Five Reasons to Choose a Hostel Instead of a Hotel

Many travelers associate hostels with unkempt backpackers strumming on their guitars or massive dorm rooms filled with snoring strangers.

Others still think all hostels are youth hostels, and that they’re either too old or too experienced to check in to one.

However, nothing could be further from the truth.  Hostels have come a long way in the past twenty years, and are an increasingly appealing option for travelers of all ages, experience levels, interests and budgets.

Here are five great reasons why you should consider booking a hostel instead of a hotel on your next trip:

Why book a hostel: Hostel vs Hotel

1. You’ll Save Money

A quick search on one of the major booking sites shows that of the more than 1000 available accommodation options in London, England, the sixty least expensive options are all shared, dorm-style rooms.

In fact, the average price of a bed in a dorm room in London is approximately 80% cheaper than the average price of a hotel room.

For single travelers, the savings can’t be beat.

Groups of two or more may be able to find double rooms for approximately the same price as two dorm beds, but the hotels with prices that low generally get equally low scores from guest reviews.

The more expensive the city, the more you’ll save by staying in a hostel.

Hostels are economic when you are on a tight budget

2. You’ll Make New Friends

Whether you’re traveling solo or with others, it’s always nice to make new friends along the way.

When you stay in a hostel you have instant access to a group of people who, like you, are interested in travel, meeting new people and learning about other cultures.

Many hostels organize activities such as walking tours, day trips and pub crawls to help guests get to know one another.

The best hostels also have comfortable common areas where you can relax with a book, sip a drink or connect to the internet while chatting with other guests.

Most travelers who frequent hostels can easily list a dozen cool people they’ve met while hosteling… can you name even one friend you’ve made in a hotel?

Social Life is one attraction at hostels, new friends

3. You’ll Reduce Your Environmental Impact

Think about the cost and environmental impact of lighting, heating, cooling and cleaning a hotel room.  Now multiply that by the hundreds of rooms in any given hotel.

The impact is pretty huge, and it’s especially harmful in sensitive ecological areas.

When multiple travelers share common facilities, however, the impact can be reduced.  Instead of needing air conditioning in ten separate rooms, hostels can simply air condition one ten-bed dormitory.

Instead of cleaning ten separate bathrooms every morning, hostels can clean one shared bathroom a couple of times throughout the day.

When you’re concerned about your environmental footprint, spend part of your trip in shared dorm rooms and look for hostels that incorporate other eco-friendly practices like recycling, composting and non-toxic cleaning.

Hostels Use Less Fossil Fuels

4. You’ll Feel Like You’re At Home

Anyone who’s ever taken one look at a hotel’s dry cleaning price list and decided to just wear a dirty shirt again will know what this one is about.

Good hostels anticipate budget travelers’ needs and offer home-style services like washing machines, drying racks, shared kitchens (often equipped with cooking basics like oil and salt), free computers and complimentary boarding pass printing.

Even when you’re not trying to keep costs down, sometimes it’s just nice to cook yourself your favorite meal or wash that t-shirt that somehow seems to have developed a chocolate ice cream stain.

5. You Can Still Have Privacy

Example of a private room at a hostel two single beds.

The most popular hostels today offer a variety of room types, which may include a mix of both shared and private accommodations.

Solo travelers seeking a bit of privacy can look for hostels that offer single rooms, while groups can look for double or triple private rooms, or even consider booking an entire dorm just for their group (even if you don’t use all the beds, it’s often cheaper than the equivalent number of hotel rooms).

When you’re not into sharing a bathroom with strangers, book yourself into one of the many hostels where rooms feature an ensuite bathroom.

Recently, more hostels have been adding family rooms to their collections, so even travelers with children can take enjoy the benefits of staying in a hostel.

Take Away: Hostel vs Hotel

Motives for Booking A hostel

Whether your goal is to save money, meet new people, reduce your environmental impact or enjoy the comforts of home, staying in a hostel offers many advantages over staying in traditional hotels.

With the option of staying in a shared dorm room or your very own private room, you can now experience all the great things about hostel accommodations while also deciding just how much you want to interact with the other hostel guests.

Bon voyage!

Go Further, Life – Its Your Heroic Adventure

Stay Safe on the Trail with Hiking Poles

Barring a trek up Mount Everest, hiking isn’t typically regarded as the most extreme of sports.

Nevertheless, safety is an important consideration to make, especially if you wander on trails that take you far from civilization and potential rescue.

Hiking poles not only increase your speed and comfort on the trail, but also your safety.

