You will always find a hostel in Ecuador. Folks have cottoned on to the potential economic benefits of having strangers in the home, and offer good deals country-wide. In cities, you will have the choice of single, double or dorm (often mixed sex). Often, there is a breakfast option, and in Quito, some hostels have free rum nights. As you head into the countryside, try to have at least a name or recommendation with you, else you’ll waste time hunting out the best (or cleanest) deal. If you’re in no hurry, take it as it comes. Word to the wise: in the countryside, things shut down as soon as it gets dark. You may have trouble rousing someone to answer the door or even direct you to the nearest place if you rock up after supper.
Hostels do not generally have hot water. They might say they do, but they don’t. Prices vary, and the countryside can accommodate you for $3 – $5, including breakfast. The Galapagos Islands, however, will set you back, at the cheapest, $8 – $10. The best way to accommodate yourself there (depending on your time frame) is to find a family or boarding house that you can rent for a month or two weeks.