Hostel Hacks: A Beginner’s Guide To Saving On Accommodations
By DeAnna Taylor
Hostels are no longer the grungy, dirty, “brothel-like” places that were once portrayed on television. Hostels are quickly becoming the go-to accommodation for today’s backpacker and solo traveler as they provide a safe, affordable option in a social environment. Hostels can range from basic accommodations to modern and trendy.
Traveling solo and need to save? Or just want to see what the hype is about? Here are some tips and tricks to get you through your first stay at a hostel.
When booking a hostel you have a few options:
The lowest cost option is to stay in a dorm with bunk beds or single beds in a room. Tip: Bring earplugs just in case.
You can choose to stay in a gender-specific room or a co-ed room. Each guest is usually given a personal locker to store their belongings. Tip: Bring your own lock to secure your belongings and try to pack light.
You will also be sharing a bathroom with other guests. (usually only those in your dorm/ on your floor) Unlike hotels you will not have the usual freebies provided. Tip: Bring a towel, washcloth, and shower shoes as not every hostel will provide them.
You can opt to stay in a private room within the hostel. These rooms will cost a little more than the dorm but are not as much as an actual hotel. (depending on your location) They are normally pretty basic: bed, nightstand, maybe a desk and T.V.. Some hostels will even have private bathrooms for the private rooms as well. Tip: Stock up on snacks and bottled water for your stay.
Finally, most offer a free continental breakfast everyday. Tip: Use this to your advantage and eat up before heading out for the day.
While hostels may not sound appealing to the luxury traveler, they are a great option for those traveling for extended periods, for solo-travelers, for those city or country hopping, and for those wanting to save money.
DeAnna Taylor is a criminal defense Attorney turned travel writer. The Charlotte native recently completed one year abroad working as an English teacher in South Korea. Her hobbies include fitness, traveling to new countries, and trying new foods.