Why Do Hostels Have Age Restrictions?
It seems a bit pretty weird, doesn’t it? Don’t hostels want to welcome travellers of all ages? Don’t they want everyone’s money? Well, you probably won’t be surprised to hear that it’s usually the party hostels that have an age limit rule. This does make sense, though: many party hostels will have a bar built into the accommodation, so they don’t want to have kids running around and potentially trying to sneak some alcohol. In this case, you’ll usually find that the hostel only allows over-18s (or whatever the legal drinking age is) to stay.
Upper age limits exist, too, and again, they’re usually at the party hostels. They like to have a certain atmosphere at their places, so they want to keep everyone within a certain age range.
Are Age Limits Enforced?
If there is a particular hostel you’re dying to stay at, but are over the age limit, there’s no harm in going for it because you’ll probably be fine — just have a backup hostel ready in your mind in case you’re turned away. If, however, you’re under 18, steer clear of anywhere with a younger age limit, because you probably won’t be able to get in.
How Can You Tell if a Hostel Has an Age Limit?
Easy — you’ll be able to tell when you book your hostel. No matter which booking website you decide to use, take a look at the full description of the hostel and any of the rules, and it’ll tell you whether there’s an age limit or not.
Are Age Limits a Good or a Bad Thing?
It depends on your point of view. Some of the advantages of having an age limit include the guarantee that you’ll be spending the night with people who are in a similar range — nobody wants to spend the night in a dorm room with several kids under the age of five. If you’re hoping to hook up with someone on your travels, you’ll have more opportunity to meet someone close to your age at one of these hostels.
The main disadvantage is that it excludes people from a wide range of backgrounds, with different life experiences.