask about bills, council tax, TV license and extras.

Homestay accommodation in Edinburgh

For many foreign visitors who come to Edinburgh to learn English, the option of homestay accommodation is appealing. Not only for the homely environment but also the English language skills you can acquire from the daily contact you have with English.

When you arrive at a homestay you are welcomed into a friendly and relaxed environment. You can choose to share evening meals with your host and can spend time chatting to them around the house. You can use the washing machine and have access to everyday household facilities. Homestay is a great way to integrate in to the local community and learn about Scotland and the United Kingdom from a native speaker.

However, it is important to remember that hosts also have their own lives and commitments. Although they are very willing to help you and talk to you, you must not expect them to dedicate all their spare time to you. Hosts need their own space and time off as well.

The population of Edinburgh

Native English speakers from Scotland, England, Ireland and Wales, as well as Australia, Canada and the USA have made Edinburgh their home and English is their native language. Many people from all over the world intermingle with local born Scots and although a growing number of locals don’t have English as their mother tongue, they have adopted English as their everyday functioning language and are proficient users of English at a native speaker level.