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“more or less always a nice crowd around” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Lusaka Backpackers

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Lusaka Backpackers
161 Mulombwa Close, Lusaka 31300, Zambia (Formerly Chachacha Backpackers)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #9 of 40 Specialty Lodging in Lusaka
Berlin, Germany
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“more or less always a nice crowd around”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2014

I stayed at the backpackers for about two month. Not knowing to many people in Lusaka and being busy during the day, I really learnt to appreciate to interesting crowd of people you will meet there. There is a quite large group of locals (expatriots, indigenous and long stayers) that use the backpackers bar as their social meeting point. On the other hand there are a lot of backpackers that stay there for one or two night. So this combined is really something once in a while. But basically you will almost always find the right people you want to talk to.
The rooms are clean and the sanitation as well, but both are definately not luxurious. I can only recommend this place, if you want to stay in a good and affordable place in Lusaka. There a cheaper places, but not better in my opinion.

Room Tip: If you don't mind the noise from the bar in case it's gets late out there, you can chose the...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndyCTBP, Guest Relations Manager at Lusaka Backpackers, responded to this review, March 24, 2014
Hey Sven, thanks for taking the time to review us. The team always like checking in and reading nice things :) Hope to see you next time you are in Lusaka, by then our new place Wanderers Lodge will be fully open so you can check that out as well! See you soon :)
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92 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    14
    34
    27
    9
    8
See reviews for
2
27
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3
Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Norwegian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2014

Extremely friendly staff!!!!
We arrived very late and the chef had knocked off, however he was still willing to make us something to eat which was delicious. The food is reasonably priced.

The rooms are simple we got an en suite double room (the hippo room), however we were terribly dissapointed when it started raining and water came through the wall. All the clothing left on the floor was drenched.

Beyond that the crowd is the mature back packers and research students. Which was great.

Would go back but would stay in a different room.

Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndyCTBP, Guest Relations Manager at Lusaka Backpackers, responded to this review, January 27, 2014
Hi, Thanks for the review. Really sorry about the rain issue. We have fixed that now. As I'm sure you spotted when it rains in Zambia It really rains! Looking forward to you coming back. Andy and the Team.
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Nagpur, India
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2014

Great value for money. had a niece and comfortable stay. We reached there in the night and received a warm welcome. The room were clean and cozy. The bathrooms were neat,clean and hygienic. the atmosphere was vibrant and cheerful.....overall a very good xp.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndyCTBP, Guest Relations Manager at Lusaka Backpackers, responded to this review, January 27, 2014
Hi, Thanks for taking the time to review us, the team always appreciate reading nice things :) Andy
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Cape Town
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 8, 2014 via mobile

Great value for money. We slept slept in both double and twin ensuit rooms. I would advise you book the double ensuite room. The beds in the twin rooms are not comfortable.

However, overall experience was good. Relaxed, vibrant and informal atmosphere. If you are on a budget, Lusaka backpackers is good value for money. We chatted to many friendly locals at the backpacker's pub. Additionally, the food is good.

  • Stayed December 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndyCTBP, Front Office Manager at Lusaka Backpackers, responded to this review, January 27, 2014
Hi, Thanks for the review, if your back in Lusaka please come and see us again. Thanks Andy
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Houston, United Kingdom
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2014

This Hostel has a cute scam going: On hostelworld.com, where they compete with other hostels, they advertise very competitive prices: $9 for a dorm room. Great value!

But, 48 hours before a booking date, they have hostelworld configured to display no availability, even when rooms are available. So if you just turn up at the hostel, or try to book online or by phone less than 48 hours in advance, your price magically nearly doubles, e.g.to $15 for a dorm room.

