Working in hostels in Krabi has blessed me with a constant stream of backpackers to meet, get to know and make friendships. I have met hundreds of backpackers from around the world. Some of become really good friends of mine and others i’m glad to see the back of! Even though everyone is unique in their own way, there are definitely different types of backpackers. Which one are you?
1. The Alcoholic
My hostels were party hostels. We would run pub crawls, beer pong tournaments and give out free shots and buckets. So immediately, we have attracted the backpackers that like to get drunk. But, there is always that guy and that girl that go too far… He’s having a Chang beer with his breakfast while she’s dancing on the bar by 6pm half naked. These people are not usually that interactive by day as they’re constantly hungover but by night, that’s when they shine. And fall. And puke.
2. The Hippie Tree Hugger
Ao Nang in particular attracts these guys. With the increasing amount of reggae music bars popping up and an actual island dediated to it (Tonsai), these ‘make love, not war’ sentimentals come from near and far to find themselves and their chakras and become eternally grateful for their beautiful lives with a little help from the weed and mushrooms. You’ll see them floating around in their tye-dye, with flowers in the hair, eating vegan salad from that ridiculously overpriced ‘Organic’ cafe.
3. The Arrogant Arsehole
Now, I have come across a fair few of these ridiculous people who think its perfectly fine to make a soppy Skypecall to their dog at 4am, get up at 6am and have a full blown chat with each other, cackles included. I mean, I don’t need sleep and I think the people the next hostel over would love to hear about the time you got drunk on a plane and started to re-enact ‘Bridesmaids’ HAHAHA!! Shut up. These people tend to have naturally loud voices, love to talk about themselves constantly and have a weird obsession for plastic bags.
4. The Golden Oldie
You’ll find this guy in hostels with no age limit wearing a pink pineapple shirt and shorts a little too tight for his waistline. He wants to relive his youth and be down with the kids. First thoughts are always ‘OMG shock horror!’ But once you get to know him over a few pints, you cant help but love him. He’s crazy, wild and full of stories and inspiration. And he can drink you under the table.
5. The Travelling Virgin
It’s his first time leaving the comforts of Mom and Dad to backpack the world solo and despite a rocky start with fear and homesickness, he is on top of the world and finds everything just a little bit too exciting. “OMG IT’S AMAZING!!! I COULD CRY!!! OMG!!” It can be annoying to more experienced backpackers who have ‘been there, done that’ but being around someone with fresh eyes on the world can help draw you back to perspective.
6. The Inbetweeners
Ever seen the show? Well believe it or not, there are groups of guys that resemble Simon, Jay, Neil and …… in banter and personality to an absolute tee! The banter on these guys is so on point, they’ve forgotten how to speak to each other normally. They wear matching elephant pants, matching bandanas and egg each other on to pull girls every night and teasing them relentlessly regardless of whether they’ve failed or succeeded.
7. The Super Trooper Pooper
Broken a bone? Can’t stop throwing up? You’d go to hospital right? Not this guy. He had food poisoning the first week and made best friends with the toilet, but that didnt stop him getting on a 8 hour sleeper bus to the middle of nowhere for a 25km hike the next day. He got infected insect bites and has to take strong antibiotics, but that didn’t stop him getting drunk every night. He broke a rib sliding down waterfalls but that didn’t stop him zip-lining down the mountain afterwards. Nothing will get in the way of his travels. Despite his bad luck, his positive attitude keeps him going. What a trooper!
8. The Loner in Love
He’s just come out of a serious long-term relationship and has decided to travel the world to find himself. He doesn’t want free shots at the bar, he doesn’t want to join the walking tour. In fact, he doesn’t want any social interaction because he is now a single and independent who can do this. Alone. You’re best off just leaving him to it.
9. The Scaredy Cat
This guy still has his arms tightly wrapped around his western comforts. He finds the local language and the people too overwhelming and doesn’t feel the need to open himself up to any new cultures. This guy is probably British, will only talk about England and football to other British guys while avoiding the Germans. He will never put himself through a Thai massage and is often found either in Burger King or MacDonalds.
10. The Barbie Girls
A little word about Asia. It’s hot. It’s humid. The roads are often non existent. Here come the Barbie Girls. Leaving their air conditioned private dorm room with pristine hair, perfect make up, honking of the most expensive Louis Vuiton perfume with high heeled wedges. This ain’t Marbella babe. Your hair will frizz up in a matter of seconds, you will look like the Joker on crack by the end of the night and you will stink of Thai cigarettes and chang beer. But it’s cool. You do you honey.
11. The Irish Clown
This guy is a legend. You will hear him before you see him and if you come across one on your travels, stick with him for a bit. Only for a while, he will get on your nerves eventually. Trust me, you will have the best time. You will be permenantly drunk, become a pro on kareoke, will go on some crazy adventures involving a scooter and dodgy backroads and gain some priceless memories. You’re gonna need Botox for them laughter lines when you get home!
12. The Travelling Couple
There are two types of travelling couples. I have met awesome couplets who are out for a good time, stays in dorms, meet new people, join the pub crawls and don’t feel the need to live in each others pockets 24/7. On the other side of the hostel is the deluxe private room where the other type of travelling couple resides. They only have time for each other, book expensive private tours and get the claws out if anyone tries to talk to the partner without their permission.
13. The “Know It All” Sav
He’s been everywhere. He’s done everything. If you’ve just had an amaing experience on a remote island, he’s had a better one on the moon. If you found your favourite asian dish, he knows how to cook it better as he was taught by monks. He makes you feel bad sometimes for not going to temples 500miles away from the main touristy town or for not volunteering for 2 months in the poorest part of Africa. However, he can also become a wealth of information and recommendations. Just be careful not to pump his head any bigger than it already is.
14. The Social Media Addict
You probably won’t be able to get to know these people as much as they’ve lost their nose in their phone. Everything they do revolves around getting that instagram pic. They go to extreme lengths and put their lives at risk for the likes and loves. Their social skills aren’t too great but they will tag you in some epic memes! And their snapchat story is on point. Just don’t expect much conversation at dinner.
15. The Quarter-Life Crisis
She’s just turned 25. Has a steady career. Owns a house. Has a boyfriend. Life is just swell. All of a sudden, she freaks out! She throws a huge spanner in the works to halt her comfortable life. She rips open her little bubble and leaves everything behind to not only travel the world, but re-invent her whole life by moving to Australia. Her family thinks she’s having a breakdown, her boss thinks she’s mentally sick and offers her personal leave. But she packed it all in and left her adult life. She’s never looked back and is having the time of her life.
writer: Sami Reed