14 May, 2014 |

What are the room types?

  • We have mixed dorms and female dorm rooms. Dorm rooms have 4 – 9 beds and while you can request a smaller room, we cannot guarantee it.  
  • We have Double Beds in a Mixed Dorm which is a full size bed for two people or just for one person. There are typically 2 of these beds in one room so they can be a Quad Private Room.  
  • Triple Private Rooms have one double bed on the bottom and one single bed above, bunk bed style.  
  • Two Bed Private Rooms have two single beds, bunk bed style.

How much does it cost?

It depends on the time of year and room type. Our dorm rooms are $35 – $51, Double Beds in a Mixed Dorm are $60 – $100, Triple rooms are $90 – $151, Two Bed Privates are $80 – $135, and Standard Privates are $80 – $135.

If I’m in a shared room, where can I put my bags?

For each guest in dorm rooms, we provide a locker underneath the bed. They are fairly large, around 3’x3’x18”. It can easily hold a large checked bag. You can bring your own padlock or buy one at the desk for $5.

How many beds are in the dorm rooms?

Each dorm room has 4 – 9 beds. We do not differentiate our dorms by the number of beds, so you can request to be in a smaller dorm, but we cannot guarantee it.

Can I be in the same room as my friends?

If you book more than one dorm bed in the same reservation, we will make sure you are in the same room with other guests in your party. If you book separately from your friends, let us know ASAP that you would like to be in the same room and we will do our best to accommodate you.  However, this is dependent upon availability and we cannot guarantee it.

What’s the bathroom situation like?

While we do not provide ensuite bathrooms, each bathroom is single occupancy. So once you close the door, you have your own toilet, shower, and sink. We have 10 bathrooms ranging in size throughout the hostel.

Do I need to be a foreigner to stay at the Green Tortoise?

Every guest must currently reside outside of the Bay Area and have proof of onward travel. However, if you are a Bay Area resident, we would be happy to give you recommendations of other places to stay in city.

How old do I need to be to stay at the Green Tortoise? Is there an age limit?

To stay in a dorm room, you need to be over 18 years old. If not, you can stay in a private room with a parent or guardian. We do not allow anybody under 18 to stay without one. There is no age limit and we host people of all ages. Our median age is 20 – 30 years old and we definitely do have a younger vibe, but anybody over 18 is welcome.

What do I need to bring to check-in?

To check in, you will need to bring a valid government issued photo ID from outside the Bay Area.  You can bring any foreign driver’s licence or non-US passports. If you present a US passport, you will also need to have proof of travel i.e. train ticket, plane ticket, or bus ticket.

When can I check in?

Check in is officially at 4:00 pm. If you happen to arrive early and your room is not ready yet, feel free to stop by to store your bags (free of charge), use the facilities, and grab some free breakfast (until 10am). If you’re arriving at night, no worries – our reception desk is open 24/7. If you are arriving after 10:00pm, please inform us by phone or email.

How can I get to the hostel?

  • There are numerous shuttle companies. We have a special deal with Airport Express SF and they will drive you to the Green Tortoise Hostel for $14 per person. You need to book directly through them and tell them that you are staying at the Green Tortoise. Their number 415-775-5121. It would be best to call them at Baggage Claim and have them pick you up there. If you cannot contact them then go upstairs and find them at Arrivals at “Ground Transportation”. They drive shuttles until 9:45 pm.
  • There are other shuttles that will drive you here 24/7 and cost around $20 per person.
  • You can take the subway (called BART, $8.95). Their last train leaves SFO at 11:45pm.  Take any train except the Millbrae train and get off at the Montgomery Station. From there, walk north on Montgomery St. to Broadway. Make a left on Broadway and you will find the hostel on the right hand side of the street, at the corner of Broadway and Kearny. The walk takes about 15 minutes.
  • The Greyhound station is located on Folsom and Main St at the Transbay Terminal. If you prefer to take a taxi, the fare should be less than $10. Otherwise, you can walk (25 – 30 min.) Walk east on Folsom street and turn left on Embarcadero. Walk up Embarcadero and turn left on Broadway and walk about 6 blocks to Broadway and Kearny, we are on the right side. Or you can take the city MUNI bus #10 or #12 ($2.50) from the corner of 2nd St. and Stevenson St. Get off at Pacific St. and Kearny St. and walk 1 block up Kearny to Broadway St.
  • There is no train depot in the city, so the Amtrak shuttle bus will leave you at the drop-off point of your choice. The Financial District drop off at the Hyatt Regency Hotel would be the closest, about a 15 minute walk. Walk up California St. until Kearny St. then turn right and continue up Kearny until Broadway St.

