Youth Hostels Information

Youth Hostels are the most popular accommodation choice for backpackers and independent travellers on a budget. Hostel guests have the choice of shared or private accommodation, with optional ensuite in most New Zealand hostels. All hostels have great kitchens with full facilities perfect for preparing meals. Most hostels have communal lounges, outdoor areas and TV rooms - great places for relaxing and meeting fellow travellers.

Forget the old stereotypes - chores, curfews and lights-out are a thing of the past! Many YHA hostels in New Zealand are staffed 24 hours, all are professionally cleaned daily and all offer 24 hour guest access.

Never stayed in a hostel? Watch our video

Is your YHA New Zealand accommodation booked but you've never stayed in a hostel before? No worries! Watch our hostel experience video to get the inside scoop on what to expect when you stay with us. 

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Still have questions? Read our Frequently Asked Questions (and their answers!)

Other FAQs:

Membership, International Travel, International Hostels, Booking terms and conditions, Cancellations and refunds

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 What are the hostels like?

No two hostels are the same which is one of the fun things about YHA! There are converted farmhouses, lodges set in beautiful acres and modern purpose built hostels. The hostels you stay in will often become a unique part of your trip. Despite their differences, we can guarantee that all hostels have private and multishare rooms, shared bathroom facilities, shared kitchen facilities, 24-hour guest access, an abundance of information on local activities and essential items for sale at reception such as milk, cereals, toothbrushes, snack food and drinks.

 Are there curfews at YHA hostels?

No, all New Zealand hostels have 24-hour guest access.

 My plane arrives at 3am - can I check in at that time?

Sure, as long as you let the hostel staff know what time you’ll be arriving when you make your initial booking. They will then organise an arrival procedure for you.

 Will I have chores or duties to do?

The traditional policy that all guests must help with the day-to-day cleaning of hostels is no longer in operation which means you are free from the chores! However, YHAs do request that guests are considerate to others and that you tidy up after yourself - particularly in the kitchen!

 Do I have to bring a sleeping bag?

Due to our Health & Hygiene policy, guests’ own sleeping bags and sleeping sheets are not allowed to be used in any YHA hostels in New Zealand. Duvets, pillows and all bed linen are provided for every guest and are included in the bed rate.

 Do I need to bring a towel?

Yes. Although hostels provide all bedding and bed linen they do not provide towels or toiletries for guests.

 Can I book ahead?

Sure. If you want to make a booking at a New Zealand hostel you can make your booking here on our website. Alternatively, you can book through our Customer Services Team, contact the hostel directly or make a booking from hostel to hostel as you travel.

 What types of rooms are available?

All YHA New Zealand hostels have both private and multishare rooms. Some hostels even offer private rooms with ensuite facilities! Multishare accommodation is a shared room that generally sleeps between 4 and 8 people and is available in single sex or mixed gender dormitories. This is the cheapest way to stay at our hostels and for this reason hostels tend to have more of these rooms.

 Can families be together in the same room?

Families are welcome at YHA hostels in New Zealand. Most hostels have family rooms available so that you can all stay in the same room. Families can also sleep together in a multishare room. If you want exclusive use of a multishare room you may have to pay for any beds that are in excess of your family’s requirements. This is especially likely in busy periods. Read more about our hostels for families.

 I am travelling with both male and female friends, can we stay in the same room or do we have to stay in the single sex dormitories?

All hostels have mixed gender rooms so couples and friends can stay together. If you’re booking online, look for ‘mixed’ shared rooms. If booking direct with a hostel, make sure you mention this at the time of booking.

 Can I buy food at the hostel?

Essential items such as milk, cereals, toothbrushes, snack food and drinks are for sale at reception of all YHA hostels in New Zealand. A couple of the hostels do offer meals during the winter season – please check with the hostel directly.

 Where can I put my luggage if I go out for the day?

All YHA hostels have high levels of security plus luggage storage facilities. For a nominal fee you can hire a locker or put your luggage in a storage area. All rooms are lockable so you can leave your bags in the room. Is there off-street parking at the hostels? The majority of the hostels have off-street parking. The spaces work on a first come first served basis. To find out if a particular hostel has off-street parking look for the ‘P’ in our hostel guide map or under ‘Facilities’ in the hostel profiles.

 Do Kiwi Experience buses pick up and drop off at YHA New Zealand hostels?

They sure do. Most other bus companies also drop off at hostels.

 Do the hostels offer free airport shuttle/bus pick-ups?

None of our hostels offer free airport transfers, however they have strong links with local shuttle services and taxi companies that will offer discounts to guests staying at YHA hostels. To find out more, please ask when you book your accommodation.

 Is there a maximum length of time I can stay at any one hostel?

Most hostels allow a maximum of 6 nights for guests staying at their hostel and this is the maximum number of nights available when booking online. If you would like to stay for a longer period of time it will depend on the time of year, size of the hostel, etc. Just ask the hostel staff once you have arrived.

 Can I make bookings for transport and activities at the hostel?

All YHA hostels in New Zealand have close ties with transport and activity operators in their area. Feel free to pick the brains of our staff. They’ll answer your questions and can make most of your bookings for you – all you need to do is ask! Although this facility is available we strongly recommend that you pre-book for peak summertime travel.

 What are hostel kitchen facilities like?

All hostels have the necessary equipment in their self-catering kitchens for whipping up any culinary delight – including pots, pans, plates and cutlery. Some hostels even have their own café or bistro for the culinary challenged!

 Are there power points in the rooms?

Most rooms have power points.

 Do the hostels have alarm clocks or hairdryers I can use?

This varies from hostel to hostel. Check with the hostel staff upon check-in.