We invited YouTube vloggers Lindsey and Meghan Hughes to our HI Chicago hostel to give them their first taste of hostelling and help them connect with some of their fans. Here’s what they had to say about the experience.
What was your overall impression of the HI Chicago hostel?
Lindsey: HI Chicago was welcoming, larger and more spacious than I expected. It was in a great area of the city, and felt like a big, fun, community oriented-hotel.
Meghan: It was very accommodating, fun, and diverse. It had a lot to offer from activities to people to meet, etc.
Would you stay in a hostel again in the future? Why or why not?
Lindsey: I definitely would, especially when traveling abroad to save money and meet friends. I enjoyed having people our age so close by, and how it’s more of a friend-oriented place than a family-oriented stay like a hotel would be.
Meghan: Of course! We had a great time and enjoyed being able to come back to a fun environment after exploring during the day.
What was the best part about staying in the hostel?
Lindsey: The best part was having everything we needed at our fingertips. The L train was literally right outside our room’s window, so we were just minutes from all the stops and sights of the city. We walked almost everywhere we ate at over our stay, so the hostel was in a prime location.
Meghan: I loved the second floor with the hangout space.
What tips do you have for your followers and our readers about staying in a hostel?
Lindsey: Don’t be worried about it if it’s a new experience. I think we were both excited and didn’t know what to expect, so that made it fun. If you’re sharing a room with others, bring ear plugs and an eye mask for sleeping, because people wake up and sleep at different times and you will be able to sleep better with these simple things. Be kind to everyone you see, the employees, and ask for recommendations at the front desk - they know the city, so ask for sightseeing, restaurants, bars, whatever you want to do most. The locals know the best spots.
Meghan: Make new friends! There’s most likely lots of people staying around you from around the globe!
Why should people choose Chicago as a destination to visit?
Lindsey: Chicago is a must-see in the US for sure because not only is it a very clean and well-kept city, it’s on the water, which makes it beautiful to walk around, and there’s delicious food and every activity you could imagine! Plus, it’s the only place to get authentic deep dish pizza.
Meghan: Chicago is a super fun city that I would definitely return to in the future, and the people in Chicago are very nice. Staying at a hostel for the first time was a fun experience and I would recommend it to anyone traveling in the future. I loved meeting new faces and hearing their stories.
What did you enjoy most about Chicago? What would you recommend others see, do, or try?
Lindsey: My favorite activity was exploring Wicker Park. Meghan and I went thrifting, ate some yummy dumplings, had cocktails at a new Mexican restaurant, sat in the park in the sunshine, and went to a little boutique called Emma where I found my favorite new dress. You could easily spend a day in the neighborhood walking around, getting coffee and lunch or dinner, and some light shopping. The neighborhood was welcoming and trendy, and we just took the L a few stops from downtown to get there.
Meghan: I really loved spending a day in Wicker Park exploring that neighborhood, shopping, and eating! It was a really fun area. Go to the park itself in Wicker Park’s neighborhood and just hang out with a friend and watch all the dogs play!
What is one thing you wish you could have done but didn’t have time for?
Lindsey: Go see the house from Shameless!
Meghan: I wish we had time to explore the jazz/blues scene.