Hostel Interviews

France Italy Germany Spain

Neville Millen

Neville Millen

  1. Current Age?

  2. Nationality

  3. Where do you live now?
    Torquay, Victoria, Australia

  4. Occupation
    univerity lecturer

  5. When it comes to travel accommodation (but leaving out crashing with friends, family or people you meet on the road), how often do you stay in hostels?
    Sometimes a hostel, sometimes a hotel or B&B, etc

  6. Where have you hosteled?
    Africa, Asia, Australia, Canada, Europe, USA

  7. Would you stay in a hostel again on future trips?

  8. Why or why not?
    I teach people of all ages and feel comfortable around younger people. They give me a lot of insight and I learn to be a better person and in tune with their vierw of reality (I am a sociologist).

  9. Out of all your experiences hosteling, what was your:
    • Best Moment
      Waking up to the steam train coming around the bend across green fields in Phouy; Cornwall after battling fog and sea mist to find the place on the moors.

    • Worst Moment
      Having my stuff nicked in Miami Beach.

    • Biggest Hurdle, Obstacle or Difficulty?
      Overcoming prejudice from ageist 20-somethings.

    • Biggest surprise?
      Over dinner finding seven other people in Kopje Lodge hostel in Harare, Zimbabwe, who agreed for me to drive them to the Zambesi River for the adventure of a lifetime at Mana Pools National Park.

  10. Do you ever book any of your hostel accommodation in advance?

  11. Why or why not?
    I like to be organised well in advance, and this allows me to relax and absorb every day and write without too much clutter. I am also a poublished travel journalist in Australia with a paper with a half-million readers.

  12. Who is the most memorable person you met in a hostel and why?
    A 30-year-old children's clothes designer from New York with wild red hair, who I met in the old rome area of Rome. We stayed in a dumpy place in Octavia near St Peters. She had overcome epilepsy and I was impressed with her vitality and love of every day on earth.

  13. Why do you stay in hostels, as opposed to other types of accommodation?
    I enjoy the sea of humanity and it is a great leveller. Sometime my colleagues live in ivory towers. I choose to lower the drawbridge and gain a real life. Zen and the art of people collecting.

  14. Is there a hostel you'd recommend to other travelers? If so, what is it and where?
    HI Ostello Venezia, Isle Giudecca/Venice, Italy

  15. What is the biggest myth people have about hostels and hosteling?
    That they are too old to enjoy the places. That the places are dumps.

  16. Why do you like to travel?
    It frees the imagination. It is an art form in itself. I have become a sort of semi-professional travel writer.

  17. What is your advice for other travelers wanting to stay in hostels?
    Make it an art form. Write down your experiences and share these with your kids as they grow up and help them with the funds to travel (I did this for my kids). They have never looked back!