General Terms and Conditions for Youth Hostels

Youth hostels (YH) are establishments of the regional associations of the Deutsches Jugendherbergswerk (German Youth Hostel Association) (DJH) or establishments of other responsible bodies affiliated with the DJH.

Membership of the Deutsches Jugendherbergswerk or of a disparate association affiliated with the International Youth Hostel Federation (IYHF) is a pre-requisite for YH acceptance. This may be acquired on site within the youth hostels.

Youth hostel accommodation is primarily offered to young people and to families.

Children’s groups and youth groups must be accompanied by at least one person responsible for their supervision.

1. Booking

1.1 Guests may book accommodation in person, on the telephone, by fax, by post, by e-mail or also online.

1.2 The booking request should provide the following information: name, address, dates of arrival and departure, number of people (specifying the number of male and female guests), date of birth, membership number (if available). Family bookings should specify the age of the child or children and any special requests.

1.3 The reservation shall become binding upon both parties upon written or verbal confirmation thereof and/or upon conclusion of a written confirmation of occupancy.

1.4 A written Agreement of Occupancy shall be concluded with families and groups, and specific to extended occupancy.

1.5 Unannounced guests may be provided accommodation solely if the occupancy status permits this.

2. Payment

Payment for accommodation in youth hostels shall be due no later than at the time of departure. Pre-payment may be requested. Further details shall be provided in the Agreement of Occupancy concluded.

3. Cancellations

3.1 Guests who do not have a written Agreement of Occupancy may cancel their booking telephonically. Cancellation must be received by the youth hostel by 6.00 P.M. on the day prior to the scheduled date of arrival.

3.2 Guests in possession of a written Agreement of Occupancy must effect cancellation in writing. Notification of cancellation must be received by the youth hostel no later than eight weeks prior to the scheduled date of arrival, unless otherwise covenanted in the Agreement of Occupancy. Notification of the number of participants must also be submitted in writing no later than eight weeks prior to the scheduled date of arrival.

3.3 Notifications received within the eight week period prior to arrival – and thereafter – shall unequivocally be governed by the provisions cited under “Cancellation charges” detailed in the next section.

3.4 The youth hostels shall be entitled to rescind approval of the booking and/or the written Agreement of Occupancy vis-à-vis registered guests in the event of non-availability of the agreed or covenanted services up to four weeks prior to the date of arrival. In such a case, they shall be obligated to inform registered guests immediately of such non-availability and to refund any pre-payments already remitted to them. Guests thus affected shall be provided support in their identification of alternative accommodation.

4. Cancellation charges

4.1 In the event that cancellation periods shall fail to be observed, or should there be a discrepancy of at least ten per cent between the number of guests who shall have registered and those who shall have actually arrived, or should the guests fail to arrive at all, the youth hostel shall levy compensation charges of fifty per cent per person and per day specific to all covenanted services unless the guest shall demonstrate that damages of an appreciably lower extent, or no damages at all, shall have been incurred.

4.2 In the event that the costs incurred by the youth hostel in consequence of cancellation shall be demonstrably higher than the fixed amount, the guest shall be liable for remittance of this amount.

4.3 Compensation shall not be due if the covenanted services shall be utilised by other guests.

5. Membership

Submission of a valid membership card is a pre-requisite for utilisation of the youth hostels.

6. Individual membership

6.1 All persons permanently resident in the Federal Republic of Germany may obtain a membership card from all DJH membership card issuing offices (including youth hostels and offices of DJH Landesverbände).

6.2 Individual guests aged up to 26 years old shall receive junior cards. Individual guests aged 27 years and above, married couples and those in a relationship akin to marriage residing at the same address, families or single parents with minor children (aged up to 26 years) shall receive a Family/27 PLUS (FAM/27 PLUS) card even in the event that addresses shall differ. One membership card may be issued per family member.

6.3 Family membership cards (FAM/27 PLUS) shall entitle adult card holders to bring along their own minor children and those of friends.

6.4 Guests from abroad who are not members of an association affiliated with the IYHF may obtain an “International Guest Card” (Welcome Stamps) on site.

7. Organisational membership

7.1 Schools, youth groups, unions, associations, foundations, companies, corporate enterprises and other organisations shall obtain corporate membership and shall, accordingly, be issued group membership cards. Their acceptance and inclusion shall be subject to statutory provisions of the primary DJH association and of the regional associations of the DJH.

7.2 The group membership card shall entitle the leader and that leader’s group to accommodation in the youth hostel. The group membership card shall not replace individual membership. It shall not be transferable to other institutions or persons.

