The 5 Types Of People You’ll Meet At Hostels

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Hostel living is either a life-changing experience where you’ll never stay in an overpriced hotel again or so completely awful you’ll question all the life choices that led you to this horror-house. Regardless, there are a few quirky characters you’re guaranteed to encounter during your hostel stay that is sure to make the entire experience worth it. Read on, friends, for a personal guided tour to meet the five types of people you’re destined to encounter at your hostel.

The Party Animal

This traveller is like something straight out of a flashback to the craziest moments of your Contiki tour. Don’t bother trying to keep up with their binge-drinking stints because they’ll easily drink you under the table and then be ready to go again tomorrow night.

Sure, they’re a legend the first night at your hostel when you’re raring to explore your destination. They’re also great at introducing you to the other hostel residents, but this a friendship that your liver (and head) won’t thank you for. Keep contact to a friendly minimum unless you want to end up passed out on the doormat of your dorm because you forgot your key. Don’t worry; it happens to the best of us.

The Zen Master

The Zen master is the living embodiment of hostel living. Willing to share everything they own and provide unexpectedly relevant advice about your personal problems, this hostel denizen is probably the chilliest person you’ll ever encounter. They know more about meditation than you do about your own degree, and they can whip up a lentil stew with the simplest of ingredients that’ll have the entire hostel lining up for a taste. If your hostel has a Zen master in residence, you’ve made a solid choice of accommodation.

The Professional Traveller

Armed with a laptop held together with duct-tape and countless stories of their adventures, the professional traveller is a walking talking guidebook who is more than happy to point you in the right direction. While this creature has no distinctive features on the outside, you can usually spot them by the overly-familiar conversations they have with hostel staff or other travellers they’ve encountered before on their journey.

Don’t be afraid to approach the professional traveller for some insider tips on the best places to see and dine at your destination. Plus, they’re completely willing to impart some solid travel advice that’ll blow your mind. The professional traveller is the best – if you can ignore the late night conference calls as they talk to their bosses in other time zones.

The Social Butterfly

The social butterfly is likely the first hostel resident you’re going to run into. They’re usually likeable, easy-going, and seem to know literally everybody in the hostel on a superficial level. But that’s just it – the social butterfly spends so much time hopping between people and social groups they don’t really know anyone well.

While this can be nice if you’re only staying overnight and in need of a little company, don’t bother trying to form an actual connection with a social butterfly if you’re staying long-term. The social butterfly is great to have a chat with in line for the shower or over some instant noodles, but don’t expect any deep and meaningful conversations any time soon.

The Over-Packer

Picture this: you’re dead asleep after a long day of exploring and really looking forward to a sleep-in when you’re brutally awoken by the tell-tale thunk and rustle of an over-packer sorting through their enormous suitcase in search of one specific item. The over-packer doesn’t mean to be annoying, they’re just the type of person who likes to be prepared for anything and decided to bring the entire contents of their house with them on their trip.

This usually comes from a combination of travel inexperience and hearing one too many horror stories about staying at hostels. Just take a deep breath and comfort yourself with the fact that they’ll get better at packing with time. Then promptly go back to sleep after they leave the room. Ah, sleep, we’ve missed you.

Shannon is a third year Bachelor of Journalism and Bachelor of Arts student at the University of Queensland. She enjoys period dramas, doughnuts and a good nap.

Image: The Inbetweeners official Facebook page