How Staying in a Hostel Could Save You Hundreds
How Staying in a Hostel Could Save You Hundreds
Hostels have been very popular among solo travelers, young travelers, and backpackers alike.
And there is a reason for that.
Bear in mind you get what you pay for, and there are many pros and cons to staying in a hostel, you just have to do your research and determine if it’s right for you.
I’ll help you out with that today by going over what a hostel is and tips on how to make your stay even better.
What is a Hostel?
So, what exactly is a hostel, and how can it save you so much money?
To put it simply, think of a hostel as a dorm room. You can expect to sleep on a bunk bed, in the same room, as other travelers staying there. Also, you will most likely share a bathroom and potentially a kitchen and other common areas.
That is what makes these places so affordable. Having multiple people staying in one room and sharing utilities allows for hostels to charge much lower prices per night than traditional hotel rooms.
Hostels are an excellent way to meet new people, as most of the time the people staying in hostels are there to meet new people too! So don’t be afraid to introduce yourself and and have fun with the other hostel-goers.
Let’s take a look at some examples. For this “case study” I will be pretending that I am going to Barcelona, and I am choosing between a hostel and an entire place Airbnb. Now of course I want to stay close to the beach and public transportation.
Staying near Barceloneta, a super popular spot for partying and a good time, shows two wildly different options. **NOTE: these properties are in the same neighborhood.**
The hostel is $50 per night, at seven nights, that’s $350! It received excellent reviews in all categories (which we will get to in a second) but you will be in a room that sleeps eight total people.
As opposed to the Airbnb property, an entire place in the same neighborhood for $164 per night, you’re looking at $1,326 for the week.
You could potentially spend $1,000 less by staying in a hostel as opposed to an entire place Airbnb. Think of all the partying you could do with $1,000! Or, of course, other non-alcohol related activities.
How Safe are Hostels?
Hostels are generally very safe, but as with everywhere, some are safer than others.
So how do you ensure your safety, especially when living with a bunch of other people?
There are many variables that come into play when choosing the right hostel in terms of safety. For beginners, look at the “security” rating on Hostelworld. In the example we used above, the safety rating is a high 9.5 out of 10. They provide 24 hour security on site, security lockers, and luggage storage.
That’s a great start.
Hostels understand that people have security concerns, if anything, they know it is most people’s number one priority. In most cases, they want they absolute best for their guests, as they want continued business.
So overall, yes hostels are safe, especially if you take the correct precautions.
How to Get The Most Out of Your Stay
1. Don’t be Afraid to Spend a Little More
Yes hostels are very inexpensive. But if you have the opportunity to get a better overall rated hostel for spending a bit more money, go for it.
Even spending a bit more is still going to be less than most, if not all other properties that aren’t hostels.
2. Meet New People
You can meet some great people in hostels! The other people staying there are most likely other solo travelers travelling on a budget.
I know people who have stayed in hostels, met awesome people, and then stayed in touch for years following their stay. Now, whenever my friend goes to visit whatever city and country that friend is in, she can just stay with their family!
3. Read the Reviews
The one major thing I love about Hostelworld, is the reviews and ratings feature.
These are very important to read through, and you should pay closer attention to the ratings. Things you want to pay attentions to are the cleanliness, security, and atmosphere ratings.
You want to ensure you are getting a clean and secure hostel with a great overall vibe. So I stay clear of any places with ratings under a 9.0 in any category, but, as with every place, read the reviews first before you pass up on it strictly for that reason.
The hostel we referenced earlier has amazing ratings, and plenty of reviews. See what other people are saying and determine if that place is right for you!
Probably the biggest thing, at least in my opinion, is to ensure the place has lockers.
Making sure you have a nice, secure place to put your items is crucial. Which is why I recommend taking a great, durable padlock with you. I own and recommend this one.
Hostelworld will list all the amenities that come with your room, so check and make sure security lockers are one of the things listed.
5. Travel Backpack
Given that you will be staying in a room full of strangers, I recommend not leaving your super important stuff behind, even in your secure locker.
You can get a great daypack that you can carry all of your most valuable things in, while still being comfortable and stylish.
6. Book Through The Hostel Itself
So, if you are looking to save a little more money, you can always find the hostel you want to stay in at Hostelworld, but then go to the hostels actual website and book it there.
I find that booking it straight through the website could save you a few dollars per night.
Note that the websites will most likely be in a different language, so it may not be worth it.
7. Must Have Items
There are a few items that you should 100% bring with you whenever you stay in a hostel.
Earplugs. You will be staying with a few other people, and if you value a good, quiet night’s sleep, then get a good pair of earplugs here.
Eye Mask. Again, if you want good sleep, get an eye mask, especially a super comfortable one. People are bound to turn the lights on in the middle of the night for various things like packing to leave or returning from a night out. Don’t let that deter your valuable beauty sleep, get an eye mask here.
Long charger. If you are the unlucky soul that gets the top bunk, then this is a necessity. There will most likely not be any outlets by you up there, so ensure you get a charger long enough to reach. Here is one for iPhone and Android.
A good lock. Again, can’t stress this enough, bring good padlock. Even if they provide one, bring one anyway, just in case. Again, you can find one here.
8. Check the Amenities
Go through the list of amenities on Hostelworld and ensure they provide things like towels, linens for the bed, and other essential items.
If you have any questions, go to the hostels website and send them your questions; they will respond.
9. Go For the Bottom Bunk!
This will make your life so much easier! There is a very high chance that whatever hostel you stay in will be all, or mostly bunk beds.
If you can, make sure you get the bottom bunk. No having to crawl up and down at all hours of the night to go to the bathroom, or leave, or anything like that. Imagine trying to climb up there in the dark while you are absolutely smashed from a night on the town? Hard pass.
Get the bottom bunk.
10. Have an Open Mind
If you have never stayed in a hostel before, it can be kinda scary and daunting.
Just make sure to do your research, and go in there with the mindset that you are going to make some awesome friends, and you’ll have an awesome time.
It’s not as bad as you think, and it can help you save a ton of money so you can go out and enjoy the city so much more!
Overall, I’d say hostels are a fantastic option if you are backpacking, or travelling on a strict budget.
As we covered earlier, you could save upwards of $1,000 just by staying in a hostel as compared to a hotel or Airbnb.
You will definitely make memories in a hostel, and I think everyone should get to experience it at least once
As a disclosure, I am not responsible should any of these items break, or cause damage to your personal property.
Subscribe below to never miss a post! Trust me, you won’t want to miss it.
Also, check out our blog for more amazing posts like this one!
Never miss a post by joining today...FREE!
Disclosure: Bear in mind that some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I will earn a commission. Keep in mind that I link these companies and their products because of their quality and not because of the commission I receive from your purchases. The decision is yours, and whether or not you decide to buy something is completely up to you.