Backpackers are a special group of people that have established their reputation as adventurous travelers in various parts of the globe. It is very important to know the basic rules and etiquette to ensure that backpackers will always be welcome in different establishments. Know about the common bad habits and avoid these immediately.

You tend to overcrowd

Many backpackers try to save more money by cramming more people in a room. As a rule, you may allow two more people than what the room is offered for. This strains the facilities available and also bring inconvenience to others. Long lines at the bathroom, not much breathing space and limited supplies could eventually blow one’s fuse.

You fail to pack before checkout

Hostels and inns do not appreciate it when you pack an hour or less before you’re supposed to leave and then bother them nonstop about things you need because you’re running late. Understandably, you may have a limited amount of time to enjoy a place or experience, but do it not at the expense of other people.


You fail miserably in maintaining cleanliness

Backpackers have a reputation for being dirty and stinky. Always practice good hygiene. Wash/change your clothes, take a shower and brush your teeth regularly and change the bedsheets. Even if you are super friendly, not everyone wants to stay close to you because of that annoying and repugnant body odor.

You return late at the inn

If you’re touring the place the entire day and return at a late hour, be sensitive by not making too much noise or turning on the big lights while everyone else is sleeping. Backpackers come in different personalities but the most disgusting one is the rowdy ones who can’t seem to zip their mouths shut.

You are noisy

Regardless of the time of day, know that other people are staying in the hostel who want some peace. Be extra quiet when backpacking in large groups. Imagine if you’re the

You don’t clean up after a mess

Always clean up after your mess when using the dining area, kitchen or bathroom. Flush the toilet and lift the toilet seat for the ladies. Also, bring your toilet paper.

You demand a lot

As a backpacker, you should be ready to forego some of the luxuries that you’re accustomed to at home. Stop stressing staff and waiters by demanding too much. But some backpackers try to squeeze in an upgrade, acknowledging that there’s nowhere to go but up in the level of comfort, even when they’re only willing to spend a little.


You use up all freebies

Several items are offered for free at inns and hostels. However, use only what you can consume. Don’t pack anything for later use since these are intended for other guests too.

You are unfriendly

Learn how to be friendlier and always be courteous and cheerful when dealing with the locals. This is also for your safety. Many backpackers are friendly and this wins them new friends, but there are also sinister ones who think they deserve more than they paid for.

You stealing things

Some backpackers have a habit of taking what’s not theirs. Do not take items, even the smallest or minor ones like a can of soda or a towel. You might be proud of traveling on a shoestring budget but if you steal stuff from fellow backpackers, then shame on you!

You don’t respect the rules

Different countries have their own set of rules when it comes to riding the bus, ordering at a restaurant, smoking or using the toilet. There are also cultural sensitivities that you also have to follow: placing your feet on the table, not wearing appropriate clothing when visiting a certain place. Always be sensitive and read the translation to show you care.

You’re being a cheapskate

There are stories of foreign travelers who fight with the waiter or cab driver because of a few cents. Just because you are not on luxury travel doesn’t entitle you to stoop down to the level of uncivilized travelers. Be thankful for good service and leave a tip if you may.


Backpacking is fun. It’s cheap, full of adventure and if you are not the selfish traveler who appreciates clean fun and rights of others. Backpackers can get conned by criminals and annoying people preying on travelers on a shoestring budget. But that’s not the reason why backpackers should behave like undisciplined school children.