New York City is where you pay a liver and half your lungs to end up living in a glamorous shoebox.
But we assure you that the Manhattan hostels on our list are much better than a shoebox. They also won’t cost you any arms or lungs (hopefully).
We think everyone should have the chance to explore any city or area they like, regardless of their budget. So, we decided to search the avenues of the City’s iconic skyscrapers and ended up with the best hostels in Manhattan.
The Manhattan hostels we’re recommending are safe, hospitable, and budget-friendly. They are suitable for all travelers: whether you’re backpacking NYC or you’re on a romantic trip with your partner.
Average price for a bed: Hostels in Manhattan cost $40 – $85 per night for a bed in a dorm. A private room has an average price of around $221 per night. This is a rough average, just to give you an idea.
Check-In and Check-Out: The average check-in time is from 15:00 (3 pm), while the Check-Out time is before 11:00 (11 am). Hostels usually offer luggage storage in case you arrive earlier or leave later. Make sure you check if luggage storage is free or if there is an extra cost.
Transportation: The cheapest and most efficient way to travel is by using the subway. If you’re on a budget, one backpacking tip for Manhattan would be to buy a 7-day or 30-day MetroPass with unlimited rides on it.
The price for 7 days is 33$ and the one for 30 days is 127$ (please double-check the price, of course).
Food: this is on what you might end up spending a big chunk of your money. If you want to save, try to cook instead; most of the Manhattan hostels in our guide have shared kitchens.
If you’re shopping for groceries, hit up cheaper NYC grocery stores like Trader Joe’s and Aldi’s.
Partying on a budget in Manhattan: happy hour will be your best friend if you don’t want to break the bank. Usually, happy hour is from 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm on weekdays and 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm on weekends.
This hostel is located in what used to be the George Washington Hotel, a famous building that was once home to various personalities of the art world.
Today, it can serve as your home in NYC, especially if you’re looking for somewhere that merges together coziness, incredible design, and social culture.
You’ll enjoy their delicious dining options if you’re a foodie. And, if you like the occasional party, head over to their rooftop bar; it serves a variety of delicious cocktails and even hosts a DJ.
Note that you can only rent dorms as private rooms (as a group), so if you’re traveling solo, and you’re looking for hostels in Manhattan, scroll down (we promise we have great options).
Location: This is a Manhattan hostel in the Flatiron district, a 3-minute walk near the subway. It’s surrounded by numerous shops, restaurants, and cafés. Popular sights of interest include Madison Square Park. The overall area is safe, even at night.
Chelsea International Hostel is an adults-only Manhattan hostel, so if you hate babies, come here! We’re obviously kidding; babies are adorable. But this is a great option if you’re solo traveling and want to ensure that your vacation is spent surrounded by adult travelers only.
Here, you’ll find:
A shared lounge
A shared kitchen
Now you would think that going to an adults-only accommodation would guarantee tranquility, but this is Manhattan, so the sound of ambulance sirens is never too far away (and the walls are thin).
As with the majority of our best Manhattan hostels, we recommend getting earplugs with you!
Also, the bedrooms are rather small (so are the lockers), so make sure you’re not carrying any large luggage with you.
Overall, this is minimalistic accommodation that is safe, clean, and affordable. We think it’s also a good option for female solo travelers (they have female-only dorms as well).
Location: Manhattan hostel in the heart of Chelsea. The neighborhood is very safe, with a police station right in front of the hostel. There are also a variety of restaurants to pick from.
Nearby points of interest include Madison Square Garden, the Flatiron Building, and (our favorite) High Line park. This hostel is close to many subway and bus stops.
This is a family-owned-and-operated hostel that also labels itself as a Bed&Breakfast. Yes, the space is as wholesome as you can expect. Some travelers even come here with their babies!
The location is awesome, the facilities are clean, and the breakfast is great because you get a lot of quantity and quality. This is honestly a rarity for budget accommodations in Manhattan.
The owner and staff are also super friendly and accommodating. We assure you that they do not correspond to the ‘unfriendly New Yorker’ stereotype in any way.
The only negative point we have is that the beds are a bit squeaky, and you can kind of hear between the walls… but hey, this is New Yorker!
Location: Manhattan hostel in the flatiron neighborhood. Nearby popular interest points include the Flatiron and the Empire State Building. If you like jogging or nature in general, this hostel is also surrounded by parks: Gramercy Park, Madison Square Park, and Union Square.
Our top pick for Manhattan hostels for solo travelers is the Chelsea International Hostel. It has awesome facilities, a great location, and is very secure. If you want an additional recommendation, check the one bellow!
Jazz on Columbus Circle is another good option for solo travelers who want to stay in the heart of Manhattan without sacrificing their wallets and security.
This hostel in Manhattan has the following facilities:
Common living room
Dorms come with private bathrooms and toilets
No towels or toiletries
Some of their dorms also have private spaces where travelers can work and where the free WiFi is stable.
Our only issue with this hostel was that it was not well-lit. Also, although their location is very central in Manhattan, this translates to a lot of noise, so they come equipped with earplugs.
Although ‘Hostels NYC Cheap’ is usually not a sentence you come across often, this one does the job perfectly.
Location: A 2-minute walk from the Broadway theater and Carnegie Hall, and a 4-minute walk to central park and Columbus circle. The area is packed with restaurants, and the subway is a 5-minute walk away.
Of course, there are always cheap hostels. But how do you actually find them? When you are traveling on a shoe-string budget and you want to save every dollar, there are ways to find the cheapest places in Manhattan.
Open Hostelz.com with a full list of all hostels in Manhattan
add your dates
Order the listings by price
Simple as that.
Hostelz.com is a price comparison site for hostels. They list every single one in the world and tells you exactly which website is cheaper to use.
Another smart Tip: Check what is actually included, and what is excluded. Take a closer look at the location, too. A further location might mean more costs in transport.
We recommend booking your hostel as early as possible! All of Manhattan best hostels are popular; especially in high-season. To make sure you end up in those stylish and good hostels, secure your room/ bed as soon as you have your travel dates fix.
The coolest Hostel App you need comes as well from Hostelworld. It gives you super cool features like you can contact your hostel mates beforehand and make plans together. Find more details in our review of the app
How much does it cost to sleep in a hostel in Manhattan?
Hostels in Manhattan cost $40 - $85 per night for a bed in a dorm. A private room has an average price of around $221 per night. This is a rough average, just to give you an idea.
Are hostels in Manhattan safe?
Not all hostels in Manhattan are necessarily safe, especially the ones that offer cheap prices in sketchy areas. They might be illegal hostels or ones without the proper licenses and safety measures put in place.
In all fairness, it is best to check out Hostelgeeks.com because we feature safe hostels in Manhattan. You can find backpacker hostels with top ratings here! Keep a close eye on the overall ratings on booking platforms!
What are the best sites for finding hostels in Manhattan?
Of course, the best site to find hostels is Hostelgeeks.com 😉
Do you have any questions left, maybe doubts? Then please leave it in the comment below. We are very keen to help you - and actually you would even do us a favor!
Your question will help us to improve this Manhattan guide.
Last note: Our commitment
This is a genuine article to help you travel a bit smarter, and find the best place on a budget! We will never recommend you any place we haven’t evaluated or are not convinced by. We are constantly updating all our guides to keep them as fresh and accurate as possible.
Safe travels, The Hostelgeeks
Best Travel Websites we recommend ❤️ (Fresh Update 2023)