Is it crazy? Should you do it? Is it even possible? You see mama, after 5+ years of traveling with my kids, I’ve learned that you get to try it all. Hotels, airbnb stays, resorts and yes, hostels too! Your accommodation is part of the overall family travel experience and each stay will always bring something unique to it. So if you’ve never considered a hostel stay with kids before, here are 6 reasons why I think you should definitely give it a try.
1. They tend to be the most budget-friendly option.
If you compare them with other types of stays with similar space, amenities and location. Considering you could have access to a full family room, hostels are generally the most budget-friendly option BUT always remember to compare them with Airbnb rentals & hotels. Your destination will play a big role, since there are places around the world where more travelers are looking for hostel stays.
To give you an example, it’s more likely that you’ll find more hostel options in regions like Southeast Asia and Europe, in comparison to the US. With more options, the prices decrease. This increases your chances to find a great place for a good price.
Here’s a little hack when choosing a room during your hostel stay with kids! 👉🏼 If family rooms are not available, you could rent all beds on a 4-bed shared room for example, and voila, you have your own private room.
2. Most include FREE breakfast every morning.
Just like in hotels, a lot of hostels offer breakfast every morning, included in your daily rate. The type of breakfast will depend on the hostel but it can go from a set dish (say toast, eggs, fruit, coffee, and juice), to a full buffet-style breakfast.
During our 1 month stay at Nucapacha Hostel in Ecuador, we had breakfast prepped for us every single day! It included fruit, toast with butter & jelly, scrambled eggs, fresh juice and coffee. Definitely a highlight, and something less to think about when traveling with kids 😉
3. Shared spaces mean you’ll have access to a kitchen.
What’s better than saving money on every breakfast while family traveling?? Yep! Saving money in all of your daily meals! And while I get it, no one wants to cook 24/7 while traveling, having access to a kitchen is a HUGE plus when traveling with kids. Instead of eating out all the time, you could have a couple of meals planned at your hostel.
We usually aim to apply this for breakfast and dinner, and choose to do lunch at a local restaurant since we’re usually on the go at that time. Another great thing about hostels, is that aside from having access to all the kitchen areas and tools, you also have storage space! That means access to a fridge where you can store food, as well as dry storage area. And don’t worry! Everything is generally organized so each “hostel room + guests” have their designated space as well as a way to label everything.
4. Access to hostel amenities.
Something that may surprise you is that there are a lot of hostels around the world that have access to amenities that you’d only think you’d find in hotels. Some of the awesome spaces we’ve enjoyed while staying at hostels in Ecuador, Southeast Asia, and Europe include pools, co-working spaces, restaurants, shops, lounging rooms, laundry rooms, and beautiful patios.
That’s right! Hostel stays with kids can certainly be comfortable and enjoyable (some times for a fraction of a hotel price 😉). As a family who loves traveling and working while on the road, we love having our stay be a place where we we can both work online and let our kids have a great time.
5. Hostel-planned activities.
This is probably one of my FAVORITE reasons to choose a hostel stay with my kids! Almost every single hostel we’ve visited around the world has had a calendar of activities, specifically planned for travelers, so we can see each destination from a local’s perspective.
These usually include activities like walking tours and food tours, but also longer planned daily tours. Our Siem Reap sunrise tour in Cambodia? Booked through our hostel. Our free walking tour in Madrid? Yep! Booked through our hostel =)
If you’re into experienced-based family travel and if you’d love for your kids to get immersed in the culture of each place, booking activities through your hostel is a fantastic option.
6. You get to meet so many travelers!
And mores because you’re traveling as a family. Kids are natural magnets so don’t be surprised if other travelers approach you to celebrate you, ask you questions, or just say hello. Although we haven’t met many traveling families at hostels (yet), we have definitely inspired couples who’ve been thinking about having kids, because now they could see that it was very much possible to still travel with them.
Something that I can guarantee is that every single traveler you meet at a hostel will have INCREDIBLE stories to share, and you’ll be able to share your amazing stories too! Being surrounded by this type of vibe is, hands down, something that will help YOU and your family travel even more.
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