Tag archive for "hostel"

The price of travel around the world-accommodation

Australia, Destinations, England, New Zealand, Other, Thailand, USA

The price of travel around the world-accommodation

5 Comments 21 August 2012

With the biggest necessity, beer, out of the way, let’s move onto to shelter.

Accommodation varies a lot around the world, but also in each city. In most places you visit you’ll almost always find an expensive place to rest your head. It’s the cheaper, but still nice places that are hard to find.

The good thing about accommodation is that sometimes you won’t even have to pay for it. These days organizations like WWOOF or Couchsurfing, even house sitting websites, can help travelers find a free place to crash anywhere in the world.

This option may not be for everyone though. For those who prefer their own rented space, here is the price of a good night’s rest around the world. Take note that the prices below are for an array of budget accommodation, from campgrounds to hostels to affordable hotels.

Accommodation world price guide

Country Price Blogger
USA $25-70 Runaway Juno
Australia AUD$26-110 ($27-115) yTravel Blog
New Zealand NZD$25-30 ($20-24) BackpackingMatt
England £20 ($32) The Aussie Nomad
Spain €15-40 ($19-50) Christine in Spain
Germany €10-20 ($12-25) Travels of Adam
Turkey TRY25-75 ($14-42) Iced Chai
India INR250-900 ($4.50-16) Globetrotter Girls
Egypt EGP40-100 ($6.50-16.50) Iced Chai
Iran IRR306,000 ($25) Iced Chai
Indonesia (Bali) IDR100,000 ($10.50) Sit Down Disco
Thailand THB150-800 ($5-25) Nomadic Matt
South Korea KRW11,300-90,500 ($10-80) Waegook-Tom
Colombia COP19,000-58,000 ($10.50-32) 20-Something Travel

Additional information from participating bloggers on the price of accommodation around the world:

  • Runaway Juno went into more detail about accommodation in the USA, saying campgrounds cost between $25-30, hostels; $30-35; and older motels; $55-70.
  • Caz at yTravel Blog says a bed in a hostel dorm in Australia will cost about AUD$26 and a private room, AUD$80-110.
  • Backpacking Matt’s price range is for your average hostel in New Zealand. He says, “New Zealand offers up a range of budget accommodation for the discerning traveler. Shy away from the chains of Nomads or Base and rather look for BBH member hostels for comfortable, clean and character-filled hostels. “
  • Chris, The Aussie Nomad, says hostels are by far the cheapest option in England. The price he gave is an average, so he advises people to check out prices on sites like Hostelworld and Hostelbookers for a better idea.
  • Christine from Christine in Spain offers price points for a shared hostel room, €15, and a private “hostal” room, €30-40, which is a no-frills hotel.
  • On Travels of Adam, Adam offers further advice on finding a cheap room in Germany. “Most of the big name hostels (those mentioned in the guidebooks) run about €20,” he says. “But you can find cheaper dorms in the city as well, usually around 10-12 euro.” He wrote a post about Wombats in Berlin and high recommends it out of the “big name hostels”.
  • Lavanya of Iced Chai, who provided information for Iran, Egypt and Turkey adds that the price given for Iran is for a budget room that sometimes comes with a shared bathroom and sometimes a private bathroom, and that accommodation in the other two countries varies tremendously. She says she paid anywhere from EGP40 for a private room with private bathroom, but no air con in Luxor to EGP100 for a private room with shared bathroom in Alexandria. She says in Turkey, Istanbul has its own price points, but for the rest of the country a budget private room costs between TRY25-75.
  • In India, Danni and Jess of Globetrotter Girls say, “A double room in a guesthouse usually runs between 250 and 500 Rupees, the highest price for a budget hotel room we have seen was 900 Rupees.”
  • Adam at Sit Down Disco gave the price for a private guesthouse room with cold water and a fan in Bali, but adds that visitors can find even cheaper rooms if cleanliness is not a concern.
  • On his site, Nomadic Matt notes that hostel dorms range between THB150 and 600 depending on location. He says private rooms in a guesthouse start at THB200. Budget hotel rooms cost THB400-800 per night. All these prices are based on Bangkok.
  • Waegook-Tom adds some really great information on finding accommodation in South Korea. The prices given above are based on cities like Seoul and Busan. Outside the country’s cities, hostels are almost non-existent. He says visitors can choose between a yeogwan, “love motel”, which costs $US40-80 per night for a private room, or a jimjilbang, traditional Korean bath-house, which costs $10 per night for a mat and spot on the shared floor to sleep. “These are everywhere in Korea,” he says. “When you pay, you’ll be given a special outfit to wear, and then go to your designated area (male or female). Here, you can either change into the outfit and go into the (mixed sex) sleeping area, or choose to use the sauna facilities first, which I’d recommend, as this functions as your shower in a jjimjilbang. However, you do have to be completely naked.”
  • The prices Stephanie of Twenty-Something Travel provided ranges from a shared dorm room to private room. She adds that this price goes up in more touristy areas.

