Arthur Frommer’s Vision

Travel legend Arthur Frommer recently identified in his syndicated column the work of four USA travel-related nonprofits as worthy of donor support. One of those is Hostelling International USA.

About HI-USA, Mr. Frommer said “the organization enables a great many people to travel who otherwise could not afford to do so, and it obviously is dependent on grants and contributions for a large part of its expenses. Though you might never have thought of this institution as an object of charitable giving, you definitely should.”

Of course, we agree! HI-USA builds intercultural understanding among hundreds of thousands of young people each year by bringing them to together in our hostels. The hostel stay is a powerful tool for promoting international exchange. And related hostel programming increases the impact.

Yet there is more to this story.

Arthur Frommer is probably best known for his 5 Dollars a Day books which opened international travel to wider US audiences. But to my mind, his seminal book is Frommer’s New World of Travel, published in 1989. In it, he was a thought leader, sharing an alternative view of travel based on cultivating mind and spirit. I still prize my copy of the first edition (a 5th edition is now in print). It’s a source of ideas and inspiration.

So it’s not surprising that this iconic travel author should venture a bit from the travel road, to appreciating organizations that “operate for an idealistic purpose”. Advocating a higher purpose of travel has long been part of Mr. Frommer’s farsightedness.

One Response
  1. March 4, 2011

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