For years hostels have discussed the issue of breakfast: should you offer it for free, for a fee, or not at all? And if you do offer breakfast, what should you offer?
Grant Williams from Travelers’ House in Portland, USA brought this topic up again recently, asking:
Who here provides breakfast at your hostel?
I’m looking to add it as an additional amenity, but want your tips beforehand. (I’m thinking of pancakes mix that staff will premix the night before, syrup, butter, muesli, and milk)
Does anyone know how much in general you budget for breakfast monthly or per person? My hostel at 100% can sleep 40pax.
Here are some of the responses so far:
Juan Velasquez Correa from Blue Almond Hostel in San Andres, Colombia:
No matter how good or bad your breakfast will be, people will always complain about it. I suggest you sell it for very cheap, even Booking let's you put it as an addition.
Cathrin Eszbach from Penthouse Backpackers in Osnabruck, Germany:
I have my accomodation set on Booking WITHOUT breakfast but provide the basics for free. so instead of complaining people are pleasantly surprised, when it is just there for them to use. my hostel is 35 beds and what I pay for the basics (teabags, instant coffee so that people only use as much as they need for one cup, milkpowder, toast, jam, margarine, cereal and vegan milk - carnivores and everybody can add to this whatever he/she likes in our guest kitchen with supermarkets around the corner) about 50,-€ to 70,-€ per month for ALL. --- the budget for toilet paper is much steeper!
Joanna Kasprzak from The Generator Hostel in Dublin, Ireland:
we had free breakfast (regular and soya milk, 3 types of cereals, small muffins, coffee and tea) for free without advertising it. Like you said, it was a pleasant surprise. Now we decided to put it on booking and we get complaints... I think we will not be setting it up anymore. Eh...
Uli Schmidt from Plakias in Crete, Greece:
We have a public kitchen where people can make their own breakfast but offer also some basic breakfast for thos who don't want to make the effort going shopping.
We have continental breakfast (bread, butter, jam plus a coffee or tea for 2.40 EUR), 2 fried eggs with bread and butter or omelette or scrambled eggs (2.20 EUR). A cup or tea or coffee or a glass of orange juice is 1.20 and we offer Youghurt with honey or Muesli/Cereals for 2.20. That's it already. We have 48 beds and about 30% of the guests buy breakfast from us. It's not making profit but is keeping the people happy. When I have more than 30 guests I have an employee or volunteer helping with the breakfast. With less guests I run reception and breakfast alone.
Breakfast time is 8:30 to 11:30am.
Salem Orion from the Funky Monkey Hostel in Mazatlan, Mexico:
We change between 3 free breakfasts. Mixed fruit, hotcakes, eggs with veggie. All served with fresh coffee. We might add banana bread.
I wouldn't do a free breakfast but the other hostel decided to so we have to.
What are your thoughts on hostel breakfast?
Here are some links to older discussions about breakfast from this forum. Do you think the expectations for hostel breakfast have changed over the years?
Should Breakfast be free or provided at all
What does your hostel serve for breakfast?
Free breakfast for cheap bed?
Any good ideas for free breakfast?
Free breakfast for some?