Note: Exchange rates were calculated on 21 August 2012 using XE and are the approximate conversion. These rates change constantly, so check the most current exchange rate before any trip.

Also, prices vary throughout a country, especially larger ones like the USA. If you do not agree with the price provided, please write about it below and we’ll adjust our chart.

Finally, each price above is based on per night rates. When these rates apply to hostel dorms, the price is per person, per night. When a private room, guest house, hotel or motel is mentioned, the price is per room, not per person. Accommodations have different policies on how many people can stay in one room per night.

Is there another country you would like to see in this post? It’s an open post, so share the price of a room in another country of the world in our comments section and we’ll add your tip to the chart.

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A diamond in downtown LA: Cecil Hotel

Destinations, USA

A diamond in downtown LA: Cecil Hotel

2 Comments 29 September 2011

In a city that actual icons of success call home and the word millions is thrown around daily, it’s pretty much a giveaway that Los Angeles isn’t the easiest place to find cheap accommodation.

Searching through hostels and hotels in America’s most glamorous city, there seems to be a clear cut divide between the cheap accommodation being in terrible locations and great locations only have overpriced accommodation

Dorms starting at $30 something a night? C’mon

Reasonably priced privates in Venice Beach? I want to be in Hollywood!

Good rates in Compton? No thank you.

Dorm, private, I didn’t care. I just wanted to find a reasonable rate at a place actually in the city.

Luckily, I found Cecil Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles, which offers a private room  suitable for two people at $50 per night.

Location

Located on S. Main Street in Downtown Los Angeles, Cecil is a bit of a diamond in the rough. It’s classic interior and grand architecture seems to clash with the lackluster buildings that neighbor it and garbage-filled shopping carts that grace its sidewalk.

However, the hotel is located only two blocks from a subway. So even if you’re not in the center of all the action of Hollywood, you’re only a short walk and a few stops away.

Photo courtesy of Cecil Hotel

The Staff

I didn’t really have too much interaction with the staff, but what little I did have was good. They were very friendly at reception, helpful with directions and they looked after our bags for the day.

Cleanliness

Completely up to par. The rooms are a bit worn, but very clean. Shared bathrooms were spotless.

Rooms

Our standard hotel room came with a double bed, TV and sink. The room is worth the price and even had a little view of the city. It must be said that after three nights of struggling with sleep due to jet lag, Ric and I both had the absolute best night of sleep our first night at Cecil.

Vibe

It’s no Roosevelt and I doubt any A-listers would be caught dead there, but the hotel actually does have an old Hollywood feel. While all the rooms in the massive hotel are pretty simple, the lobby and second floor are really beautiful. I actually felt like I escaped to the Hollywood of the 40s or 50s upon walking into the hotel.

Travelers lounge around the hotel’s second floor to use the hotel’s free internet. But other than that, it’s a pretty private place to stay. Even though it offers prices cheaper than some hostels in the city, it doesn’t have a hostel feel at all. Don’t expect to make friends.

Photo courtesy of Places Online

Safety 

Sure it’s probably not the nicest area in LA, but I don’t think it is as bad as the reviews make it out to be on Orbitz. It’s really only the street it’s on that doesn’t “look” up to scale. Everything that surrounds the area is extremely commercial.

