Travel accommodations are an important part of your trip experience. Do yourself a favor and plan for what you need.

Traveling is quite a versatile endeavor, with varying styles among each person. If you achieve what you desired out of it, then there is certainly no right or wrong way to go about it. Of course, part of this process includes understanding your own personal travel style. Once you do this, it is easier to analyze which travel options works the best for your needs. A large part of the travel style game is accommodation. Given the fact that there are virtually endless options out there for where to stay while exploring a new place, you might be wondering exactly what is the difference. Those moments when it feels like there are too many choices can also feel like there are no choices. Things like a hotel vs hostel are often not on the forefront of a traveler’s mind.

However, there is plenty to educate yourself on as you navigate the ever-changing travel world. As a unique individual exploring new cultures and places, you should expect to be treated a little differently. Explorers often have outside the ordinary interactions with the places they visit. To help you feel more at home wherever you go, it is useful to have somewhere comfortable to stay. Accommodation is a very large part of the travel experience, and should not be overlooked. This is where discussions such as hotel vs hostel come in. Naturally, the two most popular methods of accommodation often get compared. It can be difficult to know which is best when traveling.

These useful tips are sure to help you as you decide between a hotel or hostel.

Hotel vs Hostel: Which is cheaper?

Clearly, affordability is a considerable factor when planning your travels. Travel styles and trip experiences vary significantly, often due to financial budgeting. It is not a good or a bad thing necessarily to allow your budget to steer your trip plans. For the hotel vs hostel conversation, naturally, the hostel appears to be the more financially sound choice. But is this always the case?

Hotel

The price and availability of a hotel hinges largely on the place you are visiting. Certain travel destinations average $100 per night, which others are much higher. As you might have guessed, hotels generally cost more than a hostel, but there are certain exceptions to this. It is quite important to do your research within the area you plan to stay so you can map out pricing options between a hostel vs hostel.

Hostel

Hostels have the most leeway when it comes to pricing options. If you use a search tool such as Hostels.com, you can compare the different hostels within your destination. On average, you should except to pay less with a hostel, but naturally this depends on a few details. For one, the location of the hostel impacts how much it will cost. If it is in a more tourist dense area, or a higher quality place, you can expect to pay significantly more.

Hotel vs Hostel: Which is more comfortable?

Comfortability is another driving factor as you decide between a hotel vs hostel. Your desired quality of travel is entirely up to you, and it is helpful to be aware of your expectations. This helps keep your options open and more catered to your personal travel needs. For example, if you do not care for the idea of sharing a room with multiple strangers (i.e. hostel) then you should look into hotel options. However, some people enjoy the opportunity to meet different travelers and engaging in this fun, vibrant community.

Hotel

The comfort factor of a hotel is that you almost always know what to expect. Hotels provide a single room, with amenities all to yourself. Private rooms are the norm among hotel travelers, so if your personal space is important to you, then a hotel is likely your best option.

Hostel

If you have ever been exposed to the backpacking world, you likely understand that the words “hostel” and “comfort” are often not used in the same sentence. (Perhaps in a joke). Generally, people who seek out hostels are not expecting a luxury five star experience, and for good reason. If you think you can stay at a hostel and have access to everything you would in a high-class hotel, you might find yourself quite disappointed. Most hostels do not prioritize comfort over practicality, which is why there is greater room for accommodation. Here, you can expect to see twin sized beds and bunk beds as the norm. Additionally, a communal bathroom space is always something to expect and get used to.

Hotel vs Hostel: Assessing the amenities.

Amenities are essential when you are on the go. Most travelers look forward to their accommodation for the fact that they have access to things that they otherwise do not have while on the road. Some of these things include kitchens, telephones, and even hair dryers. If amenities are crucial to you within your accommodation experience, check out what to expect from a hotel vs hostel before you book. It is useful to remember that you should always look into the individual booking to see what particular amenities are offered there, as there tends to be significant variance.

Hotel

One perk of a hotel is that you generally know what to expect when it comes to amenities. Most hotels offer things like a hair dryer, coffee maker, and a telephone. If the little things matter to you in your accommodation, then a hotel may be an ideal choice. A lot of hotels often have a conjoined restaurant, or a least a full breakfast every morning as well. Keep these factors in mind as you peruse your booking options. You can even look for a hotel with added luxury features such as a pool or a hot tub, if you want an extra dose of relaxation.

Hostel

Hostels do not always have the little things that hotels contain, such as hair dryers or shampoo bottles. Generally, the experience is much more bare-boned, with little room for “fluff.” One thing that hostels offer however, is shared amenities. These features are quite typical within hostels, and include things such as kitchens, reading rooms, and televisions. The communal living areas within a hostel are quite nice, and give you a chance to have some fun while connecting with like-minded travelers. Naturally, these types of relational features help keep the hostel vibe going strong around the world. Sometimes hostels offer a morning breakfast as well, for an additional fee. If it is a full breakfast spread, then this is often worth the extra money.

Hotel vs Hostel: How to find and book.

Once you have an idea of your desired destination and accommodation type, then you must figure out exactly how to find and book. With countless hotels and hostels out there, it might feel overwhelming to decide where to stay. Always be sure to do your own research within your specific destination so you have an idea of what to expect with the accommodation. If you are aware of the price variance within your city, then it is more difficult to find yourself overpaying.

Hotel

Hotels are generally best found online and ahead of time. In some countries within Europe, it is not uncommon to book your hotel the day of and in person. This is risky, however, because hotels tend to fill up very quickly. Especially during tourist seasons, you are not always guaranteed a room. In addition to this, you could find yourself paying significantly more if you pay for a hotel on the spot, as opposed to booking in advance. Decide your desired budget and try and search online within these parameters for the best hotel booking experience.

Hostel

You might notice that hostels are quite interesting to book. With the proper resources and tools, you can understand that you have plenty of hostel options available to you. When booking a hostel it is important to remember that saving money is not the most important factor, even if it is to you. There are some incredibly cheap hostels out there, and for a good reason. Generally, these kinds of accommodation options are in unsafe places and are not the most sanitary. Make sure you keep other factors in mind as you access which hostel is right for you.

Hotel vs Hostel: Take your pick.

The good news about deciding between a hotel vs hostel is that there is no wrong choice. Each of these options are popular among travelers for a reason. They are reliable and worth using time and time again. However, as you explore, you will learn just which options best suits you. Fortunately, you can use this guide as a tool in this process so there are no unwanted surprises.

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Faith is a writer and social media manager residing in Virginia Beach, Virginia. She is passionate about people and currently attends university in pursuit of a degree in Clinical Psychology and Counseling. A nomad by nature, Faith finds utmost joy in trekking around the globe and strongly advocates backpacking as the best way to explore anywhere. Being a bookworm and an avid coffee drinker, she is likely to be found sipping an Americano and mulling over a classic novel.

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