Hostels vs Hotels

Finding accommodation for your trip can be a daunting task & often it is easy to make the wrong choice. We live in a time where we are spoilt for choice when it comes to which type of accommodation we would like to stay at. Anything from couchsurfing to high end resorts are available for us to choose. I thought it would be fun to compare two of these options; hotels & hostels. Which is the better option?


The biggest advantage of booking at a hostel is the price. You could potentially be paying a fraction of the cost of a hotel stay & if you are traveling on a tight budget, this does make your money go further.

On the topic of money, hostels are usually owned by an individual & by supporting the hostel, you are putting food on the table for a family, you’re helping cover education costs for a child & overall your support is more valued. I’m not discrediting that hotels provide jobs for hundreds of people, but they are often part of a chain & owned by big corporations.

In my experience, you are far more likely to interact with other guests at a hostel than at other types of accommodation. You can find out a lot about the area/city you are in from the other guests as they may have just experienced a thing or two before you met them. You might find that they’re heading to the same place as you next & that could lower your future travel costs. You could also just simply make new friends; this is wonderful & I know it does happen because I am still in contact with people I met at a hostel in Egypt more than two years ago.

The biggest down side is sharing with strangers. You will be sharing rooms or bathrooms with multiple different individuals & that comes with a whole host of issues. You need to be cautious with your valuables. You should pack flip flops (or whatever terminology you use) to use in the shower since you are sharing that space with people you don’t know. Although some hostels offer private rooms, you will probably be sharing a room with other people & if you want to sleep when they’re awake & talking – problematic. I remember all of this becoming very evident to me at a hostel in Azerbaijan where there were 20-something other beds in the same room as mine.

A negative point I have to raise is the level of cleanliness tends to be much lower at hostels. I’m not saying that all hostels are dirty or that it’s only this type of accommodation prone to this, but you just need to be a bit more careful. It does help to read reviews online before making your booking as reviews will often mention if a hostel is not exactly clean.


The first advantage I can think of when it comes to hotels is that people in the area tend to know where hotels are. They’re more landmarks than hostels are. If you’re asking for directions to get back or you’re using a taxi, your trip is most likely going to be direct & undoubted.

Hotels have a 24 hour desk which is helpful if you check in or out at an odd time. This is not always streamlined with hostels as they’re often owned & run by an individual or a family.

Hotels offer services & facilities. Obviously it depends on the establishment, but there will most likely be a pool, gym, in-room dining services & sometimes more. Of course, the services always come at additional costs.

The first disadvantage I can think of when it comes to hotels is that they tend to be very strict with the times you check in & out & penalize you if you opt to do so outside of their time frames. Hostels are far more relaxed in this regard.

Another disadvantage I’ve noticed is disappointment. Because hotels can be pricey, people set their expectations slightly higher than they probably should & when these expectations aren’t met, they get disappointed. I feel that if you book at a hostel, your expectations are more realistic for getting what you paid for.

There are some of my advantages & disadvantages to both types of accommodation. Which one is better? Well, that depends on you & what you feel is of more value to you. If you are hell-bent on cutting costs then a hostel is better for you. If you value privacy & amenities more then a hotel is better suited for you. I will say that if you are traveling with children or older people, hotels are a better option… but again, that is entirely up to you.

Keep traveling, keep safe.

DanVenture Travels.


25 thoughts on “Hostels vs Hotels

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  1. Nice post. I’ve reached the age where hostels have very little appeal. B&B’s or other small family run hotels work really well for my husband and myself. There is the advantage of having a local resident (the owner or whoever is in the kitchen) to point out places to see or avoid and, the big plus for budget, breakfast is included. That breakfast table usually includes other traveler/guests.
    My travel experience is limited to Europe and the Americas and there seems to be a good choice throughout for either B&B’s or family hotels. I’m curious as to what is available in Asia and Africa…


  2. I’ve stayed in a lot of hostels during my earlier years of travel. While I appreciated the inexpensive prices and cool people I met, I’ve gotten to the point that I would much prefer hotels now, for privacy and comfort. Changing tastes, but still the drive to travel!


  3. I have never used hostels and never would. Its always been hotels for me. I value my privacy and knowing my belongings are safe.
    I have always spoken to people at the same holiday as me. I even went out with someone for a meal, because I knew she hadn’t ate her meal one night and it was left to be desired by me, with nothing catering for my dietary needs. Being us both lone travellers, meant we enjoyed each others company and I heard a lot about other places she been and a little about herself too.
    We were also sat at the same set of seats in the coach, so were chatting with one another on our way to our destination, as well as on the way home. 🙂


  4. Wonderfully narrated my friend. As a traveler, I also feel the same and want to reiterate that hostels are cheap and far more affordable than hotels. However, when you are traveling with family, at times you have to look for cheap hotels. Hostels may not always friendly for the children.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Another helpful post! Personally, I would avoid a hostel at all cost. Some of my nephews traveled a lot to different countries and continents in their college years, and did use the hostels to save money. But did report that they’re not for everybody.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am certainly with you. Great post. As usual well written. And ever so helpful. As someone with a peg feed a hostel is somewhere I will definetly avoid. Yes for many they are brilliant, and if you are on a budget, go for it. But take a pal, I certainly wouldnt go on my own…..


  6. Thank you for posting. I have been considering hostels over hotels to allow for cheaper travels recently (less accommodation costs = more miles). I handout thought about the individuals/big corporation dynamic. I will certainly bear this in mind in future! thank you! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Hostels vary a lot more than hotels I think. I’ve stayed in some that are very clean and nice and others where you sleep on the floor and have nowhere to store your valuables. I do like hostels more though.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I like this post! I’ve always fancied staying in a hostel but as I’ve got older I’ve started to think I’ve missed the boat on the time when I’d have found it fun and exciting. I love the whole idea of meeting people etc. but I also really value cleanliness and always go for hotels. If I were travelling alone I’d go for a hostel, but a clean one in a room with females and not too many 😂 I know, I sound picky!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. At this stage in my life, where I have short trips, I usually prefer hotels. It saves hassles of shared bathroom and common areas. I never tried Airbnb. But after this COVID situation, let’s see how things turn out

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I’d echo those last few comments. Hostels were great in my younger days, with all their fun and camaraderie. But now I stay in hotels, ideal for a short city break, and withdraw to my room and terrace at night for a glass of wine and some writing and reflection.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I tried hostels in New Zealand, but didn’t get enough sleep. I need dark and quiet, so I’ll share a bathroom but not a bedroom. My preference is for B&Bs (old-style, not AirBnB) or small, family-run hotels, more common in Europe.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. This is a helpful post. Often, I travel solo and ruminate between staying at a hostel (but question the safety, cleanliness, and the people) or a hotel (possible stricter rules, stoic personalities). I have had good and positive experiences staying at places with shared bathrooms and kitchen and would like to have more of an open mind next time. I think staying with a host family would be a wonderful experience.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I always go for hotels when I’m in a solo travel. But when the family travels, we stayed in AirBNB, commonly a house for a group. It’s cheaper. In Japan there are AirBNB’s and they are safe. Doors have passwords/pin numbers which the owner provides. Very nice blog post!


  14. I have always wanted to stay @ a hostel but my husband is not keen on possible accommodation mishaps. He says mishaps — I say adventure and extra cash for food and shopping.

    Perhaps next time.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Such a well laid out post! My husband & I’ve not yet become comfortable with hostels but we experiment with homestays & Airbnb’s a lot. A lot of your points applicable for hostels hold for these two categories too.


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