Sorry, this content is not currently available in the mobile view. Switch back to desktop view to access this page.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below is a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's) and answers that Hostelling International often receives. To make it easier to read and find your question we have divided the questions and answers into three sections:

  1. Hostelling International and HI hostels (General questions and answers about HI and staying at HI hostels)
  2. Booking with HI
  3. Your HI account

 

1. Hostelling International and HI hostels

 

2. Booking with HI

 

3. Your HI Account

 

1. Hostelling International and HI Hostels

About Hostelling International

Hostelling International is the brand name of the non-profit International Youth Hostel Federation (IYHF) and its members National Youth Hostel Associations around the world. Our name is your reassurance of good quality budget accommodation that you can trust. HI Hostels enable you to meet people of different cultures, backgrounds and experiences, and provide a rich resource for learning and for building a better, more peaceful world. HI has been operating for more than 80 years with one mission at heart: “to promote the education of all young people of all nations, but especially young people of limited means, by encouraging in them a greater knowledge, love and care of the countryside and an appreciation of the cultural values of towns and cities in all parts of the world, and as an ancillary thereto to provide hostels or other accommodation in which there shall be no distinctions of race, nationality, colour, religion, sex, class or political opinions, and thereby to develop a better understanding of fellow men at home and abroad”.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What is a hostel?

A hostel is good quality budget accommodation that offers a comfortable night's sleep in a friendly atmosphere at an affordable price. Hostels also provide the perfect way to get to know a country at low cost and meet many like-minded travellers while using the communal facilities such as the bar or lounge, the kitchen. Hostels offer a wide range of accommodation including shared rooms (either single sex or mixed) and private rooms. Private rooms are becoming increasingly popular at our hostels, making hostels open to families and couples as well as individuals and groups.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What are the HI Assured Standards and HI Quality?

The Assured Standards set out the levels of welcome, comfort, cleanliness, security and privacy you can expect in any HI hostel, anywhere in the world. HI-Q, the HI Quality Management System complements the well-established HI Assured Standards, and focuses on hostel management and operations. It takes ‘best practice’ from quality systems around the world and tailors them to the specific needs of hostels. HI-Q enables hostels to consistently improve and deliver high standards to ensure you have a great hostel experience. Only those hostels which successfully complete the programme will be certified and able to display the distinctive HI-Q logo – look out for it in the hostels you visit.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What kind of building and type of facilities can I expect to find at a hostel?

Part of the charm of staying in hostels are that all hostels are unique. No hostels are alike. The hosts’ personality often characterize the hostels, which often leads to an informal atmosphere among the guests. In many countries, hostels are located in historical buildings as e.g. monasteries, mansions.

Hostels are ideal for meeting new people and you will find communal facilities such as a common room, a self-catering kitchen, bar, restaurant, library, TV room, laundry facilities. Hostels also offer many services such as internet access, activity tours, discounts on attractions and shows - and of course the advice of local staff. The specific facilities and services that each hostel provides can be found on the Facilities tab of the hostel page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What time can I check in/check out?

Check-in times are displayed for each hostel on the Preview tab of the hostel page. If you are unable to find this information online, please contact the hostel directly for assistance as all of our hostels differ. Contact details for the hostels can be found on the Location tab of the hostel page. Specific instructions may be provided on your booking confirmation.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What are the hostel opening times/hours?

Generally, large city hostels are open 24 hours a day, while others may have shorter opening hours and some may even close for a short period during the day. Most hostels are open all year round; however, some of our hostels are seasonal and are unavailable at certain times during the year. The information regarding the hostel’s opening times and dates are available on the hostel page. If you are unable to find this information, please check with the hostel directly for assistance using the contact details provided on the Location tab of the hostel page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Who can stay at a hostel?

Hostelling International welcomes everyone, regardless of age, race, nationality, colour, religion, sex, class or political opinions. Families are welcome to stay at a large number of our hostels, but please check with the hostel directly, as certain conditions may apply, for example, you may need to book a private room. Groups (10+ people) are also welcome in many of our hostels and specially catered for; you can find detailed information on our groups dedicated website.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Can children stay at hostels?

