Author Topic: YHA yet again penalises self caterers and solo walkers on a budget  (Read 2356 times)

jimbob

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Anyone who has used hostels (auberges/albergues) in France or Spain knows how minimal these places need to be. Somewhere to get clean,  use the facilities,  a place to make a meal,  and a bed to kip in.
As long as there is  a reasonable fire alarm in all rooms what else would be needed.Here in the UK we have interpreted safety rules in such a way as to make the number of hoops an owner has to jump through so stringent and often changing  (as another jobsworth decides to give a different interpretation) that owners of hostels either have to charge a much larger amount than they set out to do (YHA?) or keep the places so full of block bookings to pay their way that solos cannot find a space.
I was talking to a fellow who had shut down his camp site devoted to PW walkers who said the local authority wanted him to spend thousands getting the waste from the shower block to a proper sewer and to stop using his septic tank which only needed to be emptied once every two years. As he said he couldn't get them to understand that the pumping company transported the sludge to a council run facility anyway.
Too little, too late, too bad......

Innominate Man

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The clue should be in the name ' Youth ' Hostels.
Anything far removed from that should not be part of their raison d'Ítre.
I'd camped for several years, with my friends and undertaken all three levels of the Duke of Edinburgh Awards (expeditions). We'd put up with old fashioned/heavy camping and soggy gear until we decided to treat ourselves and do a long trip using YHA. By that time I was 16 and the freedom that lighter packs and decent washing facilities offered us (as well as comfy beds) was a revelation.
One night we stayed at the Eskdale YH and I learned some time later that not too many years before staying there Eric Shipton had been the warden.
....... with outdoor luminaries holding such positions - who could fail to be inspired ?
These days I am pretty sure that is unlikely to happen (no money or fame in it).
Drat - this has become a small rant !!
Only a hill but all of life to me, up there between the sunset and the sea. 
Geoffrey Winthrop Young

FTSTTLB

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The hostels in the UK (well, the ones I used) are quite neat with more than average comfort and facilities, especially compared to the more basic ones in other countries. I think membership in Belgium is different though, so can't comment on what would be best.
We stayed in YHA Lewes this summer. it was a nice place, though the location was a bit unfortunate. Didn't get much sleep with all the cars passing by at high speed a few metres from the hostel.

dank86

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I worked in 2 YHA's and yes they're treated as hotels. On one site it was mostly catering to school groups during the week and families on the weekend with 2 small rooms set aside as dorms. I remember some rather unfortunate American visitors turning up in their huge car and complaining about there was no pool or gym, poor WiFi etc. The place was older than America is, and they were expecting a 5 star hotel. The other site had a lot more younger guests but they were only using the cheap accommodation to go out clubbing 😕

archaeoroutes

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I was very upset by this. I use them a lot with the family as they are great for getting my two girls out into the countryside. The change in discount is one thing, but I don't like the only one member in the party having to be a member to get the whole booking discounted thing. I didn't see anything about them changing the family membership price (mentioned up thread) in what they sent, just that they would give us the option to drop to a single membership when our current term ended.
Walking routes visiting ancient sites in Britain's uplands: http://www.archaeoroutes.co.uk

Maggot

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I worked in 2 YHA's and yes they're treated as hotels. On one site it was mostly catering to school groups during the week and families on the weekend with 2 small rooms set aside as dorms. I remember some rather unfortunate American visitors turning up in their huge car and complaining about there was no pool or gym, poor WiFi etc. The place was older than America is, and they were expecting a 5 star hotel. The other site had a lot more younger guests but they were only using the cheap accommodation to go out clubbing 😕


Er, are you sure?


I am pretty sure it existed before Columbus rocked up  ;)

dank86

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Er, are you sure?


I am pretty sure it existed before Columbus rocked up  ;)


Im pretty sure you know what I mean and trying to be funny but failing, America as a  country isn't that old and the YHA I was working at was much older than America is as a country.

Maggot

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This discussion is focusing on how the YHA should be a bit more like the old days, yet everyone will get there via satnav and smartphone mapping and Viewranger! All togged up in Goretex, with Vibram soled boots, lightweight rucksacks and a Garmin watch counting the steps. Then into the shower where you get dry with a microfibre towel, put on a nice fleece jacket and sit snuggled under the free duvet.  Then you use the wifi to download the next days route and send texts and email to friends telling them that the YHA isn't like the old days and needs to be more like 1973!   You can't pick and choose your progress.


