The hostel is a common word associated with out of the country travel, but most people don't think about hostels in the United States. Hostels are a good middle ground between camping and hotels. 

Colorado is a beautiful state full of gorgeous mountain towns. These mountain towns come along with hefty hotel prices, which is how I discovered hostels. I stayed at my first one this weekend and had no idea what to expect going into it.

Although each hostel is different, the basics are mostly the same: Community kitchen, dining room, and living room. The hostel I stayed at had a large front yard and backyard with hammocks, a grill, and varied patio furniture.

Riley

Hostels are great for single travelers because of the price, and couples wanting to adventure for cheaper. A hostel is not for everyone, though.

Here are some things I learned from my first stay in a hostel.

  • Personal space is not guaranteed unless you get your own personal room (these rent out fast) or you chill in your bed
  • There are way more people than bathrooms and showers. This requires a little planning or patience.
  • Being outgoing is a positive. Most people are very friendly and willing to chat it up, so if you're not shy, hostels are a great way to make new friends and hear lots of stories.
  • Bring your own shampoo. Unlike a hotel, toiletries are not provided.
  • Clean up after yourself. It's kind of like living in a community dorm room for x amount of days. If you respect the people around you, they will do the same.
  • Bring earplugs. If you are a light sleeper, you will want them.
  • You pay per person. My husband and I booked for one bed, two people. When we got there, the price was doubled because we had to each pay for our own bed. Most hostels don't allow you to share a bed unless you get the private room. It still comes out cheaper than a hotel room, most of the time.
  • Booking sites can be wrong, so call the hostel with any questions before you book or look at their actual website for details.
  • Don't bring plastic grocery bags. There is nothing quiet about a plastic bag when people are trying to sleep.
  • Have fun and enjoy the adventure.
Riley

What is your favorite part about staying at a hostel?