Thursday, July 26, 2007

Where'd everybody go?

We have a new set up for our community page which includes photos, blogs and all the other cool stuff. You can go there now by clicking on this link.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Plus Launches New Website

On Friday last week saw the launch of a new phase in the development of Plus with the launch of our new website

The new phase encompasses the redevelopment of the pluspass and the development of our web 2.0 travel platform incorporating Google mashups, community and activities.

The site will be run in parallel with with customers having the choice as to which site they want to use. Plusted will be the home for the pluspass, pluspass hostels, activities, blogs etc. while plusvillages will focus primarily on Italy


As we were developing our new website we took the opportunity to revisit the pluspass and to make some significant changes from the way the pass works from both a hostel management and the end users point of views.

Major Changes

  • We have now split the pass into 6 different zones that are relevant to geographical areas and cost the cost of a bed night.
  • We have reduced the number of nights to each pass to 5 thus eliminating a perceived cost barrier to entry from our customers.
  • We have changed the number of nights stay available to be booked with the pass to unlimited provided the customer has available nights left on the pass.
  • There are now combi zones available on the pass. Which allow customers to buy a combination of different zones at discounted rates.

The Zones

The Stone Zone- England, Wales, Scotland, France, Switzerland, Belgium and the Netherlands

The Bull Zone- Spain and Portugal

The Paddy Zone- Ireland and Northern Ireland

The Stein Zone- Austria and Germany

The E Zone- Bosnia Herzegovina, Croatia, Hungary Czech Republic Poland Etc.

The Sun Zone- Italy Greece and Turkey

Cheers Pops

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Go slow day

This looks really cool .I found it while looking for information on the prime minister's (Prodi) resignation, a situation that is rather common occurrence in Italy. They've had more governments than I've had hot pizzas. 60 new prime ministers in as many years since the end of WWII. They don't have so much a ministerial chair as a bare patch of carpet where they stand for a limited time. Anyway, the go slow thing. Life has certainly slowed for me since joining the mothering sorority (fraternity just doesn't sound right) Time is measured in feeding periods and length of time time between nappy changes, sometimes only 10 mins between.
I was happy to move to Italy as I knew it had a slower pace of life after London and now they have honoured it with a day devoted to going slow. Some acquaintances of mine may argue that I don't need a day to relish going slow, I've been doing it all my life.
Why the need to go fast? Unless you are behind the wheel of a supercar (Mclaren F1 or Ferrari spring to mind) with the top down there really is no need to go any faster than necessary. I agree with the need to look around you and see what's happening in the rest of the world. Taking the baby for a walk has certainly slowed things down for me, stopping every few feet to wipe up spit or find the toy that's gone overboard.
I remember watching the world go by from the window of the train years ago, wondering what people around Europe got up to in their daily lives. I guess most of the time its everyone watching everyone else rushing around. Unless you are in Italy of course.

Thursday, February 15, 2007


Well last year it was flashpackers, in the years before they were called backpackers. Now in a country you could only call America comes the Fatpacker. I picked up this little gem at Willy Volks Blog at Glading.

Apparently the definition of Fatpacking is:
an alternative to Boot Camps, Fat Camps, Fat Farms and a less rigorous version of Outward Bound- is for people who love the outdoors, but who are a little bit overwieght or a little older and prefer not to feel rushed by superfit-atheletes or obsessive hi milage hikers.

Fatpackers offer 1 or 2 week hiking vacations durring which Fatpackers guides help reshape the participants bodies while having an 'unforgetable wilderness experience'. Apparently Fatppackers can loose as much as 5 pounds a week (possibly more if you stumble accross a grizzly bear)

Even better for those chasing a bit of stardom there is even talk of a reality show. Be careful though my mate Chris a camera man informs me that TV cameras always stick on a few extra pounds.

For those interested check out Fatpackers here.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Should a Hostels Details be Included in a Website

I have just received an interesting email from an unnamed website requesting us to remove a hostels contact details from our content pages due to the fear of customers making direct bookings to a hostel.

Now I have to ask myself several questions:

  • Do people really leave a website to make a booking directly with the hostel?
  • Why would people leave a website unless they're having a bad experience or they thought that by ringing or emailing the hostel they could get a better deal?
Isn't it a matter of customer service that we enable our clients to have easy access to us enable them to contact us to change a booking, tell us they are going to be late or to ask us for directions rather than the customer having to struggle to find the relevant info?

There is no way that Plus will change our policy of adding contact details to web pages where appropriate.

Let me know what you think

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Something Really Cool to Do in Dublin

Last week the Plus crew headed of to Dublin for the Hostelworld conference. The conference was up to the usual high standard you would expect. A great time was had by all. Congratulations to all the hoscar winners especially Jetpak in Berlin who seemed to scoop most of the major prizes (or was it one too many beers consumed by myself) they seemed to win everything. Well done to Grannie and her team for doing such agreat job.

While in Dublin Antonio, Rani and I cruised Dublin looking for cool stuff. I had a bit of a heads up, as I had arrived on Saturday and met up with a mate of mine and over a few beers he told me about this cool XBOX LIVE gaming centre. So on the Wednesday after the conference we decided to suss it out.

Wow, 2500 sq feet of gamer paradise. 50 plasma screens that can all be linked together, leather chairs and couches. You can play individually or as a team and you can play against players from anywhere in the world thanks to the net. They regualary hold leagues and competitions every night of the week infact.

Yep, we even got to play Battlefield 2 between our selves and Andrew who was showing us round. Well all that I can say is that I think that my generation slightly missed the boat and that Antinio has spent far too much time hunting birds in Madrid and whiling away time infront of a screen at home.
Thanks to the Manager Tony Murray and Andrew for showing us around. I think that i may have an idea for our Atomic bunker in our Prague hostel now.

Now all that I need to do is convince Katy to buy me an XBOX, I'm hooked.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

£120 per Bag -You're Dreaming BA

£120 for every extra bag. As the line goes in the movie the Castle "tell him he's dreamin" I honestly don't know what planet the directors of BA live on. Maybe they have to charge the customers exorbitant fees because they got shafted by the unions last week! You have to cover your costs somewhere.

I think that somehow this will end up being a PR bloodbath and passengers will vote with their bums and buy seats on other airlines. Mind you there is probably only one exception to this, where there is a choice between paying £120 and flying Ryan Air I would much rather take out a second mortgage to pay the £120 to BA.