The trick to snagging a swanky hostel is to know before you go. Check out reputable hotel review site to get a feel for your prospective hostel. While some hostels resemble trendy boutique hotels with plenty of privacy, others are like the traditional youth hostels of yore.
2. SKIP THE TOUR GROUP AND ARRANGE YOUR OWN ACTIVITIES.
Although there are certain activities that must be undertaken with a guide and the appropriate safety equipment (improvised independent zip-lining is unlikely to be covered by your insurance plan!), this is one of the key ways that we have reduced some of our big expenses.
Most destinations served by tour companies are easily accessible by public transport meaning you won’t be paying extra on that entrance fee and a detailed guide book or some night-before research can negate the need for an expensive guide.
3. Plan ahead
One of the best parts about backpacking is the freedom to go, do and see whatever you want, whenever you want. We don’t insist that you organize every detail ahead of time, but doing your research is important. Consider booking plane tickets further in advance for the best cash rates and setting Expert Flyer alerts for award availability. If you’re visiting somewhere during high season or while a big event or festival is happening, consider booking hotels in advance too.
For example, if you plan to be on the Thai island Koh Phangan during the (in)famous Full Moon Party, don’t put off finding your accommodations until the last minute. You’ll end up paying way more because of high occupancy, or worse, you could end up sleeping on the beach because everything is full.