You’ll meet a few crazy street dwellers hanging around the area, but I think that kind of adds to the California trip. Luckily, the hotel staff are pretty mindful of this and keep a close eyes over the hotel

Overall

We got really lucky with Cecil Hotel. It’s not the spectacular Hollywood accommodation that people dream of, but it was comfortable, clean and a decent price in a city where that affordability isn’t a concern.

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Get a room

Australia, Destinations, Tips & Facts

Get a room

No Comments 29 August 2010

I’m a firm believer that no matter how thrifty or cheap a person wants to keep his or her travels, every once in awhile that person must treat herself or himself.

While it may be important to watch the cash flow, so the trip can last longer, it’s also important to remember that this is a trip abroad and should be lived to the fullest. So travelers should spend on themselves or something they really want to do on the road, because they can do nothing at home for a lot less money.

I’m a pretty good judge of when I’ve reached my limit and after two months of living in a six-bed dorm, I can say without a doubt that limit was reached. Between disagreements over the air-con, people coming in late at night every night (including myself) and sleeping in bunk beds, I was getting between two and four hours of sleep a night for a good few weeks and had to escape.

So I did what any smart woman would do. I checked into a hotel room. My own room, with no guests and nothing to do all day but lay around and pamper myself.

I booked the room on Orbitz after a really rough night where I achieved zero hours of sleep. The website offered a wide range of rooms costing $100 and up in the Port Douglas area. I selected Rydges on Davidson St., which was $115 for the night. A small price to pay for my sanity.

At that point anything would have been nice, but my room at Rydges was extra nice. It wasn’t just a room. It was a suite, with a kitchen, living area and bathtub with jets. Yea, jets!

Freaking out like a dog after someone mentions the word walk, I arrived an hour before check in. The room wasn’t ready so I spent that hour at the pool and laying around on couches in the common area. I already felt cleansed of all the germs I had picked up over my months living in a hostel.

Once I checked in, I discovered the place also had a washer and dryer, so I headed back to my hostel, where I was still checked in, grabbed all my laundry. Then it was straight to the bathroom where I exfoliated and masked my face then laid in the tub for a good hour. I did my nails, treated my hair even washed my feet.

Afterwards it was straight to bed, which was covered in pillows. There I watched a few episodes of my favorite two TV series at the moment, True Blood and Mad Men. I had saved a few planning to watch them all in bed, but I only made it through half an episode of True Blood before knocking out.

I slept the entire night through and even slept in, something I hadn’t done since I’ve been to Australia I believe.

My night at the hotel was so good I did it again the following week with a girl friend, which was just as relaxing, but a bit more fun and less money.

No matter what tickles your fancy, it’s important to invest in that every once in awhile. I think a hotel room is a great option because it can be cheaper than some spa services and lasts much longer.

Some tips to finding the cheapest rate:

  • check deals on travel booking sites like Orbitz and Kayak
  • call the hotel on the day of your planned stay for last minute deals
  • ask around people at the place your living, someone may work a nice hotel
  • if you work in the area, check if the hotel does industry rates
Living where you work

Australia, Destinations, Dispatches from Down Under

Living where you work

8 Comments 20 June 2010

It seems to good to be true. Work a few hours a week and earn free accommodation. The deal is great, but the workload and hours are tough.

Most work for accommodation is for hostel cleaners. Imagine cleaning an 80-bed dorm of smelly, hungover backpackers. Plus there’s the kitchen the smells even worse, the bathrooms that often have a sink full of puke in the morning and sometimes even condemns left in strange places that you’ll never look at the same.

Even though the daily work load only amounts to an hourly rate of about $7 per hour in a country where minimum wage is $15 per hour, backpackers flock to this deal.

While the major portion of long term hostel guests usually include people cleaning the hostel for their room, it can also include people actually working at the hostel and those working in town who just prefer to stay at a backpacers.

I’m the second type of long term hostel guests. I’m a receptionists and bartender at a hostel in Port Douglas, QLD for a decent hourly rate and have $150 taken out of my paycheck each week for accommodation.

