Homey Hostel – Your 2nd Home in Taipei10 March, 2016
Getting to Homey
Situated in heart of Taipei city, Homey Hostel is very convenient to get to. Most international tourists will land in Taoyuan International Airport. From here, there are several options you can take to get to Homey Hostel.
1. Ubus → High Speed Railway (HSR) → 7 minute walk
From the arrival gate, take the escalator down to the basement and find the Ubus counter. Each ticket to Taoyuan HSR station costs 30TWD (SGD1.30) and the bus departs every few minutes. The trip takes roughly 15 mins to the HSR station. Once there, you can purchase your HSR ticket to Taipei Main station. A ticket costs TWD160 (SGD7.00). The HSR is very comfortable, with plenty of legroom and there is a food trolley on board. It is Taiwan’s fastest mode of transport and will get you into the city in a mere 25 minutes. Once you reach Taipei Main station, come out to the first floor lobby and exit from Exit North 3.
2. Express bus to Taipei West Station Terminal A
If you wish to avoid the hassle of transferring from the Ubus to the HSR, there is an alternative express bus provided by Kuo Kuang (國光). The ticket of this express bus can be purchased at the same place as the Ubus and costs TWD125 (SGD5.40) each. However, the journey is slightly longer and it will take you slightly over an hour to reach the city. You will be dropped off at the east side of Taipei Railway Station. From there, you can walk towards Exit North 3.
At Exit North 3, there is a L shape pedestrian crossing across Civic Blvd. Cross the road here and walk down towards the Macdonald’s sign at the end of the lane. Turn left onto ChangAn W. Rd at the Mac’s sign and you will see Homey Hostel slightly further down. It is located in a commercial building on the 7th floor, No. 180. Look up for the large sign outside the building!
Checking in is relatively hassle free. Once you reach the 7th floor, turn left to their common area.
You will need your passport for verification purposes. Once you’re checked in, they will pass you your room key (1 per person), a clean set of bedsheets and and your pillow casing. Though this may sound troublesome, fitting in your clean set of bedsheets and pillow casing on your own will ensure that the set belongs to you and is clean, given the high turnover rate at Homey Hostel. Your room key has 2 purposes – to open your door and to be inserted into a slot at your bedside to use the bedside light as well as the aircon.
The Different Homey Room Types Available & Our 4-bed Bunk Room
Homey Hostel owns the entire 7th floor as well as half of the 8th floor, with 15 rooms on each floor. They offer a 4-bed bunk dorm, an 8-bed bunk dorm as well as private rooms with either a bunk bed or a double bed.
|Cost Per Night (TWD)||Cost Per Night (SGD)|
|Economic Private Twin Bunk||1260 (2 pax)||54.80|
|Standard Private Twin Bunk||1460 (2 pax)||63.50|
|Standard Double Room||1460 (2 pax)||63.50|
4-bed bunk dorm
Standard Double Room
All the prices include breakfast that will be provided in the common area every morning from 8.30am to 11am. They serve a simple breakfast that consists of bread (which you can toast) with a selection of jam, butter, chocolate and peanut butter. There is also fresh milk and juices, as well as fresh fruits available. Coffee is charged at TWD40 (SGD1.70) per capsule. Personally, the breakfast is not fantastic, but it is good enough to kickstart your day.
Our mixed dorm (4-bed bunk room) on the 8th floor was clean and spacious. Each person is assigned a small locker in the room, so you can lock up your valuables. The cleaning lady comes in every morning to clean the room, so you do not have to worry about the cleanliness! Do note that there is no eating and drinking allowed in the room but you can make use the 24-hour common room on the 7th floor to do so. There is free Wifi available at all areas on the 7th and 8th floor.
Homey Hostel promotes a homely feeling and encourages their guests to interact with each other. The 24-hour common room has comfortable sofas to lie on, tables to do your work or play games, a foosball table, a kitchen with basic cooking facilities, a fridge as well as a water dispenser. You can easily strike an interesting conversation with a fellow Homey Guest in the common room as they come from all walks of life. The employees of Homey are also very friendly and willing to help if you have any queries. They even helped us place several reservations!
If you’re intending to stay for a longer period of time, you can do your laundry on the 7th floor, where both washing machines and dryers are available.
Unisex toilets are available on both the 7th and 8th floors. One thing that deters most people from staying in hostels is the thought of having to share the toilet with others, especially if the toilet is dirty and not maintained well. However, the toilets at Homey were really clean and they even have an employee to keep it clean at all times, switching on a fan when the floors are wet so that they will dry faster! We advise you to plan your time to bathe, as it can get quite crowded at night when everyone returns to the hostel.
Services and Activities Provided & Attractions Nearby
Homey Hostel provides various services for their guests:
- HSR discount if you are a foreigner
- Booking service for a pick-up (TWD1200) or drop-off (TWD1000) to the airport
- You can buy a Chunghwa Telecom 4G Unlimited Internet phone card from them
- Homey will help you to reserve a spot in the Starbucks on level 35 of the famous Taipei 101. Do note that you will need to make a reservation at least 2 days in advance for this and that there is a minimum spending of TWD200 per pax in Starbucks! But this definitely beats paying TWD500 to take the lift all the way up as you will still get to enjoy the view with a cup of coffee in your hand!
To promote a homely culture, Homey organizes various interesting activities for their guests to take part in free-of-charge!
Mondays, 7pm: They bring their guests to different authentic Taiwanese dinner spots, mainly in the Ximending area.
Wednesday evenings (5pm till late): Beer night, where guests are invited to gather in the common area to play games and drink beer at a discounted rate. Fridays, 7pm: They take their guests to track at Elephant hill.
Sundays, 7pm: They bring their guests on different walking tours in Taiwan.
Occasionally, they will hold other activities around the festive seasons like Chinese New Year shopping so be sure to check with their employees what activities are going on during your stay.
We went on a food tour with Homey when we arrived on a Monday night. It so happened that the temperature took a dip when we arrived, so it was perfect to have steamboat. The dinner was arranged by the Homey staff, with a total of 10 of us at the dinner. Everyone was very friendly and open to sharing. The food was really tasty as well and we got to experience an authentic Taiwanese steamboat dinner, which we would have never tried as it was filled with locals and was definitely not a typical tourist spot.
Situated at the Taipei Main Station, Ximending (Singapore’s Orchard Road) is just one stop away from Homey Hostel on the blue MRT line (Bannan Line). There is plenty to shop and eat at Ximending and is definitely a must go for tourists.
Taipei is also extremely famous for their night markets – Ningxia night market is a mere 8-minute walk away from Homey. Unlike other night markets, Ningxia night market consists mainly of food stalls with all sorts of delicious Taiwanese snacks. You will not go hungry before you sleep!
All in all, we had a very positive experience at our stay in Homely Hostel, from the warm welcome by their staff to the cleanliness of the rooms and toilets. Their service was great as they were always willing to help and we felt that they had developed a culture that not only provided their guests with a place to stay but also a place where you can interact with others. We will highly recommend Homey Hostel as its location is easily accessible from almost anywhere in Taipei City.
This post is brought to you by Homey Hostel.