10 Solo Travelers Discuss Which Is Better – Hostels or Hotels?

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Someone new to solo traveling has posted in a solo travel forum, asking for input from others regarding whether you can stay in hotels rather than hostels when traveling solo. They’ve noticed most solo travelers in this forum default to hostels, but they have concerns about privacy and safety. This is what seasoned solo travelers have to say about hostels vs. hotels.

1. Hotels Are More Relaxing

One traveler prefers staying in hotels over hostels because they find hotels more relaxing, and it gives them a sense of control over their time. While they acknowledge that hotels may offer fewer social interactions than hostels, socializing is not their primary interest when solo traveling.

2. Hotels Let You Stay Solo if You Can Afford It

One traveler likes to emphasize the “solo” in solo traveling, so they swear by hotels. While they’ve stayed in hostels before, now that they’re fortunate enough to afford hotels, they don’t plan on using them any time soon. The main reason for this is they prioritize having private space and value having their own bathroom and the ability to control their environment.

They acknowledge that hostels are a great social opportunity for young travelers who want to mingle and socialize, but that’s not their priority. Furthermore, they argue that you can do this as a hotel stayer by visiting the hotel bar. They experience a new place on their own terms by staying at a hotel.

3. Hostels Can Hold You Back

Someone on team hotels comments that there is a perception in the subreddit that if one does not stay in hostels, they are not fully traveling and not getting the complete travel experience. However, this user had always avoided hostels, even when they were young and broke, due to the rules and lack of freedom.

They prefer having complete privacy in case they meet someone they want to bring back to their room. Additionally, they find hostels to have too many inconsiderate people and a high school-like clique atmosphere. The commenter prefers searching for small, independently run hotels or guesthouses instead of hostels.

4. A Hotel Promotes Well-Being

A traveler critical of hostels comments that they choose hotels because hostels lack privacy with shared bathrooms and force you to deal with disrespectful roommates. They prefer spending more money to stay in a hotel for peace of mind during their travels.

They do not travel for the social experience but for hiking and sightseeing. Additionally, they acknowledge that some people may not have the budget for more expensive accommodations, but they prioritize their well-being while traveling.

5. Hostels Offer Private Rooms

A few people pushed back on the other commenters claiming that hostels burden you with a lack of privacy and annoying people. They argue that many hostels offer private rooms and are much cheaper than private hotel rooms. One of these people says, “accommodation is the main thing that’s more expensive when solo, so single-room hostels help overcome that.

I still get to decompress alone if I want.” Good point! If you’re okay with sharing common areas like the bathroom, this is a great budget option that provides the best of both worlds.

6. Hostels Are Awkward for Older People

A 43-year-old who has stayed in hostels for decades says they feel out of place at hostels at their age now for a few reasons. They prefer staying in hotels now because they snore, prefer the overall cleanliness, and dislike dorm life.

They have stayed at lower-tier hotels like Fairfield and Courtyard and thought they were fantastic and will be staying at even nicer hotels for their next trip. They find it hard to return to a dorm after experiencing a hotel.

7. Hostels Are Unbeatable for the Price

While most commenters grant that they would prefer to stay in a hotel if they could, only some have the means to drop hundreds of dollars a night on accommodation. If they did, they probably wouldn’t need a hostel. However, some cities have prohibitively expensive hotels, as one person brings up.

Even people who have switched to hotel gang over the years will find themselves reverting to hostel life when the price is too outrageous. As solo travelers, there isn’t anyone else to split the cost with.

8. Hostels Are Preferred by Extroverts

One jet setter characterizes people who stay in hostels as either cheap (living on a budget) or extreme extroverts who need to socialize. While most people in the thread prefer hotels, they granted that hostels are unbeatable for bringing people from all over the world together in shared spaces, where they can get to know each other in a fun and relaxed environment.

9. Hostels Are Convenient & in a Great Location

One traveler goes back and forth between hostels and hotels depending on the circumstances of their trip. They prefer hotels when they are sick, need to come and go often, or have a lot of things to carry. Hostels are preferred when they want to save money, and the location is worth it.

When staying in hostels, they prefer ones with ensuite bathrooms, single-gender rooms, and fewer beds. They also note that hostels often have laundry facilities on site, which can be convenient. Since hostels are targeted towards backpackers, they’re usually centrally located, so everything is walkable.

10. Hotels Are Safer, More Peaceful, & Have Better Amenities

Though the original poster thought this forum was biased towards hostels, all respondents unanimously preferred hotels for the peace and quiet and the unparalleled amenities. For example, one says having your own bathroom makes the price of a hotel worth it. Others cite having access to a pool and gym as reasons why hotels are better.

However, more serious concerns about safety and constant noise are likely the larger reasons. One person says while they know most people in hostels aren’t a threat, they still feel much safer in a hotel with proper security and a good reputation. Despite hostels being desirable for young tourists to socialize, multiple people said that noise worries deter them from booking at a hostel.

This thread inspired this post. Featured Image Credit: Deposit Photos

This article was produced by Our Woven Journey.

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Demi Michele is a seasoned traveler, turned freelance writer. Having explored most states and ventured internationally, her love for outdoor cafes, new cuisines, and cultural immersion shines through her wide range of articles. Based in Texas with her family and two Scottish Terriers, Demi turns her adventures into captivating travel narratives to share with readers.