FAQ - Frequently asked questions

We are happy to explain all details concerning your stay at a&o!

If you still have any questions that you feel we have not fully answered yet, feel free to contact us!

App

a&o offers its own free app for guests in German and English. With the app you can book accommodation, check-in online and it is even possible to use your mobile phone as your room key - just turn on Bluetooth, hold your smartphone to the lock, click and that's it!

Available for free here: Google Play Store; Apple App Store.

Arrival after 6 pm

Guests with a FIX booking (cheaper rate; paid in advance) can arrive at any time without hesitation.

Guests with a FLEX booking (payable on site; can be cancelled free of charge by 6 pm) should call us on +49 30 80 947 5110 and have their booking guaranteed by submitting their credit card details with CS Service Agent to be on the safe side. Then you can arrive later without any problems. The credit card is for security purposes only – you can still pay on arrival. The card will only be charged if you do not arrive. Without a credit card, we cannot guarantee that your room will be available after 6 pm.

Bus parking

There are bus parking spaces free of charge in close vicinity. Some a&o's offer bus parking spaces.

Car parking

Almost every a&o location has its own parking lot or underground parking. Street-level spaces cost from 5,-€ per day.

Catering

You can expect a rich breakfast buffet for only 8,90 €. Please note that prices may differ in countries where the euro is not accepted as a means of payment. You can book the breakfast online for 8,65 €. Children 6 and under get breakfast for free, ages 7 and up are just 4.50 €, and young adults 18 and older pay full price.
Breakfast hours are Mon-Fri 7.00-11.00 am and Sat-Sun 7.00-11.00 am. For groups of 10 or more we also offer dinner (by arrangement). On request we prepare packed lunches for 6 € (groups of 10 or more get a 50ct discount). This includes a sandwich, fruit, a sweet and a drink. For detailed information click here.
We ask for your understanding, as lunch and/or dinner cannot be added for individual guests. However, you are welcome to book packed lunches in advance online or on site (one day before required).

Check-in/ Check-out times

Check-in is possible at any time. Your room is ready for you at 3 pm.  

Check-out workdays is until 10am. Weekends and also holidays until 11 am.

Community rooms

Yes, these offer ample space for smaller and medium-sized groups. Should the room still be too small we can make the dining area available (non-eating times only). For teachers and accompanying persons there is also a teacher and guide lounge, called a&o Lounge.

Early Check-in / Late Check-out

With our Early Check-in for 10€ you can enter your room at 11 am. On Weekends at 12 pm. - You can book this service for single, double or family rooms at aohostels.com.

The Late Check-out until 2 pm for 10 Euro allows you a nice and long sleep-in. Available also online.

Forgot something at the a&o / Lost & Found

Forgot something? We would love to help you out! Just use our contact form for a personal inquiry directly to the desired a&o house. If we have found what you lost, we will send you a short manual for the pick-up request via DHL.

Guests under the age of 18

From the age of 14 you can stay in our a&o's all by yourself.  All you need is a signed declaration of consent from your parents and a copy of the personal identification from the parent who signed the form.

Getting to a&o

A precise description of the directions can be found on each location's website.

Info bed tax ("Kulturtaxe")

Important downloads for your stay
In cities like Amsterdam, Berlin, Bremen, Budapest, Dortmund, Dresden, Frankfurt, Graz, Hamburg, Cologne, Weimar, Prague, Salzburg, Venice and Vienna tourists pay a city tax.

"City Tax" in Amsterdam | "Übernachtungssteuer" in Berlin | "Tourismusabgabe" in Bremen | "Idegenforgalmi adó" in Budapest | "Beherbergungsabgabe" in Dortmund | "Beherbergungssteuer" in Dresden | "Nächtigungsabgabe" in Frankfurt und Graz | "Kultur- und Tourismustaxengesetz" in Hamburg | "Kulturförderabgabe" in Köln und Weimar | "Turistický poplatek" in Prag | "Ortstaxe" in Salzburg und Wien | "Tassa Soggiorno" in Venedig

In certain cases guests are exempt from payment. For this purpose, if applicable, a corresponding form (see blue boxes) must be filled out in advance and presented on the day of arrival.

