One of the best things about traveling is the opportunity to meet people from all over the world. It exposes to you culture that may be incredibly different from yours and opens you up to the possibility of finding new life-long friends.
Hostels offer just this type of environment. They are places where people whose love for exploring and seeing the world convene. They have rooms that can accommodate four or more people to encourage mingling and socializing.
While staying at hostels seems fun and enjoyable in general, it can also be your worst nightmare if you end up in a room with backpackers who are ignorant or unaware of the basic hostel etiquettes. For new travelers who are serious about making friends and do not want to cause trouble or conflict with their hostel roommates, here are the most basic hostel etiquettes that you should always remember:
Know when to keep quiet.
During the day, it is acceptable to chat with your fellow travelers in your normal voice volume. You can exchange funny stories and share laughs or plan your itinerary with them for the day without hitch. Daytime is basically fair game for everyone.
However, once night time comes, there is an unwritten rule that everyone should keep it down during the later hours of the evening. Many of the people in your room would be quite exhausted after a long day, so they would want peace and quiet as they prepare for bed and get some good night’s sleep.
Talking incessantly, walking or running without caution, banging the dorm room door close, packing your things and making all those loud thugging and rustling plastic bag noises , and switching the lights on are all considered rude and inconsiderate once the clock strikes 10, in most cases.
Respect each other’s space.
Each dormer gets only a limited amount of space, so it is very important that you learn your boundaries and place your stuff in your own designated area. Put your bags in your assigned locker. Leave your shoes under your bed. Keep all of your personal belongings on or by your bed or inside a locked and secured place to not lose them.
If you are occupying a top bunk, refrain from hanging towels or other garments in a way that can obscure the view or block the person on the lower bunk. Do not sit or lie on other people’s beds even if they are not there. Try to put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself if you would not be annoyed if someone violated your personal space.
Obey the rules.
Usually, hostels have specific rules for common room, kitchen, laundry, and bathroom use posted around so make sure to look for these and follow them.
Your hostel may have particular hours for when guests can use the television or dining area. They may require anyone to clean up after themselves when using the plates and utensils in the kitchen. They may prohibit people from taking a shower or using the hairdryer between midnight and 5 in the morning to not disrupt the other guests.
Being aware of all of these can help you plan your day-to-day schedule more efficiently.
Be mindful of your hygiene.
Unpleasant smells are a major issue in hostels, so keeping yourself clean and not smelling like you spent the day rolling in garbage should always be a priority. During the day, you get all sweaty, spending so many hours under the sun. So, at night, take a shower and change into new clothes and socks. Wear deodorant and use foot powder to minimize body odor.