If you’re looking for a hostel that’s cheap, centrally located and basic then Flinders Station Backpackers is for you. We’ve found that travelling as a couple can get expensive when you want to rent a double room instead of staying in a dorm but the rates at Flinders were better than we’ve seen at other hostels in Australia; $72/night for a double and $27/night for a dorm with discounts for weekly bookings.
It’s located right in the heart of Melbourne with shopping and bars just minutes away and the tram stop’s opposite the hostel if you’re going further. It’s also got a laundry, breakfast is free and they do a weekly guided tour of the city if you’re interested.
These are the positive points about the hostel. And unfortunately, that’s where they end.
If you’re also looking for dirty toilets, cold showers and music blaring from the bar on Level 2 until the early hours then you’ve also come to the right place! The cleaners do do their rounds every day, but only to knock on your door at some ungodly hour to ask if they can empty your bin – even though they emptied it yesterday and you’ve not put anything in it since. And I can count the number of hot showers I had in a 2 week stay there on one hand.
The room was definitely basic, and nothing like the lovely pictures on their website. Polished wooden floors? Tea-making facilities? Complimentary towels? I wish! It was the smallest room I’ve ever stayed in, although it was clean and it had a television (which was a bonus).
The atmosphere of the hostel is generally good, and while we were there there was a variety of people from different places staying there. It’s not the hostel’s fault that some people think it’s ok to steal other people’s food and play guitar to someone over skype while you’re also trying to use the (incredibly slow and expensive) internet.
Some might complain that the free breakfast was nothing special – but you can’t expect more than cereal and toast for what you’re paying per night. The kitchen facilities however, left something to be desired; crowded, dirty and a definite lack of pots and pans, and the fact that you have to rent a cup is quite strange.
Overall, I’d recommend it – but not for a long term stay.
Atmosphere – 3/5
Cleanliness – 2/5
Facilities – 4/5
Value – 4/5