American Backpackers Hostel




(Location is approximate. You may need to pan/move to find "American Backpackers Hostel" at 347 West Pender Street.)


347 West Pender Street, Downtown, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
49.282746, -123.111634 (accuracy not guaranteed)
+1 (604) 688-0112
+1 (604) 685-7989
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(40 ratings)
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53% Guest Reviews

Very cheap, fun fun hostel, good times
I read so many review and I see different people. in reviews it reflect who they are people that want travel to experience and enjoy, and people who judge places (how nice they are, how clean, how beautiful views they have) and spend they holiday in hotel room. the people who go out and have good time and just come to sleep or party -- this hostel is good for fun, but not for luxury.
Age 23, australia
Filthiest hostel in Canada and probably the world
Staying here, it pains me to watch such open racism going on by the owner and some guests in two places it has no place in. A hostel, where diversity should be welcomed , and also, more importantly, in a country where diversity is expected to be welcomed. Needless to say but that's the Canada i have experienced everywhere except here. The indirect but racist signs he puts up at this "hostel" reinforce this, but he is not ashamed of this, and he is also very open and proud, when it comes to this. This hostel is one street over from hastings. A famous and one and only type of street in Canada, where one should be very aware not to step on an infectious needle. Last Christmas eve at this hostel, there was a major robbery where more than 15 people in the hostel got robbed. I lost 600$. One I know had his passport stolen. Others lost valuables as well. Robberies occur here on a daily basis and it is scary that there is no security. The owner simply told me he's not responsible, and his racism at one point surfaced when he smiled and said I probably don't even have such money. One sad story here is the death that occurred through an overdose, but It breaks my heart to go into this, and I don't think this is the place for it. But that is not the end of it. From the Mice, Rats, Roaches, and bedbugs that you will find crawling everywhere, to the filthy bacteria ridden fridges (where people steal food everyday). But this is still not the end of it. Police make regular visits to this place. I was attacked twice by two different drunks, who police came and dragged out. (Good thing I know how to handle myself and they got the worst of it). Expect such racism here, especially when people start drinking in the common areas which occurs day and night here everyday. Smoking cigarettes is allowed anywhere in this hostel, so I hope you're at the least a smoker, should you decide to come. I understand the price is appealing to the less fortunate (which is the case here) or the tourists (which is a handful here), who want to spend as little money in an attempt to get the most Canadian experience. However no one should experience Vancouver or Canada in a racist & ignorant place full of insecurity. (Few have told me they were in prison, both good and bad here). I will also say this. One day a group of people broke on the roof shattering the glass above. So the owner (vincent), went up and without closing the door, or putting any warning signs at the toilet door, dropped a huge glass from above me, that in his own words, "would've killed me had it hit me". (I was an inch away from having my skull opened up) , but it was so close it grazed and cut my elbow. He smiled later and said I should've been hit to collect the insurance. The owner has a sign around the hostel, one of many, that encourages their long term tenants to put up good reviews, as all the tourists here keep posting bad reviews. (This "hostel" which is listed as a homeless shelter, is a mix of people being here for years , and only a handful of tourists). So I strongly encourage people to be aware of this, as they go through the reviews. I don't usually make such reviews, but my experience here has been mentally damaging. I just don't want people who come to Canada with the hopes of enjoying the freedom and diversity we are fortunate to have here, have to be subjected to such open racism and hostility. I give the one star for the very few good hearted people you could be fortunate enough to potentially find here.
Age 30, Canadian
Overall great experience!
First, me and my friends (two German girls and one Belgian guy) were only looking for a simple, cheap place to stay that is quite central in Vancouver as we just arrived and had no idea about the city anyway. So we found the American Backpackers hostel and liked it that much that we changed now our plans from moving into a shared house/app to staying here for at least 6 months if not for almost our whole year in Canada. Of course one of the reasons is that is such a cheap place to stay in, but actually mostly we love the cozy atmosphere where everybody is super relaxed and friendly. Everyone is either working, backpacking, looking for jobs or just relaxing for the moment. The hostel is not a clean place, so I would not recommend it to families or people who are looking for a very neat and tidy hotel/hostel experience. Anyway for us it is a great choice and it already feels like home here.
Age 26, Germany
Great place
reading reviews I was disappointed but I want to try this hostel, so I walked in and I was welcome. stayed a month not a day to try. then I stay 3 months. some people complain because they are broke anyway but many people were working and did well. the place is worth the money, is clean, safe, fun to be there -- all facilities work. no bedbugs because of strict rules about not too much junk around the beds. the dorms are big and have a lot shelf and private single are so cheap that anyone can afford if dont like dorm with people that snore or dirty socks under the beds. the managers are very strict and that what this place needs but pot and cigarettes is allowed so is not that bad.
Age 25, germany
Beware of owners and staff
I stayed for just over a month and I met a lot of great people. Had an issue with Vince throwing out items and coming into our rooms without asking. what if i was getting changed? no soap for the washrooms. i had bed bugs in my room and we didn't even bring food in, and they blamed us for having food. it could have came from a roommate traveling from somewhere else. you won't necessarily get bit by bedbugs but bit by the management there. ive witnessed the security loser try and throw people out for no reason. from the other reviews i can see what people meant. if you do stay there because you're broke, then go there. otherwise, find a place for a month on craigslist because this is one of the only hostels that have super cheap prices. it is also a dirty disaster but i normally just go there to sleep at night as i work at a coffee shop most of the days. the security guy is a video game addict and i've heard has past charges of sexual nature, and i don't normally judge a book by its cover but ive seen his computer screen when he thinks people at the table aren't looking. also vince is a disaster and doesnt care about anyone. he says no bullshit but creates it, with putting notes on doors thinking you didn't pay on time when you just gave him a months rent the day before. i heard they have security spy cams but i can't seem to find them. that place will get raided in no time. do not book this place for more than 3 nights testing, because the only thing that will keep you there is having no money to get out of there, but for meeting friends just be careful of what you say because most people dont have a career life and are very negative and garbage, except the odd person here and there. as a female its even worse and i wouldnt even recommend it for a male. one star (but three stars if you count the price into equation. Oh he can't spell for shit and expects you to read all signs).
Age 37, UK
Great place if you are not rich
it's not for everybody, this gem in the heart of Vancouver. so rich so poor -- if you stay one night but if you stay for a while and make friends, this is great. no luxury, no clean, but humanely friendly and bonding with people. managers you are people like you and me. no complaint for me.
word traveller
Age 24, Canada
Stay away
$60/wk for a 8 bed dorm is cheap. The private and double rates aren't anything special. Thats the only good news. If you like bedbugs, cockroaches and dirt, this is the place for you. There are 3 showers and 4 toilets for up to 100 people. They are disgusting and the water shuts off when your washing. The mops used to clean the floors are dirtier than the floors. The kitchen is unsanitary and always a mess. Smoking cigs and pot is allowed everywhere except in the dorm rooms. It stinks thru the whole place. The owner and the night guy are the worst "people" my GF and me have come across while traveling around the world. And this should be classified as a downtown shelter not a backpacker hostel. The tenants are mostly men that are there for a long time. Very few interesting travelers. I cant give minus or zero stars. 1 star is way to many for this place. We left early to escape from this dump.
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.
Jack T
Age 20, Canada

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