Stepping out of my $20 a night dorm room at Waikiki Beachside Hostel and walking a block to the beach, past $150 a night hotel suites, put a smile on my bargain-hunting face every time. I stayed here for three nights in June in an 8-person female dormitory. It was a huge space with two bunks in the kitchen area (with full-sized oven and fridge) and two bunks in a separate room with the air-conditioning, which is where I slept. There was also a private bathroom.
- Location. The hostel’s biggest drawcard is its location to the world famous Waikiki Beach. In less than five minutes you can have stripped down to your bathers and be floating in the beautiful blue Hawaiian sea. It is also close to Kuhio Avenue, which is a main street where you can get buses around the island and eat and shop until you are full or your pockets are empty.
- Room Size. I have never stayed in such a big dormitory. To have two separate rooms and a kitchen bigger than some you would find in inner-city apartments, it was fantastic. I loved having the microwave to heat up meals to save on costs, and the fridge to keep food and drinks cold in the tropical weather.
- Safety. I always like a secure dorm, especially when travelling solo. To get into the hostel you need to show the reception your security tag: a blue bracelet that allows you to enter your room by holding it against the control on your door. A different concept but effective nonetheless. The area was also very safe when out at night. I don’t usually like to be out too late when travelling by myself, but I couldn’t help it one night in Honolulu and I was so glad I experienced the city coming to life as the sun set. The streets were bustling with performers and tourists going to and fro.
- In need of TLC. The hostel, inside and outside, is in need of some tender, loving care. Not too much, just a lick of paint here and some small improvements in the bathrooms and it will look, and work, much better.
- WiFi. I had major WiFi issues — in my room and the common area. It would work for about five minutes if I stood in a certain spot in the kitchen. And even if I went downstairs to the large, outside common area, it wouldn’t improve.
Waikiki Beachside Hostel
Because of its supreme location, if you are looking for a cheap, safe and secure place to sleep in Honolulu, don’t look past Waikiki Beachside Hostel.