Attention – Special cases:

AMSTERDAM:
Guests in Amsterdam pay a city tax of 7 % on the net accomodation price plus an additional € 3 per night / person over 16 years. The legal regulations can be read in original language here.

BERLIN:
Guests in Berlin pay a city tax of 5 % on the net accomodation price. Special rule for Berlin: Freelancers and employees staying overnight on business trips are exempt. The links to the exemption forms can be found below. Associations, foundations and religious communities are also exempt. Before traveling, please fill out this form.

BREMEN:
Guests in Bremen pay a city tax of 5 % on the net accomodation price if they are 18 years or older. Special rule for Bremen: Freelancers and employees or guests staying at the a&o for more than 7 nights in a row are exempt from the 8th day. You can find the links to the exemption forms below.

BUDAPEST:
Guests in Budapest pay a city tax of 4 % on the net accomodation price. Special rule for Budapest: Exempted are guests under 18 years, students (second or higher education), performers of a service obligation, performers of an entrepreneurial activity with a registered office in Budapest or persons performing the work / service of an employee as well as persons staying overnight due to official / judicial arrangements. You can find the links to the exemption forms below.

DORTMUND:
Guests in Dortmund pay a city tax of 7.5 % on the net accomodation price from the age of 18. Special rule for Dortmund: Freelancers and employees who stay overnight at the a&o are exempt. You can find the links to the exemption forms below.

DRESDEN:
Guests in Dresden pay a city tax of 1 / 15 (approx. 6.67 %) on the net accomodation price from the age of 18. Special rule for Dresden: Freelancers and employees staying at the a&o are exempt. You can find the links to the exemption forms below.

FRANKFURT:
Guests in Frankfurt pay a city tax of € 2 per person on the net accomodation price. Special rule for Frankfurt: Freelancers and employees staying at the a&o are exempt. You can find the links to the exemption forms below.

GRAZ:
Guests in Graz pay a city tax of € 1.15 per person on the net accomodation price if they are 18 or older. Special rule for Graz: Freelancers and employees or guests staying at the a&o for more than 13 nights in a row are exempt from the 14th day. You can find the links to the exemption forms below.

HAMBURG:
Guests in Hamburg pay a city tax if the net charge is less than € 10 - € 0, € 25 - € 0.54, € 50 - € 1.07, € 100 - € 2.14, € 150 - € 3.21, € 200 - € 4.28 (price per person, incl. VAT). Special rule for Hamburg: Freelancers and employees staying overnight on business trips are exempt. You can find the links to the exemption forms below.

COLOGNE:
Guests in Cologne pay a city tax of 5 % on the net accomodation price from the age of 18. Special rule for Cologne: Freelancers and employees staying at the a&o are exempt. You can find the links to the exemption forms below.

PRAGUE:
Guests in Prague pay a city tax of CZK 15.

SALZBURG:
Guests in Salzburg pay a city tax of € 1.75 per person.

VENICE:
Guests in Venice pay a city tax of € 1.40 (from 16 years) or € 0.70 (age 10 - 16) per person / night. Special rule for Venice: Guests in Venice pay a lower city tax of € 1 (from 16 years) or € 0.50 (age 10 - 16) exclusively in January. Children under 10 years are exempt.

Condition for tax exemption (with proof* / without proof):

-    Residents of the city of Venice (incl. suburbs)
-    Children up to and including 9 years of age
-    Guests who are in Venice for rehabilitation purposes *
-    Accompanying persons of patients in Venetian hospitals (max. 1 accompanying person) *
-    Parents of patients in Venetian hospitals *
-    Bus drivers / teachers / guides (travel agency) of groups of 25 people or more
-    Volunteers in social services for events (organized by the city / province) or in states of emergency
-    Police, fire department or armed forces personnel on duty in Venice
-    Disabled persons 

* Only with proof from the hospital, the presentation of the personal data of the person to be treated and an estimate of the duration of the stay in the hospital.  

If any of these cases apply, please fill out this form before travelling.

VIENNA:
Guests in Vienna pay a city tax of 3.2 % on the net accomodation price. Special rule for Vienna: Exempt are students at Viennese universities and universities of applied sciences, minors staying in Vienna for school attendance or vocational training or in youth hostels as well as persons staying at the a&o for more than three months in a row. The links to the exemption forms can be found below.