It’s a strange way of life that I can only relate to college dorm life during freshman year of college, except with less places to escape, more partying and zero classes. While this sounds like a dream, it has its ups and downs, but is almost a right of passage for backpackers in Australia.

Some days, hostel workers may not even step foot off the property. They wake up at the hostel, go to work at the hostel, eat their meals at the hostel, party at the hostel bar and once again return to bed at the hostel. It’s great only having to walk a few steps to and from work every day.

But makes it hard to escape.

I work four days a week, yet everyday people ask me questions about everything from staying another week to how to work the microwave. I don’t mean to be rude, but sometimes I just need to walk away when this happens to keep my sanity.

On top of the guests asking things, there’s the boss asking things. When people leave work at the end of the day or week, they’re out of reach. They don’t have to run into their superiors and they can just ignore calls or emails if they really want to.

That’s not a luxury had by people who live where they work. Just walking into the hostel on my day off I can be asked to help with something. If I’m not visible, my room is only a few steps away.

But always having people around can have its benefits. It’s not always easy to make friends in new cities. It usually takes awhile and requires going out or joining clubs and activities. However, at a hostel there’s always people around to hangout with and some of those people might end up being great friends.

Unfortunately, this means sometimes hostel workers must reprimand their friends. This is a huge problem. The majority of the time, hostel guests are breaking hostel rules. Technically those employed at the hostel should reprimand or report this. But not only does that add more off-the-clock work, but it’s also not a good way to keep friends.

Then there’s those that become more than just friends.

It’s easy to find love (or something like that) in a place that hosts 50 or so usually 20-something people a night. Plus the people are constantly changing increasing the chances of finding Mr. Right or Mr. Right Now.

With all the drinking and partying that comes with hostel life, booty calls are more in reach at 3 a.m. here than they are anywhere else in the world (for those that are into that).

It’s easy to find someone to crawl into bed with at night, but you’re bound to run into them the next day. Sometimes this can be good if those people really had that connection, but usually it’s just awkward and can even be annoying for those not interested.

If this fling moves past the next day, living a few rooms away from a potential partner can be straining. Both always know where each other are, which provokes a bit more drama than there would be if the pair lived far apart.

It almost feels like moving in with someone you may really like, but literally just met. Everything from your dirty laundry to your eating habits are exposed giving the hostel relationship nearly no chance.

It seems like a dream trade and looks like so much fun for those just visiting the hostel. But like anything else, it has its ups and downs and they’re hard to escape.

Worth the work: Pittwater YHA

Australia, Destinations

Worth the work: Pittwater YHA

1 Comment 01 June 2010

People that visit only Sydney, see just that, not Australia. The city is beautiful and full of history, but it doesn’t quite show off Australia’s landscape or wildlife, which is a big part of the country.

Unfortunately, most people don’t have enough vacation time to see as much of the country as they need to really understand it’s lure. They stick to Sydney, because it’s the easiest city to fly into and most well-known.

Luckily, the city’s suburbs are fairly easy to reach and give short tern vacationers a glimpse of the rest of Australia, outside the city. About an hour from Sydney, located in Ku-ring-gai National Park, Pittwater YHA offers affordable accommodation in a slice of untouched Australia.

Location

Directions to the hostel may turn some people off. It starts with a commute on one of three buses from Railway Square in Sydney. All three buses depart rarely throughout the day and one bus requires people transfer at Narrabeen/Mona Vale. Once guests are dropped off at Church Point, they must take an $11 per way or $12.50 return ferry to Halls Wharf. Finally, guests must walk 15 minutes uphill to reach the hostel.

People taking the long trip to reach Pittwater YHA may regret the decision about two minutes into the walk, but that will change once they see this place and its view. With a view of Morning Bay from the front porch and close proximity to several fantastic hiking trails, it’s a dream escape from the city.

