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16 Oct

Practice at Pil Pil Hostel Bilbao, month number 1

The first month in Pil Pil Hostel Bilbao has been a great experience. I was at the same time starting to practice and staying at the hostel a couple nights before I found a stable place to stay here in Bilbao.

The life in a hostel is completely new to me. I had never stayed a night in a hostel before. I had a couple of doubts if the hostel life would suit me and if I would feel comfortable here but they disappeared in a minute. I was very positively surprised. It felt natural to be and sleep in shared room but I imagine that the feeling only appears when the hostel has a good enough quality.

So the first day of my practice I had a tour in the hostel and I was told the main things of how all works. I was meeting new people both guests and receptionists. Superb people. Then the same night I left to Madrid.

In Madrid I got to see the other Pil Pil Hostel and meet more new people. The hostel there is modern and delightful. I love the bright signature colours of Pil Pil. The rooms are in two floors and there is also a corridor to another part where the private rooms are. It functions well without being too maze-like.

The next morning I had the training with two other girls who were going to work in Pil Pil Madrid after the training. I got in-depth, detailed information about check-ins check-outs, billing, special cases, everything. During my time in Madrid I mostly hung out at the reception in the mornings observing and doing a couple of things myself also. Helping around, showing guests to their rooms and telling them the things they need to know. Then I’m glad that I also had a lot of free time for getting to know Madrid and being a tourist.

Then back in Bilbao at the hostel I had to learn their way of doing things. Similar than in Madrid but still connected to the different location. One week I got to see the more or less normal hostel life. People checking in and out, asking for information about various things. Learning how to register the information on the computer, how to check reservations from different websites, verify them, copy them to system of the hostel and then closing the availability in order to avoid overbooking. Answering phone calls, checking and telling information.

There was one special week when we had a group of French students occupying the whole hostel. Then I could handle the shift without any check-ins or outs. I just had to keep sure that everything is in order, that the hostel is clean and the patio is closed at the right time. Also I sometimes answered the phone calls and helped students find some place they wanted to go. Also I had to give them tickets for lunch in order to control the amount of eaters. It was an easy start and a good learning experience for me. Also I learned how to open and close the cash register and keep track of the inventory.

Until now I’ve learned a lot. About daily schedule, billing, registering, communicating with a client, making inventory, breakfast, cleaning, finding information, language… More to come!

E.V.

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