Terms and Conditions

Terms and Conditions

Booking a Course

All courses must be booked in advance and a completed booking form should be sent to the school.

  • All fees must be paid in advance of the course start date.  Payments are due 30 days after the invoice issue date.
  • Bookings are not transferable.
  • Bank charges are paid by students.
  • An (non-refundable) enrolment fee must be paid at the same time as paying for your course.
  • Course fees do not include course books, travel expenses, social events where fees are charged or personal and health insurance. Some course materials are provided
  • All students are required to present their passports on their enrolment day and the school will retain a copy of the information on the school database.
  • Students must be 16 years of age or over for all adult courses ( 21+ for Business English)
  • Student must be 12+ for all private groups
  • Students under 18 will be accepted at the discretion of The Essential English Centre Ltd.

Starting a course

All courses start on a Monday ( accept when the school is closed. School closure dates are available on our website) and on your first day you must attend your enrolment appointment before you can start your course.

Booking accommodation

  • An (non-refundable) accommodation booking fee must be paid at the same time booking your accommodation.

All accommodation must be booked at least 4 weeks in advance and is subject to availability.  The Essential English Centre offers homestay accommodation and student residence accommodation. The Essential English Centre does not own its accommodation but uses local, student residences and homestay accommodation providers. The terms and conditions for each accommodation type are available here and should be read before booking. When you book a course, you agree to these terms and conditions and you will also be asked to sign these terms and conditions during enrolment. 

Students who wish to extend their stay must give at least 1 week’s notice in writing and payment must be made 1 week in advance.  Accommodation is always subject to availability.

*Important* Students must vacate their accommodation at the agreed time.  In such cases where a student does not vacate and/or has not made payment, a written warning will be issued in the first instance and students may be subject to the trespassing laws of England.


All students who require a visa to study in the UK should also read our Visa-student-terms-and-conditions.pdf before booking a course.  These terms and conditions are in addition to our standard terms and conditions.


The Essential English Centre’s insurance policy covers accident or injury on the school premises only. It does not cover illness, theft, damages or loss of a student’s personal effects.

The Essential English Centre holds no responsibility for any illness, theft, damages or loss of personal effects and strongly recommends that students take out personal insurance which covers, as a minimum, travel, health and money. More information about buying student insurance can be found on our website. EU Nationals may be eligible for health cover through the E111

The Essential English Centre will not be held responsible for any difficulties a student may face due to any undisclosed medical conditions.

Students may purchase travel and medical insurance at the same time as bookings their course.  The Essential English Centre recommends booking insurance as course cancellations (for example due to sudden illness) will not be refunded by the school.

Cancellation Policies

Cancelling a course

(a) Cancellations before the course start date.

  • If a course is cancelled more than 28 days before the course start date. The only charge will be the non-refundable enrolment fee.
  • 15-27 working days before the course start date, we will charge 1 week’s tuition fee
  • No refunds will be made for cancellations made lesson than 15 days prior to the course start date

(b) Cancellations after the course start date:

  • No refunds will be made once the course has started.
  • All notice of cancellations must be made in writing to the Director(s) of the school by the person who booked the course and within school office working hours. Office working hours are Monday-Friday 8:30am-5:00pm.

Cancelling accommodation 

Homestay Accommodation

  • If homestay accommodation is cancelled more than 7 days before the accommodation check-in date the only charge will be the non-refundable accommodation booking fee.
  • If homestay accommodation is cancelled 7 days or less before the start of the accommodation check-in date, you will be charged for 1 week’s accommodation plus the non-refundable accommodation booking fee.
  • The accommodation booking fee is always non-refundable

Students who wish to change their homestay accommodation during their stay must give 1 weeks’ notice in writing on the first Monday of the 1 week period.  All of our homestay families undergo a thorough inspection process ensuring the health and safety needs of our students are met.  If a student wishes to change homestay accommodation without a valid reason, we cannot guarantee that another host family can be made available.

Residence accommodation

  • Residence accommodation is not confirmed until full payment has been recieved.
  • Once payment has been received, there is a 7 day ‘cooling off’ period.  This means a student can cancel their accommodation within the first 7 days and receive a full refund, minus the accommodation booking fee.
  • If residence accommodation is cancelled after the 7 day period, no refunds will be given.
  • Please note that the student residence operates its own terms and conditions and we are bound by these rules.

Students who wish to change their residence accommodation after the check-in date can not usually do so.  The residence room is booked and paid for in full at the time of booking and changes are subject to the decision of the residence manager.

This policy applies throughout your stay.


Where a refund is issued, the school will not cover the cost incurred as a result of an international bank transfer. A refund application form must be requested from the bookings team and completed and returned to the school.  Once the refund has been confirmed, we aim to process all refunds within 30 days. Please ensure all of the refund details are correct on the refund form as this may cause delays in processing the refund.

  • The enrolment fee, accommodation booking fee and bank transfer fees are non-refundable.
  • For cancellations please refer to our cancellation policy. Where necessary, you will need to read ‘ cancelling a course’ and ‘cancelling accommodation’.
  • No refund will be made for shortening the course duration after the payment is received.
  • No refunds are given in any circumstances where a student is absent from class. In exceptional circumstances a student may apply for special leave, however this is granted at the discretion of the Director(s).
  • Refunds must be applied for by completing a ‘Refund application form’ and returning to the booking team at school. This will then be passed to the Director(s) of the school who will review the application and will inform you, in writing (usually within 14 days) about the decision. 
  • Refunds are usually processed within 30 days of agreeing the refund


All students must apply for holidays, in writing at least two weeks in advance. It is not sufficient to notify a member of staff verbally. The maximum authorised holiday permitted for students is 1 week for every 12 weeks of study.  The permitted time will be added to the end of the course or you may be given the possibility to attend additional classes. This will be decided by The Essential English Centre.  You will not be issued a refund for any holidays taken.  The one week holiday must be taken within the 12 weeks’ study period.  It can not roll over to the next 12 week period.

