Weighs In on Fair Practices for OTAs, operated by Instant World Booking, has reviewed the Sydney Declaration.  Following a meeting of a group of leading youth travel accommodation providers and associations at WYSTC 2013, a position statement was agreed upon regarding online distribution practices. represents a significant share of hosteling OTA volume worldwide, and is the only top 5 hostel OTA based in the United States. From that vantage point, has a fairly unique view on the issues set forth.

For more information on the Sydney Declaration, see: Sydney Declaration

Based on our review, supports the intent of the Sydney Declaration. In fact, we are pleased to disclose that at least 80% of the Declaration is already in force within’s terms and conditions, and have been so since the inception of the company. The management of our company decries the practice of requiring rate or availability parity, and have never done so ourselves. Our principles are founded on the basis that flexible service to our hostel partners is the best way to serve the needs of the industry.

We congratulate the WYSE Travel Confederation on their work so far, and will continue to follow it’s progress.

Lowest Price Refund Guarantee – New from HostelTraveler

HostelTraveler (Instant World Booking) is your cheapest option for hostels around the world. 

Our new Lowest Price Refund Guarantee is a promise that you won’t find cheaper hostel prices elsewhere.  We’re cheaper than Hostelworld, Hostelbookers, Hostelsclub, and the rest.

While our friends at other booking services are comparing and trying to out price each other with advertising campaigns, you can book with confidence at HostelTraveler.  That’s because we’re offering a guarantee that you’ll receive the lowest available price.  So, don’t bother looking any further.  Reserve with confidence knowing that, if you find a lower price, we’ll refund you double the difference.  It’s that simple.

How can we offer this incredible guarantee?  Because, HostelTraveler is one of the most economical online reservation providers, serving over 10,000 unique hostels and specialty budget properties worldwide.   And, because we provide superior service and technology, we don’t gouge our accommodation partners with exorbitant commissions.  So, we can pass on the savings to our travelers.

About our Lowest Price Refund Guarantee

We are absolutely committed to offering the lowest prices for hostels.  You can now book with confidence, because you won’t find any of our hostels cheaper elsewhere on the internet.   If you are able to find a better deal for the same travel dates and with the same booking conditions, we’ll refund double the difference.  See more about the terms of our Lowest Price Refund Guarantee below.  We think you’ll agree that no better guarantee is offered anywhere.

Lowest Price Refund Guarantee – Terms

(1)  Contact us within 7 days of booking your accommodation through HostelTraveler (Instant World Booking), or one of our 100+ travel websites.  Your booking must be completed on one of Instant World Booking’s websites, not a lodging’s website or other affiliate site.

(2)  Tell us the details of the lower rate you were offered.  The lower price must be available to book during the 7 day period following your reservation, and we need to be able to verify the offer.

(3)  The guarantee will not apply to lower prices advertised within 7 days of arrival date.

(4)  The lower price must be available on a website other than

(5)  The “lower price” consists of the total cost of the reservation, including the daily rate, any included meals and extras, and all booking fees and taxes.  The “lower price” must be found on a website for an equivalent room at the same lodging accommodation for the same period as your reservation, and with the same conditions.

(6)  Instant World Booking will make refunds only if your reservation through Instant World Booking completed and not cancelled or the subject of a no-show.   Refunds will only be given after the departure date, once the terms of your reservation have been fully completed.

(7)  If a refund is given, you are still bound by the terms and conditions of your existing reservation confirmed through Instant World Booking.

(8)  The lowest price guarantee does not apply to accommodation reserved in combination with a membership rate, frequent stay, reward type program, or special promotion offered by the accommodation provider.

(9)  The lower price must be a regularly advertised price for your reserved hotel, not a price received from an ‘opaque’ site or auction site, where the exact location or price is not known until after booking.

(10)  The maximum refund that will be provided by Instant World Booking is limited to the total confirmation payment made at the time of your reservation.

(11)  Instant World Booking reserves the right to withdraw this offer at any time without prior warning or notification.

Is Hostel Traveler the Cheapest?

