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“Worse than terrible”

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Hostel 639 Kensal Green Backpackers
Ranked #639 of 837 Speciality Lodging in London
Doncaster, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Worse than terrible”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 March 2012

When we arrived at Victoria coach station I rang the number (given online) for the free Courtesy coach to come and take us to the hostel. 1st and 2nd call went straight to answerphone. I rang hostel and was told that I had the wrong number. Instead of contacting the driver themselves they gave me another number. I rang the number and was told we could maybe get picked up at 5p.m. It was 1.30 so I said we needed picking up now please and the guy just hung up on me. My daughter rang and was told that the driver was unavailable but maybe he could pick us up at 5.30. Apparently he was out shopping. We were told to make our own way there maybe bus or underground. We got the bus(4 x £2.30) and arrived an hour later as it was quite a walk from the bus stop. We had quite a wait as there were quite a few people either booking in or complaining. When we voiced our complaint the young lady on reception just shrugged her shoulders. Then we were told that we did not have a booking. She could not check on the pc as this was still not working so just had names written on a piece of paper. The manager was called inside from her 'fag break' and she disappeared with my paperwork. 10mins later she returned and said that it was ok and that they did have a room for us...at this point, I now know that. we should have just left and found somewhere else to stay...We paid what was owed in cash and then was asked for a £10 key deposit. As we did not have any more cash we said we would go and find a cash machine. At this point my daughters passport was taken from her hand and told she would get it back when we paid the £10. Luckily we had €10 so she took that.
The lift was not working...so 3 flights of stairs later we were ready for a nice sit down...1 chair and 2 very uncomfortable bunk beds with well worn mattresses,pillows and blankets inside duvet cases were what we found in our room. The sink and shower seemed ok until water was run then it did not drain away until much later. The communal toilets were ok. We went out for the evening and came back hoping for a good nights sleep..no chance..Very loud music and people shouting until 4.30a.m ish.
We were up at 8 for breakfast..sainsburys basic cornflakes and cold, almost toasted bread, juice and tea/coffee/chocolate. Dining area not nearly big enough and people were just stood about eating breakfast.
We went out for the day and came back at around 10pm to find our room door open. My husband went down to complain and was told to come back if anything had been taken then they would check cctv. Apparently the cleaner ( I use the term loosely) sometimes forgets to lock the doors. We were lucky as nothing was missing. The people on reception just did not seem to care and again just shrugged. After another sleepless night we were up and out of there and will definately never go back. Travelodge are much safer,cheaper,cleaner and more comfortable and where we will be staying in future.

Room Tip: Stay somewhere else!!
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Janet B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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452 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    31
    77
    74
    265
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23
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Rating summary
  • Location
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    2 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    1.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    2 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    2 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (46)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
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English first
London
1 review
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 February 2012

When we got here, their computer's were broken and had no record of our booking, which we'd already paid for. We had to force them to take us in. (When we made the booking we tried to do it over the phone but they refused - "You have to do it online." "That's fine but can you let me know your prices?" Then they hung up.)
The room was fairly standard for a hostel, not dirty or messy or anything, but there is a shower in the room for some reason.
The staff mostly don't speak English, and those that do seem mostly too stupid to understand what you are saying anyway.
Anyone can get a key to your room just by asking for it and putting down a ten pound deposit - no proof of even staying in the hotel is required.
The restaurant shuts at 7pm for some reason and so is not ideal to eat dinner at.
Mattresses feel like they haven't been changed since WWI.
You could smell pot everywhere, constantly.

My main problem was the staff not speaking English or just being plain stupid and giving you blank expressions, or laughing and making fun of you for something they thought you were saying.

Room Tip: Just pick a new place.
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ben Q
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these London hotels

Malta
Level Contributor
20 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 December 2011

Myself, and 10 other friends of mine stayed at this hostel from the 8th December up till the 12th December 2011.

