5 Reasons Why a Hostel Private Room is the Solo Traveler’s Holy Grail
I remember my first time in a hostel. London. 2015. After walking through the door in the back of the bar and up the stairs, I got to my room. Well… our room.
In a normal-sized bedroom, some magician has managed to squeeze three triple bunks. I had the luxury of the middle bunk. I didn’t have to climb to my sleep. I was also safe from having my face inches from the floor.
It was fine. I was just excited to be traveling. But now, at the elderly age of 28, I have made the executive decision. I’M TOO OLD FOR THAT SHEET.
But what’s a solo traveler to do? Cramped hostel? Lonely hotel room? Neither! Just like Goldilocks, I’ve found a happy medium: a private room in a hostel.
Hostal Private Room Benefit #1: Meet Other Travelers
This is arguably the top reason travelers stay in hostels. Forming new relationships and hearing interesting stories is the essence of solo traveling.
By staying in a hostel, you get access to tours, events, and other travelers. If you want to be social, simply step outside your room. Hostels have common areas where guests congregate. You’ll always have someone to talk to.
Hostel Private Room Benefit #2: Escape Other Travelers
If you’re a long-term traveler, sometimes you need some downtime. Drinking and socializing every night isn’t sustainable. You may want to read a book, watch a show, or go to sleep at a reasonable hour. If you’re a digital nomad, perhaps you need some time to work.
When you’re in a shared room, there’s no telling what sort of nonsense can take place. People coming back at 3am from a party. Other people leaving for an excursion at 4am. Alarm clocks blaring. People having sex. It’s the wild west.
When you have your own room, you are the master of your domain. Live according to your own schedule.
Hostel Private Room Benefit #3: Spend Less Than a Hotel
Hostels cost less than hotels. Everyone knows that. You can get beds in a shared room for as low as $5 in some countries.
But private rooms aren’t that much more expensive. When traveling around Latin America for three months, I stayed almost exclusively in hostel private rooms. I paid between $12 to $30 per night. Most of the time it was around $20. Not too shabby!
Hostel Private Room Benefit #4: Get Your Own Bathroom
Perhaps the biggest ordeal when staying in a hostel is the bathroom situation. The shower’s taken. The toilet’s clogged. It can be enough to convince you to forego bathing.
But the private room changes everything. You can use the bathroom when you please! You don’t have to bring a change of clothes to the shared bathroom while shuffling in your towel. You can brush your teeth in a comfortable setting.
Don’t overlook this benefit. It’s a big one.
Hostel Private Room Benefit #5: Feel Fancy
I know what you’re thinking. Fancy? A hostel private room? Come on…
But humans tend to see their well-being in relative—not absolute—terms. If you have a hotel room, so what? Everyone at the hotel has a hotel room. You’re not special.
But at a hostel, having a private room makes you feel nice. You can observe the plight of the common folk as you retreat to your $17 castle. You’ll be known as “the esteemed gentleman or gentlelady of the private room.”
You’ll be royalty. Everyone will want to know your name. You’ll have a line of groupies just waiting to make eye contact. They’ll be hanging onto your every word.
Ok…perhaps I’m getting a little carried away. People probably won’t be writing home about how they met someone with a private room. But I stand by my premise. It can be nice to feel like a big fish in a small pond.
Wrapping It Up
There you have it. I’m sure you’re convinced. Now you know how to make it as a solo traveler. You can have a social life and your own bathroom…all without breaking the bank.
Originally published at https://columbia2colombia.com on October 1, 2019.