Can you stay on campus during the Holidays?

<p>I’m 99% sure I’m going to Alabama next year, I just need to figure out all the small details, including housing.</p>

<p>I was going to try and move into a 4 person suite in Ridgecrest South (not the honors hall), but then my mom brought up the fact that I might not be able to stay there during the holidays.</p>

<p>I’m from the Philadelphia area and flying home 3-4 times a year won’t be happening for me next year. I’ll probably fly home to visit maybe twice, for Christmas and either spring break OR thanksgiving, but not both. </p>

<p>On the Alabama housing website it says this under the FAQ:</p>

<p>"Where should I live if I need housing over break periods? Do any residence halls remain open?</p>

<p>If you know that you will need housing during periods during which the University closes, you may want to consider living in Burke East or West, Rose Towers, or the Highlands. These residence halls do not close during break periods and are available to freshmen. The Bluff and Bryce Lawn are also open during break periods, but they are typically available only to upperclassmen."</p>

<p>… But it doesn’t say anything about any of the other dorms… does that mean those are the only ones that stay open?</p>

<p>If I end up with a suite in Ridgecrest South, will I be allowed to stay on campus during a holiday break or will I have to leave the campus?</p>

<p>The dorms only close for Winter Break (December-January), Spring Break (March), and Summer Break (May to August.) The dorms are open over Thanksgiving Break (November) and Fall Break (October).</p>

<p>You'd be surprised how inexpensive it can be to fly home during breaks. With enough advance planning and knowing the going prices for airfare, you can get some good deals.</p>

<p>Should you need to stay on campus when most dorms are closed, UA will provide housing in one of the open dorms for the break and then you can move back to your assigned room once all of the dorms reopen after break.</p>

<p>Also, remember that Ridgecrest South is a popular dorm and may not have any spaces available by the time you are able to select your room. Spaces may open up later on as students change their room assignments, but you'll have to check for those open spaces as there is no guarantee that specific rooms will open up.</p>

<p>Since Southwest Air flies into Philly, you may want to get on its regular e-mail list so you receive notification of its sales and specials. During a recent sale, I managed to book a one-way fare for my son from BWI to BHM for just $69. Should you have a roommate or friend who has wheels and drives through Huntsville, sometimes you can pick up a bargain fare there. Last year, my son flew home on AirTran for just $59.</p>

<p>I can tell you that my DS is one of those that only came home last year for Winter and Spring Break with no problem and although there were definitely LESS students during the other holidays, he never felt he was all alone. He even indicated that he'll have more company this year for Thanksgiving that plans are to even do their own dinner. </p>

<p>We even found out later that if he had wanted to stay for spring break (for whatever reason) we could request temporary accomodations from Housing. If there is space available in one of the open dorms, you take essentials and stay there for that week. Don't know what the cost is, if any - I imagine there is a nominal fee. </p>

<p>One thing to look into is signing up for the ZipCar so you can have transportation if you want. We didn't do this last year but he likes the idea that this year he can catch a movie, go somewhere further from campus if no one has a car.</p>

<p>And I agree with SEA-tide, getting your Southwest flights early is the best savings.</p>


<p>Lots of OOS students stay on campus for the shorter breaks. Even if money was not a consideration, sometimes the travel time makes returning home just not feasible.</p>

<p>You will not be alone....and you will have the opportunity to enjoy the campus in a more leisurely way. You can use the time productively by cleaning your room, shopping, doing laundry, studying and getting ahead on assignments, or you can just enjoy the downtime and catch up on sleep.</p>

<p>In the past many students have made friends who have invited them home for the breaks. That's hospitality southern style.</p>

<p>As others have said the dorms are open during the Thanksgiving break. You'll be home for Christmas so that won't be a problem and you can make arrangements to either fly home or go with a friend over spring break. </p>

<p>As for flights. If you can get a ride to Atlanta you can fly airtran to Philly for cheap cheap cheap. Usually under $90 each way. They also have a standby program for college kids where you can get the flight for $69 the day of the flight. Go to their site and look up Airtran U. </p>

<p>Southwest has several sales throughout the year and they fly from BHM - PHL. I booked two roundtrip flights for football weekends this fall for $200 each and lil bro got his roundtrip flight for Christmas for under $240. Delta also has some solid fare sales periodically and they fly from BHM - PHL as well.</p>

<p>Adding to what socal2bama and I mentioned, UA has a limited amount of housing available over breaks when the dorms are closed for those who need/wish to stay on campus. There is no charge for this service, but a small deposit is required. I stayed on campus over spring break last year due to high airfare prices and was very grateful that UA had an available space in Rose Towers (which is to be demolished this summer) for that week. UA also provided linens and some toiletries, which was a nice touch.</p>

<p>When purchasing airline tickets, remember to pick flights that will work with UA's shuttle times or find a ride to the airport. Early morning departures from and late arrivals into Birmingham make it more difficult to find a shuttle.</p>

<p>While it may seem anticlimactic, if money's tight, consider moving in alone to save the cost of airfare, hotel, and rental car for additional people. A private shuttle or taxi costs $50-90 each way with a student discount and it is easy to mail a couple of boxes down beforehand.</p>

<p>The following is just part of an email received about a week ago:</p>

<p>Dear Parent,</p>

<p>It’s hard to believe, but the end of the semester is quickly approaching. We hope that your student has had a successful semester and is looking forward to the upcoming holidays and break from classes.</p>

<p>To insure a successful end to the semester, there are some things that your student has recently been informed of and should keep in mind:</p>

<p>· All residence halls will remain open during Thanksgiving Break.</p>

<p>· Most residence halls close during Winter Break. Rose Towers, the Highlands, Bryce Lawn, the Bluff, Burke East and West, and Palmer Halls remain open during Winter Break. Students in other locations must plan to move out over Winter Break.</p>

<p>^^^I have seen that e-mail and I think that the last sentence "Students in other locations must plan to move out over Winter Break" is worded incorrectly. Students returning for Spring Semester do not move out during Winter Break, they just lock their room and suite doors and return for the start of next semester. I do encourage students to not leave any valuables in their room especially in open view.</p>