I have stayed at enough budget backpackers to believed I am qualified to advise backpacker owners and managers on certain things.
In no order of importance, here it goes:
- Free unlimited WiFi should be a basic at a backpackers. You
have no idea how much publicity you get from budget travelers checking
in on Facebook at your establishment.
Most solo travelers have blogs as well, as a way to keep their families updated of what is going on in on their travels.
Do yourself a favor and stop limiting the WiFi.
And what's the point of WiFi if Whatsapp has been blocked from working on it? This is madness, please stop it. Some of us really pick which accommodation establishment to stay at based on availability of WiFi. Thank you.
- A "Free for all" box in the kitchen. This is useful when
travelers have have left over groceries that they don't need. Instead of
throwing it away, you keep it for other guys coming. If I'm here for 2
days it doesn't make sense to buy a full bottle of cooking oil when someone just threw it our.
And to those that feel the need to take anything in the 'Free for all" box just because you are greedy, I have it on good authority that you might not make it to the pearly gates.
- Basic seasoning in the kitchen guys, salt and pepper. That's all.
- Fully equipped kitchen. Most of us aren't aspiring chefs but as solo travelers, we tend to become a family at meal times because we really are the only family that we got. Allow us the simple pleasure to prepare a decent meal.
- Clearly labelled recycling bins. This goes a long way with some of us. Others don't understand the purpose but they like it cos it seems neat.
- A donation bin by reception. We tend to pack light but as we travel we realize that some of the items we have packed are just taking up too much space and aren't necessary. Partner up with a local charity organisation so that you can donate all the items we give up to that organisation. Label the bin and tell us the name of the organisation.
- The free evening activity nights for the travelers to get to know each other are a major win. If you don't do this yet, look into it. E.g: Pizza night, Movie night, board games night... etc
- I know we are not the most glamorous people but can you invest in mirrors. Fully length mirrors behind the dorm room door even if we might mostly use it to apply our sunscreen but some evenings we will make an effort and we'd like to see what we look like and not just have an idea of what we possibly look like.