7.3 A group shall consist of not less than four participants, including the group leader. Group leaders shall be required to be of no less than 16 years of age.

7.4 Group membership cards shall not be issued to travel agencies or other businesses that organise travel on a commercial basis. Even when making a booking through an intermediary, the group proposing travel shall be required to be in possession of membership.

8. Prices

Prices shall be based upon the current price list of the respective regional association, or Landesverband, and/or the youth hostel at the time of receipt of the booking request, provided differing prices shall not have been covenanted in the Agreement of Occupancy. Price lists may be obtained from the DJH Landesverbänden and the youth hostels.

9. Liability

9.1 Guests who shall have culpably inflicted damage to buildings and fixtures shall be statutorily required to provide compensation thereof (those with parental responsibility and operators included).

9.2 Liability specific to loss, theft or damage of articles of value may be assumed solely if such articles shall have been surrendered to the youth hostel management, or the representatives thereof, expressly for their safekeeping unless the DJH, its organs or vicarious agents shall have caused such loss or damage either wilfully or in consequence of gross negligence. In such an instance, too, statutory provisions shall apply.

9.3 Liability shall not extend to damage to motor vehicles (including their contents) and bicycles sited on the YH premises, provided such damage shall not have been inflicted wilfully or in consequence of gross negligence by the DJH or its organs or vicarious agents.


These Terms and Conditions of Use / General Terms and Conditions for Youth Hostels were adopted following a resolution of the members’ assembly passed on 19th November 2005 in Hanover.


We would like to refer to the EU platform on online out-of-court dispute resolution, which can be found under the following link: Our DJH Service Center will be happy to assist you with initial questions on dispute resolution. Beyond this we do not participate in voluntary dispute resolution procedures before a consumer arbitration board.


House rules for youth hostels

Deutsches Jugendherbergswerk wishes all guests a pleasant and memorable stay in its youth hostels! Our guests are not only presented with a wealth of opportunities to meet people but also interact with people of divergent age groups and cultures. Such people often have unique habits, behavioural characteristics and requirements. The youth hostels have house rules that are intended to help cater to the differing requirements and to facilitate a stress-free stay. The following house rules thus require compliance by all guests. Group leaders and teachers are responsible for their groups.


If you are registered, you may arrange your time of arrival with hostel management. Approved places will be reserved until 6.00 P.M. and may thereafter be allocated to other guests.

If you are not registered, you may enquire telephonically or in person at the youth hostel regarding the availability of places.

Anyone wishing to be provided accommodation or other facilities within a youth hostel must be a member of Deutsches Jugendherbergswerk or of a further national youth hostel association. Travellers residing in Germany who are not in possession of a membership card may also obtain membership in and of the youth hostel; guests from abroad who are not in possession of a membership card must obtain an “International Guest Card”.


Accommodation is provided in shared rooms, male and female occupants being, as a rule, housed separately. Families may be provided accommodation in a single room upon request insofar as this is available.

We request your cooperation during your stay: this requires, for instance, that you keep the facilities, rooms and articles that you use in good order and that you assist in table service.

The youth hostels have pledged themselves to the conservation of the environment and of nature. We therefore request that you segregate the waste that you collect or avoid it completely, and that you use power and water sparingly.

Meals may not be prepared or consumed in bedrooms. In view of fire safety, insurance and health legislation considerations, the use of electrical appliances for the preparation of meals and hot beverages is prohibited.

Charging rechargeable batteries for electric motors is not permitted in the youth hostels for safety reasons, with the exception of assigned Connections.

Smoking is not permitted on the youth hostel premises.

Alcoholic beverages brought into the premises may not be consumed in the youth hostel or on its premises. Guests in a state of inebriation may be expelled from the premises.

As a rule, animals may not be admitted to the premises. Guide dogs and service dogs may remain in the youth hostel upon approval thereof by hostel management. Further exceptions may allow dogs in designated hostels.

Youth hostels generally remain open until 10.00 P.M.

Night hours are observed from 10.00 P.M. until 7.00 A.M. All guests are requested to exercise due consideration so as to enable other guests to sleep undisturbed.

Please remain considerate of other guests during your stay, especially when you use electronic appliances.


Bedrooms must be vacated by 10.00 A.M.

Exceptions to this rule must be approved by hostel management.

Domiciliary rights

Hostel management or a representative thereof is commissioned by the body responsible for the youth hostels to exercise domiciliary rights.

They may ban entry to the premises in the event of non-compliance with the basic rules.

The ban on entry to the premises shall be verbally substantiated.


These house rules were adopted following a resolution of the members’ assembly passed on 18th November 2017 in Berlin.