Growing up, I had never heard of a hostel. Perhaps I had seen it in writing, but I’m sure the word nerd in me figured it was just someone misspelling “hotel.”
My family was all about that Holiday Inn life…I’ve since evolved, explored and enjoyed my stays at various hostels around the world. Still unsure about hostels? Let’s debunk a few of the top hostel myths:
1. Hostels are dirty.
Ew, what about bedbugs?! I’ll admit, I was a bit nervous about cleanliness before my first hostel stay. And while most hostels don’t offer daily turndown services – yes, you’ll have to make your own bed – I’ve found fellow travelers to be very respectful and clean overall. In fact, luxury hostels these days rival some hotels in terms of appearance and tidiness!
2. Hostels are unsafe – especially for young women.
You’re staying at a HOSTEL? But…what about that movie?? Just stay at a hotel – you’ll be safer! OK – girls AND boys, it all comes down to common sense on this one. Hostels themselves aren’t dangerous; situations you get yourself into can be unsafe, hostel unrelated. Most hotels also have security features, including passcode requirements to access room areas outside of the lobby – so random folks can’t just wander in! Always check out reviews and make sure the neighborhood is safe – especially if you plan on going solo. Don’t let fear hold you back; reach out to fellow travelers and make friends!
3. Hostels are only for youths.
While some hostels are definitely geared towards younger crowds, plenty of older folks opt for hostels too! Some hostels even market themselves as being family-friendly. Don’t strike hostels off the list just because you’re not in college anymore!
4. Hostels are for penny pinchers.
True, many look to hostels when they’re traveling on a budget; however, these days hostels can be just as glamorous as a 5-star hotel! In fact, here are 10 of the most expensive hostels in Europe! Many “regular” hostels also have options to upgrade rooms if you’re looking for a bit more space and/or privacy.
5. Hostels are loud and inconvenient.
Staying in a dormitory-style room may have its challenges, sure. You don’t have a whole room to yourself and you must be respectful of fellow travelers. However, many hostels have mandated quiet hours and offer plenty of amenities; from towels and safes to lock up valuables, to toiletries, laundry facilities, WiFi and board games, travelers will often find they have everything they need! Many hostels also have kitchen areas so you can cook up a nice meal with your new travel buds! Plus, many hostels are centrally located and offer guided tours; hardly inconvenient if you ask me!
Have you ever stayed in a hostel? What’s been your favorite experience? Let me know in the comments below!
Spread kindness and cheer, xo