Youth hostel operator, Generator, is backing a plan to permit youth hostels in commercial districts.
New York City does not have a law that legalizes youth hostels. A City Council bill, Intro 699, would provide access to safe, modern, legal and regulated hostel facilities said Generator executive chairman Carl Michel.
Generator has plans to enter the U.S. market and has identified various cities in which it is ready to invest in building and re-purposing property into hostels. The company currently has 6,300 beds in nine cities across Europe.
Around one quarter of the global travel market is in youth travel, however New York has lost out to other cities in North America because hotel accommodation is too expensive for youth travelers.
Legalizing hostels will ensure the city is positioned to grow its market share of the estimated $320 billion youth travel market in 2020, said Michel.
Councilman Mark Weprin introduced Intro. 699, legislation that would allow hostels to operate with four to eight beds in each dormitory-style room and re-open a market targeted for young individuals that are backpacking in New York City.
It would allow licensed hostels to operate in commercial areas and be subject to regulation by the city Department of Consumer Affairs.
Hostels in New York City have reportedly struggled since a 2010 law outlawed renting apartments for less than 30 days.