 

General information sheets on taxation (partially only in country’s original language):

Berlin Bremen Dortmund DresdenFrankfurt Graz Hamburg Cologne Salzburg Venice Weimar
 

Documents for groups (school classes) with an educational task / further education:

Berlin Dortmund Dresden Hamburg Cologne Salzburg (students up to 15y.) Weimar
 

Guests with professional reason for travel (employer / employer's certificate):

Berlin Bremen DresdenDortmund Hamburg Cologne Weimar
 

Guests with professional reason for travel (tradesman / freelancer certificate):

Berlin Bremen Dortmund Dresden Hamburg Cologne Weimar
 

Luggage storage

You can store your luggage in our lockers. For groups there is also a free luggage room.

Pets

Dogs are always welcome at all a&o locations! You can bring a maximum of 2 dogs in your room for a fee of 10€ per night and dog.
Unfortunately it is not possible to bring dogs into the multi-bed rooms, as it is possible that it would make other guests uncomfortable. For the same reason we ask you not to bring dogs to the breakfast room. We appreciate your understanding.

Room categories

In almost all of our a&o establishments, you can find single, double and family rooms, however you can also book a bed in a dorm for four to eight people.

*Exceptions to this rule are the a&o Hostels Köln Dom / München Hauptbahnhof / Hamburg Hammer Kirche, as these hostels only have private rooms, and are therefore unable to offer bookings for a bed in a dorm.*

Therefore, you have two options for booking with a&o:

• The First option means…
You are booking a private room i.e. a single, double, or family room. The price includes bed linen, hand towels, 2-in-1 shampoo, a hairdryer, and you can enjoy the convenience of your own bathroom.

• The Second option means…
You are booking a bed in a dorm room. This option offers you affordable accommodation in an uncomplicated atmosphere. With this option, each room has its own bathroom with 2-in-1 shampoo and a hairdryer. You can also add bed linen and hand towels to your booking.

*The only exception is our a&o Hamburg Reeperbahn, where there are still a few bathrooms on the floors.*

Rules of the house

You can view and download the house rules here.

Self-catering

You can of course also bring your own food when staying with us. Our tip: It is best to check in advance whether the a&o you have booked offers a guest kitchen where you can prepare your meals.

You can find out either by reading the e-mail sent to you 48 hours prior to your arrival or by checking our website here.

Ticket bookings

If you are already on-site, please ask at the reception for selected tickets. Our friendly staff will be happy to help you.

Of course, you can already book selected tickets on our website upon your arrival. Simply choose an a&o city and get some inspiration. For example we offer WelcomeCards which already include a ticket valid for public transportation and huge benefits for several leisure and culutural activities.

Wi-Fi

Every a&o offers free Wi-Fi in all public areas, such as the lobby or the bars, and in every room as well.

Disabled-friendly

Wheelchair-accessible rooms are available in almost all a&o HOTELS and HOSTELS. Feel free to call us at +49 30 80947 5110 to get more information.

Guest kitchens

We offer community kitchens with full kitchen equipment in some cities for city dwellers, for example for solo travellers, for couples, families and friends as well as for smaller groups. More information is available here.

Kids’ Corner & child care

Families find a Kids’ Corner in every a&o with toys, a painting board, coloring pencils and children's books. In some a&o's, the small children's playgrounds even have slides or playhouses. Your children can have a good time while you enjoy a cup of coffee in the lobby or in the breakfast room.

Find more information about our family benefits here.

We’re sorry to say that we do not offer hotel child care services. However, we can provide you with a good babysitter network for some cities that you can contact independently.

Room cleaning

At a&o we carry out daily room checks which consist of:
i) refilling hygience products and emptying bins
ii) no daily cleaning with chemicals in respect to our natural resources
iii) basic cleaning after check out.

We are always striving to help the environment that's why we don't change the towels daily. Please hang them on the towel rail and do not leave them on the floor. Fresh towels can be purchased at the reception for a small fee.

Smoking

Since January 1, 2008 all of our locations are smoke-free.

Towels / Bed linen

All single, double and family rooms come with bed linen and towels. Only guests in multi-bed rooms need bed linen and towels, if they didn't bring their own. You get bed linen for 3.50€ and a towel for 1.50€ either at the reception or as an online feature when booking your stay.
In family rooms (grand)parents sleep a double bed (bed linen included) and their (grand)kids in one or two bunk beds. Families put fresh linen on their children's bunk beds themselves.

Women's rooms

Of course, we offer dorm rooms just for women. You can simply book them online – a pink banner shows the correct room category.

Automobile Association discount (e.g. AA UK)

All ARC Europe members (such as AA UK or AAA USA) get 12% off the daily-updated overnight rate at all a&o HOTELS und HOSTELS and a free, non-alcoholic soft drink (kids under the age of 12 get a free ice-cream).

Young drivers with an ADAC membership ('Junges Portal') get 12% off and free Wi-Fi instead.

All information with this reduced booking rate here.

Booking cancellation

It depends on the rate you booked. If you booked using our Flex-Rate, then you can cancel at any time. Otherwise the room will be kept available for you until 6 pm on the day of your arrival. Please let us know if you will arrive later. The Fix-Rate is, as the name says, "fixed" and cannot be cancelled. The price cannot be reimbursed even if you do not stay here. That's why this rate is especially low. For groups of 10 or more there are special cancellation rules that you can find in our Terms and Conditions.

Children's discount

Children under 7 years of age stay free of charge in their parents' room. The room price is based on the number of travelling parents (guardians). Little ones are always welcome! We can provide you with free children's beds (recommend up to the age of 2 years) and high chairs, when available.

Facebook discount

Social media are great communication networks that we really like! This way we can interact with our (potential) guests. That's why fans of our Facebook page also get 5% off the daily-updated price.
If you go to our Facebook page now and become a fan, you can then enter the following code when booking online: imafan

Frequent guests

As a frequent a&o guest you get - similar to bigger airlines - a special treatment. For 69€ you can order your personal Traveller Card at each reception desk or via telephone / E-Mail. The card will be send by post (on-site you will get a temporary card). You find all advantages for you as our guest here.

Group deposit

We don't request a deposit, but we request that groups behave themselves properly.

Long-term guests

If you stay at one of our a&o HOTELS and HOSTELS for a longer period of time, we recommend purchasing a Traveller Card. It offers exclusive prices for frequenters and other great advantages. Find more information here.

When travelling with lots of people or at regular intervals, we're happy to advise individually. Our competent sales team deals with your requests at: [email protected].

Payment options

You can choose from a range of payment options. You can pay by instant bank transfer, credit card (VISA or MasterCard), PayPal, Amazon Payments or direct debit. Paypal payments are charged with a 2.45 € processing fee when your amount is lower than 200 €. You should only use the direct debit option if your arrival is not in the next 5 days.

Press discount

Journalists get a 20% discount on overnight stays. MICE Travel Card holders also get to use this special price. Please contact [email protected] to make a reservation and show your valid press pass at the check-in counter.

Pricing at a&o

Our prices are determined by availability – completely fair, completely transparent! That means that if beds of one room category are in short supply at a specific date, then the prices go up. And if the desired occupancy rate has not been reached, then the prices also fall automatically. What does that mean for you? Basically, the earlier you book, the lower the price. Those who make decisions on the spur of the moment also benefit from exclusive last-minute deals – of course, only as long as the respective category is not fully booked.

Rail pass discount

Guests with a valid InterRail, Eurail or GermanRail pass receive a 10% discount on the daily rate of accommodation in all a&o's. Find all information including our online discount link here

Student discount

Each student with a valid ISIC- oder ITIC-ID card gets 10% off the daily-updated rate at all a&o HOTELS und HOSTELS including a free, non-alcoholic soft drink. Simply type in the discount code "isic" into the appropiate field when booking online.

Surcharge for single occupancy

We don't have a surcharge for single occupancy. You can find our current prices on each location's website.

Vouchers

You can purchase our "a&o TO GO blue" gift box for 119,-€ for yourself or a special occasion. The box includes 2 nights in a double room for 2 people with breakfast buffet included. Kids younger than 7 years stay overnight for free in their parents' room. A great tip for backpackers is our "a&o TO GO orange" gift box for 29,-€ that lets you sleep in dorm for 2 nights with bed linen and free Wi-Fi. Find out more here.

Our Online Shop has got plenty of other useful and interesting products.