Christmas is coming and hopefully your traveling loved ones are coming home for the holidays. Or maybe you want to let them know you’re thinking of them from across the miles. Either way, if you’re looking for gift ideas for the wanderluster in your life we can help with our personal picks of the best gifts for travelers. After more than two years of full time travel and two Christmases away from home, in Mexico and London, I think we’ve got some pretty good ideas.
You may think that travelers are difficult to buy for since they often value experiences over things but we would argue the opposite. It may be true that the traditional gifts of household items, movie collections and dressy clothes are not really practical but we have plenty of other more suitable ideas. Because the constant traveler has to be very selective in their belongings and also the fact that we use the same items over and over again means that we usually know exactly what we can use and are constantly in need of replacements or updates.
We went through our own wishlist along with our personal belongings and picked our choices as the best gifts for travelers in your life. We have either had, have or want to have all of these products and can say confidently that pretty much any traveler would feel the same. We’ve tried to select items that would be appropriate for males and females and in a range of prices. however they are in no particular order of preference.
Ten Best Gifts for Travelers this Christmas
Whether your traveler is trekking for days in back country, visiting a city in a developing country or just wanting to do their for the environment, a water bottle with a good filter is a must in our opinion. The Vapur is super light weight with a chemical-free filtration system which removes 99.9999% of water borne bacteria and protozoan cysts such as Giardia and Cyptosporidium. Definitely stuff you don’t want to be drinking! $37
When we first packed our tie dye cotton throw to travel with 3 years ago we had no idea how handy it would be. We regrettably didn’t bring to Asia with us thinking that we would surely find a new one to pick up as a souvenir. Sadly we haven’t yet found one we like and we really miss our multi purpose piece. We have used it as a sheet, bedspread, beach blanket, towel, wall hanging and sling bag. It washes well and rolls up small enough to pack or attach to the outside of a pack. Plus your traveler will think of you every time they use it to pretty up the bare walls or bed of their temporary home. $10-$50
Something else we have been traveling with since day one is our ExOfficio clothing. We each have a shirt and a couple of pairs of underwear. Nathan also had a really nice pullover until he left it on a bus somewhere in Europe. The clothing line is made of lightweight, durable and wrinkle free fabric and some items even have sun and bug protection built in! $10-$200
There are so many on the market with various options and prices and as we bought an off brand in Turkey last year we don’t really have a specific brand to suggest. What we can say is that it’s definitely something every traveler will love. Just keep in mind weight and size for portability when choosing. $20-$100
We have traveled with Pacsafe products since day one of our journey 3 years ago and can’t imagine ever traveling without at least one of their pieces. Currently we have 4 Pacsafe items with us in Asia…all lovely gifts from family and hugely appreciated! They have a great variety of luggage, purses, backpacks and travel accessories all designed to provide a traveler quality and piece of mind through their awesome anti-theft technology. $30-$300
A multi tool is not just for men, ladies love them too. Especially when they are fitted with a corkscrew, a clock and an alarm. It’s a bit on the pricey side but it’s like several gifts in one and soooo useful for travelling. $125
I have been a member of Audible for years and I can’t imagine life without my audio books. Audible has thousands upon thousands of books to download onto a portable listening device and they are all stored in a personal Audible Library. I have listened to novels, guide books and guided meditation and have taken course in everything from languages to creative writing and SEO. You can buy your traveler a single book for as little as $2 or set them up with a monthly subscription so they can buy a new book every month. $2 and up
We haven’t been lucky enough yet to be gifted with a Tinggly experience we have travel friends who have and they rave about it. How it works is that you purchase a gift box of whatever value you choose and then your loved one gets to select from hundreds of Tinggly experiences all over the world. Better yet, buy one for yourself as well and get Tinggly together! $50 and up
Ok so I’m sure this awesome little camera is on everyone’s list this Christmas. Like our ExOfficio shirts and PacSafe bags we have been traveling with a Go Pro since the beginning of our travels. Sadly it is not the same one as we lost one to thievery and had to replace it. This tiny but tough camera is of course great for adventure seekers but it’s also good for a little more sedate traveler. We have used it snorkeling in Belize, hiking in Mexico, caving in Guatemala and cycling in Barcelona to name just a few but it’s equally as good for recording a leisurely boat tour or cultural show and it also take cool still shots. The traveler in your life would love you forever if you gifted them with a Go Pro. $150 and up
In an attempt to keep our life in balance as we travel we exercise on a regular basis. It’s not always possible or affordable to access a gym so we carry some exercise equipment with us. Our favorite item is suspension straps. You can perform dozens of different exercises with them and they fit nicely into any luggage. $179
As you can see most of our best gifts for travelers are available through Amazon which we often find to have the best price and availability. If you do decide to purchase through Amazon and don’t already have Prime we would highly recommend getting it. Not only does the annual membership give you free two day delivery on every order but you also get free streaming movies and TV shows, unlimited music streaming and photo storage plus thousands of free ebooks. They also have a free 30 day trial so you an set it up now and get free shipping in time for Christmas!
Actually I just realized this is a bonus idea of the best gifts for travelers. Get them Amazon Prime!
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Note: All of the products above are items that we have purchased or would like to purchase, in other words we have not been paid to review or promote them. However some of them are affiliate links. All this means to you is that if you purchase anything by clicking links on this page we may receive a small commission at absolutely no extra charge to you.
You’ll sort of be like Robin Hood, so thanks for that!
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Born in England, Sarah developed her wanderlust at a young age as she traveled around Europe with her parents. As a young adult she spent every penny she could on experiences as opposed to possessions. Eventually she found a way to earn a living doing what she loved: traveling, writing and capturing images of the wondrous world we live in. When not on the go Sarah enjoys time in her “sometimes home” of Vancouver.