My friend and I are currently toying with the idea of opening a hostel in Croatia. right now we are trying to compile as much information and advice about the process as possible.
Neither of us are from a business background nor do we have any financial or accounting skills. We are just travellers with a little bit of money and an idea which we think will be successful.
The area we have picked is well served by major public transport routes and has a high frequency of traffic passing through it going on to other destinations and to major tourist attractions nearby during the months June-early September. We estimate we can average at least 1.5-2 nights per guest given what the immediate area has to offer to the average tourist. But we feel we can increase this average by offering trips/activities such as rock-climbing, kayaking, mountainbiking etc.
Depending on the property we find, the hostel will ideally be 12-16 beds. We want to rent the property at first. We have heard the licensing for an apartment can be difficult to obtain due to guests not being allowed to use the building's common areas. So, we are on the look out for house type properties. A typical example would be 100m2+, 3 bedrooms, bathroom, seperate toilet, kitchen/living area, closet/storage room.
I don't want to focus on the budget for the moment. What we need is...
1. Advice with dealing with the Croatian "system"
2. What is the order of execution. And how long can it take. Cost?
We would say -
A. Register the company. (neither of us had a "tourism degree". Do we have to pass an exam before we can manage in the tourism industry?)
B. Find property. (ongoing, but should be found by this point)
C. Obtain licensing for the property.
D. Painting, decorating, furniture etc.
F. Open for business.
3. We need some guidance with regards to what kind of tourism taxation we will be subjected to.
Many thanks for any help you can give us. Looking forward to hearing from you.