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“Basic.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hostel on 3rd

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Hostel on 3rd
2.5 of 5 Hostel   |   542 3rd avenue, San Diego, CA 92101   |  
Hotel amenities
New York
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2014

I had originally booked for two nights at this hostel but due to complications with flights ended up with just one night.
Check in was at 4 if I remember correctly, and having arrived at 1 was happy to wait, I was told previously there was a place to leave luggage.. Which turned out yo be an area in the main reception area. No rooms or security.
I was shown to my dorm which was up some stairs through a super ate door secured by a code which 'only gets changed when something bad happens' as I was adviced by a member of staff. After a confusing your I was taken to my 6 bed dorm which was a tiny room with 3 bunks. All other 5 beds were occupied and so was the entire floor space with mess. Granted this isn't the hostels fault but maybe under bed storage would make things easier.
The other occupants in the dorm were in a habit of not locking the door and leaving it wide open so security isn't the best. Lockers are provided if you have your own padlock so make sure to be prepared.
The place was generally clean but just worn out I think. It also Wasn't the 'party hostel' it's reputation had excited me with. But maybe that was seasonal timing so that's not the hostels fault I guess.
Overall it was a decent stay but security and comfort isn't to be found, if that's cool for you then awesome.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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29 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
23 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 3, 2014

Decent budget accommodation in San Diego appears to be hard to come by. As I didn't have a car, I decided to stay centrally, as bus services (particularly from Point Loma) are limited. Hostel on 3rd was by far the cheapest downtown option, yet seemed to have good reviews (the two are, in my experience, usually mutually exclusive).

This place is good value for money. For what you pay, you can't expect to be blown away, but I have stayed in worst places at higher expense. Hostel on 3rd is located in the Gaslamp Quarter (a lively area at night - lots of bars and restaurants in the vicinity). I wasn't particularly keen on the area, to be honest - it's commercial and lacks character, and if you're not there to take advantage of the San Diego nightlife, it doesn't really have much to offer. It is convenient for public transport, though - both the Greyhound and Amtrak stations are within walking distance and you can get the #992 bus to and from the airport. The hostel is situated away from the bulk of the noise. The common area - which includes a pool table, TV and patio seating area - is in a separate building to the dorms and closes at midnight. The wifi worked well in both the common area and the bedroom.

My 6-bed dorm was on the small side (which meant that suitcases and other personal belongings were strewn all over the floor), and a little hot. There were no reading lights. The bed was comfortable though, and I slept fine. There are several restrooms, although only one had a power outlet (which made drying my hair in the mornings a bit awkward), and they were generally clean. Possibly because of its price and location, most people staying here were pretty young (I'm pretty sure I was the only person over 30), and there were a mix of nationalities.

One complaint I have about this place is that the kitchen is too small. Breakfast times were particularly awkward because there would never be anywhere to sit (I had to eat my cereal on the stairs) and I decided not to bother cooking dinner again after having to wait ages to use the facilities. The other issue with the kitchen is that it was used as a gathering space after the main common area closed. My room was directly opposite, and it got very noisy. One night I had to ask the offending party to keep it down, and was very surprised to see two of them sat behind the reception desk the next day.

Another thing I wasn't so keen on is the fact that the doors to each dorm are propped open between 12.00 and 4.00pm each day, presumably to give the rooms an airing. The front door has a key code, which is great, but I wouldn't have thought it completely beyond the realms of possibility that another guest would see it as an opportunity to have a discreet rummage in a neighbouring room, especially if someone - not being aware of the policy - left something valuable on display. There are lockers available outside the room (you need to bring your own padlock or buy one at the front desk), but they're very small and certainly wouldn't fit a standard size laptop.

Other than that, this place is pretty decent as hostels go. I'd recommend it for a short stay.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2014 via mobile

Amazing location, nice room for the price range and the pancakes were great! The staff was very helpful and the guests from over the whole world were nice. One night there was some noise, but the staff handled it well. The beds did creak a bit, but we slept well on them.

Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cairns, Australia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2014

I've stayed in lots of hostel, and this place was by far one of the better ones. The staff were friendly and couldn't be nicer. The hostel was clean and tidy at all times. The location was awesome, so close to restaurants and entertainment. Wifi could have been better but I was told that it was being fixed very soon. Nice lounge area in the lobby and I would go back and stay again

Stayed April 2014, traveled solo
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San Diego, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 15, 2014

first night i arrived the front desk was frendly afterwords my frend show up so i can stay at hes place i was checked in only for 15 min and i ask if i get my money back they said we dont refund back afterwords trying to sleep when people were making noices in the room

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hostel on 3rd

Address: 542 3rd avenue, San Diego, CA 92101
Location: United States > California > San Diego
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 55 Specialty Lodging in San Diego
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Hostel on 3rd 2.5*
Number of rooms: 15
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