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apr 1, 2011
by David O.

Suggestions for Hostel Owners

What Backpackers Look For in a Good Hostel

Often it's small things that make the difference between an unpopular hostel that backpackers avoid and a great hostel that they love. In the comments and reviews on Hostelz.com, we see the same issues over and over again. Many of these issues cost little or nothing for a hostel to fix. Often it's just that hostel owners are unaware of what they need to do to keep their guests happy—and their hostel full.

This document was produced thanks to the input of the Hostelz.com staff, our reviewers, and many many backpackers all over the world through their comments on Hostelz.com, with additional input thanks to the Lonely Planet Thorn Tree forums and the HostelManagement.com forums. We hope that over time more hostel owners will be aware of these points and it will help to improve the hostel experience for all backpackers, and the hosteling industry as a whole.

What all good hostels need...

Policies and Rules:

Reception / Check-in:

Common areas:




Don't "Nickel and Dime" Your Guests

Nothing upsets guests more than getting charged for things that are normally expected to be free in most hostels. They know when a hostel owner is charging them for a service that costs little or nothing to provide. The bad vibes vastly outweigh the little bit of profit.

Things that should always provided at no charge to guests:


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