It´s not that I have stayed in Hostels my whole (travel) life but at least during my last travels I did and I have to admit, that these have been my best so far, weather it was in Portugal, New York or Sri Lanka. For all of you who never stayed in a Hostel you will find a general information of what a Hostel is, where to find them, how to book them, what to bring with you and much more here.
What is a Hostel?
- Hostels are usually inexpensive accommodations for people on the road.
- It is common to sleep in a dorm room (mixed or girls only available at most of the hostels) from 4 up to even 16 people in one room.
- The rooms are very simple, but most of the hostel provide lockers for your important stuff. Beds are usually bunk beds, sometimes you can choose between sleeping on the lower bed or up, choose wisely! 😉
- The bathrooms are usually shared with all the other people sleeping on the same floor but separated by gender.
- Hostels have a fully equipped kitchen free for use.
What to bring with you? The Hostel essentials!
- Flip Flops for the shower
- A locker (numbers – not a key one!) for your VIP items
- All the bathroom stuff in one bag – in case you need it in the middle of the night you don’t have to look for different things and just grab the whole bag.
- Earplugs and a sleeping mask. (Your are sharing a room!)
- An open mind and a healthy portion of common sense.
- A smile on your face and don’t be afraid to talk to people.
Where and how should you book?
Hostelbookers.com, Hostelworld.com, booking.com and agoda.com are my favorite pages to look for hostels nearby. Often this sides have special rates when it comes to rooms, but sometimes the price might be cheaper when you just show up at the hostel and ask for a bed. For very well known hostels, which have a rood ratings and comments it is often the case, that they are booked out in advance. eg. the one I stayed in in New York. My recommendation: If you are doing a city trip, book in advance. If you are on the road and not sure where you wanna go when you can rather look up the availability of the rooms online or call if they still have a room for the same day or just show up and have faith in your luck 🙂
Pro´s and Con´s – Do´s and Dont´s – to follow soon!
I also collected some of the pro´s and con´s of Hostels in comparison to other accommodations. Moreover you find the most important unwritten rules to follow when staying at a hostel. Both stories in another blog post online in the upcoming weeks!
Great advice. I love “A smile on your face and don’t be afraid to talk to people” I think other than the cost factor, thats the best bit about hostels. Meeting open minded people from different cultures, sharing stories and experiences. Sometimes the best cafe / travel spot comes from these encounters. Di x
Diana from http://paintsewgluechew.com/2016/02/prawn-and-guacamole-nibbles/
Totally agree with you. I also like the fact, that you eventually meet people again, or some who already discovered the area and can give you some tips and advices 🙂 actually gonna add that to the post 😀
What a nice idea to write about it – I think most people think everything is clear 🙂 I love hostels – each has its own story and ambience 🙂
Thank you Marta, I thought about writing about the basics, because obviously there is always a “first time” for everyone 🙂
Love this! The “An open mind and a healthy portion of common sense.” is very true. I also use hostels.com and the hostel’s own website. When I travel, my options are always hostels or airbnb. I’ve stayed at the Firehouse Hostel in Downtown Austin (Texas) and Auberge NOLA. I highly recommend them 🙂