Welcome to the TheHostelHelper’s resources section, a genuine list of tools and websites I love and strongly recommend for building and optimizing your hostel business.
I have tested every single resource I recommend on this page. Many of the tools listed here are absolutely CRUCIAL to running my own business.
Before digging into the awesome resources I know and trust, an important disclosure. Some of the links below are affiliate links. That means that if you choose to make a purchase, I will earn a commission – at no extra cost to you. This allows me to continue and improve this website to help you even more.
A Property Management System (PMS) helps you manage your reservations. It’s the centerpiece of your business. Cloudbeds PMS shows all your rooms and beds with their occupancy in a calendar view where you can easily add, cancel or edit them.
A channel manager is a tool that allows you to automatically synchronize your availability & rates across all distribution channels. This helps you avoid overbookings, frees up plenty of time and leads to more bookings. Here’s what I love about MyAllocator:
Did you know that 56% of hostel managers use MyAllocator (by Cloudbeds) to manage their distribution channels?
For further information, check out my guide about channel managers for hostels.
An accounting software overtakes big parts of your accounting duties and is completely automated. Quickbooks is tailored towards the needs of lodging facilities and is by far the most popular accounting software among hostels.
When you have your own domain (e.g. thehostelhelper.com), you need a site host to store your files. All my websites are hosted on Bluehost. Why? They make it incredibly easy to get a new website up and running.
I highly recommend using Bluehost for your website, you can get started for as little as $2.75/month (USD), which is an exclusive TheHostelHelper deal!
Need help with your website? Check out my step-by-step guide to create a hostel website.
In combination with THIS online course, you can’t do anything wrong.
To get a professional business email address and your own website, you first need to register a domain (e.g. yourhostelname.com). My favorite website for this is GoDaddy. It’s cheap, super straightforward and most importantly – it’s safe.
With this link, you’ll get access to an exclusive TheHostelHelper deal where you can buy your first domain for as little as $4.99/year (USD)!
If you’re looking for a way to automate your emails and earn additional money through special deals or up-selling, GetResponse is your #1 choice.
Furniture & Equipment
The right beds play a key role in your guest’s experience and can affect your reviews to a great extent. Sleeptite is the most recommended bunk bed supplier among hostel owners.
On Amazon, you have the advantage to read through thousands of reviews. Hence, you’re able to choose mattresses that have been tested and approved by others. Over the last 10 years, Amazon has developed into a respected distributor for all sorts of things – even quality mattresses.
The same principle as for mattresses holds true for your bedding: Choose proven products as opposed to visiting random stores and hoping for the best.
Organize tasks with dates, reminders, and priorities using whatever device you have at hand! What I love most about Todoist, is that it recognizes your written text and transforms it automatically in tasks. Hard to explain – go and see for yourself!
Evernote allows you to easily capture information from anywhere, using whatever device you have at hand. It puts your notes, photos, audios, PDFs, etc. in one cloud and enables you to literally find it in seconds.
Once you’ve signed up, you can easily drag and drop files in a cloud-based folder – called your “Dropbox”. This allows you to access your files from anywhere and at any time.
I use Dropbox every single day. It’s where I store all my excel sheets and folders. I simply add shortcuts to my cloud folders onto my desktop. Easy & convenient.
With this link, you can sign up for a free account.
If you’re using Facebook, Instagram, and/or Twitter, you definitely want to check out Buffer! Using social media professionally without Buffer is like writing a book with a typewriter.
For further information about how to use Buffer, check out my foolproof step-by-step social media guide.
No matter what kind of images you are looking for, Canva does the job. With Canva, you have access to a wide range of templates which makes creating your own awesome pictures dead easy.
Optimizilla is the most powerful yet easy-to-use tool to compress your images without lowering their quality.
Remember: Before compressing your images, crop them into the exact size you need on your website. Use either Paint or Pixlr to do that.
If you or your staff are writing more than 5 emails a day, this tool is a must-have. It allows you to create emails in seconds by replacing keywords through your customized templates.
This simple tool reduced my time to write an email by more than 70%.
Click here to learn how it works.
Freelancer.com is by far my favorite website to delegate tasks. It offers the cheapest high-quality freelancers for various tasks. Need a logo? New brochure? Photo editing? Marketing video? Blog articles for your website? Web design? … Then look no further.
Vikki Matsis is the author of the book as well as the manager of the “NotSo Hostel” in Charleston, USA. In my opinion, the beauty of this book is that Vikki started managing the hostel without much previous experience. Hence, you can benefit from all the mistakes she has learned the hard way!
It’s not about whether she does everything right or wrong, but about gaining different perspectives on certain topics. Her insights and learnings are invaluable.
The author and serial entrepreneur Nate Bunger is the owner of the “Casa Miraflores Hostel” in Colombia. In my opinion, he has written the most inspiring book for hostel owners.
This quick read is a pure motivation cocktail. It clearly shows the bright future the hostel industry is awaiting!
I’ve read 268 books (July 2019) in the category of business and self-help, and this is BY FAR my absolute favorite book. Why? Because it’s the most practical advice I’ve ever received.
- Make your competitors wonder why your hostel is always fully booked
- While it’s not written for hostels, almost most principles apply!
- Plan your success by following the step-by-step process to create your own personalized marketing plan
- Still in doubt? Just take a look at the reviews
This advice is hands down what other companies pay millions for – packed in 200 pages. An absolute MUST-READ for every serious hostel owner.
I’m currently comparing different other aspects:
- Capsule bed suppliers
- Suppliers for lockers
- Privacy curtains suppliers
- Point Of Sale (POS)
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I highly appreciate your opinion and insight into the experiences you’ve had with software for hostels. Please leave me a comment here.