I’m not too sure how I expected my first hostel experience to go. I don’t think I expected most people at Pirates Backpackers to have lived there for 3 to 6 months. This was slightly disconcerting because they were all good friends, and I was a newbie in Fremantle for two days.
My fears were totally unjustified because they turned out to be so lovely. The most important thing is to act confident. Even if you feel slightly awkward just pull up a chair and join in the conversation. No one is going to fetch you from your room. If you want to join in, it’s up to you.
A few tips for a good hostel experience
- Say YES.
Someone asks if you want to go to the markets together? Say yes. Someone asks if they can come with you on a trip? Say yes. Someone asks if you want to join in watching a movie? Say yes.
- Tell people where you are headed
I was talking about how I wanted to visit Rockingham the next day. Before I knew it I was going on a mini road trip with a group of people who also wanted to come.
- Be confident in yourself
I’m a very rare drinker and I don’t smoke. If someone offers you weed (which is quite likely), just politely decline (unless of course you want some). Act confident and no-one will question you.
- Pull up a chair
Things are only awkward if you make them so. Even if everyone already knows each-other just rock up and join in. If you’re getting distinctly unfriendly vibes, don’t waste your time. Move on.
A bit of luck for a good hostel life
So I did all the right things. I acted confident when I didn’t always feel it. I joined in the evening chat, I was flexible with my plans and went with the flow. However I was also lucky. I don’t expect to always have a great hostel experience.
Have realistic expectations of your hostel and check online that it has the vibe you are after. 9 times out of 10 you will meet awesome people and have an amazing time. I strongly believe that positive attitudes attract positive experiences.
There was a moment when we were just back from the beach. We were driving with the windows down, singing absolute tune and on our way to watch the sunset. I couldn’t believe that the Australian experience I had dreamed of was coming true.
Even the most incredible experiences are better shared with friends. Hope this post eases any nerves about hostel life! x