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Jun 15, 2018
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10 Gifts for Travelers

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Feeling inspired to give the gift of fun and helpful travel tools to an exploratory friend? Look no further! I’ve searched high and low for some truly unique gifts that will help get you where you want to go and have fun along the way. Comfort, efficiency, and inspiration for you or your friend’s next trip are waiting below. Before you head somewhere new, read on for travel must-haves you may never have thought of!

Noise Cancelling Headphones

For some people, part of the allure of traveling is the opportunity to meet new folks from all over the world. Interpersonal interaction while traveling often leads to new friendships, insider tips and tricks about your travel destination, and more. But for the rest of us, having your neighbor chatter in your ear for that six-hour cross-country flight sounds like absolute misery. So let’s thank our lucky stars that some honest soul created noise cancelling headphones so that your overly friendly fellow flyer, the colicky baby two rows behind you, and general airplane white noise are no longer a concern on long trips (Can I get an “Amen?”). And brands like Bose don’t mess around, either. Not only do these headphones block out unwanted noise, but you can adjust the level of noise you want blocked, in case you need to keep an ear out for the snack cart. Oh, and you can of course use these for playing music or answering phone calls, too.

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The Trtl Pillow

We’ve all felt the horrendous aftermath of a long car drive where you just couldn’t quite keep your eyes open. You recall the feeling…namely, the neck pain. Trust me, the side panel of your SUV makes a horrible road trip resting place. Lucky for us, there’s no shame in the comfort game, friends. The Trtl Pillow is proof of that. Just wrap around your neck (not too tight, please) and lean in to the shameless fluff support system. This pillow is scientifically proven to support your neck in an ergonomic position during rest, and if scientists call this thing “comfy,” then so do I. My u-shaped memory foam pillow hasn’t been cutting it for me lately, plus, it’s probably coated in airplane germs. Sign me up for this machine-washable pillow, ASAP!

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Scratch Off Map of the World

If you’re anything like me, you have trouble with geography. Sure, I passed the class in high school and all, but nine times out of ten I’m not even sure what state I’m traveling to. I go where the wind takes me! But there is something to be said for keeping a record of all of the places you and your family have traveled to together. That’s why I love the concept of the Scratch off Map of the World. It’s a visual reminder of your travels. And you should probably consider having the kids scratch off the map themselves, so that they don’t end up like me (always lost!).

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Where Chefs Eat Book

One of the most exciting (and motivating) parts of traveling is food!  Whether you’re headed to another state, another country, or just a few cities over, you’re going to have to eat at some point. So why not “treat yo’ self” to a few meals recommended by some of the world’s most renowned chefs? Whether you’re on the hunt for affordable meals or a high-end dining experience, you’ll find it in this book. And it’s not the dry, tasteless (no pun intended) style you often find in typical travel guides. This book’s goal is to make you feel like these chefs are your best friends giving you genuine recommendations. Obviously this is a must-have item for the foodie in your life.

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Universal Adaptor

Although not the most glamorous of gifts, this one is certainly the most practical, and often forgotten, even by the most experienced traveler. You literally can’t do anything in most countries without a universal adaptor. Say goodbye to styled hair because your curling iron won’t work; your precious Keurig coffee can’t save you if it won’t plug in (but who brings their Keurig to another country in the first place?); and you can bet you’ll have a heck of a time calling home if your phone charger has no outlet. The surge protection component is also key, because electrical currents in other countries are often much stronger than we’re used to in the States, and your electronic devices can overheat in a hurry if they aren’t protected.

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Coloring Book Kit

When your Spotify playlist fails you with too many repeat jams, or your phone/music player dies and you’ve got no charge, the world is not over. A coloring book kit can be a therapeutic way to unwind and enjoy the journey and simply unplug for a while. It’s also a great way to kill time while you’re lounging in a hotel, or hiding in the closet at your in-laws’ place waiting for dinner. You don’t need to be the creative type to color, either. They give you the designs; all you need to do is color in (or outside!) the lines. This particular kit even comes with double-sided colored pencils. Your artistic and non-artistic friends will all thank you for this opportunity to unplug.

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GoPro Bundle

In many ways, social media and GoPros are the modern day home video cameras. That’s why it’s so helpful to have a kit that helps capture memories accurately. For the tech-savvy traveler who likes documenting every leg of the journey, this bundle is a really a treat. It includes GoPro Hero camera, 32 GB Micro SDXC Class 10 UHS-1 memory card, USB Card Reader, USB-C Cable, Memory Card, Digital Cleaning Kit, and Camera Gadget Case. If you know what all of these things mean, then congratulations, I think you’ve found the perfect gift.

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Portable Foot Rest

Perhaps you’ve been gifted with the oh-so-attractive “swollen travel foot syndrome.” OK, so although it’s not diagnosable, it really is uncomfortable to be sitting on an airplane, train, bus, etc. with ultra-puffy feet. Someone with lots of time on their hands and consideration for the swollen-footed traveler invented this portable foot rest, which is crafted with memory foam for ultimate comfort and hangs off the back of an airplane tray table. I can see Grandma and Grandpa really appreciating this gift, especially if they’re hesitant to travel due to discomfort.

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Anywhere Travel Guide

Paperback travel guides very quickly become outdated, and it’s often difficult to give them as gifts because you just never know if that guide to, say, Amsterdam is relevant by the time your friends next vacation rolls around. That’s why this Anywhere Travel Guide will never go out of style; it’s a unique mix of “concrete actions and whimsical prompts” to inspire your travels. From cards encouraging you to ask a local what his/her favorite street is, to blank cards where you can write your favorite memories from your trip, this is a unique gift for the well-traveled friend who has been there, done that, and read every guide along the way.

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Personalized Travel Journal

Picture this: Harry Potter meets an artist and a hipster on the streets of London, and together they create this travel journal. Portable yet durable, this notebook is meant to show just the right amount of wear to make it uniquely yours. The 300 blank, unlined pages are ideal for sketches, poems, memories, to-do lists, letters to your friends back home, and more. There is even a built-in pen holder so the pen won’t get separated from your notes. This gift is perfect for the friend who reminds you of Henry David Thoreau, I’m imagining that one friend who wanders through his or her backyard taking copious notes and writing poems about life.

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Next time you’re searching for the perfect travel companion, ditch the outdated itinerary and pick up one of the gifts above for your traveler friends. And remember, life is not about the destination, it’s about the gifts you get along the way. Oops…I mean, it’s about the journey!


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Gift Guru Lists · Her · Him · Hipsters · Travel

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