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American Backpackers Hostel

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Hostelz.com's Review
American Backpackers Hostel is the cheapest hostel you'll find in Vancouver -- maybe even in the whole of Canada! If you need a very cheap bed to sleep in a good location, and no extras, this is the place to go.

The Location

The hostel is located near Gas Town, the old part of the city. It is a very popular area with shops, bars, and restaurants just around the corner, and everything is within walking distance. The waterfront with Canada Place and the Vancouver Convention Centre are just a five-minute walk.

There is a bus stop in front of the door, but parking a car is a bit more difficult. So-called Crack Town is nearby, and cars get their window smashed in very frequently. So paying for a parking garage is definitely recommended, and there are plenty all over the city. There is a small grocery shop just downstairs, and another one just a few steps further.

Rooms and Bathrooms

The hostel has private rooms as well as dorm rooms. All rooms have locks, and there are separate rooms for men and women. The rooms also have lockers to store your belongings. Every room has approximately three bunk beds, and bathrooms are shared. There is a shower downstairs, and one upstairs. There is hot water and also there are hooks to hang your clothes. You can use the washing machine and dryer for a fee.

Common Spaces

The hostel has a kitchen with stove, kettle, and microwave, but dishes and cutlery are scarce. Next to the kitchen is the common room with free pool table. For you pool fans who are getting excited, the table is bent, the balls have dips in them, and the cues are worn off. But it offers good entertainment to guests, especially to all those working travelers, who often stay here for a while before finding an apartment. There is a TV room with DVD and video player as well as a small terrace. In the hallway you can find an old computer to use the internet. Alternatively, you can bring your laptop and hook it up, but you will still have to pay for the internet.

The hostel houses an interesting crowd -- lots of travelers looking for jobs and permanent housing, some sketchy characters, and passers by who are attracted by the low rate. The hostel generally has excellent reviews because of the note at reception which offers you a free night's stay if you write a positive one.

You have to pay for luggage storage. The whole building is smoking-friendly -- even the kitchen. Don't talk to the receptionist lady in the morning before she's had her smoke!


All in all, this is a good hostel and you get what you pay for. It's ideal if you are on a low budget and don't need much comfort.

Exclusive Hostelz.com Review
August 2009

Photos taken by the Hostelz.com reviewer — Genuine photos you can trust.
How is American Backpackers Hostel rated on other websites?
Not listed on Hostelworld.
Not listed on Hostels.com.
Not listed on HostelBookers.
Not listed on HostelsClub.
Hostelz.com Guest Reviews
5   Character Abound, Great time The American Backpackers Hostel is true a gem found in the downtown heart of Vancouver City, Located on the corner of West Pender and Homer, its convenient location is ideal, with food & shops everywhere, easy access to transportation, and as a plus the famous Amsterdam Cafe is just a stones through away. The hostel itself is anything but dull, with people of all ages coming and going constantly there is never a shortage of personalities. It's more of a home than a hostel, whether you are there for a couple days or a couple of months, you will be welcomed like an old friend. You will not find a cheaper place in Vancouver.  , age 20, Canada ()
5   Most laid-back hostel you'll ever find you can smoke in the kitchen here ... this place is pretty damn chill. There's a smoking area for the blazers and late at night you can smoke in the lounge room as well. It's very communal and open, don't come here if you like things to look shiny and smell like daisies, it's a hostel not a hotel. For only $10/night you can't get any better. Given the location of this hostel the price crazy cheap. Go check it out for a night and you'll end up staying for a week or 2. Maybe more. It happened to me.  , age 27, Canadian ()
5   Cheapest place in canada! you will not find a cheap place like this all over the canada! excellently located right in the city center and a step away from the skytrain and all the major tourist attractions. very informal atmosphere, average customers are very young. in summer make they make party even with free spaghetti. the rest of the services and basic level but for the price you pay is more than good. also suitable for long stays for people like me who has the working visa. I have been here for many months and I felt right at home.  , age 26, spain ()
5   Cheapest place in town most cheapest place in vancouver! great atmosphere and great party on friday night. i really enjoyed the time i spent here. also hostel is placed downtown close to everything. will come again.  , age 23, germany ()
5   Awesome place! Great atmosphere!! Really cheap place right in downtown close to everything. For anyone on a budget I recommend staying at the American Hostel. For sure the only place im gonna go each time i'm in Vancouver!  , age 24, Canada ()
1   Psychiatric facility!!! This is not a hostel, it is a psychiatric facility for homeless people and drug addicts. Aggressive staff!!! I am wondering like many other people, how it is still possible for this place to be open.  , Greece ()
1   Stay away from here! Poeple get nights for free if they leave a good reference. It is the most horrible I've ever experienced in the hostel world. My roommates were homeless people and everything was dirty and stained. Blegh!  , Dutch ()
1   Don't go there unless you're really broke and desperate! For a positive review the hostel staff pays 20$ (2 dorm nights for free). But I'd rather comment on the negative truth. My boyfriend and I went to stay there in 2011. After we had been shown the room we did not want to stay any longer not even for one night. She told us the room had not been cleaned yet, but it still looked the same when we returned, only the bed had been made, the sheets were still the old used ones. Doors look as if they have been forced up before. I don't know how this hostel survives independent controls and can remain open. It's only a nice place to stay if you're into filth, parties, drugs, sex, bugs ... I would never spend a night there! Except for this one, it doesn't appear on any decent hostel booking website. We went somewhere else instead (just around the corner).  , Germany ()
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