Header Notice

Winter is here! Check out the winter wonderlands at these 5 amazing winter destinations in Montana

Cheap Hostels In South America


Modified: December 27, 2023

by Kiley Crafton



Welcome to South America, a vibrant and diverse continent that offers a plethora of exciting travel opportunities for budget-conscious adventurers. With its stunning landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and friendly locals, South America has become a popular destination for travelers seeking unique experiences without breaking the bank. And when it comes to affordable accommodation, cheap hostels in South America are the way to go.


Staying in a cheap hostel not only helps you save money on accommodation, but it also allows you to connect with like-minded travelers from around the world, creating lifelong memories and friendships. Whether you’re embarking on a solo journey or traveling in a group, staying in a hostel is a budget-friendly alternative that provides comfort, convenience, and a sense of community.


One of the greatest benefits of staying in cheap hostels in South America is the opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture. Many hostels are located in the heart of cities or near popular tourist destinations, giving you easy access to local attractions, markets, and food stalls. You can explore the bustling streets, try traditional cuisine, and engage with the locals, gaining a deeper understanding of the country you’re visiting.


Furthermore, cheap hostels offer a range of amenities and services to enhance your travel experience. From comfortable beds and shared kitchen facilities to common areas where you can relax and socialize, hostels provide everything you need for a comfortable stay. Some hostels even organize activities and tours, allowing you to discover the hidden gems of South America and make the most of your trip.


In the following sections, we will explore the benefits of staying in cheap hostels, discuss important factors to consider when choosing a hostel, highlight some of the top-rated hostels in South America, and provide tips for a memorable and affordable hostel experience. So, pack your bags, tighten your shoelaces, and get ready to embark on an incredible budget-friendly adventure in South America!


Benefits of staying in cheap hostels in South America

When it comes to exploring South America on a budget, staying in cheap hostels is an excellent option that offers numerous benefits for travelers. Let’s take a closer look at some of the advantages of choosing a hostel for your accommodation:

  1. Affordable Accommodation: One of the most obvious advantages of staying in a cheap hostel is the cost savings. Hostels offer budget-friendly rates compared to hotels, allowing you to stretch your travel budget and allocate more funds towards experiencing the local culture and attractions.
  2. Social Atmosphere: Hostels provide a vibrant and social environment that encourages interaction among travelers. With communal spaces such as lounges, kitchens, and game rooms, hostels create opportunities to meet fellow adventurers from around the globe, share travel stories, and make lifelong friendships.
  3. Local Knowledge: Hostel staff members are often locals or seasoned travelers who are well-versed in the area’s best attractions, hidden gems, and local customs. They can provide invaluable advice and insider tips to help you make the most of your travel experience, ensuring you don’t miss out on any must-see sights.
  4. Flexibility: Hostels typically offer a variety of room options, from dormitory-style rooms to private rooms, making them flexible to accommodate different travel preferences. Whether you prefer solo travel or enjoy the company of others, hostels can cater to your needs.
  5. Shared Facilities: Most hostels provide communal facilities such as kitchens and common areas. This allows you to prepare your own meals, reducing dining costs, and create a homely environment where you can relax, socialize, and exchange travel tips with other guests.
  6. Convenient Locations: Cheap hostels are often strategically located in the heart of cities or near popular tourist areas, making it easier for you to explore and navigate your surroundings. With these central locations, you can save time and money on transportation while having easy access to local attractions, restaurants, and entertainment options.
  7. Extra Amenities: Despite being budget-friendly, many hostels offer additional amenities to enhance your stay. These may include free Wi-Fi, lockers for storing your belongings, laundry facilities, and even organized activities or tours to help you discover the best of South America.

With these benefits in mind, it’s clear why staying in cheap hostels is a popular choice for budget travelers in South America. Not only do hostels provide affordable accommodation, but they also offer a unique opportunity to connect with fellow travelers, immerse yourself in the local culture, and create unforgettable memories. So, embrace the spirit of adventure and embark on your South American journey by choosing a cheap hostel as your base for exploration.


