Care to relive the glory days of college? In the summer, when students go home, most college dorms sit empty. But some enterprising universities are renting out their unoccupied apartments and dorms to travelers in their off-season months (typically January, and June through August).
University Rooms lets travelers of all ages book unused rooms at more than 400 universities in more than 100 cities around the world. The service is popular in Europe and Australia and it is beginning to catch on in North America. Starting at about $22 per night, it can cost about the same price as a hostel but offers more privacy.
In Europe, travelers can stay at universities in Austria, France, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Spain, Turkey, and the U.K.. In the Americas, options are slightly more limited. There are a few cities in Canada that offer the service (including Montreal and Quebec), Buenos Aires in Argentina and two cities in the U.S.: Laredo, Texas (Texas A&M), and Worcester, Massachusetts.
Of course, student accommodations are not the most luxurious on the planet. They’re basically just like what you remember from college. Some may be straight dorms (with a shared bathroom down the hallway), while others are more typical apartment options (with a kitchen and bathroom en suite). Many University Rooms stays also include breakfast in the dining hall.
But across the pond, the service could help live out some fantasies. Didn’t get into Oxford or Cambridge? You can still get the experience by staying in one of the universities’ historic dorms, some of which date back hundreds of years.