Travel smart: tips to finding the best hostel in the world

In the past, hostels were seen as the seedy last-option for budget travellers. Recently, hostels have become a trendy lodging option. With an upswing in eco-conscious culture, thrifty travel has grown even faster. As a result, a whole new range of hostels have emerged.

Rather than trying to sift through all your options and sort the gold from the coal, use this handy checklist to vet out the best hostels in the world.

Travel smart: tips to finding the best hostel in the world

The basics

As with any lodging, you want to look out for some fundamental elements:

Good consumer ratings: Hop on any popular travel review website to see what others are saying. What’s the average guest rating? It’s recommended to avoid hostels with less than a three-star rating. Look for common complaints, and before you book your stay, call ahead of time to ask about the issues you read about.

Cleanliness: When arriving at a hostel, make sure to verify the room you’re staying in is clean. You should have fresh bed sheets and the bathrooms should not look questionable. Look for the health inspector certificate or scorecard.

Safety: Its location will shed insight into how safe the lodging is. Even in towns with great reputations, ask if they have any night security. Look up reviews and consumer agencies to confirm that there isn’t consistent and unsolved theft at your hostel of choice. This is unlikely if you follow the consumer rating, but it’s better to double check than to find out first hand.

Little extras: Many hostels today have modern interior design, semi-private rooms, and even complimentary breakfast. When shopping around for a hostel, look on their website or in their brochure for additional accommodations that make your stay a little more comfortable.

Luxury on a budget: Some hostels were made with a specific theme in mind. Not only are they designed beautifully, but they may feature luxury bedding, free hygiene products (such as shampoo or lotion), and even a full-service kitchen, bar, or cafe.

Things to keep in mind

There are several hostels across Canada, Europe, New York, and California that have built-in media exchange libraries, dance floors, or art exhibits.

Because you could be sharing lodging features such as the bathroom with other travellers, you save money. However, that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice beautiful views, 300-thread count sheets, or your morning coffee.

Finding the best hostels in the world requires you to research. The little amount of time that you put into finding hidden-gem hostels, the more enjoyable your stay will be. Being eco- and budget-conscious doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice comfort.

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