What To Bring To A Hostel – A Complete Guide

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Many regular tourists would agree that traveling is one of the most rewarding experiences one can experience. New cultures, new places, and new memories are just a few of the most significant factors shared between people who love to travel.

But, one thing that differs greatly between travelers is how they feel about their lodging options. Some opting for hotels or resorts only, while others prefer apartments, hostels, or motels.

That said, depending on what sort of lodging you decide on, your packing list will vary. For example, staying at a resort or hotel, there is no need for packing extra towels, whereas at a hostel or apartment you’d probably better pack some towels along just in case.

Hostel Packing-List

Packing for any trip can be a daunting task. When it comes to lodging at hostels specifically, in comparison to most hotels, there are several items that you’ll need to pack along that you otherwise might not need.

1. A Lock for Each of Your Bags


If your travels involve any major public transit, you should already be in the habit of packing locks for each of your bags. That said, if you do all of your own driving, and have never stayed at many hostels, perhaps you are not familiar with this safety hack. While staying at a hostel, any bags left behind while you aren’t in your room should be zipped shut and sealed closed with a lock of some sort that only you have the code or key to.

2. Stuff To-Do for a Rainy Day

One of the main differences between major hotels and many hostels is the level of entertainment provided. And, while some hostels may actually exceed many hotels in this area, this is far from the normal story with hostels.

So, if you plan to spend down-time in the room, make sure to pack some entertainment. A laptop and your favorite DVDs, a handful of books, or your preferred mobile device, whatever you enjoy, make sure that you bring some along.

3. Something to Block Out Noise

If you have never stayed at a hostel before, you may not be prepared for the level of noise that sometimes comes with the territory. Those who regularly travel and lodge at hostels know this oh too well, and they come ready for it.

Headphones, earplugs, or even cotton balls work for most people. Depending on the sort of hostel you select, this may or may not be necessary but it’s better to be prepared than not when it comes to something capable of such an impact on your sleep and relaxation time.

4. Prescription Medications

One of the most important items to pack along to hostels is any prescription medications that you or anyone in your group require on a regular basis. Assuming that everything will be fine and that you’ll be ok without your medicine for a few days is never a great move. You never know what may lie in store for you during your travels.

Likewise, if you are traveling far, consider purchasing and packing some basic medicine (such as aspirin) and first aid products (like bandaids).

5. Your Most Comfortable Backpack


Hotels are a bit more secure than the average hostel. That said, hostels are not dangerous places for the most part. They may simply have fewer security measures in place. That means, while you’re away exploring the city, someone could theoretically get into your room and go through your things looking for valuables to get-away with. For this reason alone you should carry a backpack, to keep your most precious items with you at all times.

Even more, hostels are frequented by backpackers and the explorative type, in which case a comfortable backpack is even more crucial. There is nothing worse than walking around somewhere new, and instead of enjoying it, wishing it was over already so the pain in your neck, back, shoulders, and feet will stop. A great backpack will greatly reduce the amount of stress on your body.

6. Comfortable clothes

In a hostel, the more comfort you bring from home, the more enjoyable and relaxing your stay is. That said, nearly everyone enjoys a nice comfortable outfit or two that they wear around the house. Make sure to pack them, even if you think you won’t have time for lounging around in your room.

You never know what may happen, or how the weather may swing one way or another, preventing you from leaving the hostel for hours to days. In these situations, you’ll be glad to have your most comfortable clothes with you. Likewise, be sure to pack your favorite pajamas along with yourself as well.

7. House shoes or comfy slippers

Truly a sub-category of the one listed directly above, house shoes or comfy slippers are a must if you plan to spend any real amount of time in your room or walking about the hostel facilities. After spending several hours per day walking around and visiting attractions (while wearing normal shoes), house shoes or comfy slippers will feel like heaven on your sore feet. Don’t leave home without them!

8. Bathroom and grooming supplies


When it comes to staying over in a hostel, shampoo, conditioner, and most sanitary items are not provided. Some hostels provide a roll of toilet paper and possibly even travel-size soaps and shampoos. However, you should not count on this being the case and should pack your own.

The most important of these bathroom and grooming supplies include items such as toothpaste, tweezers, nail clippers, hairbrush or comb, deodorant, feminine hygiene products, and anything else that you’ll need from your bathroom at home while traveling.

9. Towels and Washcloths

If you’re staying overnight you will also need to pack up enough towels and washcloths to last you in addition to your other bathroom supplies. Albeit some hostels do provide a towel or two, it is never wise to assume. Save yourself some headache by stowing away a few linens just incase.

10. Adapters, Extra Cords, Chargers, and Power Banks


Today, most people don’t leave home without their phones (let alone a small arsenal of additional mobile devices such as GPS, tablets, and other technological gadgets. That said, these devices all require battery power. That means you will not only need to charge them before leaving but several times during your trip.

So, be sure to double-check your bags for all the proper cords, chargers, and adapters that you may need. In addition, if you plan on staying gone (from your hostel room) for long periods of time you should consider investing in and packing along a decent power bank.

Anything else you can’t go a day without

Just as everyone’s favorite travel destinations, choice of lodging options, and other opinions vary, so do the items that they can’t live without. These sorts of items could be literally needed, such as an inhaler is need for your well-being. But, they also include comfort items such as your favorite sweater and blanket, some sort of candy, or even a brand of cigarettes.

Whatever it is that you can’t seem to live without, make sure that you don’t even have to try surviving a day without it. More comfort equals sess stress, and that means having a better time and creating happier memories.

Final Thoughts

Staying in a hostel is one of the most unique ways to lodge, especially abroad. Packing the above-listed items will only enhance your stay. So, make sure you create your own little list of what to bring to the hostel and double-check it before catching that flight. That way, you can rest easy on the way to your destination, and rest even easier when you finally arrive.

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