Factors to consider when choosing a cheap hostel in South America

While staying in a cheap hostel can be a great way to save money and connect with other travelers, it’s important to consider certain factors before making a choice. Here are some key factors to keep in mind when choosing a cheap hostel in South America:

  1. Location: Consider the location of the hostel and its proximity to the attractions and activities you plan to explore. Opting for a hostel in a central or well-connected area can save you time and money on transportation.
  2. Safety and Security: Prioritize your safety by researching the hostel’s security measures. Look for hostels with secure entrances, lockers to store valuables, and reliable surveillance systems. Reading reviews from previous guests can provide insight into the hostel’s safety record.
  3. Reviews and Ratings: Check online reviews and ratings for the hostel you are considering. Pay attention to the experiences of previous guests, their feedback on cleanliness, staff friendliness, and overall ambiance. Reliable booking platforms often provide detailed reviews from verified guests.
  4. Amenities: Consider the amenities offered by the hostel. Does it have free Wi-Fi, a communal kitchen, a common area, laundry facilities, or organized activities? Assess your personal needs and preferences to ensure the hostel meets them.
  5. Room Options: Evaluate the room options available at the hostel. If you prefer privacy, look for hostels that offer private rooms. If you don’t mind sharing a room, check the size and layout of the dormitories, as well as the number of beds in each room.
  6. Atmosphere: Consider the atmosphere of the hostel and whether it aligns with your travel style. Some hostels cater to a younger, party-oriented crowd, while others focus on creating a calm and relaxed atmosphere. Choose a hostel that matches your preferences.
  7. Additional Costs: Take into account any hidden costs such as towels, bed linen, or security deposits that may not be included in the initial price. These additional expenses can quickly add up, so be aware of any extra charges before making your reservation.
  8. Staff Friendliness: Friendly and helpful staff can greatly enhance your hostel experience. Consider reviews and feedback from previous guests regarding the hostel’s staff, as they can provide valuable assistance and recommendations during your stay.

By considering these factors, you can make an informed decision while choosing a cheap hostel in South America. Take the time to research and compare different options to find the hostel that best meets your needs, preferences, and travel style. Remember, your choice of accommodation can significantly impact your overall travel experience, so choose wisely.


Top cheap hostels in South America

South America is home to a wide variety of cheap hostels that offer affordable accommodation without compromising on comfort or quality. Here are some of the top-rated hostels in South America:

  1. El Misti Hostel Rio de Janeiro – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Located just steps away from Copacabana Beach, this vibrant hostel offers a lively atmosphere, comfortable dorms and private rooms, and a range of amenities including a bar, communal kitchen, and free breakfast.
  2. Banana Bungalow – Lima, Peru: Situated in the heart of Miraflores, Banana Bungalow is a popular choice among backpackers. With its colorful decor, spacious dormitories, and a rooftop terrace with stunning views of the city, this hostel provides a fun and friendly environment for travelers.
  3. Wild Rover Hostel – Cusco, Peru: Known for its lively party atmosphere, Wild Rover Hostel is the perfect base for exploring the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu. This hostel offers comfortable dorms, a bar with nightly events, and a friendly staff that organizes tours and activities.
  4. Loki Hostel – Mancora, Peru: Situated on the beachfront, Loki Hostel is a haven for backpackers looking to relax and enjoy the surf. With its beachside bar, swimming pool, and comfortable dorms, this hostel provides a perfect blend of relaxation and socializing.
  5. Hostel El Zopilote – Ometepe Island, Nicaragua: Nestled in a lush tropical garden on Ometepe Island, Hostel El Zopilote offers a unique eco-friendly experience. With rustic cabins, vegetarian food, yoga classes, and a relaxed atmosphere, this hostel provides a tranquil oasis for nature lovers.
  6. Selina Hostel – Buenos Aires, Argentina: Located in the trendy Palermo neighborhood, Selina Hostel offers stylish dorms and private rooms, a pool, a rooftop terrace, and a coworking space. It’s the perfect choice for digital nomads and travelers seeking a blend of work and play.
  7. Hostel Pangea – San Jose, Costa Rica: Situated in the heart of San Jose, Hostel Pangea is a lively and sociable hostel with spacious dorms, a swimming pool, a bar, and regular events. It’s the ideal place to start your Costa Rican adventure.
  8. Che Lagarto Hostel – Buenos Aires, Argentina: Located in the vibrant San Telmo neighborhood, Che Lagarto Hostel offers budget-friendly dorms and private rooms, a bar, a communal kitchen, and a rooftop terrace. Its central location makes it easy to explore the city’s attractions.
  9. Adventure Brew Hostel – La Paz, Bolivia: Famous for its lively bar and on-site microbrewery, Adventure Brew Hostel is a popular choice among backpackers. With comfortable dorms, a terrace with panoramic city views, and regular pub crawls, this hostel guarantees a memorable stay in La Paz.
  10. Rengo Hostel – Santiago, Chile: Situated in Santiago’s bohemian Bellavista neighborhood, Rengo Hostel offers cozy dorms and private rooms, a courtyard with a BBQ area, and a lively atmosphere. Its convenient location allows easy access to art galleries, restaurants, and nightlife spots.

