I have stayed in hostels a handful of times and have always had pleasant experiences. The people I met were nice. The accommodations, while sometimes sparse, were doable. The facilities were clean. Until…December 14, 2016.
On this day, I was faced with the worst hostel I could imagine (well, minus the horror movie type), at Common Grounds, in Pai, Thailand. I knew from the second I walked in that I was not going to be happy there. Reluctantly, I paid $18 for the three nights I’d signed up for (hey, it had good reviews online!).
Walking past the many stoners hanging out on beanbags in the outdoor verandah, the staff led me to my room: a 4-bed room with an in-room bathroom. The room was shabby, and I had flashes of bedbugs in my mind. As I was unpacking, I heard many other patrons being led to their rooms and one piece of instruction was a little different than what I’d gotten:
Continue reading Accommodation Nightmare
I have a penchant for staying on friends’ couches and consider myself a 3-star hotel kinda gal, but my recent trip to New Orleans was all about traveling on a budget. The best way to do that is by staying in a hostel. With 23 countries under my belt, you’d think I’d be a hostel pro, but this was my first time ever! I stayed at a lovely, off the beaten path place called Auberge near the St. Charles streetcar. It was given really high ratings on all of the blogs I read, and at $26 a night, I jumped on it. (For comparison, some hotels rooms I found were $200/night).
The room I stayed in was an 8-person mixed dorm room, meaning both men and women shared the room. The room was never full but the inhabitants were certainly characters – a Brazilian man with a tan, 6-pack, and a nipple ring; a man in his 20s who slept often, always with his jeans on; and a female Floridian who smoked pot and claimed to be in NOLA to sightsee, but never made it past Bourbon Street. I met a girl from Japan, a few from Germany, and a couple from the UK, all of whom stayed in other rooms. Besides my room, there was a 6-person mixed dorm and all-female rooms, costing $30 and $33 a night respectively.
The only reason I chose the 8-person mixed was because I’m cheap (really, I just wanted to spend the extra $21 I was saving on yummy treats).
Continue reading My First Hostel Experience