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Backpackers Hostel Canada- HI Hostel Canada

Save money and make friends! Staying in a backpackers hostel in Canada is a special experience for people of all ages.

Backpackers Hostel Canada
Hostel scene

Backpacker Hostels are not only for the “young”! Nothing beats heading out on a backcountry adventure with just a few of your belongings in a backpack and a bucket list of places to see.

Hostelling International Canada (HI-Canada) has a network of sixty hostels from coast to coast. Ten of the hostels located in western Canada are wilderness hostels.

Backpackers hostel in Canada is usually not the type of accommodation that comes to your mind when you plan a trip to Canada.

The backpackers’ hostel is a good choice for the budget traveller and the backpacker. This type of travel is not for everyone.

Some youth hostels are located in beautiful remote locations, and they can be difficult to be reached by public transport.

Most Canadian backpacker hostels are modern places with great services and amenities. They have come a long way since my hosteling experience in my early years here. Since then, Hosteling International (HI)l has developed a quality standard for all HI hostels. Some youth hostels are privately owned and standards might be different.

Hostels, also simply called backpackers hostels, offer cheap and safe lodging. They are not only fun places to stay, but you will meet lots of like-minded travellers from all over the world. Travelling alone? Not for long if you stay in a backpackers hostel in Canada. It’s a great place if you’re looking for a travel partner. Canadian hostels are run by people who can give you information about the region. They help you with organizing and booking a trip, or can even help you find work if this is what you are after.

If you have a working holiday visa for Canada, and you’re looking for a job, the HI backpackers hostel is a good place to start. Information about hostel jobs can be found on the HI website.

Other Backpackers Accommodation In Canada

Canada is a big country and offers many different experiences. Most backpackers hostel accommodations might have similar standards, but most of them are pretty unique. Some backpackers hostels in cities and popular tourist places might be more like modern resorts than budget accommodation.

They might have nice patios to hang out, big pool areas, lively bars with music all day and have free Internet.

Some backpacker hostels in Canada might be party places for young travellers and very loud, but there are definitely alternatives.

Wilderness Hostels In The Rockies

Get back to nature and check out the HI network of ten wilderness hostels in West Canada which are tucked away in the Rocky Mountains along the Icefield Parkway HWY 93 north, in both Banff and Jasper National Parks. These hostels are affordable accommodation and will get you back to the basics, away from electronics, so you can take in the simple things in life. Some have fire pits and even wood-burning saunas, how great is that.

You will be able to enjoy unspoiled nature, true silence, amazing night skies and magnificent landscapes, and be awarded a unique “off-the-grid” Canadian backcountry experience.

The rustic atmosphere and the beauty surrounding these hostels will make your effort worthwhile, whether you get there by car, bike or on foot. During summer you can tour the Icefields Parkway on a bike, stopping at hostels on the way. In winter these hostels give great access to winter sports. Check out the HI network of wilderness hostels, it’s worth it!

The Hostels:

The HI hostel Canada website gives information about each of the hostels.

What Can You Expect

Staying in a hostel is only for you if you don’t mind the lack of privacy, and sharing a dorm and the bathroom with a bunch of strangers.

Most backpackers hostel in Canada offer mixed or single-sex dorms, only good for travellers who can fall asleep despite the noise around them. Hostels might also have four people, two-person or single rooms available, sometimes with their own bathroom and shower.

The fee usually includes breakfast. A shared kitchen is available to cook your own meals. Not sure whether peanut butter sandwiches and baked beans on toast are still the favourite menus by backpackers!

No, you don’t have to worry about bed bugs, these times are gone. That’s not the reason they want you to bring your own hostel sheet, which has the shape of a sleeping bag. I remember the yellow heavy cotton sleeping sheet with a YH pattern I used to have, no silk ones were available at that time.

Make sure you secure your travel documents and invest in a money belt which you can keep on you all the time. Locker facilities vary from place to place.

Your nightly hostel fee usually pays for a bunk bed, a pillow and a blanket, no towels, shampoo, and soap are supplied. Breakfast might be included in the price.

Backpackers Hostel Bunkbeds

What You Need To Bring Along

It’s a good idea to travel light if you choose a backpackers hostel for your accommodation, there won’t be much space. Hostels are not suitcase friendly; I suggest taking a backpack along for your belongings. Even if you book your own room, it will be small.

And that’s what you have to pack, apart from your personal belongings:

  • Sleeping sheet and pillowcase
  • Shower shoes and towel
  • Soap and shampoo
  • Padlock and coins for lockers

HI Hostel Membership

You can purchase your HI membership online before you leave home or you can buy in person when you arrive in Canada. All hostels can sell you an International Membership which is valid worldwide for one year.

How To Book A Backpackers Hostel Online

To research, available youth hostels in Canada go to the HI Canada hostels website. I like their website and it’s easy to find your way around. You can make online reservations and cancellations for HI-Canada hostels, with no booking fee.

There are other backpacker hostels in Canada, privately owned and they don’t show up on the HI-Canada website.

Check out an independent booking site, like:

Both booking sites don’t charge any booking fees and no commission either.

Compare prices if you travel Canada on a budget and read the reviews before booking the hostel.

Trip Advisor is a good place for independent reviews.

Related Links

Budget Travel Canada12 Canadian Camping Apps
Getting Around CanadaCanada Maps
Backcountry AccommodationCar buying tips for tourists