We’ve recently seen posts on various blogs and sites comparing the cost to travelers of booking their hostel accommodation on some of the leading websites, including Hostelling Interntional, Hostelworld,, and Hostelbookers.  We’re happy to note that remains the cheapest and the best bargain for the budget traveler.

One post objectively states that HI charged 5% deposit plus 1.92 euro booking fee, claiming that this was the cheapest of a comparison made.  Nevertheless, while was not included in this particular comparison, was even cheaper than the winner.  Here’s why:’s typical pricing is 8% deposit plus $0.75 per bed. In Euro terms this equates to 8% deposit plus 0.52 Euros. This means that for a 1-2night stay and a hostel bed at 20-25 Euros, is cheaper for the traveler than the HI example above.  Check it out for yourself.

How come I did not receive any confirmation emails?

How come I did not receive any confirmation emails? This is a question we recieve often from travelers making reservations on various online booking services. In fact, you may be asking yourself this question even if you’ve purchased a product online from ubiquitous websites like,,, etc.

Here are a couple of guidelines to remember when purchasing products or services on the internet:

1) You are entirely responsible for making sure you are able to receive confirmation emails from online services you use.

2) Most free internet email services like Yahoo, Gmail, Aol, Hotmail, etc. will block many important emails and confirmation emails you intend to receive, even if you are not aware they use blocking techniques.

Because of these two basic facts you should never use a free email service, or any email service you cannot totally control, for important purchases or business purposes. If you are using a Yahoo, Hotmail, Gmail, or other free email system, please know that many commercial websites, including Instant World Booking, may be unable to send you email concerning transactions or purchases you have made. This is because these email systems are known to block a large amount of legitimate email, due to their efforts to fight spam. We advise that these free email systems should never be used for authentic business purposes.

But, you don’t have to take our word for it. This problem has been well documented by many authoritative sources. For example, to find hundreds of problems concerning Yahoo rejecting legitimate email, simply perform a Google search for “Yahoo bouncing email”. Here is just one source documenting dozens of problems in which Yahoo rejected desired mail:

One way to ensure that you receive confimation and delivery emails from online services you use, be sure to add the sender’s email to your address book.

Here are instructions for some popular email clients:

To Reserve or Not to Reserve – Booking with Online Services vs. Hotel Websites

As you’ve seen, has been raising some controversial questions and issues in the online world of travel. Here’s some more food for thought:

When booking your trip online, is it better to make your reservation on a hotel’s own website, or on an online booking service that deals with many hotels and destinations?

While we would never tell you NOT to book on your chosen hotel’s website (we avidly support small-busines), why not consider what you’re signing up for before you make your choice. When you book online, you will likely be making a payment in advance, or committing to a payment. If you are using an individual hotel’s website, your are committing to making payment to the hotel. the terms and conditions of payment and cancellation will be displayed before you book. Let’s say you have to cancel prior to arrival for any reason. You are now bound by the cancellation terms you agreed to when you confirmed your reservation. This likely means you owe some cancellation payment to the hotel. Or, if you receive a credit, you will only be able to use the credit if you travel to the given hotel in the given city at a later date. If your plans are permanently altered, you lose this value.

Now let’s say you made your reservation on an online booking service that guarantees your reservation at your chosen hotel. While payments conditions are usually be defined between yourself and the hotel, the booking service is experienced in dealing with cancellations. If you have to cancel, you may be offered a credit or value towards another booking in the future. With the online booking service, this credit can be applied to a booking anywhere you decide to travel in the future. You are not tied to a payment at the original hotel, which if you cancelled your plans, you may never visit again.

Of course there are other benefits to using the online booking service. They can better deal with language differences, and in the event of disputes with your hotel, will often assist in mediating.

So, next time you plan on booking your travel online, consider the benefits of booking with individual hotels yourself, or using a reputable online reservation service like

Looking for hostel reservation

Traveling to another city or country and are looking for an accommodation? Then the best option for you would be search the Internet to find the best hostels and hotel rooms that are available at reasonable prices. For backpackers, youth hostels are more apt as these cheap hostels are affordable and provide them with all the comfort. If you are searching for the perfect youth hostels or budget hostels that will suit your requirement then log on to It is one of the best websites that helps you know more about the different types of cheap hostels and youth hostels that are available for you.

