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Can Anybody Give Me Some Advice About Hostels?

Discussion in 'Europe' started by Kai, May 15, 2016.

  1. Kai

    Kai New Member

    I am currently planning a low budget Europe trip where I'll be mostly staying at cheap hostels. I've never been in hostels before, and don't know what to expect. Outside of getting my own locker for valuables, are there any tips you guys have for me to make the best out of the experience?

    I am not a very social person, and the aspect of sharing a room with 12 people is not something I'm looking forward to but its the only way I could afford to travel.
     
  2. sararas

    sararas Member

    I understand your reservation, as I myself am not a very social person. While I haven't traveled to Europe, I have, however, stayed in many hostels in different parts of Southeast Asia. Since I travel with a group, having to share with complete strangers, hasn't happened to me though. Nevertheless, the big group that I say more often than not is composed of common friends. So, generally, I only know a single person or two in the whole group - the rest are practically strangers.
    If there's something I could say about staying at hostels, is you really have nothing to worry about not being 'social enough'. Chances are, people who travel and love doing it, are basically kindred spirits. They'll make you feel at ease, and has uncanny abilities to adjust to people they're with. If they see you don't want to socialize, they'll just let you be. But if you are amenable to socializing, they'll gladly welcome you in the fold, too.
    You can do the same thing. Leave the expectations behind. Sometimes, our expectations bar us from getting the most of the experience. Natural curiosity can do wonders. Start with a smile. Strike a conversation. If safety is your main concern, do the very things that will make you feel safe, but don't go about blurting about your fears that you might lose something, or what not. Remember, you are a stranger to them, too. They can be equally be wary about you.

    Oh, if you're really conscious about your budget, perhaps you can try flexing your 'socialization muscles'. I've observed too many times, that backpacker group has more chances of saving during their travels because they usually end up sharing meals, splitting cabs, etc.
     
  3. crimsonghost747

    crimsonghost747 Active Member

    Even if you are not social, try to be. Especially if you are traveling alone. Basically you are surrounded by likeminded people so might as well talk to them and make new friends. Exploring the city with others is always more fun and they will certainly have ideas that you wouldn't have thought about.

    They usually have free lockers, you might want to bring your own lock as some don't have locks. If you wake up easily, then bring ear plugs, you never know who will be snoring. And since you are on a budget, take advantage of the kitchen facilities most of these hostels offer.

    Most hostels also have pretty affordable private rooms.
     
  4. Valerie

    Valerie Active Member

    Hostels vary from country to country on what amenities you can expect. So try not to expect anything and be pleasantly surprised. Most hostels are honestly very cozy. Unlike hotels that are very sterile and cookie-cutter, hostels have a charm about that that says, "People have lived here."

    I think hostels make traveling more immersive. And as the others have stated, even if you aren't social (trust me, I'm no extrovert either), hostels are kind of a gray zone. You will have the groups of people that you immediately connect with and the ones that you don't. There's no pressure to talk or be uber cheery most of the time. I've never ran into issues like that at hostels in Japan, so I don't think Europe will be too much different.
     
  5. Corzhens

    Corzhens Active Member

    Pardon me if I got it wrong. In my first work assignments in the provinces, the accommodation provided by our office is the hostel. It is a plain room with a bed, no amenities like the standard that we have now - tv, refrigerator. But what made it inconvenient for me is the common bathroom. That's very important to me, you know. I was glad when I was promoted to the managerial position for the accommodation had been also promoted to a hotel which comes complete with the amenities including own bathroom/toilet.

    In our personal travels abroad, some friends are recommending Airbnb which is way much cheaper than hotels. However, that inconvenience comes in again because Airbnb means we would be staying in a home of a family who would provide us with a room. That's more inconvenient for me.
     
  6. djordjem87

    djordjem87 Member

    I live in Serbia and I have been doing electricity instalment to various hotels and hostels and I have to say that most of the hostels are remarkably dirty and filthy. I cannot say about other countries but my country and my city, city of Niš, is a place to avoid when it comes to these cheaper places to crash. If you have to, sure. But there are private houses that are not really hostels but some kind of accommodation between a small hotel and hostel. It is cleaner but it's like B&B type although it is not even that. Anyway, way better than hostels and way cheaper than hotels.