Most of us are familiar with hostels. For some, the word conjures up images of a not-so-pleasant hole in a more than questionable area that students resort to out of necessity. Well, it’s most definitely time for us to wake up & recognize the benefits of hostelling. Hostels are actually a wonderful (read: inexpensive!) alternative to hotels for struggling students (or struggling non-students)! On a limited budget, it’s difficult to have to allocate a good portion of your funds to the place that you’ll use primarily for sleeping & bathing. That money could better be spent on tours, on admission to museums, on souvenirs or on food & drinks. Well, save some of that cash — Hostelling International, a parent company overseeing around 4000 hostels in 80+ countries provides fairly comfy hostels for travelers (for a very reasonable price). Aside from being inexpensive, hostels have other advantages — they are wonderful meeting places for people sharing a desire to travel or for those looking to meet travelling buddies!
Hostelling International (HI) offers a membership for people interested in doing a lot of traveling and thusly, a lot of hostelling. The memberships are FREE for youth (those under 18), $28/year for adults, $18/year for Seniors (55+) or $250 for a lifetime membership. Although you can stay in a hostel without a membership, there are benefits to purchasing an annual or lifetime membership. Aside from having access to a huge network of hostels, members get discounted prices in many hostels, discounted trips and activities, reduced price admission to museums and cultural centers as well as savings in retail outlets!
Check it out and start saving money on accommodations! After all, how often do you want to be in your ho(s)tel when culture’s waiting outside your door?