Updated: Dec 9, 2020
We've reached a topic which has no right answer and is very debatable.
Moving to another city/state/country for college or for work always brings up the question of "where will I live?"
The major three preferred choices of accommodation are-- Hostel, Paying Guest (PG) and Renting an apartment; however, making a choice isn't a game of picking a chit. Many factors are to be taken into consideration such as the most important-- our budget, followed by many other like safety, water & electricity availability, environment, connectivity & transportation, location, extra facilities, etc
There are many options in the market, but you would choose what's best for you, what provides you with everything you need in minimum cost.
Before we go deeper, we should understand what exactly do they mean.
•Paying Guest (PG): As the name suggests, here you are the guest living in someone else's house where you pay that person an amount (i.e rent) for a small part of the house, like a room. Usually, the owner takes the responsibility for the cleaning services and providing food (again, "usually", not always).
•Hostel: This is an accommodation wherein you share the space and rent a bed along with cupboard (s). More like a dormitory.
•Renting a Flat: In this type, you rent a whole apartment from the owner, including whatever the owner has furnished his/her flat with.
It's said that hostels and PGs are relativity less expensive than renting an apartment. While making a choice with your decided budget, you should consider the facilities available and whether the place provides you with everything you need (like travel connectivity and security).
When you share a place, it's bound for it to be messy, uncleaned and a total warzone area. Hostel residents are provided with cleaning services, while PG owners may or may not do so. Being in a rented apartment you can clean it yourself when you want or you can hire a maid if you have the resources to pay her/him.
A known fact is that PG and Hostel food is not of very high quality but this fact is changing in the present and upcoming years. Now, PGs do provide healthy, nutrition filled food but usually, these places charge a higher rent than others. If you're renting a house, then you'll have to cook yourself, can hire a cook or can order take-out, but there is a limit after which you'll want homemade food.
Everyone wants a safe place to live, where he/she can live peacefully without any danger or fear. Watchmen are placed nowadays to keep a check on things in the Hostel or PG. If the apartment you've rented is in a society building (CHS) then there will be security guards positioned outside. Apart from outside security, inside security cannot be wholly provided. Stealing done by roommate/s is one of the major questions again where security cannot be successfully provided.
Other facilities include washing machines, air conditioners, Wifi and television cable. Hostels don't provide this and if they do then there's a common room where it's all present instead of in every room. PGs also majority time have such facilities available in the common area. If renting a flat, then the cost of rent will increase in proportion to the quantity and quality of services provided.
When you're sharing a room or space with someone or with many someones' then you lack privacy (sometimes even in the washroom & toilet area if it's a big sharing one). Renting a flat will provide you with absolute privacy and total freedom.
There are many more points which can be discussed, but in the end, it all depends upon your requirements and resources. Every place has its own advantages, disadvantages and fun. You may not remember what you studied, but you'll always remember the hostel/PG/apartment you lived in, the problems faced, the rivalries fought and the parties organised and enjoyed!