The Best Gift Ideas for Travelers
Share has become a go-to word for travelers. We've always shared our vacation photos, videos, and stories, but we're also increasingly sharing our homes, our cars, and our dinner tables, thanks to companies like Airbnb. Human connection is often one of the most rewarding experiences of being in a new place. It's an indescribable feeling to find just as much warmth with a stranger as you have with your loved ones at home.
Our favorite gifts will help capture those memories, inspire future adventures, and make life on the road easier and more enjoyable. Some gifts will encourage travelers to get creative in commemorating their trips. Xenvo's phone camera lenses, for instance, combine the artsy fun of a traditional camera with the gratification of an immediate share to your friends on Instagram.
Some of the items that mean the most are the ones that help the wider world share in our good fortune. Give a lightweight camping hammock and you'll also be funding outreach programs for underprivileged kids, or support restoration projects at U.S. National Parks with a cozy blanket.
Whether it's a gift for a holiday or a special occasion, these ideas will make meaningful presents for your fellow world wanderers. And don't miss out on the rest of Travel + Leisure's 2020 Gift Guides, where we've curated this year's best gift ideas for anyone you're shopping for: coffee lovers, aviation geeks, long-distance friends, and many, many more.
1. Tumi Voyager Just In Case Travel Backpack
This sleek backpack by Tumi boasts a roomy interior, two-way zip opening, and a handy back sleeve that allows you to attach the bag to your suitcase's handle. The best part? It folds up completely flat so you can easily pack it in your carry on and then use it to bring back souvenirs.
To buy: nordstrom.com, $100
2. eBags Ultralight Packing Cubes- Five-Piece Set
This five-piece set of packing cubes will help travelers stay organized. Each cube in the set is super lightweight and is spring-loaded so it will keep its shape inside your bag. What's more? They feature a see-through mesh top so you can see what's inside each cube without opening them.
To buy: ebags.com, $46 (originally $65)
3. YETI 26 Ounce Insulated Rambler
Ensure the travel lover in your life stays hydrated on the road with this insulated YETI rambler. It features a double-wall vacuum insulation that keeps hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold for hours. The 26-ounce bottle also comes in 10 different colors, so it will be easy to find an option that suits their style.
To buy: amazon.com, $59
4. White + Warren Cashmere Travel Wrap
5. Anker PowerCore Ultra Compact Portable Charger
There's nothing worse than having your phone die while you're exploring a new location. This compact portable charger will help prevent that from happening. Not only is it small enough to fit inside your pocket but when fully charged, the high-speed charger can provide upto three full phone charges.
To buy: amazon.com, $17 (originally $20)
6. Zoppen RFID Blocking Travel Wallet
This adorable travel wallet from Zoppen features multiple slots and compartments to hold everything from credit cards and passports to boarding passes and more. Along with RFID-blocking capabilities to keep your personal information safe, the stylish travel accessory also comes in 34 different colors.
To buy: amazon.com, $13
7. Pendleton Glacier National Park Blanket
8. Scratch Map
9. Try The World Subscription Box
The most satisfying way to get to know a place is through its food — and it doesn't require leaving home, thanks to a new generation of artisanal subscription services. One of our favorites is Try The World, which curates a selection of snacks, ingredients, and beverages from a different country every month.
To buy: trytheworld.com, from $19
10. 'I Was Here' Travel Journal
11. City Map Glass
This intricate city map glass transcends typical cocktail glasses in style and creativity at a very reasonable price — and you've got to love a gift that looks more expensive than it actually is. They're made in the U.S. and hand-etched in New Hampshire and you can get a pair featuring their favorite city streets for just over $30.
To buy: uncommongoods.com, $16 each
12. A Birchbox Subscription
Could there be a more convenient way to stock a Dopp kit? With Birchbox, recipients will receive monthly boxes of travel-sized skincare, grooming, or makeup products from trusted brands like Kiehl's and Benefit Cosmetics. P.S. We've got plenty more subscription gift ideas travelers will love.
13. Away Luggage
If you haven't yet heard of Away, it's likely you've seen its hardside suitcases in your Instagram feed or rolling alongside celebrities like Karlie Kloss and Jessica Alba. The brand's stylishly spare luggage has quickly become a cult-favorite with travelers for its indestructible design, easy internal organization, and built-in USB charger, which is removable to comply with airline regulations.
To buy: awaytravel.com, from $225
14. 'The Bucket List' Photo Book
15. Mark and Graham Monogrammed Leather Accessories
Mark and Graham has the most fun with colors and designs when it comes to travel accessories (and gift wrapping is always free!). For a gift that feels even more personal, you can add a foil-debossed monogram to each for $9.50.
16. The Trtl Pillow
Is there anything better than dozing off before takeoff and coming to the minute the wheels touch down? For the traveler who agrees, our editors wholeheartedly suggest this travel "pillow," which is actually more like a scarf with a hidden support structure that cradles the head, even in the middle seat.
To buy: amazon.com, $30
17. Kammok Camping Hammock
18. Jet Set Candy Charms
Travel-inspired jewelry is a fun way for loved ones to wear their wanderlust even when they're not on the road. Jet Set Candy designs 14K gold and sterling silver charms with airport tags from Portland to Bangkok and everywhere in between that look lovely on delicate necklace chains or chunky charm bracelets.
