Hostelworld has become a member of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC)

GSTC is pleased to welcome Hostelworld Group to its global network. Hostelworld was founded in 1999 by two entrepreneurs – a hostel owner and an IT executive – to provide an affordable global distribution channel and property management system for hostels. Today it is one of the leading global OTAs focused on the hostel market and works with over 16,500 hostel partners globally.

Sustainable travel is growing in demand, as nine in ten (92%) hostel travellers now consider themselves to be ‘green travellers’. However, the research conducted by Hostelworld also revealed the majority (63%) of travellers think travel companies should be doing more to help customers travel sustainably. To support this, in 2020, Hostelworld became a signatory of the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative (GTPI) led by the UN Environment Programme and the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), in collaboration with Ellen MacArthur Foundation. They are leveraging their position in the hostel industry to unite their hostel partners to tackle the root causes of plastic pollution and lessen the impact on the environment. With sustainability in mind, Hostelworld continues to partner with environmentally friendly hostels around the globe.

“We are delighted to become a member of the GSTC and look forward to collaborating with them and their partners to drive sustainable travel initiatives across the hostelling industry,” says Gary Morrison, CEO of Hostelworld Group.

GSTC welcomes Hostelworld

“GSTC likewise is pleased to welcome Hostelworld Group into our network of collaborators and knowledge-sharing platform,” says Randy Durband, CEO of GSTC. “The GSTC Criteria serve as a global standard, suitable for global organizations such as Hostelworld.”

The Global Sustainable Tourism Council was created jointly by UN agencies and prominent international conservation NGOs to develop global baseline standards for sustainability in travel and tourism – the GSTC Criteria. The Criteria are used for education and awareness-raising, policy-making for businesses and government agencies and other organization types, measurement and evaluation, and as a basis for certifications. They are the result of a worldwide effort to develop a common language about sustainability in tourism. They are arranged in four pillars: (A) Sustainable management; (B) Socioeconomic impacts; (C) Cultural impacts; and (D) Environmental impacts (including consumption of resources, reducing pollution, and conserving biodiversity and landscapes). Since tourism destinations each have their own culture, environment, customs, and laws, the Criteria are designed to be adapted to local conditions and supplemented by additional criteria for the specific location and activity.

About Hostelworld Group

Hostelworld Group is a leading global OTA focused on the hostel market, inspiring adventurous minds to experience new places, meet new people and come back with extraordinary stories to tell. Their customers aren’t your average travellers; they are driven by the need for unique experiences, social connections and empowering adventures. Every year Hostelworld helps millions of hostel travellers create long-lasting memories by enabling real travel experiences.

Hostelworld has over 22 years of experience, with more than 13.7 million reviews across 16,500 hostels in 180 countries. Their website operates in 19 different languages and their mobile app in 13 languages. Over the last 20 years, they have built their industry expertise by partnering with hostels worldwide, enabling them to manage and distribute their inventory to their highly engaged and valuable global customer base.

Visit for more information on Hostelworld Group.

About the Global Sustainable Tourism Council

The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) establishes and manages global sustainable standards, known as the GSTC Criteria. There are two sets: Destination Criteria for public policy-makers and destination managers, and Industry Criteria for hotels and tour operators. These are the guiding principles and minimum requirements that any tourism business or destination should aspire to reach in order to protect and sustain the world’s natural and cultural resources while ensuring tourism meets its potential as a tool for conservation and poverty alleviation.

The GSTC Criteria form the foundation for GSTC’s role as the global Accreditation Body for Certification Programs that certify hotels/accommodations, tour operators, and destinations as having sustainable policies and practices in place. GSTC does not directly certify any products or services, but it accredits those that do. The GSTC is an independent and neutral USA-registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization that represents a diverse and global membership, including national and provincial governments, leading travel companies, hotels, tour operators, NGOs, individuals and communities – all striving to achieve best practices in sustainable tourism.

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