From the Blog

November 17, 2014

Reviews The good and the Bad

Reviews For Hostels

Reviews The good and the BadI am one of those sort of guys that just gets on with life and after almost 2 years of travelling this tiny planet and after some ribbing from a few friends I thought it time I wrote this my first ever post. The reason for me to take the effort in banging one finger (I have more, but can only use the one digit to type) on this key pad is the fact that I am dumbfounded by the system of ‘Reviews’. While some are full of valuable information the majority seem to fall into 2 camps. On the one hand you have the supposedly well-travelled backpacker, who has reviewed a number of locations based on what they know they can expect from a hostel (I must confess to only just starting to review places I have visited) while on the other hand you have what looks to be the first timer “backpacker” who reviews without weighing up what hostel life is really about, we all know the type, someone who travels with a suitcase and is simply on a two week holiday.


Reviews The good and the Bad

I suppose I should explain that last bit in more detail, I have been fortunate (and sometimes less fortunate) to have stayed in many a hostel all over this planet, some were little more than mud huts, while others were not ‘hostels’ at all but simply ‘guest houses’, that’s OK with me but unless you have been to a number of places how can you review a place without having something to judge it against? What is one person’s palace is another’s ‘S_IT’ hole.  It would seem to me these supposedly backpackers are making statements based on their own perception of what a hostel should be and not viewing their surroundings for what they truly are.


Reviews The good and the BadTo give an example I was sitting in a beach hut not so long ago when a guy books in the same hostel (dragging his oversized suit case), the first thing his says to us lying around in our hammocks, is he is shocked at the fact there was no air con and that there was so few toilets, WOW what was he expecting the rate was less than 3 USD per night, when another guy next to me pointed this out to the newbie his comments were to confuse me even further, he then start babbling on that he would take great pleasure in reviewing the hostel in the worst terms he could find. That single comment got me thinking about ‘Reviews’ for hostels.


Reviews The good and the BadSince that day I have taken far more note of the people writing the review rather just the content, what I have noticed is the same strange facts, when the review is poor the writer seems almost to flip flop in their statements, in one hand their take great delight in running the venue down and yet finish with the cost of the bed for the night was good. I wonder if these same people would go to a McDonalds and whinge that the meal was not as they had expected as they thought fast food was on the same par as an al a carte restaurant. Surely the first thing to do before starting a review is to compare apples with apples, that is to say take the price you pay and compare it against the alternatives you have around you (or what your budget will allow) and then write your review. It is no use going to a major city and expecting to pay the same as you will in the outback, nor is it realistic to expect a private room with AC, your own pool and sauna for the price of a beer or two.


Reviews The good and the BadI wonder should it not be down to the review companies to point this obvious issue out to those that have no real knowledge of what a hostel is! Or should there be a ‘Star System’ for hostels on the same line as hotels? Where a star is awarded for things such as 24 reception and a common area, for AC and fresh bedding etc.?


Reviews The good, the Bad and the ignorant

For most of us backpackers, the ideal hostel is a venue which provides a secure place where we get the chance to meet other likeminded people, at an affordable price based more on the fast food industry and not a Michelin Star Restaurant.

Unless of course you know better?

Written by: Ronny Baker




1 comment

  1. Peter bass - November 21, 2014 2:56 pm

    I recently stayed at the Asia backpackers in Pattaya and just wanted to share my story.

    I was travelling alone this time without my family when a friend of mine said that I should try staying at a backpackers he had done it and highly recommended , so I decided why not.

    After some research I came accross Asia backpackers i found that the ease of booking a bed online was very easy and time efficient. Upon arrival I was greeted by one of the female staff members who to my surprise spoke and understood English very well, I checked in and settled into my bed with ease.

    All the staff that I met at the backpackers were very friendly and very willing to help or suggest places to go and see,

    I found the facilities to be very clean and well maintained.

    After a few days I noticed a poster on the walls that were advitising a franchise opportunity for the Asia backpackers, I thought this would be a great idea so I looked very hard into this and well to cut a long story short as of the 10th of December 2014 I become the new owner of the Asia backpackers in Pattaya I really hope that all that read this and decide to try out the backpackers come and say hi to me and I hope that I can really make you feel as welcome as they made me.



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