Five Reasons to Work in Hostels Abroad

Take a look at 5 reasons why working at a hostel is great for your mind and your wallet!


Traveling the world is an exciting prospect for many, and working in a hostel provides an excellent opportunity to fully immerse yourself in a new culture and make unforgettable memories. Although it may seem daunting to leave home, platforms like Hostelworlks make it easy to connect with hostel hosts and arrange a work exchange. By expressing your skills and willingness to learn, hosts are typically happy to welcome you and teach you about their business, allowing you to gain valuable work experience abroad.

1. Working at a hostel gives you the chance to enhance existing skills and learn new ones

The tourism industry thrives in many countries, making it easy to find work in this sector abroad. Hostels require many positions, such as housekeeping, cooking, and reception work, which are easily learnable even if you have no prior experience. If you want to build your skills, hostels also offer specialized positions such as bartenders, social media experts, and artists. The hostel experience caters to everyone’s skills and interests, making it a unique opportunity.

Here is a list of all the various types of activities you can expect to do while working at a hostel:

  • Bartending
  • Cleaning
  • Event Promotion
  • Front Desk
  • Housekeeping
  • Kitchen Staff
  • Maintenance
  • Night Shift
  • Office Work
  • Painting & Decorating
  • Photography
  • Social Media
  • Tour Guiding
  • Video Production
  • Web Development

2. Budget-Friendly Way to Explore New Places

One of the major costs of traveling is accommodation, and even budget hostels can quickly add up. That’s where work exchanges come in handy, as they often provide free accommodation in exchange for your services. This allows you to live in a different country completely rent-free.

In some cases, hostels may even offer complimentary meals or access to a kitchen. With most of your living expenses covered, you can allocate your savings towards activities that truly interest you. While work exchanges generally don’t offer monetary compensation, the amount of money you can save while living abroad is substantial. In certain positions, such as bartending or other hospitality roles, you may even receive tips. By saving money on flights, food (if not provided by the hostel), and activities, you can easily experience life abroad on a tight budget.

3. Meet New People from Around the World

Hostels not only offer cost-effective lodging for travelers but also provide a communal space for them to socialize and share their travel experiences. Working in a hostel’s social environment means that you’ll have the opportunity to interact with many diverse and captivating people every day. Every traveler has something unique to offer, whether it’s advice, travel tips, or an extraordinary story, so try to engage with as many people as you can. Even if you’re traveling solo, you’ll never feel lonely while working in a hostel.

Typically, hostels accept a limited number of volunteers, so you have the chance to develop strong relationships with your fellow workers. Moreover, the permanent staff who manage the hostel are often locals, so spending time with them can help you immerse yourself in the local culture and lifestyle. Let them guide you and introduce you to their way of life, and maybe teach you some of the local language. Working in a hostel is an excellent opportunity to learn a language naturally while traveling. The people you meet while working in a hostel may become lifelong friends, and you’ll likely leave your work exchange with connections to people from all over the world.

4. New Opportunities for Adventure

Working at a hostel is just like any other job in that you will have time off to explore the surrounding area. Hostels vary, but the shifts are typically manageable, giving you plenty of time to go on adventures. Hostels usually offer fun activities for their guests, and they want their volunteers to enjoy the local culture in a social and enjoyable environment. Take part in pub crawls, dance parties, walking tours, excursions, day trips, wine tours, food tastings, beach trips, and surf lessons that are often organized for guests and volunteers alike.

You can also get discounted prices as a volunteer for certain events and activities partnered with your hostel, leaving you with more money for your travel fund. You may also be able to negotiate multiple consecutive days off with your hostel managers, allowing you to travel and explore more. While work should be your top priority, you can certainly have fun during your work exchange.

5. Feeling at Home in a Foreign Country

Traveling is a privilege, yet many people fail to seize the opportunity. Living in a foreign country helps you become an informed and open-minded global citizen, allowing you to experience diverse cultures and ways of life. Studies have shown that travel can bring positive changes, and with Hostelworks, the benefits are undeniable. The world offers many beautiful places filled with warm-hearted people. From small villages to bustling cities, beachside towns to forest cabins, every destination is an opportunity to explore a new place and a different way of living.

Over time, living in a foreign country creates a special bond with the people and the environment, broadening your horizons and enriching your spirit. In essence, travel can serve as a powerful form of education. As you start to feel at home in this new place, you’ll develop a deeper appreciation for the world and an insatiable desire to see more. While some people prefer to stay put, others choose to take a leap of faith and embark on an unforgettable adventure by moving abroad. Their experiences are ones they will treasure forever.

How to Find Hostel Work Opportunities

Looking to work at a hostel? Our work placement website offers a convenient and hassle-free way to discover opportunities and connect with hostels seeking volunteers. Browse through the available positions and find one that aligns with your interests and skills. Take a look at some of the positions we currently have available by clicking here.