Life, and the YHA moves on.  If you want 1950s levels of service and comfort then you are 6 decades too late.  Personally I really enjoy the changes to YHA, I think they are much more pleasant places to be, more lively and with no flippin block jobs to do.  Why on earth would anyone bemoan the fact that you paid a tenner, then had to smile at a stranger while doing the sweeping up and pretending to enjoy the communal nature of the shared toil?  No, I will rather pay £12 and let someone else do the tidying up thanks.


The availability of en-suite family rooms was a bloody God-send when the kids were younger, the little camping pods are even better.  If this is the future of YHA, then I will just let my membership roll on and on.  Excellent stuff.



Maggot

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Childish squabbles don't achieve anything.  ::)


ilona


 :-[   sorry


Just pointing out that it was a bit of a lazy comparison.  Lots of countries fall into the category of only being named reasonably recently, India, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Liberia, Serbia, Kosovo..................dozens and dozens of countries could be described as 'younger than the YHA'.  In my (poor) defence, naming of countries etc is an interest of mine, especially in relation to how people get treated by the 'namers' and how borders are decided.  Have a read of "Prisoners of Geography", very interesting. 


Apologies, now back to how good the YHA is since the changes!

fit old bird

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 :-[   sorry



 ;)   8)   :-*   O0


ilona

Innominate Man

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Gents, by this point I really don't mind who is right or wrong. I have an opinion but so does everyone else who is waiting for this to end (and all the opinions don't matter too much): We just want it to end .....
The original point of the post was quite an interesting one, attracting varied responses both for & against. Would anyone [else] care to make a closing statement  or just any statement ?
Hopefully the OP hasn't gone and boiled his head by now  :)



Only a hill but all of life to me, up there between the sunset and the sea. 
Geoffrey Winthrop Young

fit old bird

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I suggest that all posts from 20 onwards should be deleted. Tit for tat comments which have nothing to do with the topic, silly kids who insist on having the last word, have derailed the whole conversation. Dump them.


ilona

Lakeland Lorry

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Be aware that if you add meals to your online YHA booking, then decide to cancel the booking, you will only get back 90% of the cost of the whole booking.   


I'm currently planning an 8 day walk around the Peak District, staying in YHAs along the way.   I made all 8 bookings on the same day, and also booked an evening meal, breakfasts and packed lunch for each stay.   


Later on the same day, a friend of mine said that they would like to join me on two of the days, but preferred to stay in a pub rather than the YHA.   I contacted the YHA the next morning to cancel two of the the booking I had made the previous day.   That's when I found out that the YHA refund would only be for 90% of the cost of the whole booking.   This is despite the fact that I had given them ample warning, as I made the bookings in mid January for a walk that I'm doing at the beginning of April.   


Whilst I'm willing to accept a small charge for cancelling the bed itself, I think it's unfair to be charged 10% of the cost of pre-booked meals, especially when I've given them a lot of notice.

Ridge

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That's not on LL, what have they done to deserve 10% of the food bill. It's not like they had already nipped to Tesco for extra sausages.
Doesn't sound FRIENDLY or that they had your NEEDS AT HEART, definitely not UNDERSTANDING and probably not CLEAR in their MARKETING MESSAGE.

Time to complain.
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    Maggot

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    Be aware that if you add meals to your online YHA booking, then decide to cancel the booking, you will only get back 90% of the cost of the whole booking.   


    I'm currently planning an 8 day walk around the Peak District, staying in YHAs along the way.   I made all 8 bookings on the same day, and also booked an evening meal, breakfasts and packed lunch for each stay.   


    Later on the same day, a friend of mine said that they would like to join me on two of the days, but preferred to stay in a pub rather than the YHA.   I contacted the YHA the next morning to cancel two of the the booking I had made the previous day.   That's when I found out that the YHA refund would only be for 90% of the cost of the whole booking.   This is despite the fact that I had given them ample warning, as I made the bookings in mid January for a walk that I'm doing at the beginning of April.   


    Whilst I'm willing to accept a small charge for cancelling the bed itself, I think it's unfair to be charged 10% of the cost of pre-booked meals, especially when I've given them a lot of notice.


    To be fair to them, it is in 7.3.1 of their terms and conditions!  https://www.yha.org.uk/our-policies/booking-terms-conditions  The meals are a red herring, it's to do with the booking, not the food.  I guess they may have missed other bookings because you were there and now aren't and they have had admin time etc.  Try amending or cancelling a Ryan Air booking! 


    "24 hours or more notice- We will refund 90% of the Total Booking, except for third party services."

    « Last Edit: 14:35:11, 20/02/19 by Maggot »