So, if you’ve read my blog post, 5 Reasons Why Your Next Travel Stay Should Be In A Hostel, you can probably tell that I am a huge fan of hostels. I love them. They’re cheap, convenient, and a great way to make friends from all over the world. And while not all of my hostels stays have been smooth, most of my stays have. But one thing that can quickly make a good time go south is a bad roommate. Here’s how not to be that roommate that makes everyone else miserable.
- Clean up after yourself. Most likely if you’re traveling abroad and staying in a hostel, chances are that you’re a fully grown adult. That being the case, you should know how to clean up after yourself. Don’t leave your dirty clothes all over the room. Put your trash in the actual trash bin. If you bring food in the room, dispose of it properly, as not to attract critters. Just be considerate! No one wants to see or have to clean your mess.
- Respect other’s space. One of my biggest pet peeves is when I walk into a room, only to find that my assigned bed has already been slept in or that someone else is using my new bed as their own personal storage space. Even worse is when I’ve been staying in the room and someone decides to sit on my bed or put their stuff on it. Our small spaces in our hostels are our homes away from home, so it’s only courteous to respect the little space that our roommates have.
- Try not interrupt others’ sleep. I can’t emphasize this one enough. Adequate sleep is so important when you’re abroad. Proper sleep helps prevent you from getting sick, and it also ensures that you’re able to fully enjoy your days, and interrupted sleep is enough to make even the jolliest of people cranky. If you come in late, try your best to come in quietly, so you don’t disturb your roommates. And if you have to leave early in the morning, try to prepare all of your things the night before, so you don’t wake up your roommates as you gather your stuff together.
- Keep your infestations to yourself. One of the ugly possibilities of staying in hostels is encountering bed bugs. Luckily I have only encountered this problem one time in my travels, but the time that I did, I was prepared. One way that I keep from getting nasty little bed bugs among my belongings is to keep my belongings together and secured in my bag. My roommates at the time, however, kept their bags open and belongings strewn across the floor and their beds. Traveling like this leaves you wide open to bed bugs, and when you move to another hostel, leaving your stuff open gives them a chance to get out and infest the room and other people’s things. Just be mindful. Protect yourself and protect others.
- If it’s not yours, don’t touch it. This should go without saying but this isn’t common sense to some people. Many people think that it’s okay if they borrow a little bit of their roommates’ perfume or a spray of their hairspray, but let me tell you, it’s never okay to touch someone else’s belongings without their permission. Even if it’s laying around, if it’s not yours, it’s not yours to use.
It’s everyone’s biggest wish to have a seamless experience when they travel, so let’s help each other out, at least, by being good roommates. Bon voyage!