a&o Hostels announces 2022 as most successful year to date with 5.55 million overnight stays and a turnover of 172 million Euros

23rd January 2023 – European hostel brand, a&o Hostels has revealed 2022 was its most successful year to date. Welcoming more than 5.55 million overnight stays and a turnover of more than 172 million Euros, the Berlin budget chain surpassed results from the pre-COVID year 2019 (around 150 million) and experienced a turnover increase of more than 100 million Euros compared to 2021 - almost 150 percent more.

"2022 was an incredibly dynamic year for us," says founder and CEO Oliver Winter, "personnel reinforcements, extensive investments in digitalisation and sustainability, as well as award wins have once again given us a lot of energy and motivation as we look very optimistically to the year ahead."

Winter highlights three fields of action in particular:  


  1. Team

Around 600 new employees were recruited, trained and integrated into the a&o family in record time; in addition, numerous new appointments were made to key positions in revenue management, HR and sales;      

  1. Digitalisation

a&o guests opened their doors via mobile key over 80,000 times; the a&o app is now installed on 55,000 smartphones and the offers will be further expanded;    

  1. Sustainability

a&o plans to invest around 20 million Euros in sustainability measures over the next three years; over four million Euros were invested in the energy refurbishment of the a&o Munich Hackerbrücke alone in summer 2022;  

Despite the energy crisis and rising prices in many areas of life, the a&o founder remains confident that he will continue to be able to offer all travellers who value affordable quality: "Our size and efficiency allow us to continue to provide affordable travel offers in the future. Currently, our rates in January are even lower than those from 2019."

Team strengthening and key positions   

2022 brought a lot of movement to the team, in a&o’s favour. The new Director HR and ESG, Anne Spanjersberg (37) ensures the team, guests and partners are committed to the company's sustainability agenda; to be Europe's first emission-free budget chain by 2025. Numerous measures and initiatives are underway or imminent, such as an extensive ESD pilot project at the a&o Berlin Mitte. After a "record summer", Annalia Bassi, new Head of International Sales, is aware of the challenges and wants to position a&o as a flexible, guest-oriented product in still complex times. Team colleague Francesco Falcon is now also responsible for Spain in addition to Italy. The DACH sales team has also been strengthened with Jenny Gartner and Nelly Fischer; the newly created position of Operational Talent Coordinator has been filled by the head of a&o Dortmund, Gerald Pupkes; and in spring, the new Real Estate Team was launched: with James Simmonds as the new Chief Investment Officer (CIO), Real Estate Analyst Leandro Rispoli and Associate Real Estate Annabel Jasakov.

Growth to continue to pick up speed  

The purchase of the a&o Berlin Hauptbahnhof was another highlight in 2022, with expansion plans focusing on the UK, Italy, Benelux and the umbrella region. "Within reach," says Oliver Winter, are still Heidelberg, Florence and Barcelona. "In addition, we are pursuing very specific projects in Athens, Rome, Milan, Lisbon as well as Glasgow and Stockholm." The success story of what is now the world's largest hostel chain began with the first house in Berlin Friedrichshain in 2000: currently 40 houses in 25 cities in nine European countries belong to a&o; the chain grew continuously even in 2020/21 and opened three houses in Warsaw, Copenhagen and Budapest; since summer 2021, a&o is also represented in the UK for the first time with Edinburgh.

School classes and groups, certifications and awards 

With over 2.2 million school class and group overnight stays, a&o 2022 significantly exceeded its 2019 figures. "Certifications are an important quality feature that gives our guests orientation," emphasises Phillip Winter, CMO of the budget group. All or numerous properties have been (re-)certified, including for the first time by Bett+Bike as bicycle-friendly accommodation; Greensign recertification for sustainability; Reisenetz quality seal for youth travel; the majority of the current 40 a&o locations bear the quality seal for children's and youth travel (QMJ) and are classified as 4 or 5 stars; TÜV certification for trainers/regional managers for internal audits; in addition, a&o was awarded the rating "High Satisfaction" for the first time for its family-friendliness in the category "Hotel - Budgets".



About a&o Hostels

a&o was founded in 2000 by Oliver Winter and currently operates 40 hostels in 25 cities and nine European countries. The a&o guest mix is diverse: backpackers are part of the a&o target group, as are solo travellers, families, school groups and clubs. The number of business travellers and senior citizens is also increasing. The first location in the UK to open was the a&o Edinburgh City in July 2021. Three new locations were added in 2020: premieres took place in Poland, a&o Warsaw, and Hungary, a&o Budapest; the second property opened in Copenhagen. With around 28,500 beds and around 5.55 million overnight stays in 2022, a&o recorded a turnover of €172 million (2021: €70 million; 2020: €64 million). a&o's goal is to be Europe's "zero-emissions hostel chain" by 2025. Since 2017, the American investor TPG Real Estate has owned a&o. The company is still managed by the founder.

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