Hostelworld reports 76% drop in revenue as travel sector remains under Covid cloud

Budget accommodation group sees light at end of the tunnel as travel restrictions are eased

Hostelworld has reported that revenue fell 76 per cent drop in the first half of 2021 to €2.9 million as the pandemic continues to hit the travel and tourism sector.

However, the budget accommodation specialist said it had seen a “modest increase” in bookings in recent weeks in line with the easing of travel restrictions.

The company’s half-year results to the end of June show bookings declined by 73 per cent from 1.1 million to 300,000 when compared with the same period in 2020.

Hostelworld, which has some 36,000 properties across 178 countries on its platform, has been hit hard by the pandemic and related restrictions on travel.


Nonetheless it said its latest half-year results were largely in line with expectations.

"During the first half of 2021 the Covid-19 pandemic has weighed heavily on the global travel industry," chief executive Gary Morrison said. "Although global vaccination programmes have continued at pace, new strains of the virus have spread rapidly around the world, leading to frequent and swift changes to travel restrictions.

“Despite the challenging macro-environment we are starting to see customer demand returning in geographies where travel restrictions have been eased,” he said.

Mr Morrison said the company’s liquidity position remained “very strong, driven by our relentless focus on cost control coupled with the successful term-loan facility transaction in February 2021”.

The company has a cash position of €33.7 million at the end of June.

“In summary, while the short-term outlook for the travel industry remains extremely challenging, I remain confident that Hostelworld will emerge from the Covid-19 crisis stronger than before,” said Mr Morrison.

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy is Economics Correspondent of The Irish Times