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Great Hostel Give Back

Each January and February, HI USA offers groups of 6 or more a chance to earn free overnight stays at our hostels across the country in exchange for volunteer service in our communities. Whether you're an alternative break group, sports team, club, or simply a group of friends looking to give back, the GHGB is here to help you make your volunteering trip more affordable.

Here's how it works:



Choose your destination from participating HI USA hostels across the country. From major cities, to small towns and national parks, we offer a huge range of destinations coast to coast. New to hostelling? Learn more about hostels here.



Before making your hostel reservation, arrange a volunteer project with a local organization in your destination of choice. Need help finding a volunteer project? Ask us for recommendations or visit For each day your group spends two or more hours volunteering locally, you’ll earn a free overnight stay with us (up to four nights).

Earn free stays


Our hostels offer up to four free nights’ accommodation while your group volunteers locally. During your stay, our lounges, kitchens, and dining rooms ensure plenty of opportunities for your group to connect with other travelers, and we invite you to join in with our free events, tours, and activities to explore the hidden gems of the city with us. Learn more about the application process and requirements.

Applications for GHGB 2024 are now closed. To be alerted when applications open for 2025, please sign up for our Programs and Events email list.

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Here's why groups love the GHGB:

Yampah Mountain High School

"The Great Hostel Give Back at the Santa Monica hostel makes our California service trip do-able. Many of our students have their own hardships, so this is a valuable experience. Not only do our students learn the lesson of giving back to a community, but they are exposed to a cultural experience in the community and hostel that is priceless."

UC Denver alternative break group

“The volunteering (we did) was impactful and meaningful to the organizations we worked with, the local community, and the perspectives of participants. During our time at the hostel, everyone in our group met new friends from across the globe.”

CA Americorps Disaster Team

“Our team got a chance to interact with other groups and travelers from all over the world. It was also great to stay in the location of our service project - it really connected our members to the work they did.”