Welcome to your guide to the different types of Hostels that you should be aware of! We have put together a list of the most basic types of Hostels out there to give you an overview of the variety that you can experience.
If you have ever stayed in a hostel, you already know that there are also unique, or hybrid buildings out there, just waiting to be discovered. There can also easily be a combination of a boutique-styled hostel with the homely, cosy feel like that described in hostel type #2. This article is part of the Guide to Hostels where we cover many questions around its topic.
Here is our full packing list for hostels.
You can download the Hostel Packing List as a PDF. Simply open the .pdf and save it on your device. We also added a few more points so you can add your own items to the list.
The order of the listed hostel types is completely random, and has nothing to do with our personal preferences.
We have also created a full guide to European Hostels. Here you will learn everything you need to know about Hostels in Europe, from finding great hostels to booking hostels the cheapest way.
There are no fix standards or definitions for hostel types. We, Anna&Matt at Hostelgeeks, have a different approach here.
The 5 Star Hostels unique to Hostelgeeks, are the only type of hostels based on fixed transparent criteria, where details can be found in the last point of this article. Before you can book your Hostel, you need to decide which type of Hostel fits best with your plan.
1. Cheap Hostels – travel on a budget
Yes, although Hostels are already on budget, there is still the kind we call „cheap hostels“. The cheap hostel refers to the one(s) with the lowest prices in town. Most likely the service and facilities are not to a high standard, and in general their location is perhaps not in the city center.
You can identify this easily through the most obvious hint; the price. But also be sure to have a look at their reviews! The facilities, services, and ratings are generally of a lower level when comparing with the other hostels in town.
Have a look at all the hostel room types. The biggest dorm is usually the cheapest – obviously.
2. Homely & Cosy Hostels
This type of hostel is maybe the most cosy one you can find. It instantly feels and looks like a home rather than a paid accommodation. There is the kitchen you can use, as well as an actual living room and many more little details which make a place feel like a home. Quite commonly, these hostels also have their own garden to relax in.
The video and photo below shows Ani&Haakien Hostel in Rotterdam – also a cosy hostel type with an artistic heart.
Another interesting and outstanding homey hostel is the Hopewell Lodge in Marlborough Sounds, New Zealand. This accommodation in the north of the South Islands of New Zealand attracts the active travelers and nature lovers. You can reach the destination by water taxi, and it has been rated one of the top hostels in the country. We have visited the Hopewell Lodge and brought back an unforgettable experience.
Also interesting, Montacute Boutique Bunkhouse, the 5 Star Hostel in Tasmania. This property is an absolute Boutique Hostel as you can see, PLUS it feels like a home from home. The reason is simple: the owners actually live inside the hostel, and share their home with the travelers from around the world. This adds special character to the overall vibe, doesn’t it? As you can see, some hostels feature two main characteristics.
3. Boutique Hostels – Design, Luxury, Upscale
There are many different names out there used to describe this specific type of hostel. A boutique hostel is the most design-conscious type, whereby a boutique-style meets and joins with the hostel world. It is a well-designed accommodation, but still on budget. This establishment provides you with an extra comfort, and most of the time there is an interesting story to tell.
We put together the ultimate list of the +110 Best Design Hostels worldwide.
Let’s have a look at an example for a Boutique Hostel: The Cocomama Amsterdam Hostel, which was a first of its kind in Amsterdam. The two dutch girls, Lotje and Anika, dreamed about opening a place where the comfort and luxury of a hotel meets the social life of a hostel. This is how Cocomama Amsterdam was born.
Another great Design Hostel is the brand new STAY Hostel Rhodes in Greece. It comes in a modern and fresh design, and is located only a short 5 minutes walk away from the beach. Oh yes…that’s pretty awesome. On top of that, STAY Hostel is also a 5 star awarded hostel.
Another beautiful, intimate boutique hostel is Valencia Lounge Hostel. The 5 Star Hostel in Valencia features 11 neo-classical rooms, new technology, and developed a new understanding of a reception.
4. Party Hostels – All Night Long
As the name already claims, this is where the party happens! Party Hostels are oriented more towards the younger-minded travelers. Party Hostels usually organize special events, and there is no way alcohol is missing at any point of the party!
Here you might find a age restriction so just in case, make sure you are able to stay at this specific party-oriented hostel before you arrive. It is quite easy to recognize a party hostel simply by their photos on the booking platforms and descriptions on their own website.
Related Article: Sex in Hostels including hilarious real-life stories and basic recommendations.
Be aware also that there are hostels out there claiming to be a party hostel at night, and a cosy hostel during day-light.
Also interesting, how safe are hostels? An overview
Find the other 3 types on the 2nd page: