Don't Forget This Essential If You're Staying In A Hostel

Just as Carl Fredricksen learns in the Disney-Pixar classic "Up," adventure is out there. And if social media and dating apps are to be believed, everyone wants to find it. Maybe they're not as willing to take a house carried by balloons on their excursion to exotic lands and far-off places, but plenty of people will do whatever they have to in order to venture out into the world and see more of it. Luckily, it's easier than ever to travel on a budget

Companies like Spirit Airlines and Megabus can get you to your destination for a fraction of the price that it would have cost before. Train travel can also save you some big bucks if you book far enough in advance and if you're not in a hurry to get where you're going. Although, after you have your mode of transportation covered, where do you stay when you get there? Sites like Orbitz, Travelocity, and Expedia can help with hotels that won't break the bank. 

Motels are also coming back into fashion (potentially thanks to "Schitt's Creek"). But there's another option when it comes to resting your head at night while you're off on your next adventure. Hostels offer low-cost, short-term accommodation for the more sociable and budget-conscious traveler. However, if you do choose to stay in one of these establishments, there is something that you should not forget to bring with you: A pair of flip-flops.

Protect your feet in the shower

When you stay in a hostel, the experience can be reminiscent of a traditional college dorm. Guests will typically share bedrooms with multiple people, including other travelers they have never met before. Depending on how full the hostel is on any given night, you may even have to share a bunkbed as well. Regardless, you will most certainly be sharing a bathroom, which is why it's crucial to pack a pair of flip-flops to use as shower shoes.

Like most accommodations, the majority of hostels will do what they can to keep their facilities clean and sanitized. However, it's still a good idea to keep your feet protected from germs and unwanted infections. After all, as Charmed Nomad points out, there are potentially dozens of people who could be using a hostel shower in a single day. So just like when you bathe in any shared space like a locker room, a dormitory, or at the beach, it's best to wear shower shoes as a preventative measure.

When it comes to choosing the right shower shoes for your travels, there are a few important things to consider. Big brands like Nike, Addidas, and Crocs all have suitable options. However, unlike most accessories, it's probably best to prioritize function over fashion. Look for a breathable and non-absorbent material, ventilation, an antibacterial layer, and rubber soles to prevent slipping on wet surfaces.

Ensure you bring these essentials too

In addition to packing flip-flops to prevent athlete's foot, ringworm, a staph infection, or MRSA, there are a few more things that you should definitely bring with you to a hostel. First, pack a travel towel. Hostels will usually provide you with linens and blankets, but unlike hotels, they may charge for you to use their towels. Call ahead to confirm your hostel's policies and procedures regarding towels. If there is a fee, you can pick up super absorbent, quick-dry, and foldable microfiber towels relatively cheaply from a variety of stores. 

You should also bring a lock for your luggage to utilize while staying at a hostel. On the one hand, hostels offer an open and incredibly social travel experience because you have the opportunity to make friends from all corners of the world while saving some money on your trip. On the other, not everyone in the world has the best intentions when meeting new people. 

And, because you don't know anyone's intentions, it's always better to be safe than sorry. Ideally, you should use a combination lock so there's no fear of losing a key. You could also bring a bike chain to secure your locked bag to your bed for added protection. That way, you can have a little peace of mind and ensure that you leave with everything you want to take with you.