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“Great” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Federal Backpackers

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Federal Backpackers
Southampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Great”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2013

Great place to stay ever. Loads of work and the staff are amazing can't wait to go back. The place a little shabby but it just adds to your experience. If you looking for work and just somewhere reasonable to stay then this place is for you.

  • Stayed October 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank joshSFC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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16 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    2
    3
    4
    0
    7
See reviews for
Families
0
3
5
4
Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    2 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    2 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
34 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 22, 2013

We travelled to Bundaberg in January 2013 in the hope of finding regional work. We had originally booked into another backpackers in the town who had promised us there was ample work and that we could count the days off for our 2nd year visa no problem. Fortunately we met a guy who warned us that the particular hostel we were booked into was a sham and it was riddled with bed bugs and suggested we stay at the Fed.
When we arrived we were picked up and taken to the hostel in a van - the receptionist Belinda I think was her name was, is a doll, so lovely and was as helpful as she could be under the circumstances. Unfortunately we'd arrived on the East Coast in the wrong season, there was hardly any regional work going but the staff promised to put us on the waiting list and would do what they could to help. They've seen hundreds of travellers all wanting to do the same thing, over the years, many that don't really know what to expect from fruitpicking and farm work. I can imagine it must get pretty tiresome after a while, but they're relatively sympathetic nonetheless.
We were given a fridge box each which contains all your crockery and cutlery so I'm not sure why there are some people on here complaining about not having communal stuff. The box is big enough to keep your fridge food in too as it's a huge walk-in fridge room. (Lovely when it's so hot outside)
Our room was pretty big - 8 bed mixed dorm with balcony on the front looking over the main street. It wasn't the nicest room in the world, the mattresses are a bit gross and my bed frame was broken so I was literally sleeping in what felt like an uncomfy lumpy hammock. The walls don't reach the ceiling either so it is true that you hear all the noise coming from adjacent rooms, not to mention the noise from the street outside. Our room only had one ceiling fan working so we often had the balcony doors open at night as it was so hot.
The kitchen itself isn't too bad - it's pretty small but it's manageable. The toilets/bathroom aren't the best but they're cleaned regularly and I've definitely seen worse.
The hostel has a beer garden and is attached to a bottle'o so there's always a good crowd talking and having a good time. If you're a newbie, it can be a bit difficult to get into the crowd as many of the workers have been there for so long, but you can really feel a huge sense of family between everyone. You just have to read some of the lovely messages on the walls in the lounge room to see that a lot of people have had amazing experiences there and made lifelong friends.
Unfortunately, the weather had other ideas from us and Cyclone Oswald caused some of the worst flooding that Bundy has ever seen. The entire town was pretty much under water, including the original hostel we were supposed to have stayed at. The Fed suffered a great deal with leaks, but fortunately managed to avoid the flood waters. The staff were absolutely amazing, and I have full respect for them having to protect their livelihood and cope with an army of travellers who couldn't work because the farms were flooded.
We'd been on the waitlist to work for over a week, with more and more people arriving every day. After the floods hit and we were able to escape the town, we decided to move on else where to find work. Despite its first appearances, I have no doubt that if we'd worked and were able to stay longer we would have had a great time at the Fed. The staff are all really busy, and are trying to keep their business running but they are lovely and willing to help you in any way possible once they get to know you. One even gave us a lift to the airport for free in his own car as there were no taxi's or buses running - a gesture that I will never forget. If you're heading to Bundy to work temporarily, then I would highly suggest staying at the Fed, but be prepared that it's not a luxury palace and you're there to get your hands dirty to get your visa.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank shootingstar13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
22 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 17, 2012

It wasn't that the place was old that made me not happy, I've stayed in so many old places, even in farms, and feel in love with plenty of them. But this place is just plain disgusting. the mattresses look like they've been there for decades and were rescued from the sewage. The kitchen floor is muddy. Even in the room is full of random filth(torn pieces of paper, tabacco leaves, cigarette filters, etc).

The so-called-wall between rooms didn't reach the ceiling so there's a huge gap: letting you hear every single sound from every single occupant in them same floor upto the last minute before you fall asleep and right before sunrise when the fruit-pickers wake up.