Children with their family or group leader are welcome to stay at many HI hostels. However, as age limits may apply in certain hostels, we recommend you check that information on the hostel page before booking. Young people under the age of 18 will usually need to provide permission from a legal guardian if they wish to stay unaccompanied in a hostel. Families with young children or groups of minors will usually stay in a private room rather than a shared room. Please contact the hostel or the National Youth Hostel Association directly before booking if you require further information.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Do age limits exist?

Hostels are open to everyone. However, minimum age limits may apply for children in some places - please check the "You should know" section on the Preview tab of the hostel page or with the hostel directly. There should be no upper age limit to stay at a hostel.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Do hostels organise trips and activities?

Our hostels have a wealth of information and knowledge available about the local area and environment. Many hostels organise a wide range of trips and activities themselves. If trips or activities are not organised directly by the hostels, they can provide you with information for you to get the most out of your stay. You can find information about the hostel activities on the Location tab and Noticeboard tab of the hostel page. 

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Can I bring my pet when I stay at a hostel?

Out of consideration for people with allergies, there are few hostels that allows pets in hostels. Should animals be accepted, it must be agreed in advance. Internationally pets are more common, but please check with the hostel before making a booking, either on the Preview tab of the hostel page or by contacting directly the hostel. Contact details for the hostel can be found on the Location tab on the hostel page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What types of facilities are provided for wheelchair users?

Many hostels provide access for wheelchair users and specially adapted rooms are becoming more common. We recommend you contact the hostel for specific details before making a booking as many hostels are located in historic buildings which cannot easily be adapted. Contact details for the hostel can be found on the Location tab on the hostel page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What about safety and security?

The safety and security of our guests is extremely important to us. Several of our hostels have lockers or safes in rooms where you can leave your valuables. Some may require you to have your own padlock or hire/purchase one from reception. Those hostels which do not have the locker facilities in the room usually have a reception safe in which they allow guests to leave their valuables. We recommend our customers make sure they have adequate travel insurance before they travel.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Do I need identification?

Some of our hostels will require you to show identification upon arrival - this is highlighted during the booking process. If you would like to check the types of identification accepted, please contact the hostel directly using the contact details on the hostel’s page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Do I need travel insurance?

We recommend that you always obtain adequate travel insurance before you leave on your travels. Hostelling International does not provide travel insurance directly but does work with World Nomads to offer HI customers a discount on their purchase. For more information about World Nomads (same link as the one on the partner ad on the home page).

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Where can I get directions to HI hostels?

If you need directions to get to your hostel, please use the map which can be found in the Location tab on the hostel’s page or the directions on your booking confirmation. If you have any questions about reaching your chosen hostel, please check with the hostel directly using the contact details on the Location tab on the hostel page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What about luggage storage?

Many hostels will provide a luggage room or lockers for you to store your luggage. You may be able to leave your luggage before check-in and after check-out. However, for details on this and for information on prices, please check with your hostel directly using the contact details on the hostel’s page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Do I need a sleeping bag/bedding?

Sleeping bags are not always permitted at our hostels due to hygiene regulations. Bed linen will usually be provided by the hostel and will either be included in the price or will be an additional cost. This information will be displayed in the product details on the hostel page - please check before travelling.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Do I need towels?

In most hostels towels will not be included in the price of your booking; this will be shown during the booking process. If they are not included, you will need to take your own towel or hire one from the hostel. Please check with the hostel directly using the contact details on the Location tab on hostel’s page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

2. Booking with HI

How do I make a booking?

Type your destination or hostel name and dates (optional) in the search box at the top of any page of the website and click the Search button. Then select the hostel of your choice from the search results provided by clicking on the name of the hostel or the View details button. Then select the product you wish to book from the product grid on the Prices tab, select the number and gender of guests you are booking for and click Select. Read the summary information to make sure you are booking the correct dates and number of nights then click Book now. You will be asked to log in to your account or create one before confirming your booking and paying the deposit.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance


How do I find hostel information?

Type your destination or hostel name and dates (optional) in the search box at the top of any page of the website and click the Search button. Then select the hostel of your choice from the search results provided by clicking on the name of the hostel or the View details button this will take you to the Preview tab of the hostel page. You can also view the hostels on a map by clicking on Map view. The Preview tab is a summary of the hostel information, you can find details in the other tabs: Prices, Location, Facilities, Noticeboard and Reviews.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance


What bed/room types can I book online?

