If your hostel is not yet closed, we highly advise you read our article “Dealing with the coronavirus situation in your hostel“
Unfortunately, due to the coronavirus pandemic, a lot of hostels have been forced to close. This may be due to the lack of guests or forced by the local government.
We believe that you can make the most out of this downtime. Here are some suggestions for what you can do during this period in order to prepare for the future. This way, your hostel can come back stronger than before.
Training plans and manuals
In our opinion, every hostel should have a clear training plan and procedures manual. With them, you’ll be able to train staff to be more capable, independent and less reliable on the owner or manager. If you have your staff at home and are still paying their salaries, ask them to work on these manuals. It’s a great use of their time, knowledge and skills.
For samples of manuals and training plans you can also speak with us and we will be happy to help.
Analyze your data to improve future results
Another great way to use this time in order to improve the future is to learn from what you did in the past and the results it has had. Take this time to study your Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) such as average price and occupancy (broken down by room type and periods). With proper analysis, you can find many opportunities in your strategies that could improve your hostel’s revenue in the future.
This is one of the many things we do in our Sales Analysis and Action Plan package. To do our part in the hostel community during these severe times, we are offering a free sales analysis to a hostel in need. Furthermore, we have teamed up with Stay the Night to also include a free Digital Marketing Audit. See our “Giveaway” post on our Instagram for more info.
Focus on your technology
Still don’t use a Property Management System (PMS), Channel Manager (CM) or Booking Engine (BE)? Do you have them but have been thinking of making a change? If so, with a closed hostel this is the perfect time to do so. Furthermore, there are many providers that are offering special conditions during the current coronavirus conditions.
If you need help deciding what is the best option for your hostel and your budget, talk to us for a free consultation. We’ve experienced a variety of different PMS’s and will be able to suggest the best fit for you.
Deep cleaning and small maintenance
If the situation in your country is not forcing you to be at home but already bad enough so you have to close your hostel, take this time to do some deep cleaning (bellow the mattresses, behind the bunk beds, etc). You can also do some small maintenance work you’ve been wanting to do as long as you already have the materials you need for it.
The best investment you can make is in your education. So what better than applying for an online course on revenue management, business management, digital marketing, etc. There are many options out there. You can use websites like Coursera or Udemy. You can also encourage your staff to do the same.
Help save lives!
There may be a real need for healthcare beds and rooms within your community. If not now, possibly soon! During these special circumstances, beds/rooms are needed as field hospitals for quarantine, social distancing, and for healthcare professionals. Consider the temporary use of your closed hostel as a service to your community.
Hospitalityhelps.org is creating a centralized bed repository and connecting properties to healthcare agencies desperate for assistance. We strongly encourage you to take this into consideration and participate if possible.
Other ideas from the hosteling community
We also asked the hostel community what they suggest for this downtime and we got some great suggestions such as:
- Replying to reviews
- Revising online profile descriptions and translations
- Renewing the hostel’s pictures
- Freshening up your website
- Look into the possibility of renting to long term guests and digital nomads. (see our interview along with Stay the Night for more ideas about hosting for staycations)
If there’s anything else that you would add to this blog post, we would love to hear from you in the comments below.