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HI_LOGO_CIRCLE without r High ResThe Hostelling International Board of Trustees are pleased to announce the appointment of Darren Barker as new Chief Executive Officer of Hostelling International (HI), a WYSE Travel Confederation member. He will assume responsibilities on 20 April 2015 and will succeed Jon Rabbett, Interim CEO since September 2014.

We are convinced that he embodies the right combination of experience and new ideas and we are confident, that with him, HI now has a leader with a fresh perspective and an innovative approach. Together with our staff he will deliver success and ensure future sustainability and growth” said Angela Braasch-Eggert, President of HI.

Darren Barker is a qualified chartered management accountant and has a love of retail, e-commerce and strategy development. Leading up to this appointment he was General Manager at Emirates Holidays UK, responsible for 30 staff across finance, operations, product, marketing, systems and the call centre.

He was previously Director of Financial Planning & Business Intelligence at ebookers, a pan-European online travel agent and part of Orbitz Worldwide. Involved in steering the business successfully he gained experience of driving performance through marketing investments, revenue management, product development and investment decisions.

After attending the annual HI CEO Meeting in Toledo in early February, Darren Barker said “Hostelling International is an organisation with a fantastic mission and great history. I’ve now met many of the National Association CEOs and I’m eager to get started with them helping to promote Hostelling International and the associated mission. I’m delighted to be joining and looking forward to getting started in Welwyn Garden City next week.

About Hostelling International

  • Hostelling International is a non-governmental, not-for-profit youth organisation representing 69 Member Associations and three Associate Organisations all over the world
  • We work closely with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) and the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO)
  • The HI network has nearly 4,000 hostels within 89 countries
  • HI receives 34.7 million overnight stays per year
  • Annual revenue within the HI network is an estimated GBP 500 million
  • With 3.7 million members, HI is one of the world’s largest youth membership organisations and is the only global network of Youth Hostel Associations
  • HI stands for more than just a bed and a place to stay; it’s about experiencing all that Youth Hostels have to offer, whether that takes the form of learning about different cultures, meeting new people or discovering oneself
  • Hostelling International’s offices are in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, UK

Source: Hostelling International press release