Hostels can be a great place to stay if you’re young, have no kids and travel on a budget. They can also be an excellent opportunity to meet new people. If you’re older, more settled and looking for some quiet time alone, this may not be your best option, but good news: hostels are changing! Staying in a hostel has become quite a trend, and we’ve outlined the pros and cons when you consider them for booking your next vacation.
Staying in a Hostel: The Good, the Bad and Everything in Between
Hostels Are More Affordable Than You Would Think
Hostels are more affordable than hotels, Airbnb, camping and Couchsurfing because non-profits or community organisations usually run them. The people working in them do it out of passion rather than to make money. As such, they’re much less likely to overcharge you for things like meals and activities than other accommodation options.
They may also have fewer amenities such as laundry facilities or Wi-Fi—but those cost savings get passed onto you. Hostels are an excellent option for budget travellers, but even travellers who want to splurge a little bit can book a private accommodation in the newer hostels that have been opening up the past few years.
Perfect For Solo Travelers
In addition to providing a cheap place to stay, many hostels are explicitly designed for solo travellers. You’ll be surrounded by like-minded people and have a better chance of making friends, so you don’t feel lonely when travelling alone.
Other amenities include shared kitchens and standard rooms where guests can mingle over drinks or play board games together. Many hostels also organise group activities such as pub crawls or city tours, helping you get out and interact with others while still feeling safe.
Bad Roommates Can Ruin Your Stay — But You Can Overcome This
One drawback of staying in a hostel is the possibility of getting a not-so-fun roommate if you book a bed rather than a private accommodation.
While most people who stay at hostels are respectful and considerate, there are always a few who aren’t so great. People can act out because they don’t know how to be good guests. It’s also possible for two people staying together in separate rooms but sharing the same bathroom unit to have conflicts arise over personal space issues. For example, using another person’s toiletries without asking first.
The best way to avoid this is to just be positive and communicative. You’ll see that they will start to open up when they know more about who they are staying with.
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Shared Bathrooms and Showers
Shared bathrooms and showers are among the most significant drawbacks of staying in a hostel. You get to meet new people and have to share these tight spaces. If you aren’t comfortable with this arrangement, you may consider staying in an Airbnb or even a hotel if your budget allows it.
Showering at night can be challenging because others might be using the bathroom while you’re trying to get ready for bed after a long day of sightseeing or hiking through mountains, but if you wake up a little earlier than the travelers who are sleeping in from partying late, you’ll be A-OK.
Where to Book Your Stay in a Hostel?
Whether you book a hostel room at Booking.com, Hostelworld or Airbnb, you can also bring your internet access devices wherever you decide to stay. Whether you have a laptop, a tablet or a smartphone, there are several ways you can use them to get internet access to Facebook, a mobile online casino, or internet banking while travelling. One last popular option that allows you to book your stay in advance while travelling abroad would be to connect with locals through Couchsurfing.
You’ll meet people from around the world and get the opportunity to stay at affordable prices. There are some drawbacks to staying in hostels, such as noise levels or lack of privacy, but we recommend trying it at least once because who knows? It could be one of your favourite memories.