And before you say "That's just the rack rate," realize that: (1) a rack rate is not the same as nearly doubling prices 48 hours before a reservation date (2) if it was just an honest rack rate, you would not have staffers lying and making lame excuses like "oh, Hostelworld just has the "old prices"" on it, and acting embarassed when you call them out on the magically doubling prices. They would just say "sorry, that's the rack rate." NOT LEGIT

Despite this, the hostel has an attentive staff, consistent electricity, clean toilets, and free internet. It would be 5 stars if they would either end these shenanigans, or clearly advertise to the world: "Book with us 48 hours in advance via hostelworld, or your prices will be approximately double!"

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndyCTBP, Guest Relations Manager at Lusaka Backpackers, responded to this review, January 27, 2014
Hi.

Thanks for the review and saying we are 5 star. However, no thanks for rest of it.

We have been established in Zambia for over 10 years and our most of our staff have been with us for most of that time and one thing the whole team here have always been is straight forward and honest with all our guests. I will take constructive criticism from anyone but Lies I won’t.

1. We have NEVER doubled our prices, I only wish we could.
2. Hostelworld cannot be configured by a Hostel, again, I wish it could.
3. Our staff, including me, would have no idea what a "rack rate” is. This maybe a term used at the Houston Holiday Inn but not in a backpackers in Zambia. The staff member you verbally attacked was embarrassed that they did not know what you were saying and at you loudly shouting at them. May I suggest that next time you travel abroad that you avail yourself with what the locals consider to be manners. Whilst making a scene and shouting might get you a discount in Houston it won’t in Zambia. Sorry for that.

However on a serious note it’s really not necessary to publish your anger at your mistake of not booking on line when you had the opportunity to the whole world.

Yes, we do adjust our prices from time to time, yes they do increase when we are busy. You will find this to be the case in all hotels around the world and with airlines etc. I'm used to this happening to me a lot. However I can’t remember the last time I looked at British Airways on line booking system , got the price, then for some reason didn't book, then turn up at the airport counter a few days later and when the price was different called it a scam. Nope, I've never done that.

I can only hope that if you are back in Lusaka that you enjoy staying elsewhere.

Regards

Andy
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Columbus, Ohio
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2014

The accommodations are okay for a night or two, the mattresses are a bit uncomfortable and the rooms (even with a fan) can be a bit hot. I stayed here one night at the beginning of December (before taking a bus to Livingstone) and one night at the beginning of January (before flying out of Lusaka). The chef is great, but the kitchen tends to be out of a lot of things on the menu, also the wi-fi is free but it drops quite a bit and is slow when it does work. The staff were very friendly!

Stayed December 2013, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndyCTBP, Front Office Manager at Lusaka Backpackers, responded to this review, January 27, 2014
Hi, Thanks for taking the time to give us a review. And next time your here we hope you stay longer :) Andy
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turnhout
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2014

We stayed a couple of times in this hostel while on our way to other destinations. Staff was always remarkably friendly and helpful, they always have taxis waiting for the door, there is free internet + guest pc, and the cooks in the kitchen were the best cooks we ever had in Zambia.

Rooms are very basic, but OK for a short stay. That being said, the biggest problem of this hostel is the horrible quality of the matresses. We were in different rooms, and all matresses we slept on were severely worn out in the middle. Sleeping quality is thus really bad. This could easily be fixed by replacing all matresses.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
AndyCTBP, Guest Relations Manager at Lusaka Backpackers, responded to this review, January 27, 2014
Hi, thanks for the review and the feedback on the matresses, we'll look in to that. See you next time. :)
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lusaka Backpackers

Address: 161 Mulombwa Close, Lusaka 31300, Zambia (Formerly Chachacha Backpackers)
Location: Zambia > Lusaka Province > Lusaka
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 40 Specialty Lodging in Lusaka
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In the heart of city Lusaka backpackers is a great place to stop and relax from your travels. Evenings are always fun at The Cha bar and a hearty breakfast from the cafe will leave you feeling revived for your onward journey. We've got all the facilities you'd expect from a quality backpackers in Zambia, including a great pool, travel desk to book your trips and safaris, self catering kitchen, internet access, and a fantastic bar to meet fellow travelers. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lusaka Backpackers Hotel Lusaka

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