Here’s How Hiking Poles Enhance Your Trek:

Girl Pair of Hiking Poles Grand Canyon

1. Hiking poles act as antennas.

That rock might look stable, but you won’t know until you put your foot on it.

Hiking poles can allow you to test surfaces before transferring your full weight.

Use hiking poles to probe the ground for slippery ice patches, rogue holes and loose rocks.

This is a good way to avoid falling down or twisting an ankle.

2. Hiking poles prevent stress injuries by reducing strain on your feet and knees.

As anyone who’s hiked in steep ranges such as the Alps can tell you, mountain terrain can really wear on your legs.

Repetitive stress injuries are common among long-distance hikers, so it’s important to take preventative measures.

3. Hiking poles keep you alert.

Couple Iceland Trekking Nordic Poles

If you don’t believe this one, try doing an algebra problem after walking for a few hours with a heavy pack.

The discomfort of a heavy pack tires you out and dulls your senses, making you vulnerable to wrong turns or surprising dangerous animals.

Hiking poles will ease the weight of a pack. This will make you more comfortable and therefore more able to be aware of your surroundings.

4. Hiking poles keep you balanced on tricky slopes.

No hiker wants to fall to their death; hiking poles are handy on a steep slope that’s intent on pitching you to the bottom.

Whether ascending or descending, hiking poles will make slopes much safer, allowing you better control over your balance.

Poles allow you to have four points of contact, which can help you negotiate patches of loose rocks and slippery mud.

Couple Hiking Mud Puddle Hiking Poles in Use


While safety is top priority, also consider the other benefits that improve the trail experience. Poles allow you to move faster and cover more ground. If your goal is maximum mileage, poles better be on your equipment list.

The use of poles can also make more difficult terrain accessible to older nature lovers.

You may be over the hill, but with poles, you can get over a mountain.

Buying Trekking Poles

Many poles are listed at $200, but your first set doesn’t need to be that expensive.

You can purchase a perfectly reasonable set for $100 or less.

If you’re short on cash, simply repurpose some used ski poles, which can often be found for cheaper. To read more about things to consider when buying a trekking pole check out this post [with videos] >>>.

The 3-Step Used Shipping Container Quality Assessment Checklist

Being avid travelers, we think it’s only appropriate to want to use a shipping container as building material.

It’s essence gives off the adventure, distant lands, trade, and foreign places vibes–vibes we like to carry with us through life. So, what better way than to repurpose a shipping container for, well–the options are numerous.

From living quarters, to restaurants, to sheds, to emergency shelter, with the sturdy construction of a shipping container built to specs to survive the rigors of the high seas–you can take advantage of this and build a dream something or other.

Whether you’re in the market for a second-hand shipping container for storage purposes, construction material, or anything in between, you want to make sure you’re not getting ripped off.

To ensure you’re purchasing a high-quality used container, take this easy 3-step checklist with you when you talk to the seller.

Apartment housing made from shipping containers

 

1. Where has it been?

When you talk to your chosen seller about their shipping container, you’ll want to ask them where it’s been.

Depending on the temperature it’s exposed to, metal will expand and contract. If your container has been back and forth from Australia to a cold region like northern Europe, the constant swelling and shrinking of the metal may have caused warping and weakness in the steel.

Find out what journeys the container has taken to ensure you don’t get this kind of damage. The less extreme temperatures it’s been exposed to, the better.

Buildings Created Used Shipping Containers Shopping Center

2. How many times has it been used?

The location of your shipping container’s journeys isn’t the only important thing to consider.

You’ll also want to know how many journeys it’s been on.

Aside from damage caused by repeated exposure to extreme temperatures, the constant loading and unloading that a well-used container has to withstand can also cause problems.

You can take a look at the state of the walls inside the container to verify what the seller tells you.

For example, if he or she informs you that the container has been used once, but you can see scratches and dents of various ages, your seller may be lying about the product. Don’t be afraid to ask for extra clarification on any damage you see.

House Design Using Shipping Containers

3. What has it carried?

If your shipping container has taken few journeys to places with moderate temperatures then you may be in luck, but don’t forget that the contents of the previous cargo matter.

For example, if the container was used to ship hazardous chemicals or other dangerous items, it’s possible that some of these could have leaked into the container and permeated the walls.

It’s especially important to avoid this if the container will be used to construct a structure like a house or pool, where the users’ health could be threatened by such substances escaping into the atmosphere.

