Youth Hostelling as a Disabled Person

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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