Through, you can make online hostel reservations in any part of the world. All you need to do is select the region you would be traveling to and the website would provide you with the list of all the youth hostels and other cheap hostels that are situated in that region. These hostels are listed on the basis of their price, class and name. You can also sort them on the basis of the ratings given by other backpackers. Thus the website makes it easy for you to book your hostels and enjoy your trip comfortably.

Looking for last minute accommodation

Traveling to another country or city, but haven €™t booked your accommodation? No need not worry anymore as can provide you with last minute accommodation at very reasonable prices. The website can provide you with online reservation facility in almost any part of the world. For backpackers, it provides information on various hostels such as youth hostels which are cost-effective. These cheap hostels can save you money and make your stay more fun. The cheap hostels or youth hostels are listed on the basis of their price, class, and on ratings given by the other hostel travelers.

It is one of the most popular websites and can provide you with all the important details related to your stay at these hostels. Booking youth hostels or cheap hostels is fairly easy on this website and it also allows you to interact with other backpackers and get more information. All you need to do is select the region you will be traveling to and the website will provide you with a list of various youth hostels and cheap hostels. You can easily get last minute accommodations at the hostels listed with the website so that you may relax and enjoy your trip. All you need to do is to log on to

Stay in hostels and save money

Do you love traveling but are afraid of splurging too much? Then the best way to save money would be to stay in hostels. The cheap hostels and youth hostels provide you with good accommodations at cheap prices and thus help in saving a lot of money. Staying at these cheap hostels or youth hostels can prove to be more adventurous and fun as compared to other accommodations. It is advisable to book your cheap hostels or youth hostels in advance so that you may not have to face problems later. can provide you with all the information on the best hostels which will help you get good discounts as well. The website can provide you with a list of different accommodations all around the world. It is quite reliable and a number of backpackers rely on it for valuable travels trips. For this you need to choose the country or the region you would be traveling to and the website would guide you with the type of accommodations available there. You can browse through these hostels on the basis of the price, rank and class, etc. You can get to know more about these hostels through the website and save money as well. Advance booking and online reservation can be done through by logging in to

Low cost hostels best for youth

If you are a backpacker who enjoys traveling around the world then low cost hostels would be apt for you. Cheap hostels or youth hostels charge less and are therefore more affordable. It is also more fun to stay at hostels as compared to hotels and can be more adventurous too.

You can also get high discounts in these cheap hostels and youth hostels if you opt for advance booking. Booking your accommodation in advance can be very useful and save you from a lot of trouble later. To book your room at these hostels, log on to The website can help you to choose youth hostels or cheap hostels as per your requirements and book your accommodation there.

Whether you are traveling to one region or to multiple different regions, you can book hostels accordingly through the website. All you need to do is to select the country or region and the website would provide you with a list of cheap hostels and youth hostels that provide accommodation at low cost. These hostels are listed on the basis of their prices, class and also on the basis of ratings given by the other travelers. Through this website, you can interact with the other travelers also and know more about these youth hostels and cheap hostels and make your booking accordingly.

What to keep in mind while traveling in hostels

Traveling around the world and exploring new things is a novel experience in itself. Make this experience more pleasurable by planning your trip in advance and keeping a few things in mind. For backpackers the best accommodation would be hostels like youth hostels as these are cheap hostels that are affordable and more fun.

There are certain things that you must keep in mind while traveling in hostels. For one, you should make your reservation in advance so that you do not have to worry about the accommodation later. Before you book your rooms in these youth hostels or cheap hostels, if provided, check their reviews. Try to find out the type of accommodations that are provided by these hostels and then prepare your trip accordingly.

Before you commence for you trip, make sure that you have a copy of all your important papers. Travel light and do not carry unnecessary things. Carrying a Swiss knife, pen torch and granola bars can be very useful in your trip.

You can opt for online reservations that are provided by The website can provide you with a list of cheap hostels and youth hostels in various regions. You can also get to know more about these hostels through the reviews written by other travelers.