Join the Scottish Independent Hostel Network

Any independently-owned Scottish hostel, bunkhouse, backpackers or activity accommodation can join the SIH network, as long as they are either affiliated to VisitScotland Quality Assurance or are part of our independent review system.  An annual membership fee is required based on the number of bed spaces in the hostel - please see the table of fees on the bottom of the page.  For such a small outlay, the marketing benefits are excellent! 

The benefits of joining the SIH Network

SIH works to help raise awareness of the quality and diversity of Independent Hostel accommodation in Scotland to a wide range of target markets through various marketing initiatives.  It undertakes marketing campaigns and initiatives which will benefit the members through exposure to the general public.  There are also many direct marketing benefits to our hostel members:  

Listing on the SIH website

Our website lists an extensive range if hostels that cover most of Scotland. Search by map, A-Z, activity or email enquiries directly to the hostel. 

There is a direct link to your website and you can update your listing independently.

Lots of opportunities to highlight your hostel on special offers, blogs and other pages. 

Social Media, Email Marketing & Blogs

We currently post on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Tag us and we'll share you posts and stories.

We run regular advertising campaigns to raise the profile of our social channels. 

We have a growing mailing list with over 3,000 subscribers and we're always looking for news for our blog. 

Leaflet and Events 

All members get an entry in the SIH printed leaflet, updated annually and distributed throughout Scotland.  All of the hostels are marked on the map, which can double as a handy poster. 

We also represent the industry at events to make sure your hostel has a voice in the travel and tourism community. 

Be part of the Hostelling Community 

Connect with like-minded hostel owners and exchange ideas on running hostels and get expert advice on a range of relevant issues.  Our members section on the website carries lots of information useful for hostel owners. We also run a Facebook Group for hostels to support each other. 

We have an annual gathering as well as plenty of opportunity to chat online. 

What the hostellers have to say...

For me one of the main benefits of SIH is the opportunity to network with other hostel owners and managers who face the same challenges as we do. I find it so helpful to swap ideas, share triumphs and commiserate together over the tricky day-to-day running of our small business. It feels like we’re all in the same boat and that’s invaluable to me.

Nikki, Lochness Backpackers

Scottish Independent Hostels was invaluable to myself and my team when setting up and running Haggis Hostels. We found that sharing information through the association was crucial when troubleshooting any problems, identifying any possible problem guests and achieving special discounted consortium discounts on insurances and subscriptions. With SIH having a presence at hostel conferences they were able to share innovative ideas we would not have known about without the help of SIH. This along with the commission free enquiries and bookings not only helped us realise the potential of group bookings but also saved us a large amount of money every year. I would highly recommend becoming a member of SIH and attending the annual conference. To network with other hostel owners will put you ahead of the competition and enable you to recommend partner hostels to your guests. Let’s face it when most people visit Scotland they are looking to move around and experience Scotland to the full and through SIH they have over 100 reputable accommodation providers to choose from.

Chris Davidson, founder of Haggis Hostels

“The SIH provides a go to website of a large number of independently run hostels. This means potential guests just have to look in one place for all the awesome locations to stay in Scotland - making it quick, clear and really easy to use. We’ve found guests like having everything in one place – a one stop shop. Thus we’ve hugely benefited from being part of the SIH group.”

Dominique, Ballater Hostel

Membership Fees 2020 - 2021

To find out more please email Nicky at or fill in the membership form.  You can join pro-rata at any time of the year; the full annual membership is due on October 31st each year.

Table of Fees

No. of bedsAnnual Fee
0 - 10£110
11 - 15£140
16 - 20£170
21 - 30£195
31 -40£230
41 -50£260
50 -100£290