How to choose where to stay when travelling

What is the difference between a hotel, motel, and hostel?


The hotel is a publicly accessible building or buildings functionally connected, with a minimum of 15 shelter rooms, which offer basic and additional tourist services related to the residence of tourists. Hotels can be 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 stars.


The hostel is cheaper than the hotel and with a lower standard of service. It is characterized mostly by the fact that in the rooms there are between 3 and 9 beds (sometimes more, often bunk), usually with shared bathrooms in the hallway.


The motel is a type of roadside hotel for residence and service of auto tourists, located outside a settlement next to an active transport hub or highway.

Categorization of hotels

The categorization of hotels is done in order to unify the standards so that people know what to expect from a hotel. It reflects the hotel's compliance with a wide range of criteria such as standard and room equipment, availability of restaurants, and a number of other services. The higher the hotel category, the higher the standard of service offered.

✮ – One-star hotels are very modestly furnished, offering only the most basic services. The rooms are very small (about 8 sq.m. single room) and feature an aunt, wardrobe, bedside table, and sink. The bathroom may be outside the room. Please note that there is only a telephone at the reception. There may be a restaurant or snack bar.

✮✮ – The two-star hotels are small rooms (about 9 sq. m. single room), and in addition to the main furniture, they have a private bathroom, telephone, and TV. Breakfast is usually included in the rate. The hotel provides a garage or parking for hotel guests.

✮✮✮ – The three-star hotels are mid-range, whose rooms have their own bathroom, TV, telephone, and air conditioning. A daily change of linen and towels is available at the 3-star hotels, as well as room cleaning. The hotel must have secure parking, a restaurant, a laundry room, as well as a means of entertainment and recreation.

✮✮✮✮ – The four-star hotels are of a higher standard, whose rooms are equipped with comfortable furniture, sofa, armchairs, access to daily newspapers, etc. The 4-star hotels feature conference rooms, two restaurants, a gym, a beauty salon, and internet access in their rooms.

✮✮✮✮✮ – The 5-star hotels are luxury hotels with the highest quality of service, with extensive apartments. They are located in urban or business centers. Each of the rooms has one parking space, room service is open 24 hours a day, and reception staff speaks at least two foreign languages.

Hotels in a category above 5 stars are still rare. 

They have an extremely high standard and offer the most exclusive services and amenities. Architecturally and visually they are extremely attractive, ornate, equipped with the most advanced computer technologies, and occupy the most attractive location in the settlement.

Note that the categorization of hotels can differ greatly from region to region of the world. For example, a two-star hotel in developed countries can often meet the standards of a four-star hotel in Asia or Africa.

Hotel Room Types

Hotel rooms are subdivided according to their size and number of beds:

Single RoomSGL – one-person room with a single bed. Depending on the standard of the hotel, the room space can vary between 8 and 14 sq.m. M.

Twin for Sole Use – a room with two beds designed for one person.

Twin Room - Room for Two. This room type has 2 single beds.

Couple (Double Room – DBL) – this is also a room for two, but with one double bed (for couples). In the US, these rooms often have two double beds.

Triple Room – room for 3 people, usually with 3 single beds.

Quad – quadruple room for 4 people, usually with 4 single beds.

Dormitory room – this room type has many beds, often bunk beds. They are available in hostels and are usually much cheaper than traditional rooms.

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