21 Holiday Gift Ideas for Travelers

Train in Belgium

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It’s that time of year again. Time to listen to Frank Sinatra’s Christmas album on repeat, eat desert four times a day, and stress about what to buy for your dad because you’ve gotten him a tacky tie for literally ten consecutive years.

And while we can’t necessarily tell you what to buy your dad, we can help you choose gifts for the travel-lovers in your life (including yourself. Let’s be real).

Here is our list of 21 holiday gift ideas for travelers:

Osprey Porter 46L

If you’ve read basically any other post on this blog you know that we’re big fans of our Osprey Porter 46L backpacks. Not only are they super durable, but they also fit within the carry-on allotment on even the strictest budget airlines. We’ve been using ours for two years and can’t recommend it highly enough.

Further Reading: Backpack Review: Osprey Porter 46L

Afar Magazine Subscription

Though I obviously love reading blogs (and books, and the back of cereal boxes…), nothing quite inspires wanderlust like flipping through a glossy travel magazine.

Even though many of the hotels and activities suggested in Afar are out of our price range (not sure we can swing the private island rental at the moment…), the photography is beautiful and it always includes engaging travel stories. Get a subscription here.

The Geography of Bliss

Every traveler needs a good book to make long plane or bus trips bearable. The Geography of Bliss by Eric Weiner is one of my favorite travel reads. A self-proclaimed grump, Weiner travels around the world trying to find happiness.

Further Reading: Best Travel Books to Inspire Wanderlust

Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travel: Our List of the 500 Best Places to See… Ranked

With stunning photography and bucket list-worthy destinations, this is the perfect coffee table book for globetrotters. Buy a copy here.

World Travel Classic Posters 2018 Wall Calendar

Every year I choose a different travel-related wall calendar to hang in my office, and the World Travel Classic Posters calendar is one of my favorites. Each month features vintage travel art promoting hotspot destinations around the globe.

Personalized World Traveler Map

This beautiful, push-pin world travel map is the perfect way for travelers to commemorate past trips and dream about future destinations.

Besides, every traveler likes to brag talk about the places they’ve visited. This map can spark conversation and help travelers avoid the awkward “Well, Bill, it’s a nice day we’re having. In fact, it reminds me of the time I took the chicken bus in Nicaragua….” routine.

Packing Cubes

Packing cubes are life-savers when it comes to travel organization. We never travel without them anymore, and we don’t think anyone else should have to either. We use these.

Wet Swimsuit Bag

This bag comes in super handy when it’s time to pack up and move to the next destination, but your bathing suit is dripping wet from your morning swim. Plus, it’s super cute.

Herschel Duffel Bag

The Herschel duffel bag is the perfect size for weekend getaways. I bought one for Sam several years ago, and he loves it. The quality is great and the design is super pragmatic. It even has a separate compartment to store shoes!

Silicone Travel Containers

These TSA-approved silicone travel containers are great for jet setters who travel with only a carry-on.

Rather than spending a fortune on travel-sized toiletries, Sam and I buy our products in bulk and simply refill these silicone travel containers for every trip.

Field Notes Notebook

We always travel with one of these notebooks. They are ideal for recording expenses, hotel addresses, and other important information. And they are small enough to fit in a pocket or backpack.

Packable Daypack

This backpack is lightweight and well-suited for day trips. The best part is that it packs down super tiny so it takes up very little space in our bigger travel backpacks.

Travel Journal

For artistic-minded travelers, this unconventional journal is a great way to document travel experiences.

Travel Cribbage

Sam and I always throw our travel-sized cribbage board into our bag when we travel. It is a perfect activity for days when our feet are sore and we want a break from sightseeing.

Luggage Scale

To avoid unpleasant last-minute baggage fees, every traveler should own a luggage scale.

Eye Mask

Travelers end up in all types of accommodations, including overnight trains and busy hostels. Having a good quality eye mask is essential for sleeping well no matter where you are.

Shoe Bags

These shoe bags make packing dirty, smelly, well-worn shoes so much easier.


Whether in the mountains or on a tropical beach, nothing screams relaxation more than taking a nap in a hammock. Enos are great for travelers because they pack down fairly small and are easy to string up.

Laundry Bag

Though not the most exciting item on this list, a laundry bag is essential to keep stinky socks and dirty underwear from contaminating everything else.

Universal Adapter

Varying outlets and voltage levels is the bane of travelers’ existence. I have fried more electronics than I care to admit. This universal outlet adapter will keep your favorite traveler powered up on the road.

A “Travel Fund” Donation

Travelers are always more than happy to have someone pad their travel fund! Your donation can help your favorite traveler make memories that will last a lifetime.

What items would you add to this list?

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21 Best Gift Ideas for Travelers

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