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The Backpack
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Reviews (735)
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All reviewslong streetfair tradetable mountainprivate bathroombed dormtownship tourcommon areasrooms are cleanenjoyed my stayfelt very safethe location is perfectkloof streetstayed here for nightsstay in cape townsouth africahome away from homehostel
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Reviewed 7 March 2014

We booked a Private Double Ensuite for 3 nights and a Deluxe Ensuite for one night. When we arrived we were told our booking was one night in the Private Double Ensuite and 2 nights in a Double Budget -no ensuite. Primose, the supposed manager said ‘the system’ was to blame ie Hostelworld. We spoke for about 20 mins and she would not budge on her point and would not offer a discount for inconveniencing us either. Obviously slept through Customer Service 101!!

Not only were we not given what we had booked but we were put in the worst room of the hostel (off the TV lounge with people up til 3am blaring the TV and wouldn't turn it down) and we had to go to the toilet outside with a broken light. I was more comfortable camping in the previous 3 weeks than I was there.

The following day I spoke with Primose as I was extremely upset about the way we had been treated. She showed me the booking the it said Private Double Ensuite for the 3 nights but with different prices, night 2 and 3 cheaper than the 1st. She said that’s why we only got a Double Budget, it was the cheaper price. I asked how as a customer I was meant to know that when it tells me I’m booking an Ensuite. Unfortunately I am not blessed with psychic powers to know what they were thinking.

There were 2 other customers that i saw having issues with their bookings. If you want to keep sane and get what you booked DON'T book here.

It’s a shame because it’s a nice hostel but I would NOT recommend anyone stay here incase they are treated as badly as were.

Room Tip: Choose another place, DO NOT book this place
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Neicey16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SunelleA, Manager at The Backpack, responded to this reviewResponded 13 March 2014

Thank you for reviewing us on TripAdvisor.

We are sorry to hear that you were not happy with your stay.

We make use of an online booking system. When a guest makes a booking online, the system will show the available rooms and automatically allocate your booking in the relevant room on our side.

When I look at your booking, it states the following which I pasted here (which is an automated system message and users are unable to edit this)
"Standard Double Ensuite
Standard Double Budget
This booking is for different guests/nights/room types so it has been split into the following reference numbers ...."

If you try to book 3 consecutive nights in a room type that doesn't have all the nights available you would get the following pop-up message:
"The rooms you have chosen are not available on all your chosen nights, please check the booking details on the next page before completing payment."

Your booking page would have shown the difference in prices for the rooms booked.

If you booked a "Standard Double Bed Ensuite" and the system allocated your booking to a "Standard Double Bed Shared Bathroom" (Standard Double Budget) the only explanation would be that there was a system glitch.

Once again, we do apologize for this. As you may have realized, this was out of our hands and there were no other rooms available at the time you made us aware of this. We hope that the free night's stay helped towards easing your discomfort without a private bathroom. We have logged an investigation into your booking on the system to see how this could have happened.

We trust that you will have a more enjoyable time the next time you visit our beautiful city.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 March 2014

Fun bar area, breakfasts are yummy (although not included, but only about 50/60 rand or $5/6 US dollars), and helpful staff who can arrange all kinds of tours for you (may I suggest the red/blue bus and spending an afternoon Camp's Bay by way of the blue line, as well as arranging tours to see the penguins at Boulder Beach and the lighthouse at Cape Point). Met a lot of fun 20-year-olds at the hostel to go out with at night too since I was traveling solo, but it's also family-friendly.

Room Tip: If you don't like noise make sure you request a room in the back of the complex or rent a lofted room.
  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled solo
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
1  Thank Rachel P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SunelleA, Manager at The Backpack, responded to this reviewResponded 12 March 2014

Thank you for a great review!

We will be sure to pass on the compliments to our Cafe and Reception staff.

It's always good to hear that our guests are enjoying the beauty of Cape Town, as well as the great nightlife.

Looking forward to welcoming you back in the future.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 March 2014

Conveniently located to main tourist spots and pub street, extremely pleasant and helpful staff, amazing outdoor/lounge area to relax (also got a bar area) which always helps a solo traveler to meet other people.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled solo
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank Praveen N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SunelleA, Manager at The Backpack, responded to this reviewResponded 12 March 2014

Thank you for taking the time to write a review.

We are happy to hear that you enjoyed our facilities and found it easy to meet fellow travelers. We agree, our staff members are great and always willing to go the extra mile.

Hoping to see you when you visit Cape Town again.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 February 2014

Great location, the staff were really fun and helpful, met some awesome people and it was just a great place to stay! It may be a bit more expensive than some of the hostels around there but soooooo worth it... One bit of feed back... Maybe buy a couple more fans for the really hot nights... But apart from that it's perfect!

  • Stayed: February 2014
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Thank JeremyMarkiewicz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SunelleA, Manager at The Backpack, responded to this reviewResponded 2 March 2014

Thank you for taking the time to write a review.

We are pleased that you had a great time with us.

We will definitely be looking into addressing the air conditioning during the hot months, as we have had quite a few heat waves this summer.

Hoping to welcome you again in future.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 February 2014 via mobile

Thanks for telling me about this place Paz!!! Really nice hostel and couldn't of asked for a better 3 nights to stay. Nice chill out area, amazing view of table mountain, nice bar, close to long street and food shops. Would reccomend to anyone staying in Cape Town!

  • Stayed: January 2014
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Thank Chris G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SunelleA, Manager at The Backpack, responded to this reviewResponded 22 February 2014

Thank you for taking the time to review us on TripAdvisor. We are happy to hear that you enjoyed your stay and hope to welcome you again in future.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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