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How empty are hostels in the winter?

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Hello,

I am a 24 year old male planning a 4 week trip on my own starting in December and ending in January, probably spending most of my time in Spain and France. I travelled through Europe a few summers ago and it was nice being able to meet friendly people at the hostel and spend the day with them. I am wondering if there is a much smaller chance of that happening this time around, since I will be travelling in the off season?

There are lots of threads with tips on traveling through Europe in my winter, which almost seems to answer my question, but for those of you who have been during the winter, are the hostels totally empty? Are there no/very few fellow travellers around?

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