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Youth Hostelling as a Disabled Person

By: Jonathan Webb - Updated: 7 Mar 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Accommodation Access Youth Hostels

There are over 200 youth hostels throughout England and Wales operated by the Youth Hostel Association and their accommodation is open to everyone.

People who have never stayed in a youth hostel probably have an image of a building with very basic facilities and not the kind of place one would wish to stay if there was any other options avaialable. The modern youth hostel offers a warm welcome to all along with comfortable accommodation, good food and affordable prices.

If you choose to join the 20,000 Youth Hostel Association members you are able to benefit from things such as an exemption from having to pay the non-member supplement when you stay in a youth hostel.

The Youth Hostel Association believes that their accommodation should be accessible to everyone. Each new youth hostel is designed to offer wheelchair access and be decorated in colours to assist those with visual impairments.

Many Youth Hostel Association accommodations are also fitted with induction loops and tactile signage. The Association's older buildings are also being modernised to make them more accessible for those with disabilities, as funds permit.

Most youth hostels are able to offer limited facilities for disabled guests, these can vary widely from property to property, so always contact the Youth Hostel Association before making a booking, to check what facilities there are at your preferred location. It is also possible to make special arrangements for assistance dogs at most youth hostels, but you will need to discuss this when making a booking.

National Accessible Standards

Youth hostels assessed to have reached the National Accessible Standards are: Kielder (North Pennines), Borrowdale (Lake District), Grandbach, Hartington, Ilam, Liverpool, Manchester, Sherwood Forest (Peak District and North West), Coalport, Leominster, Oxford (Heart of England),Lizard, Treyarnon (South West England), Medway (South East England), Blaxhall, Wells-next-the-sea, Sheringham, Lee Valley (East of England), Thameside, St Pancras (London), Broad Haven, Conwy, Manorbier, Newport (Wales).

The Youth Hostel Association has a charitable objective to help young people, especially those who have little income, to gain a greater understanding, and develop a caring attitude, towards the countryside. Although, not all of the Youth Hostel Association's property is in the countryside as the Association also offers city breaks. These include London that has a flagship Youth Hostel Association building in the centre of London, near Oxford Street and Soho. There is also accommodation near St Pancras, which is handy for the major railway stations of King's Cross, Euston and St Pancras. Finally there is Earl's Court, with its renowned international area of shops, restaurants and bars.

Outside of the capital there is Youth Hostel Association accommodation available in Oxford (near the city centre and next to the railway station, which has excellent links to London), Bristol (with nice views across the waterways), Manchester (situated at a canal side location, close to the city centre), Liverpool (near the Albert Dock and city centre), Newcastle(located on the fringe of the city), York (near the city's River Ouse and a short distance from the city centre) and Milton Keynes( a farm house within easy reach of Milton Keynes).

If a weekend break is what you are looking for there is plenty on offer from the Youth Hostel Association including accommodation at: Bath, York, London's Holland Park, Canterbury, Oxford, Ironbridge, Stratford-upon-Avon and Derwentwater,

For those who really want to get away from it all, there are more remote Youth Hostel Association properties available. These include Tintagel and Llangattock.

If you want to enjoy the countryside, but not be too remote from civilisation, there are a number of countryside type Youth Hostel Association properties available in locations such as: Hawkeshead, Byrness, Ninebanks, Alstonfield, Burley, Ravenstor, Osmotherley and Bellever.

Note: Membership of the Scottish YHA is cheaper than the English one, but the Scottish membership card is also good for world-wide hostelling....including England!

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@Klara - you would think one of the people who had a bottom bunk would have given it up!
TommyH - 8-Mar-18 @ 11:06 AM
If you have a disability such that you need a bottom bunk, PLEASE do NOT book to stay at YHA in Adelaide, South Australia, Australia. It's a modern hostel with a ramp at entrance, accessible toilets, a lift to all levels of hostel, so one is led to believe this is an accessible hostel. They accept requests for bottom bunks (have a special book writethese in). However, when you make a reservation in person , over phone or online they do not tell you that their policy is to not guarantee availability of a bottom bunk. I had booked a bottom bunk in 4-share dorm 7-weeks earlier. They knew my exact need - such a simple request. I have never had a problem before. I arrived at hostel and only then was told of policy of YHA. "We get many requests for bottom bunks ... you have a legitimate tight to request a bottom bunk .... BUT ..." I cannot climb a ladder to get in/out of top bunk. No offer was made to assist me to find alternative affordable accommodation. March in Adelaide has Fringe Festival and Clipsal 500 car race ... so accommodation is fully booked. Eventually, they found me a bed in a 6-share dorm for that night. The following day I was told to leave and that I am to find alternative accommodation when I next cone to Adelaide. A long way from home, I had nowhere to stay and have been enormously distressed. I thought it is against law to discriminate on grounds of disability i(n Australia it is). Do other YHA's around the world have such a policy? What would you do?
Klara - 7-Mar-18 @ 12:05 PM
I'm looking for a place to stay here in London from 9th of June until the 22 for my friend who is wheelchair bound. Please respond as soon as you can.
Maria - 7-Jun-17 @ 6:10 PM
Hi there, I am looking for a place (Hostel)to accommodate about 13 disabled teenagers 14-17 years old on our visit to London.We would come from France so would like to see the different options in the heart of London. Thanks, Carolina Reyes
Caropi31 - 16-Jun-14 @ 11:52 AM
YHA St Pancras London has an acessable room with an acessable bathroom. I am a wheelchair user and stayed last week I was very impressed. I emailed the hostel directly to ensure they could meet my requirments and booked direct with them. They were most helpful and I would advise anyone to do the same. The actual hostel has two lifts. The acessable room had an ensuit acessable bathroom with plenty of grab handles and a shower seat. It was large enough for me to get ready with ease in my wheelchair.The bed was absoultly fine and very comfy! There was plently of room for my wheelchair next to my bed! When I emailed hostel I made them known of my exact needs including,bottom bunk, shower seat & the fact I am a wheelchair user I advice others with special requiments to do the same. Overall It was a fantastic experience and I will be staying again!
Sarah O'Connor - 9-Jun-14 @ 7:33 AM
Hello, I am French and I hope that you go to be able to help me. I would like to come a few days in London, and the hotel (First one Inn London Waterloo) would be already reserved if I could find a place where I can rent one raises sick person (patient-lift), can you help me to find?. I have to try to make my own researches but without finding anything. Thank you verry much and sorry for the faults. Mrs Follet
Mu - 4-Feb-14 @ 5:08 PM
Hi Bristol City Centre is aceesiable and has been for a longtime. With lift , disabled room with en-suite. Thanks for your very helpful website.
BristolYHAer - 10-Nov-12 @ 10:13 PM
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