These are just a few examples of the many outstanding cheap hostels available in South America. Be sure to read reviews, compare prices, and consider the location and amenities that best suit your travel preferences. With a wide range of options, you’re sure to find the perfect hostel to make your South American adventure unforgettable.


Hostel Safety Tips for Travelers in South America

While staying in a hostel can be a fantastic experience, it’s essential to prioritize your safety and security. Here are some important safety tips for travelers staying in hostels in South America:

  1. Research the hostel: Before making a reservation, conduct thorough research on the hostel you’re considering. Read reviews from previous guests to get insights into the safety record of the hostel. Look for hostels with secure entrances, lockers, and reliable surveillance systems.
  2. Keep your belongings secure: Use the lockers provided by the hostel to store your valuable items such as passports, electronics, and extra cash. Bring your own lock, as some hostels may charge for locker rentals or not provide locks at all.
  3. Be aware of your surroundings: Pay attention to your surroundings and be cautious of your belongings when in common areas. While hostels generally have a friendly and safe atmosphere, it’s always wise to be mindful of your personal belongings and keep an eye on your surroundings.
  4. Trust your instincts: Trust your instincts and be cautious when interacting with other guests or strangers. If you feel uncomfortable or sense something suspicious, remove yourself from the situation and inform the hostel staff.
  5. Take precautions with your valuables: Avoid flashing expensive items or large amounts of cash. Keep your valuables hidden and avoid leaving them unattended in common areas. It’s also a good idea to make copies of important documents like your passport and keep them in a separate location.
  6. Stay informed: Research the local area and be aware of any safety concerns or specific precautions you should take. Stay informed about the latest travel advisories and follow the guidance of local authorities and the hostel staff.
  7. Be cautious with new acquaintances: While hostels are a great place to meet fellow travelers, it’s important to exercise caution when building new relationships. Be selective in choosing who you trust and avoid sharing personal information or travel plans with strangers.
  8. Use reliable transportation: When exploring the city or moving from one location to another, use reliable and reputable transportation options. Avoid hitchhiking and opt for official taxis or rideshare services.
  9. Stay connected: Ensure you have a means of communication, such as a local SIM card or access to Wi-Fi, to stay connected with friends, family, and emergency services if needed.
  10. Know emergency procedures: Familiarize yourself with the hostel’s emergency procedures, including fire exits and evacuation routes. Take note of emergency contact numbers and keep them easily accessible.

By following these safety tips, you can help ensure a secure and enjoyable hostel experience in South America. Remember, your safety is a priority, so always remain vigilant and take necessary precautions to protect yourself and your belongings.


Budget-friendly activities to explore while staying in South American hostels

One of the best things about staying in a hostel in South America is the opportunity to explore the region’s incredible attractions and engage in exciting activities without breaking the bank. Here are some budget-friendly activities to make the most of your time while staying in South American hostels:

