We believe that hostels should continue to provide all independent travellers who enjoy being part of a transient community with low-cost accommodation in a sociable environment
Hostels (or, rather, youth hostels) were originally thought up by a German school teacher who saw the need for school children to have suitable, affordable overnight accommodation, allowing them to travel and gain some experience of the world. The first youth hostel – or Jugendherberge – was established in 1912. Over a century on, the concept of hostels has altered from a duty to provide basic accommodation for youths who otherwise may not be able to experience travel, to providing independent travellers of all ages with an alternative to hotels and B&Bs.
Now, hostels vary greatly: there are still those that belong to associations (such as the Scottish Youth Hostels Association), but also there are independent, backpacker and bunkhouse hostels, and what the majority have in common is that they provide low-cost dormitory accommodation in a sociable environment.
We are independent
Since 2013, Inveraray Hostel has been an independent hostel. We are not part of any large organisation, chain or franchise. We are not a ‘youth’ hostel. We are self-sustainable: wholly reliant on the income made only by this hostel, the determination of staff and the welcome encouragement from our visitors!
We belong to a growing network of other independent hostels – take a look: www.indepenedenthostels.co.uk
We are a small, low-budget business
Keeping our accommodation affordable for guests means we have to keep our expenses as low as possible (no ensuites, bespoke wardrobes or mini-bars here!) and run the business with as few multi-talented staff as possible. With more and more people expecting a disproportionate lot for very, very little, running a hostel can be quite a challenge!
We believe Inveraray Hostel is a very good hostel. So the bedrooms aren’t large enough to dance a waltz in, but remember that you’re not paying for the room alone, as you would in a hotel. Here, you’re paying for an excellent kitchen, a social dining area, a cosy wee lounge, a powerful hot shower, the use of a bike shed and a drying room, unlimited wifi, tea, coffee and condiments, and a well-maintained garden, complete with picnic tables! All is lighted, heated, cleaned when dirty, fixed when broken, and tended to with the utmost care of dedicated, paid staff. That’s quite a lot!
And remember, the majority of people who to work in, manage, or own a hostel don’t do it for the money: we do it because we empathise with the people who stay here. We are travellers ourselves, we understand your requirements, we try to create an environment that we would appreciate staying in. Working in a hostel is not simply a job; it is a lifestyle, and very often the hostel itself is not just a workplace – it is where we live. It is home.
We welcome everyone!
One of the many enjoyable aspects about travel is meeting people, different people.
It’s a common misconception that hostels are only for those that can’t afford to stay anywhere else. Rubbish! Hostels are for anyone & everyone! Hostels are simply an alternative to the pretentious formality of too many other establishments. Some people choose to stay in a hotel where they have nowhere to go but to their room, crammed with unused furniture & a TV to distract them from their environment, while others prefer to stay at a hostel that has somewhere they can store their bike, facilities in which they can cook their own meals & provides opportunities to meet other guests.
Hostels are for independent, self-sufficient travellers of all ages, races, backgrounds and financial status who enjoy being part of a transient community.
We believe in equality
Nobody here will be treated differently from anybody else. Staff welcome everyone with equal courtesy & friendliness without being obsequious or condescending. This helps to promote a relaxed atmosphere in the hostel. We expect guests to behave with similar regard towards each other. If we’re all friendly, considerate & co-operative, everyone will enjoy their stay here.
We’re getting greener
We are doing our best to reduce the hostel’s impact on the environment. Our electricity supply comes from sustainable sources, our daily cleaning products are eco-friendly, we have facilities to recycle packaging and staff voluntarily take your glass receptacles to the community recycling unit. We reuse what we can instead of throwing it away, promote the sharing of food over wastage and compost most food waste. We are also creating a wildlife-friendly garden, feeding the delightful garden birds and encouraging our visitors to take an interest in the local flora and fauna. Our efforts so far have earn us a SILVER Green Tourism Award.
We need your support
Without your visits, the hostel would not be here. If you enjoy using hostels, you could support us by writing positive reviews to encourage others to use them, too. The more guests we receive, the more sustainable our business becomes, & the more favourable looks the future of hostels. You can leave reviews & recommendations on our Facebook page, review networks or with the agent through which you booked.