A view of Morning Bay from a lookout point in Ku-ring-gai National Park. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

A view of Morning Bay from a lookout point in Ku-ring-gai National Park. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

Staff

Owners Michael Doherty and Sarah Polomka live next door to the hostel and work at it regularly. The lovely couple maintain a relaxed mood that can only come from years of living in a place like this. They take time to meet their guests and even invite them to go sailing on their boat once a week.

Cleanliness

Guests won’t feel like they’re roughing it in the woods. Hostel rooms and facilities are all well-maintained.

Rooms

Rooms are modest and comfortable. Some offer a perfect view of the hostel’s natural surroundings. The hostel has multi-share female and multi-share male dorms from $A26-$A29 per bed, double rooms from $A64.50-$A72 per night and four share family rooms from $A88-$A98 per night.

The rates are comparable to that of the city, which may concern some people, but this is backpacker accommodation like no other. It’s worth every penny.

Vibe

People in the area are extremely kind and welcoming. It’s a little piece of paradise and the locals recognize that.

Guests staying at Pittwater YHA should probably purchase food prior as the ferry is pricey as is the local grocery market. Most will find plenty to do at the hostel, such as rent kayaks, sail or hike. It has lovely common areas, from its outdoor wrap-around deck with hammocks to its boat house-like living room with comfy couches and a fireplace.

At the end of the day, guests eat dinner together, talk, read, maybe in an acoustic session.

The hostels boathouse-like common area has comfortable couches, a fire place and heaps of books. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

The hostel's boathouse-like common area has comfortable couches, a fire place and heaps of books. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

Safety

It’s not an issue. Pittwater YHA is one of the few places left in the world where people don’t need to look over their shoulders or worry about their belongings.

Overall

I stayed at Pittwater YHA to give a friend from home that was only visiting Australia for two weeks, a glimpse of the country outside of Sydney. It was not an easy hostel to get to, but the trip was worth it. The hostel is beautiful, staff is friendly and I was relaxed while staying there.

The hostel has a wrap-around porch with a spectacular view. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

The hostel has a wrap-around porch with a spectacular view. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

Hostel review: YHA Flinders Street Melbourne

Australia, Destinations

Hostel review: YHA Flinders Street Melbourne

No Comments 22 February 2010

Located on Flinders Street, YHA Hostel is an ideal location for those that want to reach popular tourist attractions in Melbourne, Australia. It offers the cleanliness and concierge of a hotel, but also the companionship. The massive hostel requires guest use a designated card key to enter not only their room, but also their floor. Each floor has its own common area, kitchen and bathrooms. The separation and size of the hostel can be difficult for those looking to make friends, but comforting to people just looking for clean and secure accommodation.

Staff: The hostel has a lot of people working at once, which makes it easier to check in and receive help with any other needs. Hostel staff is friendly and extremely professional. Unlike a lot of other hostels I’ve stayed at where the staff acted like long term guests doing a bit of work, YHA staff act like hotel concierge in everyday clothing.

Location: It’s perfect for those that want easy access to the docks, free tram (#35), Southern Cross Station (located two blocks away), attractions on the Yarra River and heaps of other popular sights.

Cleanliness: Spotless. I never saw a dirty dish in the sink. Staff would go through the fridge and toss old food. The common area was in perfect order. The bathrooms were unbelievably clean. The rooms were always well-vacuumed and bed sheets looked and smelled brand new.

Feeling: It felt more like a hotel than a hostel. The hostel does try to help guest have fun and interact by providing free movies and hosting themed nights, but the hallways were always eerily quiet and the common room was often empty.

Price: I stayed in a four-bedroom, female dorm for $31.50 with my YHA international card. The only room cheaper is a six bedroom dorm, but one staff member said guests must book far in advance for those rooms. Still, my room was pretty cheap considering the hostel location. Internet, breakfast and any themed parties cost extra, but Bertha Brown, the restaurant downstairs, sells coffees for $2 and gourmet pizzas for $5 to hostel guests.

It’s a great hostel for people that want a somewhat private, clean and quiet accommodation at a cheap price, but don’t expect to meet any travel partners there.

Photo courtesy of hotfrog.com.au.

