Should I stay in a hostel?

by - September 12, 2019

Bunk beds in a hostel room
Whether you are on a budget or just looking for some adventure, staying in a hostel for at least one night is one of the activities you should do when you travel. Truth be told, not all hostels are the same nor do they offer the same activities, comfort and definitely not the same rules neither do they target the same population. 

A hostel is "a place that provides cheap food and lodging for a particular group of people" (Oxford Pocket Dictionary. 10th ed.) With this in mind, you should not expect 5 star accommodation as most hostels include shared spaces and facilities. Rooms are usually dormitories that may be mixed, females only or males only and may have from 4 to 10 beds or sometimes even more. Some have themes associated with the rooms or even the hostel in general and this is reflected by colourful painted walls or doors. 

The option of booking a private room is available. It costs a bit more than average but allows you to have the privacy you need even on a tight budget. You may compare a private room in a hostel to a 2 or in some cases 3 star hotel. Private rooms do not always offer absolute privacy and you may at times need to share some facilities like the restrooms, kitchen etc.

If you are travelling as a group of friends or family, you should consider letting one person book the room to make the process easier. However, there is no guarantee that your group will be placed together in the same room so you may want to contact the hostel directly to try to arrange that.

Given that hostels are almost never empty or many times they are booked way in advance, you too may need to consider pre-booking. Although most of them allow "free" cancellation, you may need to pay a little more money in order for the cancellation policy to come into effect so be sure to read the rules on cancellation and refunds in the event that you may need to do either. Each hostel has a different policy so DO NOT think that because you are using the same site for your booking e.g., Hostelworld that all terms and conditions of the parent site will apply to the booking.

In the case where the majority of the patrons are younger persons, noise level may at some point become an issue depending on the type of hostel you intend to book. The general populace that hostels target are younger people generally between the ages of 18 and 28 therefore, you may find that numerous hostels restrict entry for persons over and under this age limit but this is not the case for all of them so you may want to familiarise yourself with the terms of conditions of booking before you actually reserve a room or a bed.

If you're looking for stays of more than 3 weeks, a hostel is not the ideal place and you may want to invest in a temporary apartment or an Airbnb. This is because hostels are generally associated with short periods of stay so when booking your hostel, always make yourself aware of the terms and conditions of stay in your hostel because it will save you even more money and it also helps you to avoid putting yourself in an unnecessary predicament. 

Remember to have fun and don't be afraid to meet new people, after all, you're sharing a living space with them. 

You may read more about the hostels in "The top 10 reasons why you should stay in a hostel"

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1 comments

  1. Hostels are great places to meet people from all walks of life. They usually attract tourist and backpackers.

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