Amsterdam Apartments Using Shipping Containers


Remember:

Buying used only works out to be a good deal if the item is in good condition and fit for purpose.

If not, you could find yourself spending so much on repairs and replacements that a new container would have been a cheaper purchase.

When your chosen seller cannot answer these questions, find someone who can or purchase at your own risk.

A Traveller’s Guide to Finding the Cheapest Airport Parking

When planning a trip beyond the great blue horizon, people often make many considerations for the time they will be in the air heading from point A to point B.

Many travellers fail, however, to make proper considerations for the logistics of arriving and departing from the airport and, therefore, have to make last minute and often costly arrangements for the parking of their vehicles.

Fortunately, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and finding the cheapest airport parking solutions before you go is easier than ever.

Below is an outline of what you should expect and should be looking for when picking the cheapest airport parking.

Tons of Competition

Air Port Parking space find

Many people simply drive onto the premises of the airport and pay for the most affordable option of parking that is available.

This is akin to walking into a major theme park without bringing any refreshments and immediately having to pay £5 for a bottle of water.

The reality is that most major airports have several – if not dozens – of private and off-site airport parking solutions that were built with price competition in mind.

The main reason for parking off-site as opposed to at the airport is the savings in cost. Without this benefit, off-site airport parking would not be a viable business model in most cases.

Disadvantages to Consider

By selecting the cheapest airport parking available – whether at the airport or off-site – there are going to be obvious disadvantages.

This may include being a very inconvenient distance away from the terminal if on-site or having to wait for a shuttle to take you to and fro if you are using an off-site parking service.

While on-site airport parking in many cases is expensive, it’s understood that access to your vehicle from the airport and vice-versa is typically easier than it would be with the cheapest airport parking solutions, especially those that are off-site.

Ultimately, it all comes down to nothing more than the balance of cost versus convenience.

Many Airports Have Valet Parking

Online Services

There are several online comparison hubs that you can use to find the best deals on airport parking.

One example in North America is BestParking, which compares on-site and off-site parking solutions that are centred around 79 airports throughout the United States, Mexico, and Canada.

Comparison tools like this one allow you to know before you go, make prior reservations, and get a scope of what each airport parking solution has to offer.

You can map out and determine how far each parking hub is from the airport, how much it will cost, and how long your “commute” will be.

Using online airport parking comparison tools is the best way to find the cheapest airport parking, regardless of where you are located currently.

If you are willing to walk a little bit more or otherwise spend more time on a shuttle getting to your destination, then you will appreciate the flexibility and savings that off-site parking solutions can offer.

For many, though, parking on-site is a must. No matter what, though, there are generally many pricing options available for this service, too. So the only way you can save the most money and be prepared is by doing your homework beforehand.

Adventure Forth to Your Next Heroic Adventure

The Most Important Travel Tips – Health, Lodging and Money

Traveling can be fun and even more exciting with proper preparation for your social or official trip. There are therefore some very important tips you must keep in mind to manage and realize a comfortable trip. These tips are so important that some can never be overlooked in the preparation of any form of travel.

Health

Your health is the utmost important factor to consider whenever you are traveling away from your home or place of work. You need to inform your doctor and insurance provider of your planned trip in order to receive necessary vaccinations and renew prescriptions as you find out if your insurance policy applies in your destination’s hospitals in case of emergencies. Continue Reading →

6 Essential Elements to Consider When Planning To Travel For Vacation

Proper planning for your vacation is very important because it ensures that your expedition is stress-free and memorable. It is therefore, vital that before you set-off your journey to your preferred holiday destination ensure that you incorporate all the essential elements in your travel checklist to help you avert any cases of inconvenience that would compromise your voyage in one way or the other.

Here are some of the ideal elements that you should never overlook as you plan your vacation to make it possible for your journey to be efficient. Continue Reading →

8 Natural Ways To Stay Healthy When Traveling

Traveling may cause stress on your immune system. You might come home from your vacation with irritating memento, such as flu or cold. You may even contract a very serious disease.

To stay healthy when traveling you need to eat foods with the largest nutritional punch. To boost your immune system, you should eat foods that are packed with specific nutrients. You should avoid grains, sugar and processed foods if you want to strengthen your immune system. Eating foods rich in antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and other nutrients which protect and restore cells from damage brought about by free radicals is preferable to vaccinations which may make you prone to health risks worse than influenza. A great way to relieve stress while traveling is visiting this Toronto spa.

Besides a spa treatment for stress, keep the healthy momentum going with the following 8 natural ways to stay healthy when traveling: Continue Reading →