Giving gifts can be a serious business. With a great gift you can make someone’s day. With a poorly thought-out gift you will be remembered as ‘that’ person who does not appreciate your relationship enough to put in any effort with your gifts.
Travellers are tough to buy for as they like to live out of bags, usually only require light, compact and multi-purpose items and are hardly ever in one spot long enough to use something big and bulky.
So where do you start?
1. Travel Books or E-Books. Anything by Lonely Planet will put a smile on their face. If you know where your friend is going, a book for that country is great. If you can’t choose a specific country there are great books about travel photography or bike riding around the world or travelling with children.
2. A fold-up drink bottle. There are drink bottles and then there are drink bottles. Everyone should be taking water on a plane with them but a bottle takes up valuable space and weight. A collapsible drink bottle that can be filled up after going through airport security is a great thing to have.
3. Luggage tags. Every bag you take should have a luggage tag on it in case they get lost. Chances are your jet setting friend may have one but a cool personal tag is a great gift.
4. A good backpack. If you have a bit more money to spend, a good backpack is essential for any outdoor traveller. Usually this can be hard to choose without the person present so make sure you get their advice first (or read this blog which tells you what to look for in a good backpack!). Otherwise a voucher for a backpack is good too. We rock backpacks by Osprey which are amazingly comfortable!
5. Space Saver Bags. After using these throughout the U.S.A I am a convert. You never understand the space these save until you use them. Thank us later.
6. Eye mask. A good quality mask is a simple but great gift that travellers will love.
7. A subscription to a travel magazine. A Kris Kringle once bought me a travel magazine subscription while I was living in London. I still don’t know who bought this gift for me but I loved receiving a new magazine every month.
8. Gift vouchers for photo printing. Travellers always have photos to be printed. They could even enlarge their favourite picture onto a canvas to put above the television when they return home!
9. Headphones. Again if you have a bit more money to spend, good headphonesthat block out other noise and feel good on your ears are a god-send for long flights. Jezza uses these ones by Bob Marley which pump some amazing beats.
10. A travel scarf. A scarf has so many uses. It can cover you up in a religious building, it can be a blanket, a skirt, a towel, or even a pillow. There are now scarves with zipped pockets in them to hold your passport!
11. Good ear plugs. Like an eye mask this gift requires good quality.
12. A good neck pillow. Again it is about quality. Most travellers have one but are always on the lookout for better ones.
13. Cash in the currency of a place they will go.
14. Local vouchers/tickets for where they are heading next. If you know they are heading to London or New York then buy them tickets for a Broadway show. Easy. Alternatively you could get them tickets to a local attraction in the place they are en route to. Make sure you check their itinerary and maybe get their OK so that timing all works out.
16. Camera accessories. Items such as straps or travel tripods are great. Remember it is all about being small and light.
17. Water filter or a water bottle that purifies drinking water. Great for hikers and people who camp. Even if they have one these pens/bottles have a short life span so will need updating at some stage.
18. A tiny wallet. People should not be taking their normal everyday wallets on holidays. They are too big and if stolen or lost have too many important things in them. I always take a small wallet when going away and only carry the cards I will need.
19. Bag organizer/packing cells. From packing cubes to handbag organisers, these gifts are always helpful.
20. Combination Locks. Always needed while travelling for locking a bag while on the plane or in a hotel.
21. A power bank. In this world where electronics are ever-increasing, these have been great to keep our phone or tablets charged.
22. A small umbrella. The smaller the better.
Remember it is all about small, good quality items. A globe-trotter will always appreciate a small well-thought-of gift rather than something they will hardly ever use.
What is the best gift you have received?