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“Unpleasant welcome and poor facilities”

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Montana Family & Youth Hostel
London, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Unpleasant welcome and poor facilities”
Reviewed 14 May 2014

Staff were rude, unhelpful and didn't offer any local knowledge, apart from pointing us to the direction of their display of brochures. After travelling hours by train from Oslo, we were pretty annoyed that it took almost an hour to check us in. They wouldn't allow us to drop our bags anywhere secure either, so we couldn't shower and chill, we just had to wait. There was no real apology, just flustered staff who blamed the hold up on a previous influx of guests that had been on a delayed flight (which was understandable, but could've been handled better and with more empathy). Once we finally got into our rooms, I discovered there was no where to place my bags (being an 18 bed room, most corners & under bed spaces were already occupied), and as we got in quite late, I probably disturbed a lot of the guests in my room by rustling around whilst i dug out my PJs and toiletries. To add to our disappointment, there were no power points by the bunks either. Thankfully our stay here was only short, as the showers and bathrooms were also pretty nasty - big wads of hair in the drain of the female showers, poor water pressure ... again not a big surprise for a hostel, but just added to the poor experience. The last straw for me was probably the internet connection - wi-fi was supposed to be inclusive of the 209NOK a night (approx $50AUD) - and due to "technical difficulties", Wi-Fi was non-operational for the 2 nights we stayed there. Normally not such a big deal, however as we got into Bergen late and only had 2 nights there, we planned to do our research and book activities before bedtime. I asked staff for help and they just pointed at the broken router, saying they'd already tried turning if off and back on again - they then pointed me to the PAYG computer for internet - which worked to some degree, but seemed to have trouble translating pages to English. So I asked for help again, this time for suggestions on some actives involving the fjords and train rides vs boat rides, and suggested routes, however was met again with directions to their brochure piles. Feeling pretty frustrated by this point, I asked if they could print some timetables and help us book some things on their computers (where internet was operational) and the staff member on duty flat out refused! She stated that they were "already working overtime due to the delayed flight (with influx of guests)!" I explained that I needed their help as their Wi-Fi was down and as we were short on time, we needed to sort our plans for the next morning - after much persistence the staff member called her supervisor, who then thankfully assisted (although I had to ask him to print things out in English, as his first few attempts only gave us printouts in Norwegian!). So after an exhausting first night, and lack of power points, the next morning was a frenzy to get things charged and ourselves ready to depart - in the frenzy i left my camera on charge in the room and returned later that night to find it had been stolen. This wasn't a huge surprise, being an 18 bed room, but was a disappointing occurrence and another negative experience, in an already unpleasant chain of events with this hostel. I reported this to staff, and they were more helpful this time, allowing me to sue their phone to call local police to lodge a report, however that was all that could be done. All in all, I wouldn't recommend this hostel - bathrooms & kitchens were dirty, bedrooms had fluorescent exit lights, so was uncomfortably lit most of the night, you could hear the noise from bathrooms and hallways from the rooms and the breakfast provided was in line with the staffs hospitality. There was very little information provided by staff on local activities, apart from bus timetables for the bus that took us to town. Also the location wasn't great, with nothing memorable on offer within walking distance, although the bus to the city ran every 15 minutes or so, taking about 20-30 min to get into town. In saying this though, I'm not sure if there were any other hostels around Bergen, that provided better service, better location and was within our tight budget... So all i can comment on was my memory of the experience, which in summary wasn't a glowing representation of my time in Bergen. I would hopefully not be staying here again.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with friends
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank P-Dingy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (20)
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  • Danish first
  • English first
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English first
Sydney, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
249 reviews
74 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 127 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 April 2014 via mobile

I stayed here with my partner in a dorm and her mother was in a private room. The first thing to note is the linen charge. While I don't like the fact that it's not included I can accept this in a dorm but for the price of a private room it should certainly be included but isn't!
The staff are a mixed bunch in regards to how helpful and pleasant they are to deal with, which is a shame in an HI where you expect a little more!
The dorms, kitchens and bathrooms are all of a fine standard, no complaints at all and the beds are comfortable.
Breakfast and WiFi that are included are both very good, except the WiFi can only be accessed in private rooms and in the common area.
The location, while it is a fair distance from the centre of town is very easy to get to by the very efficient bus and the views from the hostel are wonderful. Provided you don't mind being a bit of a way from the main action we didn't see the location as a problem. There is also a supermarket less than 2 minutes walk away.
The one piece of advice I would give is regarding the Bergen Card. While this seems like a great deal be careful because most attractions are closed on a Monday and more are closed over Easter and some close for the whole of the quiet season (until the end of May). No one at the hostel bothered to tell us this so we faced frequent disappointment when trying to visit attractions, so check with the hostel before you buy as to what is available! It would be easy enough for them to put up a sign outlining the seasonal limitations of the card but no one has done this.
Overall it was a reasonable experience but I am not sure I would recommend this place or stay again.

Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank danigross88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 January 2014

A friend and I stayed at this pleasant hostel for a two nights in September and were greeted by friendly service straight away. Whether just a seasonal coincidence or not, the hostel was quiet and was mostly hosting slightly older guests. Dorms were very standard, as were shower facilities and kitchen facilities. Breakfast and general service was great. In terms of accommodation, Montana is just a quieter version of a typical hostel- decent value for money and no nasty surprises.

