Friday, August 28, 2009
Milhouse is one of the most successful hostels in Latin America.
They have recently made the shift to integrate Adventure Engine for all payment processing. "When traveling around South America sometimes ATM's are not easy to find, they don't always work or they just charge a lot for a normal money withdraw. With Adventure Engine we've improved a lot the payment process making it more efficient and making life easier for our guests as they don't have to carry much cash. We have already increased sales as people spend more if they can use their credit cards and of course, as a consequence, we are offering a better service which is always the main goal for any hostel."
- Mariano Saccal
Milhouse's customer focus is a major factor in their success, and they have been developing their services a lot in the last few years in order to keep ahead of the game. They have gone from a hostel where you could book a bed in a room to a hostel that provides a true and complete experience. Travelers can choose to stay in either dorms or private en suite rooms, with activities every single day, a travel agency specialized in backpacker products and very high quality standards.
Hostels in general and Milhouse in particular are nowadays very far from the old concept of a room with hundreds of bunk beds and a huge shared bathroom. You will be pleased to find very convenient places to stay, with great value for your money and an atmosphere that will make your stay something to remember at Milhouse Hostel.
Check out their website www.milhouse.com
You may want to rethink your idea of hostels.
The hostel scene has changed dramatically in the last ten years. The hostels of today are stylish, modern, clean, and are a great economic alternative to a hotel room. Hostels are becoming more and more popular, partly due to the economic downturn but also because they help provide the complete travel experience.
Recent findings from the World Tourism Organization show that young people today are traveling with a purpose - "to explore and to engage with cultures, and to mix their travel ambitions with study, work, volunteer placements and adventure. They tend to stay much longer and therefore spend more than the average tourist, interacting more closely with the communities that they visit and making a direct contribution to local businesses". This only further proves that there's a great opportunity out there for both hostels and local tour companies to partner together in order to bundle travel packages with accommodation in order to truly give this "experience" that today's traveler is searching for.
Hostels are a great source of information on local activities and for those that are already using online booking software, it's easy to become a reseller and sell local product. "The youth travel market is worth an estimated US $136 billion a year, or around 18% of worldwide international tourism receipts" (OMT - WYSE). Average money spent per trip grew 39% between 2002 and 2007 - and this could grow even further with closer relationships between hostels and local companies.
Hostels: Not Just For Youth
The long-standing myth that hostels are only for young people is quickly becoming a thing of the past. Although the youth travel segment accounts for a large portion of all dollars spent in hostels, one can't ignore the other target markets that are growing annually in market share.
Once commonly referred to as "youth hostels", hostels are shedding this image and becoming all ages friendly. More and more hostels are losing the age restriction rules they once had, and also marketing towards more a more diverse clientele. Target demographic groups are now expanding to include business and family travelers, which is also accounting for the higher demand of private rooms.
In addition to the business professional looking for some company and vacationing families on a budget, there are "grey gappers" who used hostels in their youth but are now looking for more comfort without breaking the bank. There is a dramatic shift happening right now as hostels expand their offerings to suit these new target demographics, and one can see why it's so important to act on these recent trends when "50% of the hostels all around the world increased their amount of beds in 2006" (source: OMT - WYSE).
The Adventure Engine System
Popular tool for hostels!
Some hostels use Adventureengine for all of thier reservaiton and distribution needs. Others use Adventureengine as an online payment service fir guests while maintaining their own in house res system!
Not only can Adventure Engine save your company money, we can also free your staff from manual tasks like data entry, inventory tracking and reporting so you can grow effectively and improve guest service and sales.
Adventure Engine provides three main services:
1. Reservation and booking system - get all your bookings into one affordable and easy to use system.
2. Online shopping cart and payment processing for your website - customers can check up to date availability and book online at their convenience.
3. Interfacing / networking with your existing agent network making it easier for them to book your trips - and access to our growing network of distributors giving you extremely affordable marketing exposure.