Hostels are great places to meet people. They’re also great places to meet a$$holes. Anyone who’s stayed in a hostel has likely come across at least one of the following terrible, terrible roommates:
1) Uncool senior citizen. I’m totally of the persuasion that hosteling is a travel mind-set, not an age group delineation. That said, nothing poops a party more than a couple of 60-year-olds who want the budget savings of a hostel but are unwilling to acknowledge other guests or sacrifice any of their precious sleep and privacy. Uncool senior citizens shush their roommates starting at 8 pm and request that the hostel bar play calmer music.
2) Brats. On the other hand, just because hostels are laid-back environments doesn’t mean you get to be a horrible human. Generally, The Brat is traveling on Mommy and/or Daddy’s dime with a few friends, returns to the hostel post-3 am but flips on the lights while he/she rehashes the night they just had and makes no gesture of consideration toward the room full of sleeping people. Terrifying subset: The Bro. If you find Bros in your room, get ready for misogyny, a total lack of self-awareness and, if you’re lucky, discussions about e.g. chest-shaving.
3) This One’s Got a Screw (or Five) Loose. Crazies, though entertaining, can make your stay a bit nerve-wracking. They might inspire questions you never thought you’d have to consider, like, “I wonder how flammable my mattress is?”, “Did she just accuse me of being a ghost?” and “Did he pack any pants?”
4) Eat, Pray, Love to Tell You All About It. This person just had an epiphany about their previously-sorry life that inspired a spiritual or emotional quest they feel you’d be interested in hearing A LOT about. The objective of this quest probably would have been better satisfied in therapy, so if you get cornered get ready to do a lot of nodding and saying, “Wow, that sounds like it must have been really hard. Good for you.”
5) The Disgusting One. Pigs of the hostel variety are especially diverse, and the Disgusting One has several subtypes: the Clothing Explosion (dirty clothes and underwear everywhere), the Nose Picker (self-explanatory), the Snorer (also self-explanatory), the Hygiene Eschewer (who is also on vacation from tooth-brushing and showering), the Couple Who’s Sort of Boning but You Can’t Tell for Sure Because They’re Across the Room and Pretty Quiet, and the Guy Jerking Off, for Sure.
6) The One Who Partied Too Hard. This person returns to the room slam-hammered drunk and tries to climb into bed with you, has to be wrestled into his/her own bed by his/her almost-equally-as-drunk friends, and/or pisses and/or pukes in the corner after trying to piss/puke on you.