Hostels in Illinois Hostels in Illinois

You are looking for hostels in Illinois? Good news, you have come to the right place.

On this page we list every single city with hostels and other budget accommodations. helps you to find your Illinois hostel and compare its prices on the major booking sites such as Hostelworld, Hostelsclub and So you can sleep on a budget and save money while backpacking Illinois.

All Cities in Illinois

We list every single hostel in Illinois and the world. In total, we have 4 cities in Illinois for you. Please note that not all cities actually have a hostel to stay in. Below you can filter for cities with hostels and with no hostels-type accommodation, but guesthouses and budget hotels. This will help your planning.

All Illinois hostels on a map

Alright, you are more the visual type? Planning your trip with a map is always handy.

Therefore, this map shows you all cities with hostels in Illinois. It will help you to plan your trip. Just zoom in the map and click your destination for more details. Just so you know: If we do not have a hostel in a city, it is likely that there is no hostel in that city.

Our handwritten guide on Backpacking Illinois

Illinois is part of the Midwestern United States. Like other Midwestern states, most of the area is rural, with small towns and farmland. But unlike other Midwestern states, Illinois has a gem known as Chicago!

Due to lack of tourism, hostels cannot be found in most of Illinois. You may be able to find inexpensive hotels or guesthouses in these parts if you need to or want to visit them. Chicago, on the other hand, is packed with hostels. Costs of accommodation and other expenses depend on how close you are to Chicago. With few exceptions, Downtown Chicago will be the most expensive, followed by the greater Chicago area being slightly less, and finally the furthest corners of the state being the most affordable. A hostel bunk in downtown Chicago might cost about the same as a hotel room in Champagne.

Illinois is bordered by five other states and one Great Lake. Lake Michigan lies to the northeast of Illinois. Due to its enormous size, a mixture of both lake and ocean activities can be done here. This includes fishing, boating, swimming, and even naval training.

Chicago provides an opportunity to meet other travelers from across the country and around the world. Your day can include events akin to the major motion picture, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, such as visiting an art museum or Wrigley Field. Since that movie was released, even more attractions have come to Chicago. The Willis Tower invites you to the 104th floor, the highest building level open to the public in the United States. They go one step further by offering clear glass rooms that hang over the Chicago streets. On a clear day, you can see much of Illinois and some neighboring states from this height. Also check out the Navy Pier, the Chicago Cloudgate "Bean", and the Buckingham Fountain.

Although Chicago is by far the biggest Illinois city, the capitol city is actually Springfield. You can visit there if you're interested in more of the political or government aspects. If Chicago doesn't appeal to you at all, visit a rural town for a completely opposite experience (though there won't be hostels in those areas).

As for food, an authentic Illinois experience includes a Chicago Deep Dish Pizza. Of course the best pizza restaurants are probably in downtown Chicago, but due to popularity you can find locations outside of Chicago as well.

expert for Illinois hostels

Handwritten by local expert for Illinois hostels Jessica Lippe

Travel Tips for Illinois - from the Community

Hey fam! Here are a few more tips from the community, from them to you, and you to them. This space is dedicated for travellers to share their best tips on backpacking Illinois. Have a closer look - the Hostelz community share real hidden gems, insider knowledge and overall impressions of Illinois. Everyone is welcome to add something useful, funny, unexpected and the "absolutely necessary to know before you go" - share, share and then share a little more!

FAQ on Hostels in Illinois

There is a lot of travel planning to do. So let us help you once again by putting together the frequently asked questions:

Finding Hostels and Prices

What hostel booking sites are best to use?

There is several hostel booking sites, such as, and While every platform has its pros and cons, there is a universal truth you as a traveler should be aware of: Not a single booking site can always offer the best prices.

This is where comes in. You can compare all major booking portals with one click.

For you as a traveler, is the best booking site to actually save money.

How much are hostels in Illinois?

Prices always vary, depending on various factors. Weekends tend to be more expensive, same goes for special holidays. Please also take into account local vaction time.

You can search for exacty hostel prices in Illinois here on Pick your destination and pick a date. The system will track down the prices to give an idea of what budget and prices you can expect.

When to book hostels?

If you want to stay at the best hostels, it is a good idea to have your hostel booked around 1 month before you travel. For the regular hostels, booking one week before should be okay. Yet again, this always depends.

We dedicated a full article to the topic of when to book hostels.


Safety and Packing

Are hostels in Illinois safe?

Generally speaking, hostels are as safe as you make them. We highly recommend always to bring your own padlock, using the lockers and taking care of your belongings. Make sure you pick a safe hostel, offering lockers and a safe location. Please always pay attention to the reviews; they can give you a great insight on what to expect and safety tips.

What to pack when staying in hostels?

There is a few basics you should always pack when staying in hostels.

  1. Padlock
  2. Earplugs
  3. Sleeping Mask
  4. Quick Dry Travel Towel
  5. Head Lamp

There is more actually. We wrote a complete guide with more details. Read our full hostel packing list.

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