Not all the sink taps in the toilets are working and there were "skid marks" all over the toilet bowl.

They should just change the name from Federal Backpackers to Federal Prison. It's like a slavery camp in there. I don't know where they find the audacity to charge the same rate as other decent places.

Room Tip: Don't bother. Don't come near this place AT ALL!
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Lizette L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Bundaberg hotels

Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 4, 2012

Myself and a friend stayed here for 2 night in March 2012 and its the most disgusting place we've ever stayed. Being backpackers we were used to hostels but this was just rank!
We arrived looking for work but the hostel staff were unfriendly and simply told us there wasnt any, no help whatsoever!
Our room was spacious but there were still Xmas decorations! The room smelled of smoke as people had been smoking on the "balcony". The mattress were thin and our roomate was covered in bites from bed bugs! They provide a sheet and a pillow but no blanket or cover! There was also only one single plug socket in a room of 8.
The ladies toilets were absolutely disgusting, there was one sink which absolutely stunk and made it difficult to brush teeth! Neither of the toilet cubicles had a lock and were often out of loo roll.
The kitchen was next door to the toilet and absolutely stunk! A word of warning, there are no communal crockery or cutlery which they dont bother to tell you at check in! So we had to eat out of a sauce pan! Unfortunately our room mate saw two rats running through the kitchen, the whole place was a health hazzard!!!
The communal areas were no better, full of old rotting mismatched sofas. On the first day i noticed a mouldy bag of food on one of the sofas which was literally crawling with ants and smelt awful - this obviously had been there for some time!!
We stayed here for two nights and that was too long - I honestly dont know how people stay here for months without catching some sort of disease! Disgusting!!

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
7 Thank harriet b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Warrington, North West
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 13, 2010

There's a saying written on the wall saying 'you cry twice when you come to the Federal - once when you arrive, and once when you leave', and this is completely true. When i first arrived in the Fed i thought it was a complete dive - writing all over the walls, centuries old sofas in the tv room, manky kitchen and tiny dorm rooms. But i learnt to never ever judge a book by it's cover. After a couple of weeks i felt comfortable enough to cancel all my plans - i had booked all my travel up to Cairns, including hostels and greyhound and cancelled it all at last minute to stay and im so glad i did! You need to be a special type of person to stay at the fed, to put up with the hostel, those many days in the stand-by club when you first arrive, 5am starts and those many days out in the fields. To be honest all the negatives bring everyone closer together. Everyone sits out in the beer garden together talking, drinking, having a laugh in the sun. It's a great life. When i left after 5 months i was more upset than i was when i left home - the people who stay there are truly amazing, and really do become your family. So if your going to Bundy, please please stay at the Fed - when people ask me what was my favourite part of my 11 month trip around the world, i say wholeheartedly that my time at the fed was my favourite. I was the happiest i have ever been in my life when i was there and miss it so much! Keep the Bundy dream alive and the goon times rollin'!!!

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
Helpful?
2 Thank RachiBabes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
England
Level Contributor
30 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 28, 2010

I thought I'd stop off in Bundaberg to break up the trip from Airlie Beach to Hervey Bay- mistake number 1! The hostel only had people who were staying long term to work. I was put in a room with some girls who'd basically decorated the room & felt like I was intruding. I was given a top bunk with no ladder after just having told the guy that I'd hurt my shoulder surfing- so it was really difficult for me to get into bed (apart from that the staff were friendly). Couldn't eat while I was at the hostel because I couldn't find any cutlery/crockery anywhere. The walk-in fridge was locked at 9pm, hadn't seen any notices about that anywhere so when I went to get a drink I found I couldn't. The bathroom was disgusting, mud everywhere, blocked toilet etc.!

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank BeccaH283
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Federal Backpackers

Property: Federal Backpackers
Address: 221 Bourbong St, Bundaberg, Queensland 4670, Australia
Location: Australia > Queensland > Bundaberg
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #15 of 18 Specialty Lodging in Bundaberg
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 24

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