Full Schedule


Conference Schedule

We are looking forward to connecting with you and learning about ways to improve your hostel business. This schedule is tentative, restaurants, sponsors and speakers are confirming daily! 


Historic King Street

Monday, January 22, 2018

  • 12 Early check in at the Notso Hostel 
  • 1-2 Complimentary walking history tour of Charleston by Ryan Bergeson 
  • 2:30-3:00 Registration at Pure Theater
  • 3-3:15 Welcome, Inside An American Hostel Presentation 
  • 3:15-3:30 Hostel Presentation: Sin City Hostel By Jason Ordiway                                               Coming from the the City of Sin, Neon lights, the most extravagant hotels and also night clubbing capital of the world! Jason will share his experience in managing a hostel surrounded by wedding chapels, sex stores and cheap-ish motels in Downtown Las Vegas. 
  • 3:30-4 Changes to the hostel industry- HI standards and new fee structure for 2018. Presentation by Jim Kennet of NW Portland International Hostel 
  • 4-4:45  How to recruit and manage volunteers with Worldpackers.                                                Why and How to use volunteers in your hostel? Worldpackers is the first app for work-exchange in the world, counting with 1,000,000 volunteers from 170 countries. Riq will walk through successful cases and how to better use the platform. Presentation by CEO Riq Lima. 
  • 4:45-5 Attendee Introductions and Connections
  • 5-5:30 Dinner at Pure Theater, provided by Basic Kitchen
  • 5:30-7 Movie Screening of Craigslist Joe, movie screening and Q&A. Sponsored by Basic Kitchen. 

Sunset Bonfire

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

  • 9-9:45- How Airbnb and the short term rental market has changed the hostel industry. Presentation by Jacob Lindsey from the City of Charleston, Director Department of Planning, Preservation and Sustainability. 
  • 9:45-10:30 Panel discussion- how have illegal Airbnb rentals affected your business and what can you do to change it? 
  • 10-10:45 Break
  • 10:45-11:15 On a Mission: Developing business practices to save the world. Presentation by Karalee Fallert  
  • 11:15-12:30 Lunch at Verde
  •  12:30-1:30 Non-stop business in a non-stop world: Real strategies for time management. Presentation by Courtney Loechi, Editor of Hostelmanagement.com                                                  Does your hostel to-do list feel like you cross one thing off and add 3 more? Does keeping up with email feel like drinking from a firehose? Do you plan your days only to have them go 180 differently? A 24 hour business in an always-connected world is enough to make even the most efficient person's head spin. It will never be perfect, but it CAN be manageable! I will be diving into a handful of my favorite tips, tricks, & resources for the ever-elusive time management. Be sure to take notes; this is valuable info from many wise people.   
  • 1:30-3 Branding Workshop: Crafting a Mission + Vision that Builds a Memorable Brand            Branding isn’t just a logo or a tagline. It’s a commitment to yourself, your team and your customers about who you are and what benefits you deliver. Ronii and Ellen will show you how your brand is a holistic culture your company lives and promotes from.  And it all starts with your personal mission and vision for your life. Get immersed in this interactive workshop where you will develop your personal mission and your business’ strategic objective, mission and vision statements. These powerful statements will guide brand assets like your visual identity and your tone of voice to the philanthropic causes you support. It’s all connected. It all tells a story. Your story. You’ll leave with a strong brand story that influences others and resources for specific brand deliverable when you’re on a budget. 
  • 3-3:15 Break
  • 3:15-4:00 Instagram Growth Strategy- Learn applicable strategies to grow your customer following & increase engagement on Instagram.  Learn tips like best posting times, how to acquire up to 1,000 authentic followers per month, & more. Presentation by Liz Martin of Charleston Weekender, Social Media University, 
  • 4-5  How technology can improve your business. Presentation by Kevin High CEO of Vroomres Technology is amazing but it moves at the speed of light. It’s hard to keep up with all our options. There are tools for organizing your day, tools for automating marketing, tools for ordering supplies, and the list goes on. In this session, Kevin will discuss how technology has evolved and how all the options were creating chaos in his property management business. He will tell you his adventures on trying every management software and how he just couldn’t find one to do what he needed it to do. Through his story, he will talk about how he built a solution that works with a demo of his vacation rental management software, VROOMRes. Learn how this technology can improve your business.
  • 5:30-6:30PM Cocktail hour hosted by Vroomres 

The Notso Hostel Main Location

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

  • 9-915 How to Bootstrap a Hostel - Our Experience in Bend, Oregon. Presented by Bunk+Brew
  • 915-10 What I learned after opening my first, second and third hostel by Joe Gill
  • 10-10:15 Break
  • 10:15-11 Open Source Software for the Small (or Any) Hostel: Whether building your furniture, tiny houses, or assembling Ikea furniture, hostel owners are no strangers to doing it yourself. But what about marketing or training videos?  How about web sites?  Open-source projects have provided reliable and affordable (mostly free) software tools for almost any digital projects.  In this session, Joseph will discuss some open-source technologies and how they are being used throughout Providence Hostel.  Joseph will go in depth on the pros and cons of using OSS, why you should use it, and he will talk about some of the technologies used at Providence Hostel.  Topics discussed include Blender 3D, Open Broadcasting Studio, Audacity, and how OSS and backpacking share some ideologies.
  • 11-11:30 Why User Experience is Paramount                                                                                  Ben Alicea has had years of experience with digital marketing, SEO and redesigning websites. Learn how to increase your SEO and how the website experience is tied together for the user.  Someone should be able to search for a hostel and find you easily (wherever they are searching) and someone should also be able to easily navigate your website and book a room, or else they will leave (and maybe book an AirBnb).
  • 1130-12:45  Lunch at Monza offering discount
  • 12:45-2:15 Open forum for planning the next conference, form a working group to discuss forming a trade association or networking group for independent hostels. There will also be an option for a breakout session for hostels to connect over best practices.
  • 2:15-2:30 Closing Remarks 
  • 3-5 Participant talent show at Eclectic Cafe and Vinyl!