To buy: jetsetcandy.com, from $68
19. Cork Globe
20. Xenvo iPhone Camera Lens Kit Pro
For a gift that'll excite the Instagram lover, look no further than the top-rated Xenvo lens kit, which turns any phone's built-in front or rear cameras into wide-angle and macro 15x lenses. It's compatible with all iPhone, Android, Samsung, and Google phone models. And with a weight of in at just under five ounces, there's no reason to ever leave home without it.
To buy: amazon.com, $40
21. Allbirds Wool Loungers
Allbirds' sneakers are essentially slippers you can wear anywhere. They're made with superfine New Zealand merino wool, which manages to be temperature-regulating, moisture-wicking, and so, so cozy all at once. Could there be a better in-flight shoe?
22. Flight 001 4-in-1 Adapter
23. Fujifilm Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic Instant Film Camera
There will always be something that feels more authentic about holding a photograph in your hand over saving it into a digital roll. This stylish instant camera is a step above others on the market, offering shooting modes for different environments and a smart flash that calculates exposure based on the distance of the subject for a just-right brightness.
To buy: amazon.com, $120
24. Amazon Fire HD 10 Tablet
The latest Fire tablet is the ultimate packable entertainment center for the road warrior. It's got up to 64 GB of storage (and an extra memory card slot for those super-long flights) for books, movies, TV shows, podcasts, and songs, plus up to 10 hours of battery life to play it all.
To buy: amazon.com, $120 (originally $190)
25. 23andMe DNA Ancestry Test Kit
For an out-of-the-box gift idea, this at-home DNA testing kit turns a saliva sample into a detailed genetic history, enabling globetrotters to choose their next destination based on the places their families are truly from. The brand's popular Health + Ancestry kit ($99) is a much more in-depth option, which gives further insight into things like food intolerances, personality traits, and more.
To buy: amazon.com, $89 (originally $99)
26. Slip Silk Eye Mask
One of our favorite sleep masks, this pure silk mask has been recommended by dermatologists and beauty experts for its crease-resistant properties. Silk doesn't tug on the delicate skin around the eyes like cotton or other fabrics would, giving it an anti-aging reputation. Slip also makes silk pillowcases, which offer similar benefits to skin and promote soft, frizz-free hair.
To buy: nordstrom.com, $50
27. 'How to Pack: Travel Smart for Any Trip'
A must-read for anyone who hopes to master packing, this gorgeously illustrated book by Hitha Palepu of the lifestyle blog Hitha on the Go offers advice on not just what to bring, but the best way to bring it, too. Plus, the cover is pretty much begging to be Instagrammed. Here are 40 more gift ideas for $10 or less.
To buy: amazon.com, $6
28. Stow First Class Tech Case
This leather zipped case by English brand Stow is the sleekest way to keep track of tech essentials while in transit. It includes an international adapter set and a powerful black leather memory stick, and you can personalize it with up to four embossed letters. Did we mention it's Meghan Markle-approved?
To buy: ahalife.com, $535
29. Bose QuietComfort 35 Wireless Headphones II
The QC 35s are truly the best noise-canceling headphones our editors have tested to date. This model's wireless, but comes with a cord so you can keep listening even when the Bluetooth battery dies. The latest iteration also has a built-in Google Assistant that allows you to vocally queue up music, receive texts, manage your daily tasks, and get answers no matter where you are.
To buy: amazon.com, $199 (originally $299)
30. SK-II Facial Treatment Mask
31. Physix Gear Compression Socks
If your feet tend to swell or feel achy during long flights, it's time to start packing a pair of compression socks in your bag. Frequent fliers love this pair by Physix Gear because they are made from a soft and breathable fabric and provide a professional-grade 20 to 30 mmHg compression level to prevent swelling and blood clots from occurring.
To buy: amazon.com, from $15
32. Wacao Minipresso Portable Espresso Machine
Coffee fiends will love this portable espresso machine that lets them make the perfect cup of coffee wherever they are. The handy gadget weighs less than one pound and is compatible with Nespresso pods. It even comes with its own travel bag, making it very easy to pack.
To buy: amazon.com, $53 (originally $60)
33. Aesop Departure Travel Kit
You'll never worry about leaving behind an important toiletry item again thanks to this handy kit by Aesop. The beloved beauty brand created travel-size options of some of its most popular products, including toothpaste, hand sanitizer, lotion, and lip balm, all into one convenient set. Just remember to store the products in a clear makeup bag so you can easily get through airport security in a snap.
To buy: nordstrom.com, $53
34. Camry Digital Luggage Scale
Even a budget flight can become costly if you incur unexpected luggage fees. This handy luggage scale will help you avoid paying for overweight bags at check-in. The digital scale should give you an accurate reading every time you use it, and its compact and lightweight design won't take up much space in your bag.
To buy: amazon.com, $10
35. Everlane Re-New Transit Weekender
Everlane is a pioneer of transparent pricing in fashion, selling designer-quality products often for less than half of the traditional retail price. This water-resistant duffel is sized to fit easily into all overhead compartments, plus has an external pocket for easy on-the-go access to items like a passport or boarding pass. It also has a sleeve that attaches to the handle of your suitcase.
To buy: everlane.com, $88
36. Travelpro x Travel + Leisure Carry-on Expandable Spinner
Travel in style with this sleek suitcase from Travel + Leisure's collaboration with customer-loved luggage brand Travelpro. This carry-on bag features a durable polycarbonate shell, 360-degree spinner wheels, and interior zippered divider panels to keep you organized.
To buy: travelpro.com, $396 (originally $495)
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