A quick look at my Hostelworld account under the ‘My Bookings’ tab shows that I’ve stayed with Hostelworld in Belgium, Germany, Poland, the United States and Canada. They were also my hostel booker of choice for our upcoming trip to Quebec City for the winter carnival later this month.
After my organised tour around Europe where all accommodation was provided I suddenly needed to find my own. I wanted a provider which would have hostels in all the places I wanted to visit, I wanted booking to be easy and I wanted low fees.
Hostelworld boasts over 25,000 hostels in over 180 countries. When I was travelling by myself in Europe I didn’t have much of a plan about where I was going but fortunately there always seemed to be a Hostelworld affiliated hostel when I got there.
Booking is easy. I can go from selecting a location to booking a hostel room in minimal time with minimal clicks. More importantly, because of their widely used peer review and rating system I can be confident about what to expect when I arrive.
Lastly a one off booking only costs $2, or for $10 you can get the fees waived for a year. I did the $10 thing and it worked out well for me with all the hostels I stayed in.
How to Book & Check Reviews?
After you search for a hostel by date/location (ie. Hostelworld hostels in London, England) you will get a list of results showing the hostel name, address, brief description, price range and also an overall review percentage.
After you click on a particular hostel you will see five main tabs at the top in a blue panel.
Under the ‘reviews’ tab you can read what people have said about the hostel after staying there. Occasionally someone from the hostel will also reply to a review which you can read too.
Tip: If you have a particular concern it can be useful to search this page for keywords (Noisy, crowded, bedbugs, dirty, etc…). ”Ctr+f” on your browser brings up the search dialog.
What Else to Consider When Booking a Hostel?
Location for backpackers is always very important. Often an unwary backpacker will find that their $3 per night saving by choosing a cheaper hostel comes at the cost of having to spend $5 on public transport every day to get anywhere. Hostelworld has a ‘map view’ results option (as well as the ‘list view’) which can be a quick way of eliminating a number of unsuitable hostel locations.
Check in time can be critical if you’re making a last-minute booking and expect to be arriving late at night. When searching for a hostel make use of the filters on the left hand side which allow you to filter by a number of options. Under the ‘facilities‘ filter options you can select only hostels which offer ‘24 hour check in‘, ‘internet access‘, ‘breakfast included‘ plus others which may or may not be relevant to your needs.
What is your preferred hostel provider? What is your best or worst hostel memory? Please voice your comments & opinions below.