  1. City Walking Tours: Many South American cities offer free or inexpensive walking tours that showcase the history, culture, and landmarks of the area. These tours are a great way to explore the city, learn from knowledgeable guides, and meet fellow travelers.
  2. Hiking in National Parks: South America boasts stunning national parks with breathtaking landscapes. Take advantage of the affordable entrance fees and explore hiking trails that lead to waterfalls, mountains, and unique ecosystems. Don’t forget your camera to capture the beauty of these natural wonders!
  3. Visit Local Markets: South America is known for its vibrant markets where you can find a variety of goods, from fresh produce to handmade crafts. Explore local markets to get a taste of the region’s culture, sample delicious street food, and find unique souvenirs at affordable prices.
  4. Beach Days: South America is home to some of the world’s most beautiful beaches. Spend a day soaking up the sun, swimming, and relaxing on the sandy shores. Whether it’s Copacabana in Brazil, Punta del Este in Uruguay, or the Caribbean beaches of Colombia, there are plenty of budget-friendly beach destinations to choose from.
  5. Explore Historical Sites: South America is rich in history, with ancient ruins, colonial towns, and archaeological sites scattered across the continent. Visit places like Machu Picchu in Peru, Cartagena in Colombia, or the ruins of Tulum in Mexico to immerse yourself in the fascinating history of the region.
  6. Sample Local Cuisine: Eating local street food and traditional dishes is a fantastic way to experience the culture of South America without breaking the bank. Indulge in empanadas in Argentina, ceviche in Peru, or churrasco in Brazil, and savor the flavors of the region’s diverse culinary scene.
  7. Outdoor Adventures: South America offers a wide range of outdoor activities for adventure enthusiasts. Go trekking in the Andes, try sandboarding in the desert dunes of Huacachina, or go white-water rafting in the Amazon. Many hostels can help arrange affordable tours and activities.
  8. Attend Local Festivals: South American countries are known for their vibrant and colorful festivals. From Carnival in Brazil to Inti Raymi in Peru, these celebrations provide an immersive cultural experience where you can witness traditional dances, music, and costumes, often for little to no cost.
  9. Enjoy Free Cultural Events: Keep an eye out for free cultural events such as concerts, art exhibits, and dance performances that take place in public spaces. These events offer a glimpse into the local arts and cultural scene and provide entertainment at no or low cost.
  10. Connect with Nature: South America is a paradise for nature enthusiasts. Take advantage of the many opportunities for birdwatching, wildlife spotting, and nature walks in the region’s national parks and reserves. The breathtaking landscapes are sure to leave a lasting impression.

By engaging in these budget-friendly activities, you can make the most of your time in South America while staying in hostels. Remember, some hostels offer their own organized activities or can provide recommendations for affordable options nearby. Embrace the spirit of adventure and explore all that this captivating continent has to offer!


How to book a cheap hostel in South America

Booking a cheap hostel in South America is a straightforward process that allows you to secure affordable accommodation for your travels. Here are some steps to help you book a cheap hostel in South America:

  1. Research and Compare: Start by researching the hostels in your desired South American destination. Look for hostels that fit your budget and offer the amenities you desire. Compare prices, read reviews, and check the hostel’s location to find the best option for you.
  2. Utilize Booking Websites: Make use of trusted booking websites that specialize in hostel reservations, such as Hostelworld, Booking.com, or Hostelbookers. These platforms provide a wide range of options, user reviews, and helpful filters to narrow down your choices.
  3. Check Hostel Websites: Visit the official websites of the hostels you are interested in. Sometimes, hostels offer lower rates or exclusive promotions on their websites. It’s worth checking directly with the hostel to see if there are any special offers or discounts available.
  4. Consider Room Options: Determine whether you prefer a dormitory-style room or a private room. Dorms are the most budget-friendly option, but if you value privacy, private rooms may be worth the extra cost. Check the availability and prices for different room types.
  5. Read Reviews: Before making a reservation, read reviews from previous guests. These reviews can offer valuable insights into the cleanliness, safety, and overall experience of the hostel. Pay attention to recent reviews to ensure the information is up to date.
  6. Check Cancellation Policies: Take note of the hostel’s cancellation policy before finalizing your reservation. Ensure that you understand the terms and conditions, including any fees or refund policies in case you need to modify or cancel your booking later.
  7. Book in Advance: To secure the best rates and ensure availability during peak travel seasons, it’s advisable to book your hostel in advance. Popular hostels in popular destinations tend to fill up quickly, so plan ahead to avoid disappointment.
  8. Consider Hostel Facilities: Assess the facilities provided by the hostel. Look for amenities such as free Wi-Fi, communal kitchens, laundry facilities, or common areas. These can enhance your hostel experience and provide added convenience during your stay.
  9. Double-Check Booking Details: Before confirming your reservation, carefully review the booking details, including the dates, number of guests, and room type. Ensure that all the information is correct to avoid any misunderstandings or issues upon arrival.
  10. Confirm Reservation: Once you are satisfied with your choice, proceed to confirm your reservation. Provide the necessary information and payment details as required by the booking platform or hostel’s website. Keep a copy of your reservation confirmation for reference.

