Hostel Life: Making Friends and Memories on the Road – A Beginner’s Guide

Traveling is an experience that opens up a whole new universe of opportunities. It lets us see new places, immerse ourselves in diverse cultures, and have lifelong experiences. Staying at hostels is one part of travel that enhances the experience. Hostel living provides a one-of-a-kind opportunity to meet fellow travelers from all walks of life, form friendships, and make treasured memories along the way.

When you enter a hostel, you enter a thriving community of like-minded people who share a love of travel. For example, the joint area or kitchen becomes a center of social interaction. Conversations flow easily; strangers quickly become friends by trading tales, experiences, and travel ideas. Hostels establish an environment that invites interactions, whether you’re sitting around a table playing a game, making a meal together, or simply resting with a cup of tea.

By the conclusion of this post, you’ll understand what a hostel is, why they’re so unique, and how to embark on your own hostel trip across the world!

Finally, I’ll share some of my most critical tricks and suggestions for enjoying the hostel life in 2023!

What is a Hostel?

A hostel is a type of company that offers low-cost lodging. It’s as simple as that. Hostels are often able to provide reduced costs due to one factor – dormitories!

Dorms are precise as they sound. Consider college life but with larger bags. Hostels may considerably cut their rates by cramming 16 people into a room; they’re an essential tool in the armory of tactics for budget travelers to save money. That simple!

But here’s the thing: every hostel is unique. The size, quality, and general feel of hostels vary greatly. No two hostels are the same, and each caters to a particular group of travelers.

This implies that the ‘hostel life’ differs drastically depending on the type of hostel you stay at!

Different Types of Hostels

Different hostels have distinct moods and purposes that appeal to different types of tourists. However, as this is a hostel tour, let me mention some major ones.

Party Hostels:

These bad guys are designed to attract and appeal to a party demographic. Partygoers float in, become exceedingly drunk, and then float out (when their tepid brain permits). Expect these hostels to be large, boisterous, and full of alcohol-related events. It’s a large party in another nation but with backpackers!

Most Off-the-Hook Party Hostels in Europe: Flying Pig Chain, Amsterdam

While Europe is plenty of fantastic party hostels, the Flying Pig chain in Amsterdam is always at the top of our rankings. There’s an Uptown, Downtown, and By-the-Beach option that’s all very Amsterdam!

However, I will always choose Flying Pig Beach since you can repair the night’s damage with breakfast and a morning swim! (However, the Uptown and Downtown hostels are closed.)

Chiller Hostels:

That is not the official name, though. In contrast to party hostels, chiller hostels are considerably more laid-back and cater to travelers looking for an excellent homey ambiance and a comfortable and quiet place to sleep.

These are more ‘living hostels’ aimed towards long-term travelers. They’re generally tastefully furnished, with extremely cozy sensations, and will request that everyone turn off the lights and remain quiet after a particular hour. They also, coincidentally, attract more smokers than party hostels.

A Bucket List Hostel in Peru: Wolf Totem Guesthouse


Some hostels have a more retreat-like atmosphere. These hostels are frequently situated in the middle of nowhere, allowing you to disconnect and reconnect with Mother Earth. These are highly prevalent in warmer areas (such as Southeast Asia and Central America).

A Bombshell Hostel in Vietnam: Green Mountain Homestay

The mountains are the greatest, and Vietnam’s stunning—towering green titans of luscious proportions. Green Mountain Homestay is not only at a fantastic location in Vietnam’s highlands, but the facilities are also excellent: breakfast, beds, and a pool with a view. Be prepared to sigh… a lot.

There are also several different types of hostels. Hostels come in many shapes and sizes, from affordable to boutique! Regarding backpacker lodging, hostels remain a solid favorite amongst travelers on the road.

Some hostels are open to everyone, while others are exclusive to women. Some are geared toward digital nomads and professional types, while others are geared toward partygoers and surfers. Some hostels are part of large chains, while others are privately operated. Other hostels offer bars and pools; some have private rooms, hammocks, free walking tours, and kitchens – it depends on the facility!

