I'm generally always the optimist when it comes to hostels as the disgruntled always have something to say, whereas the satisfied will often walk away with little to say. In my case, my expectations where met, as few as they were.
The check-in time varies depending on what website you was looking at, but in my case it was 1400, despite arriving at 1200, which meant a lot of hanging about with luggage. All I could do was walk up and down the street avoiding the local drunks shouting drink fuelled abuse at each other outside the local library. Eventually I was informed my room was ready and was told where to go. I think a cleaner actually told me where the room was, which was up some stairs.
The room was dark, as a fair few people were still in bed and it took a moment for my eyes to adjust to the gloom, but there were only a few top bunks free, so I chose one in the corner, but there was a continuous feeling of intrusion because there wasn't any real way to know that you hadn't just claimed someone else's bed as your own. Fortunately I hadn't and I learned that a rolled up quilt was the indication that the bed was free. So don't roll your bedding up else you might find someone else in it when you come back.
Eventually the visitor underneath me went home and I swapped my bedding over with newly freed bed nearest a power socket so I could charge my phone with relative security. Before I was having to charge it up across the room and watch it like a hawk for a few hours. Never take anything you can't afford to get stolen or go missing. While nothing like that happened while I was there, they have all sorts come in and you don't know who to trust.
Since I generally get up about 7am to head out into London, I never experienced any shower queues, and despite all the reviews about the quality of the showers and constant improvements I found them to be always hot and comfortable. You do share the three showers and two washbasins with the rest of the hostel, although I think there might have been another wash-room elsewhere.
All in all, I paid about £10 a night at the hostel, so considering what I got for that price it was ideal. I got a clean bed, clean showers and breakfast and a place to charge my phone up each night.
In retrospect I will spend more money to get somewhere I feel more comfortable in, but if you are short on money, don't want to take many valuables with you then this place fits the bill. It's locality to the underground is ideal and takes no time at all to get to London. I had to take the rail replacement bus a few times, but that was fairly painless.
On a side note, having a big local supermarket about 20 mins walk away was a great bonus.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- No.8 is a Unique Brand of Hostels developed and delicately integrated within Traditional Old English Pubs. For Facilities, Customer Service & Affordability it must be No.8! At No.8 we take pride in our Customer Service and ensure that all of our Guests get everything they want from their time in London. We are a Youth Backpackers Hostel and cater exclusively for 18-38 yr old backpackers, Photo IDs will be required on Check In. We have Live Entertainment on Weekends within our Traditional English Pub, along with the usual range of pub entertainment and banter! - Free High-Speed WiFi - Full Facility Kitchen, Dining Space & Outdoor Deck - Secure Storage Facilities & 24 Hr Key Card Access - Laundry Facilities (Wash & Dry) - Large Lounge - Pool Table, Foosball, Chess Table, Couches, Satellite TV & Darts Board etc - Traditional English Pub & Beer Garden - Live Entertainment on Weekends! - Free Cancellation on All Bookings prior to Arrival - Reception: Sunday-Thursday 8am-12.00am and Friday-Saturday 8am-2am - Backpackers Hostel for 18-38 year olds only - ID on Check In Required. - £20 Key Deposit (Fully Refunded On Check-Out) Whether it is your first time in London or you are a seasoned traveller, No.8 has everything you need (and a few extras) to ensure that your stay in London is definitely Enjoyable & Comfortable! ... more less
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