You can book a private room, which means that you stay in a private room with the party you are planning your trip with, and not staying in dormitories where you share a room with people you most likely have not met before. 

Hostels abroad often provide dormitory accommodations. Dormitory accommodations either can be in single sex (non-coed) or mixed sex (coed) rooms. The size of the dormitories varies from hostel to hostel. The information about dormitories are usually made available to you during the booking process. Private rooms are also available at many hostels and these will be displayed when you check the availability. If you are unable to book the bed/room type you require online, please contact the hostel directly for assistance using the contact details on the Location tab of the hostel page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance


Do I need to book in advance?

We understand how important it is to be sure of your accommodation before you leave home and recommend advance booking during high season and in popular destinations.

Most hostels offer ‘same day’ bookings but if you are unsure of the exact dates you wish to travel and would like to enquire about the possibility to walk-in or book nearer the time, you can check with the hostel directly regarding their general availability.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance



I’ve tried to book online, but no bed/room is available - what should I do?

Hostels do not always make all of their beds/rooms available to hihostels.com - they like to keep some for people who arrive on the day. If you cannot book online please contact the hostel directly using the contact details on the Location tab of the hostel page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

I can’t find the hostel I want - what should I do?

Have you tried searching for different key words? You can search for a destination or a hostel name. If you still can’t find it then the hostel you are looking for is either not a member of HI or not bookable online. You can choose another hostel in that location or nearby if there is one or choose to stay in a different location. Get inspired!

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Can I make a last-minute booking?

Many hostels accept online bookings up to 24 hours before arrival date, some even up to 18.00 on the date of arrival. If you are unable to complete your booking online, please contact the hostel directly using the contact details on the Location tab of the hostel page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What is the maximum number of people for whom I can make a booking?

You can book for up to nine people using hihostels.com. For groups of 10 or more, you can visit the group dedicated website.

Please note: multiple bookings by the same person to achieve a group number can be cancelled by the receiving hostel as outlined in our disclaimer.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Is there a maximum number of nights that I can book?

Each hostel has a maximum length of stay and this varies from hostel to hostel. If your request exceeds the maximum length stay set by the hostel, this information will be specified in the booking process. If your desired stay exceeds the maximum permitted on hihostels.com please contact the hostel directly using the contact details on the hostel page. Please note: multiple bookings to achieve a longer stay are not permitted and can be refused by the receiving hostel.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance



How can I find out the price before I make a booking?

All the available room types and products for online booking for each hostel are on the Prices tab of the hostel page.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Are the bed/room prices ‘Member Prices’?

Prices displayed on hihostels.com are usually member prices unless otherwise indicated above the product grid on the Prices tab of the hostel page. A membership card or eMembership is then required on arrival at the hostel to ensure the discounts are honoured, if you do not have a valid membership then you will be able to purchase one at the hostel or a surcharge will be payable.

You can purchase an eMembership with your booking on hihostels.com. Please check our Membership page for further details.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What currency will my payment card be charged in?

For each booking, the payment currency will be either - euros, US dollars or British pounds depending on your selected local currency and that chosen by Hostelling International as the most appropriate of the three.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What will I be charged when I make an online booking?

When completing a booking you will be charged 8% or more of the total cost of your booking. Please note that deposits may vary between hostels and room types (See specific Terms & Conditions for relevant item(s) presented during the booking process for full details). The remaining booking cost must be paid in the local currency of the hostel upon arrival. (See Booking Terms & Conditions for full details). Please note that if your home currency is not the same as the currency that you are paying in, you may incur an additional bank charge for the transaction. Please contact your bank for further details.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What types of payment card can I use on hihostels.com?

You can make bookings online using either a Visa or Mastercard credit card or a Visa Electron or Visa Delta debit card.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Why is my booking being declined?