The school will be closed on all public holidays. No additional hours are added to any course for these days.
The school will be closed during the Christmas holidays. No charges are incurred by students for the days on which the school is closed during this period.
School closure dates are available on our website.


If you are required to postpone your course start date, or your accommodation start date then the following rules will apply.
Postponing your course

  • If you wish to postpone your course, you must pay the full course fees by the original start date and may take up the place within 3 months.
  • Postponed courses are subject to availability and where a course is fully booked you will be offered an alternative start date which will be decided by The Essential English Centre.

Postponing your accommodation

  • You must request to postpone your accommodation in writing (by post or email) more than 10 working days before the check-in date.  After this time it will be treated as a cancellation and our Accommodation Cancellation Policy must be followed.
  • You may postpone your accommodation twice free of charge and after this, it will be considered as a cancellation and our Cancellation Policy must be followed.
  • Postponing your accommodation will most likely lead to you being placed within a different room or with a different host family than originally stated in your Confirmation Letter and will be decided by The Essential English Centre.

Complaints procedure

We hope that you enjoy your time at The EEC.  However, in the event that you wish to make a complaint, The EEC has a clear complaints procedure which ensures you are listened to and that an objective resolution can be found.  The procedure can be viewed on our policies page.


  • A student agrees on signing the registration form that The Essential English Centre Ltd keeps their personal records on file. Should any circumstances change it is the student’s responsibility to keep The Essential English Centre Ltd informed of all changes, in particular, of any changes of home address in the UK, as well as in their home country, changes to emergency telephone numbers and contact names and change of email address.
  • Students at the School all study together and it is required that students consider one another and all teachers and staff. This includes staff within the school and within the building. Any student whose behaviour causes inconvenience, offence or distress to other students or The Essential English Centre Ltd staff may be given the opportunity to discuss those issues in the first instance but may be immediately excluded from lessons if such behaviour is considered to be abusive. In such cases no refund will be given. Persistent offenders will be expelled from The Essential English Centre Ltd and their course cancelled. No refund of course fees will be made.
  • Students are responsible for friends or relatives who accompany them to The Essential English Centre Ltd. Such persons are permitted to enter the building 10 minutes before the lesson start time and 10 minutes after. They are not permitted to remain in the school or the building at any other time. If these rules are not adhered to and if the behaviour of a friend or relative causes inconvenience, offence or distress to other students or The Essential English Centre Ltd staff, the enrolled student will be given the opportunity to discuss those issues in the first instance but may be immediately excluded from lessons. Persistent offenders will be expelled from The Essential English Centre Ltd and their course cancelled. No refund of course fees will be made.
  • Letters and certificates will not be issued to students who have not paid, attended or reached the levels set out by their course tutor. A minimum of 80% attendance is required to receive the course certificate
  • The maximum number of students in a class is 12, September to June and 14 in July and August
  • Details of the class times are those which are agreed with your course tutor and may be subject to change.
  • Timetabled hours exclude short breaks.
  • Students taking an examination course will also be required to take a written test and/or have the Director of Studies’ approval, and will not be permitted onto the course if they are not at the required level. Students who take an exam course are also required to complete a substantial amount of homework as part of their course. It is the students’ responsibility to give homework to the teacher to be assessed. 
  • Change of class or time is strictly subject to availability. Although every effort is made to place students in the location and at the time of their choice, students can only move if there is a space in the class and if the student is at the right level for the class.
  • Students will be required to book and pay for any external examinations and The Essential English Centre Ltd does not accept any responsibility for the final grade that a student achieves.
  • The Essential English Centre Ltd reserves the right to cancel, move, adjust the guided learning hours or merge any class where there is insufficient demand or any other justifiable reason to do so. For cancelled classes the School will offer an alternative class of the same value. Where a group lesson has less than 3 students in the class, the teaching hours will be adjusted according to coincide with the value of private lessons. One student will receive 1.5 hours of private tuition and two students will receive 2 hours of tuition.
  • Complaints about the School’s courses or services should be made immediately as complaints made after the course has finished will not be accepted.
  • Students are advised that the School, its employees and its representatives accept no liability for personal injury and / or loss of / damage to personal property on the Schools premises, whether by fire, burglary, theft or otherwise. This condition also applies to public and private places when students are on School trips or excursions.
  • The School is not responsible for the safe keeping or delivery of any fax, post, etc .sent to the students at the Schools addresses.
  • The School is not responsible for the safekeeping of exam results or certificates.
  • Students may from time to time be photographed and recorded moving images, the photographs and videos. It is your responsibility to inform The Essential English Centre Ltd if you do not wish for your image to be used.
  • It is the policy of the School not to divulge any personal details of students to a third party, other than to the appropriate authorities, without the student’s prior consent.
  • In all cases the decision of the Directors of The Essential English Centre Ltd will be final and binding.
  • These Terms are governed by the law of England and are subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the Courts of England.