Hostels and night shelters

About night shelters and hostels

Not all emergency hostels and night shelters are the same. Some are of a very high standard but some are not.

Many hostels and night shelters have strict rules. Some close during the day and you might have to be in quite early at night.

You may not be able to have visitors, and alcohol and drugs are usually banned.

If you break the rules of the hostel, you could be evicted. If this happens, it could make it more difficult for you to find other emergency housing.

About night shelters

Most night shelters are free. These are usually very basic but can provide a place to stay for a few nights and often some food.

Some areas only have night shelters that are open during the winter, usually from December to March. They are sometimes called cold weather shelters.

Many night shelters are set up temporarily in churches, offices or schools that aren’t being used.

About hostels

Hostels are usually less basic and will ask you to pay.

In some places you may get your own room but more often you will have to share a bedroom with someone of the same sex. Most hostels don’t accept couples. They may have shared facilities such as kitchens and bathrooms.

Some hostels provide meals but you usually have to pay for them.