• Katie Ugland

Hostel Etiquette

Updated: Dec 23, 2020


I cannot emphasize enough how great hostels are, but to ensure you and other guests have a good experience, hostel etiquette is something to familiarize yourself with! You’re sharing a space with a bunch of other people and it’s important to be mindful. Every so often, I encounter people at hostels who aren’t considerate and that’s not something you want to be remembered for. Using these tips will ensure you’re a respectful guest and someone others want to be around. With that said, here’s a list of ways to help you be more aware in a hostel setting!


Be Quiet


Being quiet is key. If you’re entering your hostel dorm really late, normally after 10 pm, the lights will already be off, and some people will be sleeping. It’s ok to stay out really late but make minimal noise when you do come back to ensure you don’t wake anyone. If you wake up before most people, also make sure to make little noise while getting ready. It’s never fun being woken up by someone making a commotion.

It’s also cool to talk to people in the dorm room, but if it’s really late or early, try to whisper. When searching through your suitcase and moving things around, try to make as little noise as possible. Use earphones if you plan to listen to anything on your computer or phone too!

Keep the Bathrooms Clean


Sometimes there are community bathrooms and sometimes there are single bathrooms within each dorm. In both cases, don’t treat the bathroom as if you’re the only one using it. Once you’re done getting ready, make sure to take all your belongings back to your personal area. It’s important to do this because others are using the space to get ready. If you leave your belongings in the bathroom they might be used or stolen as well, or sometimes the cleaners will come through and throw everything away.


Don’t Take Over the Bathroom


On to my next point about bathrooms. In hostels, everyone is sharing them so you shouldn’t take super long showers or take up sink space for too long. It’s considerate to get in and get out in a decent amount of time.


Keep the Kitchen Clean


If you use the kitchen, clean any messes that you make because there aren’t people who come to clean it. Everyone in the hostel is sharing the kitchen so you’ll never want to leave a mess behind for the next person. Properly cleaning the kitchen utensils, plates, and appliances are also major because so many people are sharing them.

Keep All Your Belongings Together


In your dorm, you’ll have your own space and locker. Make sure all your belongings stay compact within that area. It’s not fair to other travelers if you’re belongings are scattered everywhere making a mess.

If you are wanting to dry any towels or pieces of clothing, I suggest hanging them on your bed railings to dry instead of other areas such as the bathroom. Of course, ask your bunkmate if that’s ok with them!


Keep the Lights Off


Each hostel bed comes with a personal lamp. Utilize that so you don’t bother other people if you come into the room late. Depending on the hostel, there’s a time when the main lights are allowed to go off and once they are off, you shouldn’t turn them back on.


Don’t Let Your Alarm Continuously Ring


You might be the type of person that sets multiple alarms to wake up on time, but in a hostel, it can be really rude to the other people in the room if they have to hear your alarm go off over and over again. Try to only set one alarm and keep your phone close by so you can quickly turn it off. People stay at hostels knowing they will hear alarms go off, but you don’t want to wake them up with an alarm that is continuously ringing every couple of minutes.


Pack Up the Night Before


Try your best to organize your belongings the day before you leave so you don’t make too much noise if you plan to get up early. Getting everything together can end up being loud and you won’t want to disturb everyone around you.


Be Open-Minded- Be Flexible, Adaptable, Reasonable


When you stay at a hostel, you need to know what you’re signing up for. The experiences you have when staying at hostels outweigh the cons that come with it. The reasons hostels are so cheap are because you’re sharing a space with a bunch of other people. It’s important to be flexible, adaptable, and reasonable in this situation.


Be Nice


And the final tip! Be nice! Say hi to other people in your room and create a comfortable, friendly atmosphere. Getting to know a couple of people will impact your level of comfort. You’ll feel much more at ease to share a room with a bunch of strangers if some of them become your friends!


Wrapping it up


I will continuously say again and again how great hostels are! It’s each traveler’s responsibility to be considerate to fellow travelers and when they are, everyone has a better experience. On your next stay at a hostel, use these tips to ensure you and everyone else has a great time!



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