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“Value for money in a good location”

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Belfast International Youth Hostel
Reviewed 28 August 2017

The location is very good, 10 minutes walk from Europa bus station, couple of minutes from restaurants and pubs, and not too far from the city center (15 minutes, give or take).

We have a private twin room - worth every penny. Make sure your expectations are realistic compared to the rate paid and you won't be disappointed.

Causeway cafe has a large menu. We only had breakfast, and it was just what you need to start the day. Fresh and tasty and fair price.

The only real issue we had there was on our last day. We took a day tour and left our luggage at the hold room. We weren't told there was a time limit on it - and really, we've been traveling for over 20 years and stayed in quite a few IYHA locations, this was a first!
When we got back from the tour and dinner, we were kindly (and I used that term extremely loosely here) told by the night front desk guy that we have 5 minutes to collect out things and leave the property as we "weren't their guests anymore". Talk about hospitality... We did receive a long email prior to our arrival with their t&c but this was certainly not written there nor was it told to us in advance (nor is it something we've ever been told at any other hotel/hostel including IYHA locations) . shame.

So - just make sure your expectations are realistic and are well adjusted to what you're paying, make sure to ask the front desk about everything you need/plan and you should be ok.

Room Tip: Ask for a room that doesn't face the street - lots of drunk and noisy people at night.
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  • Stayed: August 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank Liat G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hostelling_Intl_NI, Front Office Manager at Belfast International Youth Hostel, responded to this reviewResponded 3 September 2017

Thank you for taking the time to leave a review after your stay in August.
It's great to have mostly positve feedback in a review for a stay in our busiest month of the year, when we are often under pressure to turn around rooms, clean our common areas and so on before it all begins again.
Managing expectation can very difficult in hostels, particularly as more and more hostel beds and rooms are being sold on websites which in the past focused more on the hotel sector. I agree with you that if you consider the rate paid (particularly when you remember that the website on which you booked will have taken a big %) in relation to our rooms and general facilities provided, including 24 hour staffing, there is not too much to disappoint.
On a night when we are full, and we were most nights in August, we are dealing with 202 guests. We really want to make sure that everyone has the best experiencre possible. We have relatively limited seating areas on the ground floor (where guests access WiFi, plugs for charging etc): our kitchen, although big for a hostel kitchen, is probably not when you consider the number of people we accommodate. For this reason we try to make it clear that although we are happy to look after your luggage before check in (13.30) and after check out (11.00) hostel facilities generally are not available for you to use before and after your stay as this impacts on guests already in house and those arriving to check in - leading to complaints that we don't have enough common space, seating, that our kitchen is not well-equipped and so on.
We never hold luggage on the day of check out beyond 23.00, when we lock our front door.
We draw lines sometimes, are flexible when we can be, but hope that all (or most) of our guests leave happy.
David

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Reviews (579)
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7 - 11 of 579 reviews

Reviewed 25 August 2017

We've both stayed in hostels regularly all over the world, this was possibly one of the worst we've ever stayed in.

We booked a private twin room, it was one set of tiny bunk beds with no room to move, not the two single beds side by side that the photos showed. The rooms are hotter than Mordor, so we left the window open. Fine during the day, but the street comes alive at night. Bins being emptied for about an hour every morning, people shouting/preaching and it sounding like the Titanic was coming to dock right next to our room.

Positives - cafe/kitchen facilities were okay, and there seemed to be enough bathrooms/showers for everyone.

In short, if you want a tiny room, uncomfortable bed, and to be woken up all throughout the night, this is the place for you.

Room Tip: Rooms on the front by the main road are horrendously noisy - try and move to the back of the hostel.
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  • Stayed: August 2017, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank easyyyytiger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hostelling_Intl_NI, Front Office Manager at Belfast International Youth Hostel, responded to this reviewResponded 26 August 2017

Thank you for taking the time to leave a review of the hostel, albeit a mostly negative one. (That said thank you for mentioning the positives: our kitchen facilites and cafe, and that we have a decent number of showers on each floor for those who've booked a standard room).
There are photos of all of our rooms, both standard and ensuite, on all of the websites on which we sell beds: we have a very wide range of rooms here at the Youth Hostel in Belfast, and you booked the cheapest of our 2 person rooms: described online as "small (half the size of a standard 4) and designed for those seeking a budget room but some privacy, not extra space or comfort". For just £12 more you can book an ensuite twin or double, which gives you a little more space as well as a private shower/toilet.
On some websites how rooms are described, and how the photos are used or ordered, is out of our control but pictures of all of our room types are there and it seems strange to assume, when comparing rooms, that the cheaper of the 2 bedded rooms on offer is the one which is a more spacious with twin beds and a private bathroom.
August has been unusually cool, we have no heating on in the summer, so room temperature in not something that has come up in reviews very often this summer.
Sorry again that we did not meet your expectations on this visit, but I hope you enjoyed your time exploring Belfast nonetheless.
David

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Reviewed 13 August 2017

Read great reviews which is why we booked here. Unfortunately, our experience was not anything like the reviews... Room key did not work when you walked up the stairs to get into your hallway...Wifi was non existent. No change machine to be able to purchase water from the vending machine. Dirty floor in lobby. Dorm beds were very noisy and uncomfortable. Hot rooms, loud noise from street with windows open, not enough outlets for phone charging etc.

