My partner and I are not hostel type of travelers. Every time we fly and go somewhere, we normally stay in hotels. The IBIS chain of hotels throughout Europe, the Premier Inn in the UK, and the Marriott in the US are our top favorites for their price and location. On our trip to Israel, however, staying at our usual hotel chains was quite challenging. They were very, very expensive.
We stayed at Abraham Hostels instead, both in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, throughout our stay in Israel. Wildly popular among tourists to the Holy Land. You only need to read the reviews written about Abraham Hostels (AH) and you'd realize how well liked it is by travelers from all over the world. With such glowing recommendations and reviews, we went ahead and booked our entire stay with them. We paid approximately $120 plus taxes and fees a night for our private room with bath in both hostels.
We stayed six nights in each one.
1. AH offered some of the least expensive hotel room stays in Israel. Though $120 a night may sound high for some, it is actually low when compared to hotel room prices in Israel's major cities.
2. There was breakfast served every morning beginning at 7 am.
3. Location! Location! Location! Very central and within minutes to important sights and attractions in both cities.
4. Very friendly and helpful staff at the front desk.
5. The tours offered by AH are phenomenal! Well worth the price!
1. Cleanliness. This was more an issue with our room in Jerusalem. The first two nights , the bed was made and fresh towels were provided. But the following three days, our room wasn't serviced at all. We were surprised this happened. The worst part of it all was when we returned from our Masada, Ein Gedi, and Dead Sea tour on a Friday night to discover that not only was our room not cleaned, bed not made, and towels not replaced, the door to our room was unlocked and opened. We thought someone had broken in and stolen something. We headed straight to the front desk to complain. The young lady at the lobby was all ears and very apologetic.
Later that night, the hostel front desk staff sent people to check up on us and see how we were doing. I showed the head of maintenance pictures I took of the mess in the previous three days. He said sorry and he gave me tickets for free drinks at the hostel's bar. What a consolation!
2. While the breakfast was good and plentiful in both hostels, it did get to the point we couldn't eat the same food over and over. In Tel Aviv, our biggest and only gripe was that all plates, forks and spoons were not properly washed. Turns out, visitors in the breakfast room were supposed to wash them themselves right after eating. The bad part was, not everyone cleaned the dishes properly. Some rinsed the dishes with water with no soap, wiped them with a paper towel and then placed them on the cupboard above the sink. What's worse the hotel staff took the plates that were placed on the racks above the sink minutes earlier to be reused straight away by hotel guests.