What do you call a traveller who stays in hostels?
A “hosteler” – a traveller who stays at hostels overnight, person who takes lodging at a cheap hotel or inn. But the same can be said of a “backpacker”, also a traveller who stays at hostels overnight or a person who takes lodging at a cheap hotel or inn.
So is a backpacker and hostel the same thing?
Today the answer is YES, maybe some years ago there may have been a slight difference, but today it depends on your culture as to whether you say “backpacker or hostel”
Most budget travellers, travel in groups or in pairs, and most are young educated and seeking adventure before they settle into their live.
Back in the old days a hostel or backpackers was a place to find crazy looking youth with enormous rucksacks, silly hair and totally unorganised with unrealistic itineraries.
But today with the internet, the that modern hosteler or backpacker can use websites to reserve where they’re going to stay, plan the itinerary and check out ahead their next stop.
As a hosteler backpacker from days gone by, our hostels were more like borstals than anything else – but today they have wifi, a bar, barbecues, beer nights, and rooms more akin to boutique hotels than the dirty, ram-a-jam hell-holes of my youth.
So, does that make the modern hosteler or backpacker a bit soft? Forced to be organised, no sleeping in train stations, no camping out in parks? Another difference is money. No-one has travellers’ cheques any more – they have bank cards that work in most cash machines across the globe.
There is much less theft, and, even if you are robbed, you can be wired money that will arrive in less than two hours. Backpackers or hostelers, no matter how scruffy, are less likely run out of cash.
So much of my young experience that had been devoted to finding somewhere to sleep, finding places to change money, to work out just how little I could exist on a day are long gone.
The days of backpackers living in squalid little old hostels are long gone, hostels have a lot to offer, and they’re clean, modern and extremely comfortable. You can get good rooms, cheap and in good locations, if you know where to look and make a point of looking for the very best.
Hostels have gone upmarket in a very productive sense, they provide a lot of hotel-type services and amenities and they’re ready for guests 24/7. If you’re looking for something nice, hygienic and no-worries based, we have your room waiting for you when you get there. Our service is friendly, efficient and practical, tell us what you want, and that’s what you’ll get.
There are a few basic standards you can expect when booking with a good hostel:
1. Good shared areas like the TV/Cinema lounge
2. 24 hour broadband/ wireless internet
3. Free linen service
4. Amenities like towels if you need them
5. Laundry facilities
6. Modern kitchens
7. Good dining area
8. Security facilities like lockers, mini safes, etc.
9. Storage facilities
10. A games room
11. Good central location making it easy to get around and close to shopping
12. A jobs board- Always useful for budget-conscious backpackers
13. Mail handling services
14. Tour and travel help desk services (Local knowledge saves a lot of money in Sydney, so this service is all good news for backpackers.)
15. Their own weekly/daily activities, including sightseeing tours, BBQs, and anything else they can think of that’s likely to be fun.
The hostels also create a great environment for travellers, they’re fun places, and if you want to meet people from all over the world, this is where you’ll find them, in their thousands, at any time of year.
Regardless of how hostel travelling has changed over the years. the essence of an hosteler or backpacker is a constant, it’s “Someone who is independent-minded, that can connect to other people, that is culturally aware, wants to learn about new cultures and cities, they want to know where the locals go. They know the value of taking some time off in life for travelling.”
Though definitely less naive and more organised than the ancients, the desire of today’s hosteler or backpacker still remains constant, to have fun in a strange country, city or town and to expand the experiences and memories that we all treasure so much.