• Don Lucky

Keeping in Touch and Moving Forward

What’s in a relationship? Well, there is friendship, love, understanding, caring, good times. Relationships are also about extending the reach; connecting with others. Have you ever heard someone say “I met them through friends.”? And that’s certainly not unusual when traveling. People running into other people. Engaging in conversation and hanging out together if only for a brief time. But in that brief time connections are made and contact information is exchanged.

Hostels play a big role in this type of connection because traveling is like an education on the road. We provide shelter, comfort, a place to relax, regroup, enjoy some food and communicate with others. Hostels play a complementary role along with the sights, the experiences, and the people guests meet, both locally and internationally.

The Santa Cruz Hostel Society, an affiliate of Hostelling International, engages in this type of hospitality and care. We do this within a park-like setting with a series of lovely cottages, and beautiful gardens just two blocks up from the ocean and California’s famous Santa Cruz Boardwalk.

Like so many hostels in the USA and around the world, we are all in a state of pause because of this global pandemic. We're waiting for when folks can travel again with ease, meet with family and friends, and get back to work. This is also a good time to reflect on the future and to reach out to each other; because we are all stakeholders in this international field of hostelling.

So, how can we best do that?

Many hostels around the world are well known because of their progressive promotions; and word of mouth spreads fast. So, It starts with making connections, both locally, nationally and internationally; because these are the conduits through which we operate. Hostels can provide travel-staying-links to guests as they venture elsewhere where there are local hostels. And we can sweeten the deal with a 5% - 10% discount to the traveling guest. That’s working together to make a change; to regroup; and to enhance the opportunity for better days in the spring and beyond.

Young people, especially, want to get back on the road and travel. They are empty and aching to venture out and to come up for air. They have been hemmed in for too long. Hostels should work together to encourage this eagerness and to accommodate the needs of these potential guests who have for so many years supported our well being as an affordable travel option.

Though hostels are for the most part vacant at the moment, we must not be silent. Better days are ahead, so let’s prepare for them. Let’s link together and help each other. The Santa Cruz Hostel is in California and is ripe for a California travel-link tour. And referrals are always something to appreciate. So, let us come together and network. This will be beneficial to all of us wherever we are located.

And to our previous guests and to those who wish to visit, we look forward to welcoming you back or for the first time, to the ocean, the surfing, the redwoods and the mountains, and to the beautiful vibe that is Santa Cruz.

At the present time, we are inviting guests who are in town for essential business or those who are passing through to quarantine.

We would love to hear from you. Please join us in continuing the dialog and to see how we can help each other in working to make it work for all of us.

Best wishes,

The Board and Staff of the Santa Cruz Hostel Society

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