Staying in hostels can be a fun and easy way to travel on a budget. All it takes is a little planning and a few key items to make your stay a positive one. Here is our list of the 7 things you might not think about, that you should always bring to a hostel.
1. Clip on Reading Light
This light will become invaluable to you. It is perfect for doing a bit of reading before bed, finding your phone if you accidentally drop it and for getting dressed before sneaking out of the room in the early hours of the morning. With a long lasting battery and bright but direct light it will enable you to do what you need to do without waking the rest of the room.
2. Combination Lock
A combination lock will help to ease some of your worries about safety. It is not feasible to carry all your stuff with you at all times; nothing would make looking at art in a crowded museum more uncomfortable than dragging along your stuffed duffle with you. Use the lock on a locker or loop it through the zippers of your bag to keep people out. The best part of a combination lock is that you can’t lose the key! No bag is theft proof but with a few easy safety measures you can deter most petty criminals.
3. Flip flops
Nothing feels better than taking your shoes off after a long day of exploring. However, in many hostels going barefoot is not the best idea. A light weight pair of flip flops will serve two purposes: they can be used as shower shoes and will be an easy thing to put on when wandering around the hostel. A pair of shoes to wear inside will protect you from germs and give your feet a break from the walking shoes you have been wearing all day.
Sometimes we all just want to take a little time for ourselves. This can be hard to do in a bunk room with other travellers. Headphones can make a huge difference. Put them in, play your favourite album and relax a bit. These can also be great for long train rides and tuning out your chatty neighbour on early morning flights (when you would rather be sleeping).
5. Hand sanitizer
Contrary to popular belief not every bathroom is well equipped with soap. Maybe they ran out, or never had it in the first place, either way you are going to want a way to curb the spread of germs. Nothing is worse than being sick while traveling. A pocket sized bottle of hand sanitizer (or two or three) can be the perfect solution.
6. Quick drying towel
Not all hostels provide or rent towels for their guests. This can become quite a problem if you want to shower then pack up and leave for your next destination. Nothing ruins clothes faster than being thrown in a backpack with a wet and mouldy towel. Microfiber or quick drying towels are a great solution. Designed to be thin and compact, they dry almost instantly allowing for immediate packing.
7. Know yourself…
If you wake up at the drop of a hat bring earplugs, if you prefer to sleep in complete darkness grab an eye mask. You are responsible for making your trip a good one, and not sleeping isn’t going to help. These cheap and easy accessories can solve many of the most common hostel problems: roommates.