Do what your mother tells you

Tips & Facts

Do what your mother tells you

1 Comment 09 February 2010

Whenever my parents made me do chores as a child I always thought one day I’m gonna run away, eat nothing but pancakes and do whatever I want. I ran away. I eat pancakes quite often. But I still have to do chores.

A lot of parents I’ve met always express concern about their children traveling abroad and living in hostels, but they have no idea how much hostel living will help mature their children. Kids get away with a lot when living at home, because their parents care about them and despite any frustration would never do anything to hurt them or their things. Strangers on the road are not as forgiving.

The stuff you could get away with at home, doesn’t fly in communal living. In fact, living with strangers forces people to follow mum’s rules more so than her nagging.

Get out of bed: A lot of hostels offer free breakfast. Even though it’s almost never anything special, it seems like the greatest thing in the world when you’re on the road and slowly running out of money. Unfortunately, the free food doesn’t last very long, usually available from 7-10. Regardless of all the partying that went on the night before or what a late sleeper you are, you’ll find yourself constantly waking up early for some free grub.

Finish your supper: When you actually do have to buy food, it’s precious. You pay for it with your own money and usually even cook it yourself. So eat it up, hell even lick the plate.

Tidy up your room: No matter how large a hostel room is, it’s not meant for that many people. You only have a small area to yourself. On top of that, you’ll want to keep your things on order so you don’t misplace things or not even realize certain things are gone.

Finish your homework: Internet is not free everywhere and that’s hard to swallow for someone who checks her email at least 30 times a day at home. Sometimes is can cost $5 an hour, so you have to make the most of your time online. Book things, respond to emails and update various accounts. Don’t waste time looking at random people’s photos on Facebook. Plus, you’d be surprised how much actual work you get done when you don’t have the internet to procrastinate on.

Do the dishes: I never do the dishes at home, because I have a dishwasher and someone else always ends up doing it anyway. People don’t have that luxury in hostels. You have to do your dishes and so them now, or face pissed-off fellow guests and sometimes even reprimanding by hostel owners.

Hostel Review: The Nunnery

Australia, Destinations

Hostel Review: The Nunnery

1 Comment 08 February 2010

My first impression of The Nunnery on Nicholson Street in Melbourne, Australia was not very good. Arriving at 9:30 a.m. directly from a 12-hour over night bus ride from Sydney, all I wanted to do was lay down. Unfortunately, I could not check in until 11 a.m., which is understandable. So I put my bags in storage and headed straight to the kitchen for coffee. When I asked the crowded kitchen, “Where are the mugs?” Someone replied, “Good luck finding one.”

The kitchen was filthy and sink filled with messy dishes.

The kitchen at The Nunnery was always messy. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

The kitchen at The Nunnery was always messy. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

Not wanting to spend another minute in the place, I left immediately to walk around the city. When I came home, I found out it was movie night, which was a perfect way to spend my lazy day. Movie night warmed me up to the hostel. The guests were friendly and easy to interact with. The common area is very nice and has surround sound.

This first day experience pretty much sums up my entire stay at The Nunnery. In some aspects it fails terribly, in others it’s fantastic. I think with a bit of lysol and a few changes in staff it could be great.

Staff: They were very helpful, interactive and kind. They were constantly cleaning things up around the hostel, even closed the kitchen three times a day for cleaning.

Location: Two blocks from Brunswick Street, it’s ideal for someone who wants the artsy Melbourne experience. The Fitzroy area is beautiful and the actual building The Nunnery resides in adds to that experience. Designed by Lloyd Tayler in 1888 for a wealthy doctor, the building has high ceilings, hardwood floors, labyrinth-like hallways, beautiful wood and tile detailing and more. In 1944 a French order of nuns called the “Daughters of Charity” took over to house young women.

The Melbourne Museum is located across the street and guests can catch the 96 tram, which goes to Southern Cross Railway Station, right in front of the hostel. The downtown area is only a short walk away.

Cleanliness: I wouldn’t say any part of the hostel was actually clean. Some areas were just worse than others. The kitchen was by far the worst. It always smelled, the dishes were always greasy if not piled up in the sink and the oven did not work. It’s unfortunate, because the hostel staff and even some of the long term guests worked hard to keep the place in shape. They placed signs up all over the place, saying wash up, but some people did not follow the rules.

