Cheap accommodation, hostels and mixed dorms in London

mixed dorm people sleeping

I love backpacking and one of the cheapest accommodation options you can have in London is living in a hostel. I stayed at Westminster at a place called The White Ferry House. It’s just a 5 minute walk from Victoria Station which was one of the major considerations I had – get near a major Underground tube station and you’re set to go anywhere.

It was also a plus point that a 15 minute brisk walk would bring me to the two major West End theatres in Westminster – Victoria Palace Theatre (showing Billy Elliot the Musical) and Apollo Victoria Theatre (showing Wicked the Musical).

When you don’t have enough time to find a CouchSurfing or BeWelcome place to crash in – hostels are the way to go. I’ve met lots of interesting people there. My favorite hostel in the world would be The Flying Pig (Downtown) in Amsterdam – it’s smack dab in the middle of the red light district and has a smoking room and coffeeshop.

hostel westminster

However, in London, I usually find myself at The White Ferry. It’s actually a pub that has accommodations upstairs. You get a free drinks voucher upon checking in (which can get you a pint of beer) and there’s free Wi-Fi in the pub downstairs too. Breakfast is provided as well and if you book early, it’s about 15 (30 on weekends) British pounds or so per night, which is cheap by London standards.

The local draft beer is really good and cheap too – there’s always specials with pints going for under 1 pound. The interesting thing about beer in the UK is that it’s not served icy cold like over here but just slightly chilled (a little above room temperature).

mixed dorm hostel london

The White Ferry only has mixed dorms (males and females bunking together) – I try and get in the 15 bed ones coz the 21 bed dorms can get a bit crowded. I’ve met some awesome people while staying there, including a French group who kindly shared their liquor with me. It’s fun to meet fellow travelers and set out together the next day to visit someplace – strangers into travel companions, an experience you will not get in a hotel.

shannon london

…and that’s why I love staying at hostels – it’s not only affordable but a great way to meet like-minded people and hear about their home country over a few drinks. :)

Short mention:


More at my YouTube channel

Here’s my submission for Samsung Global Blogger auditions – it’s a wee bit long…okay, it’s three times as long as it’s supposed to be, but it’s one take, just like life and I want to keep it that way.

Anyway, if you want to have a shot at winning a trip to London, just click on the link above and submit your very own 30 second video. The contest closes 29th April, so hurry. :)

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24 thoughts on “Cheap accommodation, hostels and mixed dorms in London

  1. i will feel uncomfortable sleeping in such a big room with strange people of both sexes in it. i would rather pay more for a hotel room.

    • I used to live in the Halls of Residence (hostel) of my uni too. It was a lot of fun.

      …but that was in Australia so drinking was okay and there was no curfew and it’s all mixed dorms. :)

  2. Even when I backpack in New Zealand last time, 8 dorm room is kind of pack for me. Hardly to imagine 15 or 22 share. But still interesting to meet people from different nations.

    • Yeah, the larger dorms are really packed to the max. Three tiered beds. :)

      It can be uncomfortable when someone on one of the 3 tiers move.

      Yup, always interesting to meet new people. :D

  3. I love the B&Bs in the UK…especially waking up in the morning to the smell of frying ham and bacon and toast and freshly-brewed coffee from the kitchen. Yummmm!!!! I miss that!

    • Unfortunately, they only had Continental breakfast e.g. cereal and toast – nothing fried like American style breakfasts.

      Still, it’s filling and there’s coffee. :D

  4. Hmm.. I want to join the Samsung blogger thg..haven record video. BTW I want to try backpacking one day when shopping is not the priority of the trip. XD

    • Heh! Well, it’s all about priorities. Shopping or traveling. :)

      Yeah, do join, maybe you’ll win. I submitted my video for the Samsung Global Blogger dy.

  5. yikes, you’re definitely more sociable and adventurous than me! for the hostels that i’ve stayed at, a 4-bed room would be my maximum limit. and the only real conversations i might have with fellow travelers is at the breakfast table. but anyways, i’m already in my mid-30s at this point, so i think i’m past the appropriate age for hostels :D

    • Well, I’m 31 right now was 30 when I backpacked Europe so age doesn’t really matter. :)

      It’s fun if you go alone – traveling solo, this way is a great way to hook up with like-minded people and travel further. :D

    • Well, there’s so many people at one time that you won’t be uncomfortable. :)

      I don’t know how to explain it, was eating and watching TV in the kitchen one day in London when this group of French guys and girls came in and started drinking and offered me their liquor coz they had to finish it (duty free).

      It was fun to talk and hear about France. :)

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