Would hostels be safe in COVID-19?

It is time again for backpackers to start moving forward with their vagabond life and head to hostels. But, in times of social distancing, how viable and safe the idea of ​​community and sharing is when staying in hostels.

Hostels have always attracted budget travelers and those who wanted to travel solo while meeting and hosting like-minded people. And now, as the world comes out of month-long shutdowns and travel restrictions are lifted, hotels, resorts, and inns are all reopening. But this time it won’t be the same for hostels, which have always been focused on community living. Normal is going to be very different.

Life in a hostel in the time of COVID-19

Shraddha Khandelwal, co-owner, Mustache Hostel adds “Mustache hostels have always been very important to community life. Our common rooms are designed with the living rooms of the house in mind, a place where you can relax for hours. After unlocking in this age of Covid, we are more careful about security. Apart from regular disinfection, paperless control and digital payment method, we are not distributing our dorms at full capacity ”.

New study reveals changing travel expectations of young backpackers amid COVID-19, including where and how they want to travel after the lockdown and how ‘hostels’ will need to adjust. These hostels cater for the 18-35 age group and do not tend to attract other age groups.

Dormitories, which are shared stay options, are more questionable when it comes to sanitation and hygiene. It’s time for these hostels to apply for any security accreditation program
. Dharamveer Singh Chouhan, co-founder and CEO, Zostel says “Zostel is deeply invested in their safety and security and all of our ground crews have undergone rigorous training to manage operations after unlocking. Our properties follow strict and frequent sanitation and hygiene measures as well as continuous health monitoring of all staff as well as guests. Needless to mention social distancing. Safety kits with masks, gloves and disinfectants have been made mandatory, while customers can also benefit from health insurance at minimal cost ”.

It’s time for owners and managers to review their policies and be well prepared to keep these hostels running smoothly after foreclosure without subtracting or omitting the sociability factor, arguably one of the most important factors. of an inn.
Anisha Agarwal, E-living projects team who run Mudhouse Hostels in the Jibhi Valley “We started our operations from September and encouraged those who come for longer stays. With well-trained staff, we are a bit strict with guests moving around the common area without masks. The kitchens are mainly managed by internal staff and no outsiders enter the premises. We primarily encourage nature trails where travelers can take a short hike or hike and do not have to use public transportation. We cannot leave anyone in danger. Our cafe seats have also been redone ”.

Life in a hostel in the time of COVID-19

The location of some of these hostels is based on ty and therefore has their side effects. Hostels like Madpackers are launching trekking bus tours through Himachal, Uttarakhand and Rajasthan. These are fixed-start, itinerary-based tours for up to 15 people. Road travel is the new normal and we provide a safe, sanitized and social way of doing it for solo travelers and small groups. Mayank Shrivastava, co-founder of the same, says: “Travel hostels are where I have seen communities flourish through the exchange of thoughts, ideas and stories, no matter how close or the estrangement of members. We have also introduced
WorkHop: The first and only remote work and travel subscription in India. You pay a fixed monthly fee in exchange for transportation, meals, accommodation, and experiences. We take you to a new destination every 10 days so you can truly work remotely ”.

Disinfectant and disinfectant have now become commonplace in these places. The dorms barely see 50% occupancy and everyone is masked, this is what New Age travel looks like. It is time for hostel owners to play on their strengths and their environment and diversify.

With the struggles in hand, these hostels are now trying to diversify their sources of income in order to survive.

Author: Ms. Ayandrali Dutta

Ayandrali Dutta, a journalist with over 10 years of experience and also with a degree in psychology, has worked with some of the biggest publishing houses like Times of India, Dainik Bhaskar, India Today, Exchange4media for n ‘name a few, while contributing to many more. She describes herself as a wanderer by passion, a word trainer by profession and a home chef by choice.

She believes in capturing moments and freezing them through her stories.

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