Sunday, July 31, 2011


These are some of the types of guests I have seen at a hostel in my brief time of working there. Doubtless this list will continue to grow as I am able to categorize some of the behavior types into more refined categories. Not every guest will fit into a category. A guest may fit into multiple categories, or switch between categories. These are the ones I've gotten thus far, doubtless more will present themselves later.


This person is rarely seen. They leave at the crack of dawn and return late - leading mysterious lives of tourism in between. Quote: "..."


They expect everything one may find at the Hilton, including such things that an excellent concierge would be able to quickly provide. They are just too cheap/poor to spend twenty times what the hostel costs to stay at a place where such things are available. Quote: "Why don't you have X?"


This person has never gotten a vacation before and is trying to fit as much into their limited vacation time as possible. If you hear about someone doing ten countries in ten days or similar, this is an enthusiastic crammer. This usually applies to people who have more money than time and don't mind spending most of their time traveling rather than seeing anything. These people can either fit into the 'Ghost' category or they sit around the hostel planning. Quote: (Ranting about what they must do.)


This is usually a woman traveling with her boyfriend. A person traveling alone would have nobody to bitch to and in any decent society might be driven out. She tends to speak for him and voices her disapproval of anything from activities to the culture she is visiting. The henpecked/pussywhipped boyfriend may try to find a way to change the conversation topic. Quotes: "Oh, we don't do that!" "It's disgusting the way they..."


As soon as their bags hit the floor in their room, they seem set to explode. Shit goes everywhere. Consideration and other adult concepts are meaningless abstractions to them. Quote: "It's just there for a second..."


This is the kind of person who can walk by a phone hanging on the wall and through apparently no intervention cause the receiver to fall from the cradle. If you discover someone is clumsy, you should immediately protect any electronics you have or destroy them before he does. Quote: "Sorry!"


Regardless of what time they went to bed they want to sleep well into the afternoon. These are the people who hostels made a 'check out' policy for. They are either asleep or 'trying to get to sleep'. Information that medically a person only requires a certain amount of hours of sleep are met with an indignant 'not me!' On the plus side, however, you can fire mortars next to them without waking them up. On the negative side, they might snore loudly. Quote: "Just let me get some sleep." (This is said despite whether they've taken it all already or not.) Quote: "Zzzz..."


Although they should have lived with themselves long enough to know that they are a light sleeper, they did not bring any ear plugs, headphones or anything else to mitigate the noise of a hostel. They also seem to like to go to bed early. They usually don't last long in a hostel as hostels are generally fairly noisy. Quote: "Can you keep the noise down? Some of us are trying to sleep here!"


If he is quiet, this one is not really a problem. The problem is that way too few of them are actually trained as ninjas. Most of them own crinkly bags, bash things around repeatedly and are either clumsy or thinking "You've had enough sleep." Quote: "Good morning!"


People who must call in to chat with people in other locations - family and friends not adventurous to come along. While it is natural for everyone to do so occasionally, these people do it nightly for hours at a time. It reminds me of an old quote I had heard but can't remember or find where it came from. "How can they still be on the phone? They don't know enough (about anything) to talk that long!" Quote: "Blah, blah blah..."


Makes you wonder how they survived so long in other places. Often seems incompetent at things like getting a bus, carrying things every traveler should have (like scrap paper and a pen, for example), etc. Quote: "How do you do...?"


These people are usually somewhat reserved on the subject of themselves but if you ask the right questions, you will find out they've been to seventy countries, have smuggled guns, etc. Great for getting loads of stories out of as well as finding out lots of information about countries you might be interested in. Quote: "Well..." (And somewhat reluctantly launch into a story that could easily be the basis of an interesting book.)



  1. Which type are you? And is there a type for an actually competent guest that pops out touristing for reasonable times and still manages to be around the hostel and sociable? Or do they just not exist?

  2. Gosh, I've been in a lot of categories including: the disapprover, the child, clumsy guy, light sleeper (till I started using my head phones to listen to rain), early riser, inept long term traveler (I think I've still got a lot to learn) and the 'colorful character' as of late. Right now, I'm still an early riser (5-7 hours sleep is enough) and a little bit of the 'colorful character' now and then.

    Probably a competent guest who also hangs out around the hostel but they are pretty unremarkable. When classifying flavors, vanilla is not wonderful to write about. A lot of guests can fit into this category but they are often overlooked for things like this.

  3. i am the early did'nt realise there are so many types

  4. Hi logan , I am a budding travel writer. I would love it if you feature my blog as the blog you follow

    I would also love to get some feedback from you

    thanks – The travel connection.

  5. Mamta: There are a lot more types of traveler than what I've got up - those are just the ones I've classified so far.

    I don't really follow any blog (when you are on an adventure you don't read about adventures so much) but I am happy to trade links in blog. By that I mean if you put up a link to my blog (and tell me about it) I will certainly put a link to yours.

    Feedback? Pretty pictures!

  6. I thought 'colourful characters' ended up owning Hostels not being guests...

    Silly me



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