A card can be declined for a number of reasons. Usually, this is due to insufficient funds or the payment card type not being accepted. If you continue to experience difficulties online, please try to make a booking by using one of our Booking Centres where you can pay in cash or by using an alternative card.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

My booking was not completed, but I appear to have been charged

Please note that hihostels.com can only charge guests if a valid booking has been made. If you appear to have been charged and you did not complete a booking, it could be that your payment is pre authorised. This means that during the booking process your bank may hold the required funds for your reservation before the booking is confirmed. In the event that the booking is not successful, these funds will be released by your bank and refunded back to your account.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

How can I make a booking if I do not have a credit or debit card?

If you do not have a credit/debit card, friends or family members can make a payment on your behalf. However, permission from the cardholder must be obtained prior to booking. Please remember, that if you fail to turn up at the hostel and do not cancel before the specified cancellation time for your booking then the applicable cancellation fees may be charged to the payment card. (See HI Booking Terms & Conditions) and the specific Terms & Conditions that relate to your booking for full details.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Do I need to have the same name on the payment card as on the booking?

No, if someone has made a booking on your behalf, please ensure that the name of the customer is in the customer’s name box and the card holder’s name is entered in the card holder details section.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

How can I identify hihostels.com transactions on my payment card statement?

All deposits paid to hihostels.com will be identified as follows: “Welwyn Garden City www.hihostels.com”.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

I did not receive a booking receipt via email - what should I do?

After you have made a booking online you should receive confirmation of this booking via email as well as receiving a 10 digit reference number starting with 2XXXXXXXXX. If you have made a valid booking online and have not yet received your confirmation email, please check your Junk folder. If you are unable to locate your confirmation email, it may be that you entered in the incorrect email address at the time of making your booking. Please contact us directly if you feel that this may be the case.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

What confirmation do I need to take to the hostel?

Please print out your on-screen receipt or booking confirmation email and take it with you to the hostel. If you have signed up to receive the SMS booking confirmation, you can view your booking details on your phone and use this to check in. If you are unable to print or access the email account to which it was sent, please login on our website and make a note of your unique booking reference number.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

How can I cancel my booking(s)?

You can cancel your booking by logging in to your account or by contacting the hostel directly using the contact details on the hostel’s page. Please remember, that if you fail to turn up at the hostel and do not cancel before the specified cancellation time for your booking then the applicable cancellation fees may be charged to the payment card - please see the Booking Terms and Conditions for full details. The booking fee is non-refundable. For deposit refund eligibility, refer to the Terms and Conditions received at the time of your booking. If any cancellation charges apply, these will be charged to the payment card used to make the booking.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance



If I cancel my booking, will I get a refund?

Your deposit is non-refundable if you decide to cancel your booking.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Can I change an existing booking?

Unfortunately, changes to bookings cannot be made on this website. You should contact the hostel directly to enquire about the possibility of changing your booking using the contact details on the hostels webpage. Any amendment is at the hostel’s discretion and is not guaranteed (see Booking Terms & Conditions for full details).

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

3. Your HI Account

How can I set up an account on hihostels.com?

During the booking process you will be asked to login or create a new account if you are a new customer. To create a new account you will be requested to enter your name and email address and to create a password. Please remember this password in order to login in the future.

To create an account before you make a booking, please select the Login link in the top righthand side of the Home page then click Create an account.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

How can I log in to check/cancel my booking(s)?

In the top righthand side of the Home page, select Login. Please log in either using your email address and password or if your hihostels account is linked to your Facebook, Twitter or Google account then you can log in using the relevant tab.

Once logged in select Hi (your name) where the Login tab was previously and select Bookings in the dropdown list. Here you can check and cancel your current bookings and view any previous bookings.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

I’ve forgotten my password - what should I do?

If you have forgotten your password, simply click on the Forgot password? button and follow the on-screen prompts.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Can I change my email address or other personal details?

In the top righthand side of the Home page, select Login. Please login either using your email address and password or if your hihostels account is linked to your Facebook, Twitter or Google account then you can log in using the relevant tab.

To change your email address, password, language or currency select Hi (your name) where the Login tab was previously and select Settings. Remember to save any changes you make.

To change all other personal details, select Hi (your name) where the Login tab was previously and select Profile. Please remember to save any changes you make.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance

 

Can I close my account?

Your account is only active if you have current or forthcoming bookings. At all other times your account is dormant but cannot be closed.

Has this answered your question? If not, please either:
Go back to top of FAQs
Contact HI for further assistance