Some folk may have a great experience at the Enter Tromsø Backpack Hotel, but in over 40 years of travel and adventures all over the world this is without doubt

the worst Hotel that I NEVER never even got to stay at.

Here’s the story…

I booked a room at Enter Tromsø Backpack Hotel through Expedia for one week at a cost of $1,030.40 including taxes.

More than a week before travelling I had a change in personal circumstances that meant that this part of my trip was unlikely to proceed (a situation not covered by travel insurance).  I contacted Expedia and requested that the booking be cancelled.

Expedia were sympathetic to my circumstances and contacted the Hotel by telephone.  In their words the Hotel

‘… was extremely rude and hung up.’

That’s not good.  The Expedia agent explained that they had had never been hung up on before.  Expedia persisted with the enquiry and eventually advised that the Enter Tromsø Backpack Hotel would not cancel the booking under their terms of contract.

I proceeded with the business part of my trip and ended up getting to Tromsø after all.  That’s handy because I had a booking that I had paid for in full, even though I only needed just three days of accommodation.

When I turned up at the Enter Tromsø Backpack Hotel they advised that they had resold my room because I had not turned up before 6 pm on the first day of the booking!

Run that past me again.

    I’d paid for a room in full, the Hotel had refused a refund, and now they had resold my room because I had not turned up by 6 pm on the day of the booking.

There is nothing in the contract that gives this hotel the right to resell my room under any circumstances so I asked to speak with the manager.  I was told that the manager was not available on weekends.

So I asked for either:

    a refund, or

    the room that I had paid for, or

    a copy of the terms of contract that allowed them to resell my room.

The receptionist explained that he was new and could not produce the terms of contract (a statement at odds with his knowledge of the conditions that he quickly brought up on the monitor, but I’ll give him the benefit of doubt), refused to provide a room or a refund and told me to contact Expedia.

The receptionist then proceeded to threaten to call the police.  Now that’s an interesting method of resolving a contractual dispute!  The receptionist initially refused to give his name, but finally relented when it became apparent that I wasn’t going anywhere fast despite his threat to call the police.



So I never got to say at the Enter Tromsø Backpack Hotel, they’ve pocketed my money (probably including the taxes which I figure should rightly be paid to the Norwegian Government), and made an extortionate profit by reselling my room.

Later that day I emailed Expedia and explained what had occurred and asked them to re-seek a refund.  They contacted the hotel and were advised that:

    “The guest had reservation 7th of February but showed up 11th of February to claim his room. When he didn’t get the room he started to be very impolite and was threatening the staff to come in every day to make a living hell for them. The guest is not welcome there anymore and hotel will call security if he comes to the hotel.”  


Well no one can say that I haven’t given the Hotel the right of reply, but their  statement doesn’t address why they had resold my room and their description of events is wild fantasy.  Sure, I was annoyed but I was not impolite, abusive or threatening (and I have two witnesses that will attest to this Your Honour).  And for the record I only ever visited the hotel once.

If you had paid for a hotel room wouldn’t you reasonably expect to be provided with that room, or a refund, or at the very lest a valid reason why the room had been resold?


On the basis of this unpleasant and expensive experience I recommend that you avoid the Enter Tromsø Backpack Hotel like the plague.  You might also share this story with anyone you know planning on visiting Tromsø to see the Northern Lights because chances are the Enter Tromsø Backpack Hotel will make their trip memorable for all the wrong reasons.