Room Tip: Private rooms may be better.
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  • Stayed: August 2017, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
3  Thank Jane T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hostelling_Intl_NI, Front Office Manager at Belfast International Youth Hostel, responded to this reviewResponded 26 August 2017

Thank you for taking the time to leave your comments.
Our reviews are generally good, but we know that we are not going to be the right fit for everyone.
We are a city centre hostel so street noise can sometimes be an issue, particularly at the weekend or with windows open. Busy dorms can be warm places.
We only offer Wifi in our common areas, as detailed on booking websites, and have added extra sockets in and around these areas for charging. We are also trialling new lights in some rooms which give us a socket by each bed: hopefully we will be able to provide these throughout the hostel but, as budgets are very tight (and our prices low), it will be a slow process.
Having a change machine is really not something which has ever been been suggested, or seen as a necessity.
Our hostel has a dedicated team of housekeepers: they work mornings and early afternoons: our lobby is tiled and the floor is mopped every morning (not always easy with feet and bodies and luggage unwilling to surrender space - perhaps it was easier in the days when hostels had a 'lock out' during the day?).
I hope you are enjoying the rest of your travels.
David

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 August 2017

I thought this place was a great value for the money, especially considering the central location. The public areas and rooms are clean and modern and bright. There's even free parking in the back, something that we didn't find in many of the more expensive bed and breakfasts and hotels we stayed at in other parts of Ireland. And although they didn't supply towels, they did loan us towels for free, which is something we had to pay for at another hostel we stayed in. I brought all my own toiletries with me so that wasn't a problem.

The staff at the front desk were also very friendly and helpful and arranged a really outstanding black cab tour for us soon after our arrival.

The rooms were a bit small and could use a few shelves for belongings, but for the price I really can't complain. I would stay there again!

  • Stayed: August 2017, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank sueado
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 August 2017 via mobile

Came over for the Ulster GP and decided to try the hostel. The last few years ive used air bnbs with no issue. Where do we start? An untrained security guard working as a receptionist. 2 plug sockets between 4. Luckily I became familiar with the room guests as a we had a mutual connection with the road racing. However this proved to be a downfall. On othe last night, a gentleman we met on the side of the track was drenched through the rain upon the track so he was offered a shower and a charge of his phone ready for the travel the next day at our expense. Little did we know the complete and utter ignorance about to unfold. I was checked with my mutual friend for the very first time on the last evening, producing the correct ID required, no problem. As we went back to our room and the gent we had met was drying himself we got a knock from what I can only described as a man who somewhat saw himself in a position of power know fully trying to flex his authority. The good will of the room, (and the road racing family) had supposedly breached an apparent ruling. I never signed any T&C so I'm completely unaware. The clerk/receptionist/dictator then told the whole room to pick their bags and get out. It was midnight, we checked the internet and there was nothing available as you might imagine on a Saturday night. This didn't matter to him. There was no room to compromise. No reasoning what so ever. So as a stranger in 2 day relationship I was chucked on the streets of Belfast. I held my ground for a few hours asking for a manager which he couldn't produce. So he sent up an apparent security guard, who wasn't showing any documentation of a SIA badge or anything showing he was a trained man. I simply believe they just chucked him the Hi Viz. To his defence he was happy with our good will. We apologised and he said we were good to stay all forgiven.20 mins later the PSNI appeared with 0 remorse and after a lengthy discussion they said they had no rights to protect us and told us we had to leave because of this weasel. I'm quite a fan of nature and apologise to the weasel family. So the PSNI also made me a tramp that night. I asked for a refund, the PSNI said I could have one, the jumped up telephone receptionist who wasn't a manager somehow made a managers decision to say I wasn't. Now I'm from a sleepy little town in England. I'm now on the streets of Belfast at midnight. Unfamiliar with my surroundings. My only knowledge was former briefings if had on the city. I know the country has made strides forward but as a somebody who was Ex Army of very recent times, I'd still say I was at risk in the wrong hands.

Cold, disorientated and absolutely furious at the lack of compassion and responsibility by this hostel. Won't return and never will. Even if it's the last place in Belfast next year I'd rather do my night of walking Sandy Row, the shankhill and the adrenaline rush of stumbling onto the falls.

Avoid at all costs

Stayed: August 2017, travelled with friends
Thank Mark_Cundy344
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Belfast International Youth Hostel

Address: 22-23 Donegall Road, Belfast BT12 5JN, Northern Ireland
Region: United Kingdom > Northern Ireland > Belfast > Golden Mile
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 39 Speciality Lodging in Belfast
Price Range: ₹ 1,042 - ₹ 2,606 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Belfast International Youth Hostel 4*
Number of rooms: 54
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This hostel is the biggest in Belfast and the only one affiliated with Hostelling International. It's a short walk from both Belfast City Hall and Queen's University, and close to both the Europa Bus Station and Botanic Train Station. The hostel has a range of rooms, from group dorms to doubles, some with ensuite shower/toilet and some with shared facilities - so something to suit every budget. The hostel has free WI-FI in the common areas of the ground and first floor, free left luggage and good-value laundry facilities. The Causeway Cafe on the ground floor serves up good value grub and McCombs Coaches (based at the hostel) offers Game of Thrones and Giant's Causeway tours. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Belfast International Youth Hotel Belfast
Belfast International Youth Hostel Northern Ireland

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