Looking for the best hostels in New York City? There are fewer New York hostels than you would think, due to some bizarre zoning rules in Manhattan. As such the New York hostel market is woefully underrepresented.
Our home town of New York is known as The City That Never Sleeps. And you might not either, if you are visiting New York City on a backpacker’s budget. The Big Apple is famed world-wide for a plethora of reasons, but affordable accommodations options are not one of them.
You don’t have to sleep in a subway station when visiting New York on a budget, however. While hostels in the Untied States generally pale in comparison to ones you might find in Europe or Asia there ARE some great hostels in New York, and we’re here to point you in the right direction.
The best hostels in New York City all have a few things in common. All are clean, all are located near subway stations, and all are WAAAAY cheaper than the average price of a hotel room in NYC. Which, by the way, is around $300.
While a dorm bed in a hostel will typically run you about $50 a night, it’s a fraction of the price of a hotel, and is certainly your best option for an affordable stay in New York if you aren’t couchsurfing, or Airbnbing with a group.
We have put together this list based on what we personally expect out of a great hostel in NYC. Clean rooms, comfortable dorm beds with power outlets, secure luggage storage, friendly atmosphere that encourages interaction (but doesn’t force it), and a communal kitchen are all super important aspects of New York hostels in our eyes, and we prioritize them when suggesting a place to stay. All of these are factors when it comes to making our selection of the best hostels in New York City.
Let’s get to it and meet 4 of the best hostels in New York City, then.
Table of Contents
The Best Hostels in NYC
Hostels in New York – The Local NYC
- Neighborhood: Long Island City, Queens
- Address: 1302 44th Ave, Long Island City, NY 11101
- Reviews: HostelWorld
This might be THE best hostel in New York City. Full stop.
Some people might question how a hostel located in Long Island City Queens, not in Manhattan, can be listed as the best hostel in NYC. Well, LIC sits right across the East River from Midtown, and 5th Avenue is but a 10 minute subway ride away. Staying in Queens allows you to avoid sleeping in the hustle and bustle of Manhattan, yet leaving you so close that you can almost reach out and touch the city skyline from the hostel’s rooftop patio.
Long Island City has seen a lot of development in recent years, particularly along its water front. There are few spots as ideal for taking in the entire Manhattan skyline than Gantry Park, from which you can also catch the East River Ferry to midtown.
As for the hostel itself, The Local is topnotch. Immaculately clean rooms sport large lockers and uber comfy mattresses. For guest who want to mingle, the hostel has an onsite bar that offers local craft brews on tap. Combined with rooftop access that gives you sweet skyline views, a coin operated laundromat, and a nice kitchen, The Local NY is certainly among the best hostels in New York City.
The Best Hostels in NYC – HI NYC Hostel
- Neighborhood: Upper West Side, Manhattan
- Address: 891 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10025
- Reviews: HostelWorld, Booking.com
If you want to stay in a hostel with some Uptown Westside Manhattan charm, then HI NYC Hostel is the place you are looking for.
This New York hostel is located on historic Amsterdam Avenue and 103rd street, one block away from the number 1 subway line, which can take you downtown to Times Square in ten minutes. HI NYC is situated within easy walking distance of the iconic Central Park, the lovely (and under-rated) Riverside Park, the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, the often over-looked yet awesome to visit Colombia University campus, the legendary Smoke Jazz Club, and Tom’s Diner, favorite hangout of Jerry Seinfeld and friends for nine seasons.
Whew. And that’s just within a ten minute walking distance. And there is so much more to explore!
This New York hostel itself is part of the Hostel International chain, and clearly knows what it’s doing. Dorm rooms are clean (if not huge), and have everything a traveler expects a dorm to have such as individual outlets, lockers, and comfortable mattresses. There are two lounge areas for guests to mingle (or not), a huge communal kitchen (we love hostels with great kitchens!), and many a tour and outing for guests to participate in together. In our book this makes HI NYC Hostel one of the best hostels in NYC.
New York Hostels – Q4 Hotel and Hostel
- Address: 2909 Queens Plaza North
- Neighborhood: Long Island City, Queens
- Independent Reviews: Booking.com, HostelWorld
Trying to choose where to stay in NYC without breaking the bank? Q4 Hotel and Hostel is the best hostel in NYC for travelers on a budget. Situated in the bustling area of Queens, Q4 is just a 10 minute train ride to Manhattan’s East Side. Beds in a 8 person dorm start at around $30 USD which is sounds expensive but it actually very cheap by NYC hostel standards.
Q4 offers basic but stylish mixed and female only dorm rooms, as well as private rooms if you’d prefer your own space. Each room has an en-suite bathroom, so you can avoid those pesky queues for the bathroom. Guests have access to a fully equipped modern kitchen where you can prepare your own meals and save a few extra bucks.
There are plenty of spaces to chill out and get to know your fellow hostel mates, if you so choose, and there’s even a ping pong table for showing off your skills. If you prioritize affordability but don’t want to sacrifice a comfortable night’s sleep, then Q4 is the New York hostel for you.
The Best Hostels in NYC – The New York Loft Hostel [NOW CLOSED =( ]
- Neighborhood: East Williamsburg, Brooklyn
- Address: 249 Varet St, Brooklyn, NY 11206
- Reviews: HostelWorld
If you want to dive deep into the heart of the hipster movement in Brooklyn, this is the hostel you should stay in. Located on the edge of Williamsburg, in the rapidly changing neighborhood of Bushwick, this New York hostel might as well be growing a handlebar mustache and wearing skinny jeans.
The New York Loft Hostel may not be in our favorite part of Brooklyn but its comfortable rooms, complimentary breakfast, live events, and ambiance make it a great and affordable place to stay in NYC and meet other travelers. Coupled with a large kitchen, sun deck, and back garden, this is the hostel to chill in while visiting the city that never sleeps.
So if you want to get to know the new Brooklyn, while not spending a ton of money on accommodation, this place might very well be one of the best hostels in New York City
For the cheapest rates at The New York Loft Hostel click here.
The Best Hostels in NYC – New York Budget Inn Hostel [NOW CLOSED =( ]
- Neighborhood: Murray Hill, Manhattan
- Address: 200 E 34th St, New York, NY 10016
- Reviews: HostelWorld
Located on the bustling corner of 3rd Avenue and 34th Street in Manhattan, The New York Budget Inn Hostel is situated just a couple of blocks from The Empire State Building. It is within walking distance of literally hundreds of sites and attractions, so many in fact that we will not waste your time listing them all. You’re in Midtown Manhattan, one of the most dynamic neighborhoods known to mankind.
While its location is extremely central, that is not the only thing that makes The New York Budget Inn Hostel one of the best hostels in New York City. This newly refurbished building sports 65 rooms which are all kept pristinely clean. The dorms in this New York hostel are pretty standard offering free lockers, there is WiFi throughout the building, and karaoke night at the hostel presents guests with an option to socialize.
So, if you want to be super central when visiting NYC, you may as well consider the Budget Inn Hostel among the best hostels in New York City.
For the cheapest rates at New York Budget Inn Hostel click here.
So there you have it guys, our list of the best hostels in New York City, our home town. We hope you’ve helped you find great and affordable accommodations while visiting the City that Never Sleeps! As always happy travels, and we’ll see you on the road!
Disclaimer – We have included a few handy little affiliate links in case any of our readers want to book accommodations. We receive a small commission for any sales made, without any additional cost to you, our dear reader.