After 1.5 months back home, I never realised just how much I would miss hostel life. I’ve loved being back home for a bit, and I’m sure I’ll miss it when I’m away, but a lot of things I’ve missed about the hustle and bustle of hostels, and I wondered if anyone else feels this way too when they’re back home?
Meeting new people
Above anything else, meeting new people everyday is the one reason I love hostels. People check in and check out all the time at a hostel. They come from all different countries, and all walks of life. I love that I can go into the common room, and on most occasions I’ll see and speak to someone I’ve never met before. Being at home and seeing my friends & family is definitely something I enjoy doing, but sometimes after a while things can feel like they never change. In a hostel there are always new people to talk to.
I love it how you get to know people in a hostel so much quicker than you would back home. I’m not sure exactly why that is. Maybe it’s that people are more open in hostels or when they’re travelling. Maybe it’s that you are spending so much time living, eating, drinking, and sometimes working with these people too? Who knows? Either way, you soon find that you are striking up a rapport and a bit of banter with your hostel buddies very quickly. Or at least I find it that way anyway. I think that everybody is essentially on holiday too is a contributing factor. You are all laughing and joking around, going for drinks, and just generally having fun. Living in a hostel is fun, and building friendships is a big part of that.
Nightlife and parties
If you are living in a hostel it is actually possible to go out everyday of the week if you want to. For me personally, I try to keep it to 3 or 4 nights a week maximum, as I do like to do some sightseeing and fun stuff during the day as well, but it is definitely a plus point that if you want to go out at night, or even just have drinks in at the hostel, there is always someone who wants to have fun too! You do miss that nightlife element when you are home sometimes, especially if you are staying in a lot trying to save money for the next trip.
Learning about other cultures
I love it how you can be sitting around at a table in a hostel somewhere, and there are sometimes double figures as far as how many different nationalities are there! You will find when travelling that there are definitely some nationalities that are more common amongst travellers than others. For instance, there are usually some Australians, Kiwis, Canadians, Irish, and English at every hostel I have ever been too. If you are in Europe you may also find some Americans too. As for my own nationality, Scottish, I usually find that I am the only Scottish person there on most occasions. For me personally this makes it a huge advantage to travel as almost everybody that I will meet at a hostel will be of a different nationality to me, and therefore I get to learn a little bit about their culture and country from talking to them. Aside from the most common nationalities I meet on the road however, it is also fun to meet someone who comes from somewhere that you wouldn’t normally find in a hostel too, or are not as common to find as other nationalities. Like when I met a guy from Ghana in my hostel in Amsterdam, or my 3 crazy Brazilian room mates in Dublin who were the most fun and happy people I have ever met! It’s always fun to learn a little bit about a new country by the people who come from there, as after all, it’s the people who make a country what it is.
Hostels are usually situated in really good locations for either nightlife, national parks, beaches, or other attractions that are fun or interesting. They wouldn’t get much business if they weren’t in a good location. Where my parents live back home, and where I’ve been crashing the last few months while I save some cash and visit family, is very much in the heart of suburbia. It’s a nice house in a nice town, but for me the word nice has always been affiliated with boring! It’s definitely not the worst place to be in the world, but as a young, single, 20-something person, it’s always a plus to be back in a hostel and based in a city centre or somewhere interesting.