To Begin With, We booked an eight bed Dorm all for ourselves and a 4 bed private room, on our check-in we were informed that the eight bed dorm wasn't available and that instead we would have been given two rooms of four beds each. Upon our return later that night, there was a terrible smell of sewage in one of the rooms, and after complaining we were assigned another room. The Morning after, we we're given our eight bed dorm as promised.

The Staff

The Hostel is managed by a group of youth, If I'm not mistaken I think most of them are french. Well, I can't complain about the staff, most of them were helpful and approachable.

The Rooms

The Rooms were very small, yet again we didn't expect any better. In each rooms there's a small shower in a corner, and it's very difficult to change inside the shower, so make sure you're comfortable with the poeple you'll be sharing the room with since you'll have to dress and undress before their eyes. The Rooms were 'Clean' Enough, at least our room wasn't that bad as described in other reviews (apart from the 1st room we had!). Note, that the mattresses are the once they used during WW1 so be prepared for a rough night!

The Shared Toilets

The Shared toilets were always clean enough, and I think it's the only thing in this hostel that met and exceeded my expectations.

The Hostel Common Areas.

The Corridor in the fourth floor has a very dirty carpet and it smells awful, Cheese smells much better. The Corridors in the other floors are not smelly. The Cafe/Internet room smells of sweat, but you won't pass any time in there, so it shouldn't be a deterrant. The Living Area, is always crowded with people, very nice if you like to meet some strange new friends, if you're not sociable it's not your place. During our stay this hostel was occupied by very 'strange' & 'Dirty Looking' individuals! I'm not sure if it's a coincidence but they kinda put as off :/

The Location

Kensal Green is just outside central London, but near enough with just 15 minutes by tube to Marblearch. The Location seems safe enough, as we also walked the streets at 3 am and didn't encounter any problems or see anything unlawful.


Well, as one can understand it's not the best Hostel, and you'll find better accomodation in london if you're willing to pay a little bit more or if you book well in advance. I would only suggest this hostel if it's your last option, well in that case you can give it a try :)

Room Tip: Don't Stay on the fourth floor! It's Stinks! :/
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  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Franklyn25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tczew, Poland
Level Contributor
261 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 136 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 December 2011

So... It's not a place for you if you're looking for a luxurious place. It's not for you if you're a loner, a cleanness-freak, don't like making friends etc. It IS a great place for you, though, if you are a real traveller, love meeting new people from all over the world, chatting, singing...If the atmosphere is more important to you than the conditions. Well, I've been staying there for nearly 10 years now. I could choose a different one - none of them give you such a friendly climate, though. Remember to always take all you precious belongings with you whenever you leave for town and this is it! It's also a good place if money matters to you.

  • Stayed August 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank christiano_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Minneapolis, Minnesota
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 November 2011

I stayed at this hostel with a group of friends in a privet 4 bedroom room. We left to go sight seeing and when we came back our LOCKED room was broken into, they stole my laptop, my friends entire backpack with his keys, cell phone, and laptop in it, and my other friends ereader- THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS WORTH OF STUFF. The theft even relocked our door. The hostel claims that it wasn't a member of staff and that it's easy to get a key. They had out room keys like candy.
Most of the staff didn't speak english and when we demaned a refund they would only give us back enough for one night.
Our room itself smelled so bad that we thought something died in it, I'm not exagerating, when you walked into the room the smell hit you like a brick wall. The beds were very lumpy and the pillows were so flat that you'd have to fold them in half. They only have you change the sheets, but the do not wash the duvet covers.

Do not stay at this hostel even if its last resort; it's not worth risking your property getting stolen and sleeping in a dirty room.

Room Tip: Do not book here, book another place in advance
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Jessicore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hostel 639 Kensal Green Backpackers

Property: Hostel 639 Kensal Green Backpackers
Address: 639 Harrow Road | Kensal Green, London NW10 5NU, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > London
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #639 of 837 Speciality Lodging in London
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): €
Hotel Class:2 star — Hostel 639 Kensal Green Backpackers 2*
Number of rooms: 410
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Hostel 639 Hotel London
Hostel 639 Kensal Green Backpackers London

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