American Youth Hostels has more than 250 hostels across the country for travelers in search of low-cost accommodations.
The lodgings are dormitory style, with a common room and a kitchen provided. Visitors carry their own gear, keep their sleeping areas clean and perform small domestic chores. Fees range from $4 to $10 a night.
Many of the hostels are restored historic buildings, listed in the national Register of Historic Places. They range from a lighthouse in California to an 18th-Century mansion in Pennsylvania.
Eleven of the hostels are "home hostels" where travelers stay in the home of an AYH member.
In addition to providing inexpensive lodging, many of the hostels offer a variety of educational and recreational programs to their communities.
A directory of hostels, titled "American Youth Hostels 1987 Handbook," provides details about all available accommodations, along with regional maps, information on hiking and cycling trails, historic sites and other attractions.
The handbook is free to AYH members. Non-members may buy a copy for $5, plus an additional $2 for postage and handling by contacting American Youth Hostels, P.O. Box 37613, Dept. 950, Washington, D.C. 20013-7613, phone (202) 783-6161.