This just in! You don’t have to be broke, nomadic, or on your gap year to enjoy the many benefits of staying in a hostel. Gone are the days of associating budget accommodation, like hostels, to college kids and gross shared rooms. So, the next time your friend dismisses the idea, or references more than one unfortunate stereotype, simply respond with, “Felicia, you are going to love it and here’s why…”
1. The Cost
You don’t have to be traveling around the globe on a fourteen-year trip to enjoy saving some cash. The less money you spend on accommodation, the more money you can spend on sightseeing, food, and nightlife. Hostels are perfect for that. Depending on the country, location, and room size, an average night will cost you between 15-30 dollars. If your pockets run a little deeper you could even get a private room for around 30-50 dollars. That means double the amount of paella in Spain and triple the amount of souvlaki in Greece. Definitely food for thought.
Source: Big Stock Photo
One of the reasons hostels are so inexpensive is that they lack the traditional amenities you find in hotels: The TV’s, mini fridges, and quick dial concierges, or sometimes referred to as the reasons you spend time in a room instead of out exploring. Don’t fret though, hostels have their own set of amenities, like a plethora of maps, tourist information, and curated trips and events. Many offer day tours and nightlife options that are fun and give you an authentic experience in a new city. And if you choose to go at it alone, you will be hard pressed to find a hostel without a WIFI connection. They would never do that to you.
3.The Unique Styles
Hostels come in all shapes and sizes. Over the years, really cool and unique architectural designs have popped up all over the world. Hostels are smaller and easier to develop than hotels leaving room for tons of imagination. Want to stay in a castle in Nuremberg, a beach hut in Zanzibar, or perhaps an art gallery turned hostel in Porto? These are just a few of the endlessly cool options to choose from. Even the seemingly normal-looking hostels tend to offer out-of-the-box ideas, inside. Fun features like cinema rooms, rooftop terraces, libraries, themed bars, and so much more. Apps like Hostel Booker and Hostel World can help you get one step closer to staying in a tree house in Nicaragua.
Sometimes it’s just nice to go with the flow, and hostels perfectly cater to last minute decisions and a ‘fly by the seat of your pants’ mentality. Maybe the city you are in is not quite your cup of tea, or you meet someone and decide to detour from your original plans. Whatever the circumstance, the chances are high that you can arrive in a city and find a bed to sleep on. Now if that absolutely terrifies you, then go the booking-in-advance route. The good news is that many hostels have very forgiving cancellation policies, so even if you want to book every single night of your trip, you can still change your mind and not break the bank.
5. The People
Source: Big Stock Photo
This may be the biggest reason you fall in love with hostels and never go back. Right off the bat the people play a role in making your trip as genuine as possible. From the local staff whose mandate is to help you have as much fun as possible, to the other tourists that provide a wealth of knowledge on what to avoid and what is a must-see. No other type of accommodation is as social and allows you to build strong relationships, as hostels.
The moral of the story is this: hostels are cool. If you like saving money, meeting interesting people, and feeling at home in some of the most remote places on this earth, hostels are for you! Never mind the stereotypes, and forget that terrifying movie “Hostel”. You will never know how much you love it, until you try it yourself.5