Holiday gift ideas for travelers

Christmas is coming and if you or your favourite person is a traveler, get gifts that will make anyone’s travels better in the new year.

New York Public Library Christmas Patience Fortitude

Gift idea #1: Cash money

Travelers, particularly long-term or frequent travelers, have loads of ideas and plans, but don’t always have the cash on hand to fund their currency

If you find cash distasteful (that means you, Canadians), here are some workarounds:

  • Gift certificates, gift cards, or prepaid credit with a travel agent, airline, outfitter, adventure travel company (even Ticketmaster has gift cards!)
  • Pre-paid credit cards
  • Foreign currency

Gift idea #2: Travel ease and comfort

  • Travel-sized bottles and tubes
  • Packing cubes: travel game-changers for everyone I know (myself included), who’ve used them
  • Passport wallets (with RFID blockers for extra protection)
  • Portable charger/battery pack (get something over 5,000 mAH to win at Christmas)

Camino de Santiago dry gear packing cubes

Gift idea #3: Things travelers won’t buy for themselves

travel scarf zipper pocket

  • Travel scarf with hidden pocket: I think this Speakeasy Hidden Pocket Travel Scarf with a secret zipped pocket is a really cool idea, particularly for first time or long-term travelers heading overseas. I’ve already plugged these guys twice, so it seems inevitable I’m going to buy this scarf sooner rather than later.
  • Headlamp: headlamps are endlessly useful and a lot of people, myself included, don’t realize that until they have to buy one or end up with one.
  • Plug adapters for power outlets around the world
  • Merino anything
  • Journal and pens: the urge to capture travels digitally is easy and obvious, but one way to create more thoughtful records of travel is to think about it, write it down, sketch it, make lists, whatever.
  • Travel colouring books

Gift idea #4: First-time travel pack

A few years ago, my mother went south on beach holiday for the first time in ages, so, for Christmas, I gave her a travel pack for all of her in-transit needs.

  • Small crossbody bag for carry-on
  • Puzzle book
  • Refillable water bottle
  • Sleep mask and ear plugs
  • Journal and pens
  • Travel pack of tissues, baby wipes, and hand sanitizer
  • Ziploc bag with travel-sized bottles, mini stain pen, mini laundry soap
A panoply of essentials, clockwise from top left: Vapur water bottle, dry shampoo, journal things, mini hand-crank LED flashlight, baby wipes and hand sanitizer singles.
A panoply of essentials, clockwise from top left: water bottle, dry shampoo, journal things, mini hand-crank LED flashlight, baby wipes and hand sanitizer singles.

This is similar to the Seat Back Survival Pack I first wrote about a few years ago, and continue to use to this day – it works!

Good luck out there! Travelers, what do you want for Christmas?

If you enjoyed this post, please take a moment to leave some feedback in the comment section. If you really, really enjoyed this post, you can subscribe to the blog to receive notifications for new content. I share travel news on Twitter at @bitesizedtravel, pictures of travel, food, craft beer, and cats on Instagram, and I hide from Facebook. Okay, I don’t



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