There are two things however that carry Montana from a 3-star experience up to a 5-star: the location and the views. Despite many reviews bemoaning the location- and initially we were sceptical too- the bus ride between the hostel and the city became quite a bonus experience. The fare was pretty cheap and the journey pretty short but it was a nice little insight into 'everyday Bergen' and the quaint yet colourful houses that are 'oh so Scandinavian'. In short; the location is an understandable grievance for some but a lovely touch from a personal point of view.

Without a doubt my favourite thing about Montana is another product of its location: the views. Firstly, there is a little terrace out the back of the hostel that overlooks the city... Stunning. Absolutely stunning views. We sat outside for 2+ hours just gawking! Additionally, it is next to some fairly walkable hills, from which you can see over the entire city in several directions and this is equally incredible. Fairly confident in saying that no other hostel in Bergen can offer this.

In conclusion:
+ If you're looking for a sight-seeing trip and you're not hugely fussy about your accommodation then Montana's for you.
- If you're seeking a super-sociable and vibrant hostel then steer well clear.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Simon B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Perth, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
2 reviews
Reviewed 9 October 2013

This is a high quality hostel suitable for both backpackers and families. The bedrooms are furnished to a high standard with comfortable wooden beds (no squeaking), a table, sofa and sink. There is also a large common area consisting of 2 lounges and a kitchen dining area.

The only thing letting it down is location. While great if you want to explore the surrounding mountains by foot, it is on the outskirts of the city. It can be reached by taking a 30 minute buds ride from the central station, or walking takes well over an hour.

Stayed September 2013, travelled solo
Helpful?
Thank Callum b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Denver, Colorado
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 September 2013

We arrived into Bergen in June without lodging arrangements. The city was busy and the other options available were far outside of our price-range.

We were disappointed with the quality of the accommodations for the price. We had a double room with an en-suite bathroom. Linens and towels are extra. The rooms are very small and basic, with bunk beds, a small desk, a chair, and a small closet. There is limited space to maneuver when both people are in the room. The room/bathroom did not feel clean. The beds were uncomfortable and did not allow for a restful nights sleep.

The hostel is located about 15-20 minutes via bus to the city-center, and is only a couple minute walk from the bus stop. A grocery store is also located nearby. We found the staff to be friendly...and were lucky enough to have a room close enough to the main reception that we could pick up the free wi-fi from our room.

We definitely will not be back and would be very hard pressed to recommend a stay at this tired hostel to anyone.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jillaine4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 24 August 2013

the hostel is really good, it s quite big (by the way, i suggest u to book it before being there!i was in bergen in august and it was quite hard to find an accomodation!!!!). the hostel is clean and the space confortable, the kitchen is really well equipped (u can find there even oil, salt and spices). the only flaw is the location....the hostel is not located in the city center and to go there u should take a bus (by walking, it takes about 40 minutes).

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank EleAndDomi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Southampton, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 August 2013

My boyfriend and I have just come back from a short holiday in lovely Bergen. We stayed during this time in the Montana hostel, which turned out to be great value for the price we paid for it.

After our arrival we had to pay the price for stay immediately, which seemed reasonable to us. Don't forget to bring your own towels and bed linen, if you want to save a bit of money. They are not included in the price. Personally I didn't have a problem with that, as we stayed for 6 days and it motivates you to use your towel longer than one day, which obviously is a good way to save the environment. I can understand that some people who stay for 1 night, might not like this rule, but again for me it was no problem. What I did notice though in our dorm, was that some people were using a combination of a sleeping bag/sheet, in order to avoid the linen fee. It would be fair towards the guests who do pay for their linen if the staff would keep an eye on this more.

The price of is this hostel was really good, but I should mention that we booked in advance and stayed in a 18-persons room. The breakfast was included and the offer in drinks and food was really big. A big plus point!

The location of the hostel is also really good, it took us 30 mins to walk to the city centre and during those walk we could enjoy the beautiful streets of Bergen. On the way back we did use the bus though, which goes every 30 mins from the city centre and takes you almost to the front door of the hostel. Very good!

Behind the hostel is a nice terrace that gives you an amazing view over the city centre and the fjords. Especially watching the sunset is an experience you shouldn't miss!

The facilities in this hostel are really good: you can play table football and table tennis for free, there are 2 big kitchens and there is a big living room where you can sit and socialise with the other guests in the hostel. You can also borrow bikes for free, which I think is really good.

The staff was very friendly and helpful. Especially Satu was very nice and open for conversations. We really enjoyed talking with her!

Overall we were pleasantly surprised by this hostel. A recommendation for everyone who like us, wants to visit Bergen on a budget.

Room Tip: Choose for a dorm!:)
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank harriette1994
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Montana Family & Youth Hostel

Property: Montana Family & Youth Hostel
Address: Johan Blytts vei 30 | Landaas, Bergen 5096, Norway
Region: Norway > Western Norway > Hordaland > Bergen
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 30 Speciality Lodging in Bergen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:2 star — Montana Family & Youth Hostel 2*
Number of rooms: 70
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Also Known As:
Montana Family And Youth Hostel
Montana Family & Youth Hotel Bergen

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