The common area was livable. The rooms were okay. Surprisingly the bathrooms were the cleanest of all.

Feeling: It was very relaxed. Guests are always hanging out in the common area, outdoor patio and even in the hallways. The hostel made it really easy to meet people by hosting things like movie, barbecue and ice cream night. People would drink and chat outside at night, but it never got rowdy.

The common area is a great place to meet people. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

The common area is a great place to meet people. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

Rooms: The rooms were descent. I slept in a six-person mixed dorm. The bunk beds were a little unstable. My room had its own bathroom, which was very clean and spacious. My only complaint was the absence of central air. I visited in February, so Melbourne was extremely hot and humid. The only cooling option in my room was a fan,  which was not enough on some nights.

Safety: Guests receive a hostel card, which permits them into the building and their room. The rooms have lockers. The hostel also has cameras posted throughout it.

Price:
A six-person mixed room is $32. Breakfast is free and includes cereal, rolls, butter, peanut butter and jelly. Internet is not included and very expensive. If you walk a few blocks up Moor Street off Nicholson Road, you can get it for free at the Fitzroy Library. The hostel has free ice cream, barbecue, popcorn and pancakes on select nights.

The interior of the hostel matches the Fitzroy experience. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

The interior of the hostel matches the Fitzroy experience. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

Overall: It needs improvement, but it has character. If you’re a neat freak then avoid it by all means. If you can get pass that, then you’ll find a home-like environment where you can meet great people.

Hostel review: Big Hostel Sydney

Australia, Destinations

Hostel review: Big Hostel Sydney

2 Comments 01 February 2010

Big Hostel on Elizabeth Street offers the comforts of home with a perfect location in a faraway city. After being greeted by its friendly staff, guests continue on to its common area, which features six large comfortable couches, a flat screen TV and free wireless internet. The common area gets busy around 5 p.m., but remains relaxed. It’s hard to leave such a cozy place, luckily all the major sites in Sydney are within walking distance from this Surry Hills accommodation.

Staff: Made up of a few Aussies as well as foreign workers, the staff is knowledgeable and dependable. There is always someone at reception and most are in a great mood.

Location: Big is in with a swarm of other hostels in Surry Hiils. You can walk to every major attraction in the city. Darling Harbour and China Town are only a few blocks away. If arriving by train, Central Station is two blocks away.

Cleanliness: Every part of the hostel was very clean. The kitchen smelled normal, showers were always spotless and the common area was completely in order.

Feeling: Not by any means a “party” hostel, it has a really relaxed vibe. It’s easy to make friends in the common area. Most people played cards, sat around on their computers and shared a few beers.

DSC_0096

Rooms: I stayed in a eight-person female dorm. The rooms were temperate, quiet and large. The bunk-bedding was clean and comfortable, just a bit squeaky. The a small locker for each person in it.

Safety: It has lockers (bring your own lock), security cameras and every dorm room door locks every time you leave. I felt comfortable enough just leaving my computer around quite a few times.

Price: $29 per night for an eight-bedroom dorm. Free breakfast, wireless internet and sheets. Laundry and towels not included.

Overall: I liked it a lot, because I am not the type to go out and party every night. I would definitely stay here again. It’s a good option for work-holiday travelers looking for long term accommodation.

Book this hostel through Hostel World.

The little town of Fucking

Other, Photography

The little town of Fucking

No Comments 09 January 2010

Don’t call me a potty mouth. That’s really the name of a town in Austria. Although it’s pronounced Fooking.

I didn’t spend much time in Fucking. Actually I just biked through the tiny town in Summer 2007. I stayed at Yoho International Youth Hostel in Salzburg and one of the guys working at the hostel, a Kiwi, offered to take people on a free bike tour of Salzburg and the Austrian country-side. I rented a bike from the hostel and joined a group of about ten people for the journey.

I was sad to leave such a majestic place. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon.

I was sad to leave such a majestic place. Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon.

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