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What Are Hostel Bathrooms Like?

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Hostel Bathroom - a Very Upscale Hostel Bathroom - Image Copyrighted (Do Not Use Without Permission)

Bathroom at Acapulco's Kingdom Hostel (wow)

© Kathleen Crislip
Question: What Are Hostel Bathrooms Like?
Answer: Expect shared bathrooms in hostels, though private hostel rooms may have en suite (in the room) bathrooms. Hostel bathrooms usually start the day clean, but you may be sharing with double digit numbers of folks who do not share your bathroom habits, hygiene practices (whatever they may be), nor bathroom cleanliness standards. Almost always true: the toilet will be semi sloppy and the shower temperature unpredictable. Do bring flip flops to maintain healthy feet in spite of the shower.

There's a bit more to know and consider about hostel bathrooms -- and a few things to keep in mind.

    1. You'll be sharing this bathroom if you're staying a hostel dorm, and you may be sharing it with the opposite gender (you will most def be sharing with the opposite sex if you're staying in a mixed-gender dorm, where men and women share the same dorm room). If you're female and you haven't lived with a man nor shared the bathroom with one, know this: the toilet seat may get left up. (In some countries, there may not be a toilet seat, which handily eliminates the question of which gender is supposed to leave it in which position; more on kinds of toilets worldwide in a minute).

    "En suite" means that the bathroom is attached to or inside your hostel room; generally (but not always), you'll get an en suite bathroom if you spring for a private hostel room ($$$). See some examples of private hostel rooms:

    3. Anytime many people, especially of multiple cultural backgrounds, cohabit in the same water closet, things can get messy. All part of the joys of the multinational learning experiences. Observe good shared-bathroom etiquette, and you'll be fine: (a) don't let the water run while you brush your teeth (folks in droughty and water-rationed countries may especially take exception); (b) don't use up all the hot water (everyone takes exception to that everywhere); (c) don't make gross messes in and around the toilet (self-explanatory); (d) don't leave any trace: take your wet towel with you and wipe your toothpaste out of the sink, for instance.

    3. Bring flip flops if you're finicky: though thongs worn on the street tend to be a uniquely American fashion statement among world travelers, they do have their place: hostel showers. Whether various worms, fungi and parasites can actually enter the body through the unbroken skin of the feet is a matter best left to experts, but here's what we think of when deciding whether to go shod into a shared shower: somebody else probably peed in there.

Hostel Bathroom Photos

See what to expect in a handful of hostels where we've remembered to snap a shot -- usually of the best bathrooms we've seen, not the worst... nonetheless, gives some idea of what hostel bathrooms look like:

  • Acapulco's Kingdom Hostel Shared Bathroom
  • Wake Up London Hostel Semi-Private Ensuite Bathroom
  • Blue Mountains YHA Hostel Bathroom - Shared (Private Bath in Photo Inset)
  • San Francisco's Adeleide Hostel Private Room and En Suite Bathroom

    Learn more about hostels in general:

    Learn more about boutique hostels:

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