You are either a tourist, a student or just passing through, but the bottom line is you are looking for affordable accommodation in London. The problem is, we all know how horrific living in hostels can be.
Here are a few ways to make your stay bearable, even great:
Look before you book – and book in advance
Don’t settle for the photos, look at customer reviews. Check if they have a kitchen, if they charge for towels, if they provide a safe and if they have private rooms. Love yourself a bit and look for hostels with private rooms if you have room in your budget.
Also, double-check where they are located. You might just find out that the hostel is in a sketchy part of the city. And of course, an ideal location would be walking distance from a supermarket or the tube. Book in advance as well since hostels quickly fill up; this is London we are talking about.
If you were not lucky enough to get a private room, bring a sleeping mask and ear plugs. For showering, bring flip-flops and a towel. Or add it to your budget to purchase these things when you get to London. These will give you a somewhat pleasant experience and help you get a good night’s sleep.
Also, bring cash if you did not pay the full amount. Writer Caroline Roddis warns that many hostels will charge you to process card payments.
Of course, bring a selection of clothes since you would not know if you need to layer up until you get to the hostel.
Even if you get a private room, bring your valuables with you or keep them in a safe. And of course, always remember to lock your room door and windows.
Friends make things more fun and tolerable, and you will never know if they could give you a hand with anything.
So obviously, preparation is key. But of course, having an open mind and being flexible will help give you a pleasant state of mind, despite depriving yourself of luxuries.