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Explore These Top Chicago Hostels For Every Budget Traveller

Chicago Hostels

Chicago has been the setting for many Hollywood movies and TV series and has driven the city’s growth. Located on the shores of Lake Michigan, Chicago’s iconic cityscape fascinates people with its tall skyscrapers, iconic architecture and soulful blues music echoing through its streets. With so much on offer in the city, there really are plenty of accommodation options to suit your budget. So, in this blog, Nomad’s series will show you how to stay in a hotel or cheap hotel when you visit Chicago and list some of the best Chicago hostels for your stay.

Difference Between Hotels And Hostels

Hotels and hostels are different kinds of lodging, each tailored to specific tastes, financial constraints, and travel approaches. In general, hotels often exhibit higher price points in comparison to hostels. Hostels are more affordable solutions for visitors on a tighter budget. They often have dormitory-style rooms with shared facilities, therefore offering more value for your money. On the other hand, hotels frequently provide a variety of room options, and the price usually reflects the amount of comfort and services offered.

Hotels are known for providing a higher level of privacy. Guests have their own rooms with private bathrooms, and there’s often daily housekeeping service. They could also offer a range of amenities such as on-site restaurants, room service, fitness centers, and sometimes spa facilities. Hostels, on the other hand, emphasize communal living, and while private rooms are available, the dormitory setting encourages interaction among guests and has shared bathrooms and common areas. They also typically focus on providing essential amenities, with common areas for socializing, communal kitchens, and sometimes laundry facilities. 

Top Picks For Chicago Hostels

1. Chicago Getaway Hostel

Chicago Getaway Hostel
Chicago Getaway Hostel

Situated in the heart of Chicago (IL), Chicago Getaway Hostel ensures a seamless exploration of the city’s attractions, just 5.2 km from Millennium Park. Boasting easy access to transport, the hostel offers stress-free journeys with convenient airport transfer services and available on-site parking. Guests enjoy complimentary Wi-Fi, and for comfort, rooms feature linen service and air conditioning. This Chicago hostel promotes a smoke-free environment, providing designated smoking areas. Delight in daily breakfast or utilize the shared kitchen. Socialize in the communal lounge and TV area. With top-notch room comfort and dining options, Chicago Getaway Hostel offers unbeatable value, ranking higher than 96% of city accommodations.

2. HI Chicago Hostel

HI Chicago Hostel ensures an urban escape like no other. Begin each day with a delectable in-house breakfast, setting the tone for exploration in the vibrant city. The hostel boasts a shared kitchen for those with a culinary flair. Perfectly positioned, it serves as the ideal launchpad for discovering Chicago’s cultural gems, with The Art Institute and Cloud Gate just a short stroll away. Immerse yourself in local culture through Skydeck Chicago – Willis Tower nearby. Offering exceptional value, this Chicago Hostel surpasses expectations, ranking higher than 97% in value for money, facilities, and location among the city’s accommodations. Indulge in billiards, table tennis, and tours, ensuring an enriching stay.

3. Wrigley Hostel – Adults Only

Wrigley Hostel - Adults Only
Wrigley Hostel – Adults Only

Immerse yourself in the exceptional services and amenities at Wrigley Hostel – Adults Only for an unforgettable stay. Enjoy seamless connectivity with the free Wi-Fi, allowing you to share memories and manage your emails effortlessly. Complimentary parking is provided for guests with personal transportation. The attentive front desk staff offers a range of services, including concierge assistance, express check-in or check-out, and luggage storage.

This Chicago hostel offers a range of guest room amenities, from linen services to air conditioning in select rooms, complemented by provided toiletries, towels, and hair dryers in bathrooms.

You can also indulge in the vibrant hostel atmosphere with a bar, 24-hour vending machines for snacks and drinks, and convenient BBQ facilities in the shared kitchen. Unwind and engage in recreational activities, from dartboard and ping-pong to an on-site golf course or enjoy quality time in the library, games room, and shared lounge with a TV.

4. Hostel 424

In the vibrant Wicker Park district of Chicago, Hostel 424 offers air-conditioned rooms equipped with TVs. This non-smoking Chicago hostel boasts amenities such as a restaurant, shared kitchen, and lounge, all complemented by free WiFi. Located 3.6 km from the United Center, the hostel provides a comfortable stay with shared facilities like a coffee machine in guest rooms. Each room features a shared bathroom, complete with a hairdryer and bed linen. Hostel 424 is strategically placed, with Lincoln Park Zoo and Water Tower Chicago at 4.1 km and 4.3 km respectively.

5. Chicago Parthenon Hostel

Chicago Parthenon Hostel
Chicago Parthenon Hostel

Positioned conveniently in the city center, this Chicago hostel ensures visitors ample time to explore all that Chicago has to offer. The hostel offers impeccable service and essential amenities, including on-site parking.

The hostel exemplifies its accommodation with complimentary Wi-Fi access in all rooms, providing uninterrupted connection. Chicago Parthenon Hostel offers visitors a smoke-free atmosphere and they can relax and enjoy various amenities such as interesting gaming rooms and instructive excursions. The hostel’s dedication to excellence encompasses all aspects, including baggage storage and conference facilities, ensuring a remarkable experience for guests in the central location of Chicago.


Now that you understand the dichotomy between hotels and hostels, and how each caters to different preferences and budgets, you can easily look for the best accommodations for yourself. While hotels do offer privacy, comfort, and various amenities, hostels prioritize communal living and budget-conscious travelers. As you plan your Chicago getaway, book the best Chicago hostels on Agoda to make your stay not only affordable but also enriched with the vibrant spirit of the city. For more information, visit Nomads Column


How old do you have to be to stay in a hostel in Chicago?
You must be of 18 years to stay at a Chicago hostel, however, some may accept 21+ only.
How long can you live in a hostel?
You can live at a hostel indefinitely. 
Can anyone stay in a hostel?
Yes, as long as you are of the right age, you can stay at a hostel. 

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