This is why hostels (and hostel living in general) are so great! There are hundreds of hostels for you and your way of travel, no matter what sort of hostel feel you’re searching for.

There’s Another Kind of Hostel… The hostel for digital nomads!

Co-working spaces are one thing, but co-working hostels are the real deal! These are hostels intended exclusively for digital nomads and travelers who need to work on their computers. Having a place to sleep and a place to work on your laptop in the same room is a game changer.

Co-working Hostels provide many workplaces, high-speed Wi-Fi, excellent networking chances, and an ideal location for getting your head down and getting some work done.

But, among all the co-working hostels worldwide, one stands out…

Tribal Hostel is Bali’s first purpose-built co-working hostel, and it may be the best hostel in the world!

This highly unusual hostel, a perfect center for digital nomads and travelers, is now finally open…

Come on down and enjoy some delicious coffee, fast internet, and a game of pool.

Are Hostels Safe?

I’m assuming you’ve heard that hostels are risky. You may have heard that hostels are where machete-wielding maniacs slaughter young travelers or sell them into slavery by East European mafia syndicates.

Sorry to burst your bubble, Liam Neeson; hostel living is significantly less exciting. Hostels are secure.

Hostels are, without a doubt, one of the safest ways to travel. Most hostels include lockers where you may store your belongings, and many also have late-night security.

Hostels are safer because of their communal nature: they tend to have all positive feelings. It’s pretty simple to make new acquaintances and travel companions when living in hostels, and because of their social character, you’re constantly surrounded by other people. The more people there are, the more individuals will be aware of their surroundings, and the less unpleasant things will occur.

Finally, hostels are one of the most secure modes of transportation. If you use your wits and keep your belongings secure, you will have the time of your life and do it in a very safe atmosphere. Finished.

Tips & Tricks for Hostel Stays

As every seasoned hostel traveler knows, there are a few things to look out for when reserving a fantastic hostel…

How to Book a Hostel: Free Stuff

Free stuff is fantastic, and if you plan your hostels wisely, you can score some freebies that will mount up throughout your trip. Not all hostels provide freebies, but if you watch for a couple of these, your wallet will thank you.

Breakfast – roughly 60% of hostels provide complimentary breakfast, and depending on where you’re going, this may be the most significant perk on the list. In pricey nations, complimentary breakfast gets you the biggest bang for your buck, saving you $10+ daily!

Pro Tip: To find out what the hostel provides for breakfast, read the reviews on Hostelworld, one of the finest hostel booking sites. Sometimes ‘free breakfast’ implies a gourmet feast… and other times, it is just a slice of toast.

Beverages – Free coffee and tea aren’t game changers, but they’re always welcome. Approximately 75% of hostels give complimentary hot drinks.

Towels – Free towels are usually a welcome bonus. It is feasible to traverse the world without bringing a towel and solely using hostel towels… However, I would not suggest it. And if you get your own towel (preferably a quick-dry microfiber travel towel), you may use the complimentary hostel towel instead of drying your own towel.

Lockers – Free lockers are becoming increasingly common, which is good! While hostels are typically safe, having the peace of mind that a locker gives is lovely.

While 75% + of hostels give free lockers, very few supply a free LOCK; purchase a padlock for yourself.

Conclusion on Hostel Life

That’s all there is to it! This is all you need to know about hostels and to stay in them.

With the aid of this guide, you’ll know all you need to know to book a fantastic hostel, meet incredible friends, and travel across the world while saving money!

Hostels are fantastic, but it’s critical to select the appropriate one for you. If you choose the wrong hostel, you will almost certainly end up with the wrong people doing the bad thing and trapped in a backpacker trap.

But where should you stay? The right hostel, on the other hand, is a home. And everyone, especially errant travelers, requires a place to stay.

Is there anything else I should know about hostel life? Please let me know in the comments section below. Otherwise, get out there, drink some drinks with excellent travelers, and bang someone in the shared kitchen*!

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