What is a Hostel?
What is a Hostel? When you are out exploring the world on your backpacking trip, staying at hostels is the best way for you to live for many reasons, the main one being that they’re always a lot cheaper to stay at than in the traditional hotels.
Hostels are also a great way for you to meet fellow like-minded backpackers and make new friends, as normally you are sharing the room with 4+ people. Most backpackers have a tight-ish budget to stick with and are always looking for the cheaper option. When it comes to accommodation, hostels are known as the cheaper and more relaxed alternatives to hotels.
What is a Hostel Dorms
Most often you will sleep in a ‘shared dorm.’ These are rooms that you share with others, and are usually filled with bunk beds. You can find anything from 4 to 20 beds per dorm.
Often you can choose (before you book) what kind of dorm you would prefer to stay in – most often the larger dorm (more beds) you choose, the cheaper it will be for you.
Females can sometimes also choose to stay in a dorm shared with only females. A dorm is basically just a bed for you to sleep for the night. You get your own bed and sometimes there are lockers where you can store your luggage and keep it safe.
Sheets or Sleeping Bag?
Sometimes the hostels provide sheets and pillows for free, but often you have to pay extra for this. Sometimes they don’t even give you the choice but to pay extra, because they don’t allow sleeping bags.
This they will most likely inform you about before you book the room, and you can also find more info about each hostel via the online booking sites like hostelworld.com, where other travelers rate and rank their personal experience from each place.
Many hostels have private rooms you can choose, which can be a nice thing if you’re a couple travelling together and want some privacy. You will find these are more similar to hotel rooms, however still a lot cheaper.
The only major difference apart from no TV, room service or mini-bar, is that the showers and bathrooms are normally still shared with the others from the dorms. You can also book private room for more than two people. This is aimed for groups travelling together.
Single Supplement Fee
This is a fee that solo travellers often are charged when booking a single room and staying in a room with more than one bed.
This is a supplement to compensate a hotel for their losses because only one person is using a room or cabin with more than one bed.
Nearly all hostel/hotel rooms are built with the assumption that at least two people will occupy them with prices based on that.
You can be charged all from 10 to 100% of the bed you won’t be using.
Eating / Kitchens
What is a Hostel kitchen like? At the hostels there is usually a kitchen where you can cook your own food. This is a great money saver, as eating out everyday will add up fast. Some hostels also offer a simple but free breakfast. This usually includes tea, toast and a bowl of cereal with milk.
Meeting / Common Rooms
A hostel is a great way to meet other like-minded travellers. Often there are common rooms where you can hang out, watch TV, meet others, make new friends and share travel stories.
backpackers use hostels as ‘friend-makers,’ so if you are travelling alone and would like to meet new people, staying at hostels is the way to go!
Do Hostels have Internet Access and WiFi?
Do hostels offer WiFi services? Depending on the hostel and where you are in the world, the service is different. They often have computers where they charge a lot of money for Internet connection.
Others will offer free WiFi. Bringing your own laptop, tablet or smartphone will end up saving you both money as well as time.
We all like to have strong WiFi when staying in hotels and hostels. Those hostels and hotels that are using Antamedia Hotel WiFi Services will have strong reliable WiFi.
Check out our guide for How To Book A Hostel, where we share tips and links for the best places for you to find hostels.