When is check out?

Check out is anytime before 11 am. If you are in a dorm room, Double Bed in a Mixed Dorm, and Triple, please strip off the fitted sheet, flat sheet, and pillow case(s) and bring them down to the reception. You are welcome to store your luggage for free in our luggage area until 10 pm on the day you check out. If you need to store your bags for longer, we rent out lockers for $4 per day.

How many nights can I stay?

We allow guests to stay a maximum of 7 nights. Depending on the time of year, you may extend your stay beyond 7 nights with the approval of a manager.

How can I make a group reservation?

To make a group reservation, you can either fill out our Group Booking Form or email us at [email protected] For groups of 5+, we do require a full prepayment with a credit card. Depending on the size of the group or the amount, we may arrange a wire transfer.

Do you allow pets?

No, we do not allow pets.

Do I need to make a reservation or can I just show up?

We recommend that you make a reservation since we do tend to book up, especially in the spring, summer, and early fall. However, you can always just walk in and see if we have space.

Do I need to bring my own linens?

Nope! We provide all of your bedding. We actually ask that you do not bring any personal bedding or camping equipment up to your room. If you have these items, we can store it for free in our luggage storage area until you check out.

Do you offer student, military, or senior discounts?

Unfortunately, we do not offer any discounts but we would still love to have you come and stay with us!

How can I pay?

We do not take any prepayment unless this has been arranged with us prior to your arrival. You will pay for the full stay when you arrive. We accept cash, Visa, or MasterCard. If you would like to pay by credit card, it is $1 more per person per night.  

Can I bring my own food?

Absolutely! We ask that you consume all food and drinks in our kitchen and common areas instead of your room to help us keep them clean and bugs-free. We have a fully equipped kitchen and guest fridges for you to store any food and drinks. There are pens, markers, and labels in the kitchen to mark your items.

Are meals provided?

We have free breakfast every morning from 7:30 – 10:00am and free dinner every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 7:00pm. We are a community, so we ask for volunteers to help prep the meals together at 5 pm.

Is there a curfew?

Nope! Come and go as you please. We’re at the front desk 24/7. Simply ring the doorbell for entry after 7:30 pm.

Is it safe?

While in San Francisco, much like any other city, you need to be aware of your surroundings. Overall, San Francisco is a very safe city full of helpful people who enjoy giving advice to tourists. The Green Tortoise is located in North Beach, one of SF’s most tourist friendly neighborhoods. While North Beach has some adult clubs, The Green Tortoise locks our doors at 7:30 pm and requires each person coming in to show their key as proof that they are staying here.

I'm having booking issues...help!

Sometimes the internet is weird! Call our 24-hour front desk at 415-834-1000 and we can help you make your reservation over the phone. Please make sure you have a credit card ready as we do require one to make a booking.


Where do I park?

We don’t have our own parking lot, but we have a deal with a nearby garage. Please come to the hostel first to unload your luggage and pick up a coupon for discounted parking ($20 – $30 depending on the size of your vehicle). We have a Passenger Loading Zone just outside our door on Broadway.


We recommend not bringing a car into the city, or if you’re renting one to return it before checking in.


Public holidays and special events may increase parking rates.
There is street parking in residential areas, but it is difficult to park legally for longer periods of time. Parking tickets and tow away fees are incredibly expensive. If you do choose to park on the street, please make sure to pay extra close attention to tow away zones, curb colors, street cleaning days, colored meters, and hour of operations on meters.