(I have only experienced with hostels in the USA.)
I have found that hostels, though at first seeming a good option for a traveler or occassionally for a homeless person, are one of the worst options for a TI.
Why this is I have no idea.
I have been harassed in most hostels I stayed in and in a choice few experienced certain horrors that no one would believe as a TI. Mostly during the beginning of my harassment being 24/7 was it at its worst.
a few commonalities in hostels:
-heavy involvement with marijuana (staff)
-old men who are pervs working there, hanging out there or owning the place
-old buildings/sick building syndrome/mold
If you have been a TI long enough you'll be able to put it together. If you dont get it just go by the rule " what do these people have to protect/gain?"
Also alot of hostels are moldy, old buildings or obviously below code for being truly habitable in the long term. Take health issues into consideration.
WORK TO STAY: a great idea for the average traveler. For a TI I can imagine its a nightmare. I have thought about it but it doenst seem like a good idea for someone targeted.
As a guest in these places perps would just show up in streams and often I have felt like a sitting duck. A captive victim. Its justs not a good idea..unless you know the people or have some sort of protection in this situation to make it OK.