By following these steps, you can successfully book a cheap hostel in South America and secure affordable accommodation for your journey. Remember to plan ahead, compare options, and read reviews to ensure a pleasant and budget-friendly stay. With proper research and preparation, you can find a fantastic hostel that meets your needs without compromising your budget.


Tips for a memorable and affordable hostel experience in South America

Staying in a hostel in South America can be an incredible and budget-friendly way to experience the continent. To make the most of your hostel experience, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  1. Stay open-minded and be social: Hostels are excellent places to meet fellow travelers and make new friends from around the world. Embrace the opportunity to socialize, engage in conversations, and participate in hostel activities. You never know what lifelong friendships or unforgettable experiences await!
  2. Take advantage of communal facilities: Most hostels offer shared amenities such as kitchens, common areas, and game rooms. Opting to cook some of your meals in the hostel’s kitchen can significantly reduce your food expenses. Utilize the communal spaces for relaxation, socializing, and exchanging travel tips with other guests.
  3. Get recommendations from staff and fellow travelers: The hostel staff and other travelers can provide valuable insights and recommendations. Don’t hesitate to ask for local tips, hidden gems, and budget-friendly activities in the area. Their firsthand knowledge can enhance your experience and lead you to unique, off-the-beaten-path adventures.
  4. Join free or low-cost hostel activities: Many hostels organize free or low-cost activities for their guests, such as city tours, pub crawls, movie nights, or language exchange events. Take advantage of these activities to explore the destination, meet new people, and have fun without breaking the bank.
  5. Be respectful of other guests: Remember that you are sharing common spaces with other travelers who may have different schedules, preferences, and cultures. Be mindful of noise levels, cleanliness, and personal boundaries to create a positive experience for everyone.
  6. Take care of your belongings: While hostels generally provide lockers or secure storage options, it’s important to take precautions to protect your belongings. Keep your valuables locked away and secure, and always be aware of your surroundings.
  7. Be flexible and adaptable: Hostels offer a dynamic and ever-changing environment. Embrace the communal living experience and be open to variations in schedules, roommates, and facilities. Flexibility and adaptability are key to enjoying your hostel stay to the fullest.
  8. Research local transportation options: Familiarize yourself with the local transportation system, including buses, trains, or taxis. Understanding the routes, schedules, and fares can help you navigate the city efficiently and save money on transportation expenses.
  9. Engage with the local culture: Immerse yourself in the local culture by trying local cuisine, attending cultural events, or learning a few basic words in the local language. Interacting with locals and experiencing their way of life will enrich your travel experience and create lasting memories.
  10. Embrace adventure and new experiences: Finally, don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try new things. South America offers a plethora of adventures, from hiking to ancient ruins to dancing the night away at a local salsa club. Embrace the spirit of adventure and make the most of your time in this incredible continent!

By following these tips, you can have a memorable and affordable hostel experience in South America. Embrace the sense of community, immerse yourself in the local culture, and create lasting memories with fellow travelers. Enjoy your journey and savor every moment of your South American adventure!



Staying in a cheap hostel in South America offers a myriad of benefits for budget-conscious travelers. From cost savings to social interactions and convenient locations, hostels provide an affordable and enriching accommodation option. By considering important factors like location, safety, and amenities, you can find the perfect hostel to suit your needs and preferences.


South America is a continent of diversity and adventure, offering a wide range of budget-friendly activities for hostel guests. Whether it’s exploring historical sites, indulging in local cuisine, or immersing yourself in nature, there is something for everyone. Engaging in these activities enables you to experience the rich culture and natural beauty of South America without breaking the bank.


When booking a hostel in South America, take advantage of online booking platforms and compare prices and reviews to find the best deal. By considering room options, reading reviews, and paying attention to cancellation policies, you can ensure a smooth booking process.


To make the most of your hostel experience, embrace a social mindset, take advantage of communal facilities, and seek recommendations from staff and fellow travelers. Respect others in the hostel, secure your belongings, and stay flexible and adaptable in this dynamic environment.


As you embark on your South American adventure, remember to immerse yourself in the local culture, engage in budget-friendly activities, and embrace new experiences. South America offers a diverse and vibrant travel experience, and by choosing a cheap hostel as your accommodation, you can enhance your journey while staying within your budget.


So, pack your bags, seize the opportunity, and embark on an unforgettable and affordable journey in South America. With its enchanting landscapes, rich history, and welcoming locals, South America awaits you with open arms.