I decided to book a hostel in Buenos Aires for the first few days in Buenos Aires so I can search for apartments, meet potential roommates and jump on the beds before I move in. I put together a Buenos Aires hostel checklist and read a bunch of reviews from hostels in Buenos Aires from other travelers to help me find the right place to kick off my adventure in Argentina.
My Buenos Aires Hostel Checklist:
Hostel Location – Close to sites, transportation and action (go to google maps and get close to the area you want and search ‘hostel’ and see what pops up). I looked at major landmarks that I wanted to be near like the Recoleta Cemetary, Parques de Palermo and the city’s subte (subway) system.
Hostel Room Rate – I’m going to book a private room because of all the technology gear I brought so I’m not looking for the cheapest hostel, but maybe something right down the middle ($20-40/night).
Hostel Atmosphere – The tough thing about booking a hostel in advance is that there’s always a little risk involved. When booking a hostel in Buenos Aires I have to rely on hostel reviews, photos and website information. I’m not looking for the biggest party hostel in Buenos Aires because that’s not my goal of the trip but I don’t want a ghost town either. Something chill.
Hostel Security – I’ve never seen the movie Hostel and I don’t plan on it but I get the idea. I just try to find well established places in decent areas that don’t accommodate serial killers.
Hostel Extras – I like to check for stuff that’s included in the price. The 3 most important things to me are internet (wifi) and bed sheets and breakfast included. An Air Conditioner is a bonus and a TV would be nice so I can start studying Spanish.
Good Hostel Booking & Review Sites:
hihostels.com – With over 4,000 hostels worldwide, in fantastic and unique locations, HI offers you the real hostel experience. Whether you need a private room, or simply a bed for the night with shared facilities, all HI hostels meet assured standards which guarantee good quality safe accommodation at affordable prices.
hotels.lonelyplanet.com – The Travel powerhouse’s own in-house hotel and hostel booking service. This is good for lonely planet reviews and travel information connected with the location.
statravel.com – STA Travel offers a huge range of cheap hotel accommodation options. From hostels and cheap hotels to boutique hotels, we can offer you over 27,000 places to stay on every continent. So, if you’re looking to book budget hotels for your travels look no further.
hostelworld.com – One of my favorite sites for hostel searching. They have a huge inventory of hostels all over the world and usually do a good job of keeping them up to a respectable standard.
hostels.com – Every hostel, everywhere! Or so they say.
Also, most Buenos Aires Travel Guides you pick up will have a section for hostels but they lack travel reviews.
A great alternative to staying in a hostel would be Couch Surfing (couchsurfing.org). I’m not going to do it this time but down the road I’d definitely like to get more involved.
TIP: I go to a million different hostel sites and compare my different hostels against my checklist (it took me a week to pick a hostel). Create your own list of criteria and don’t settle on the first hostel you find. If you know other people who have been to the area… ask them!
I ended up choosing the Hotel-Bar Giramondo in Palermo Soho because it’s close to where I want to live and they seem to have everything on my list.