Generator: Shared Hotel Spaces for Young Travelers at a Hostel Price
PHOTO: Shared female room space at the Generator Paris. (courtesy Generator Hotels)
One of the most prolific trends among older travelers is the practice of “togethering,” which sees groups of friends traveling together. Conceptually, it’s almost an extension of multi-generational family travel, except in this case the group is defined more as a tribe than a clan. The villa and yacht markets have driven the togethering model among older, wealthier travelers, but now a new group of hotels, or hostels if you prefer, in Europe that targets a young demographic is reaching out to togethering tribes of young travelers.
Generator, a hotel brand that stresses affordability, is giving groups of friends places to stay together in such European cities as Barcelona, Berlin Mitte and Berlin Prenzlauer, Copenhagen, Dublin , Hamburg, London, Paris and Venice. The term hostels has undergone a major evolution over the years, but hostel still makes many people think of church basements and iron cots. What Generator offers is much more of a hotel than a hostel.
With a long experience of hostels, young travelers have shown that they don’t mind sharing the most intimate facilities even with strangers, if they’re part of the same generation. A weak euro is calling younger travelers to what Generator calls “groupaways” in Europe.
Generator reaches out to younger travelers by pitching pre-back-to-school getaways, spring or fall breaks and other important events in the lives of young travelers. These kinds of pitches are basically the younger version of such pitches for older groups as anniversaries and birthdays.
The rooms are priced from as little as $25 per bed per night for dorm-style accommodations, ranging from four to 10 beds. More private accommodations are available with one or two beds from $40 per room. There are even “splurge” options such as a “penthouse with a private balcony for $100.”
Generator has also created experiences connected to each property’s location.
All Generator properties have such standard amenities as 24-hour public spaces for guests to have a few beers, relax and meet people from all over the world; free Wi-Fi; events with local artists and musicians; 24-hour laundry facilities; and youth-friendly energy snacks.
How important is youth travel? About one in five international travelers are youth travelers. In 2013, youth and student travel generated $230 billion in tourism receipts. Last year the Last year, the World Youth Student and Educational Travel Confederation reported that these travelers constituted a market of 227 million international arrivals. The UNWTO projects the youth travel market will reach $320 billion by 2020.
The average cost of a trip by a young person amounted to $910. The number of international trips by young people might increase to 300 million international trips per year by 2020. Though these travelers are price sensitive they spend more in total than other travelers because the travel for longer periods of time.
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