The Ultimate Travel Gift Guide
There are as many types of travellers as there are types of travel which is why we’ve put together this travel gift guide. We’ve rounded up some unique gift ideas for travellers to make gifting a breeze. Our travel gift guide solves the problem we hear all the time… “So and so is IMPOSSIBLE to shop for”.
C’mon now, that’s just not true! But, we totally get that scrolling through endless websites, aimlessly hoping something jumps out at you can be a particularly traumatic event so we’re doubling down this year with gift guides. We’ve carefully curated lists for the specific types of people in your life – you’re welcome!
Note: Our readers are largely Canadian but we do have international readers too. When curating these gift guides we do our best to make them accessible for everyone! That said, if you’re local to Nova Scotia (and in many cases, Canada), we’ve also included links to local retailers. If you’re able to shop and support local, please do that!
Each year, we share a series of gift guides. You’ll find gifts for the men in your life, gifts for your tech friends, gifts for coffee lovers and foodies, stocking stuffer ideas, and even some fun last-minute gift ideas… but this gift guide is all about our fellow wanderers!!!
We’ve rounded up some of our favourite travel-inspired gift ideas, things we couldn’t live without, and also some things on our own wish list. Feel free to share this list with the people in your life to give them a little “nudge” in the right direction.
Now, let’s get this gift-giving party started shall we?
Gift Ideas for Travellers
Gifts for Frequent Flyers
As frequent flyers, we know that there are some essentials that just make air travel more comfortable, less stressful and more enjoyable. Compression socks are a necessity for any flight over 3 hours and toe-less socks are just more comfortable. The TRTL neck pillow is also a game changer for its comfort (it’s amazing) but also because it folds up small (a flaw of most travel pillows) and then there are the liquid IV hydration packs which keep you hydrated but don’t create the need for you to run to the washroom every half hour! Trust me, these frequent flyer gift ideas will impress the heck out of the travellers in your life.
Smart Tech for Travellers
Travellers face a different set of obstacles than the average Joe. If you’re not a regular traveller yourself, here are some ideas you might not have thought of. Things like charging banks, portable wifi hotspots and high quality, adjustable camera straps (there’s nothing more annoying than the standard camera strap that comes with your DSLF) make amazing gifts!
Functional Gifts for Travellers
Have you ever struggled to keep your passport, airline tickets, parking receipts and essentials organized while you’re boarding a plane? Yep, me too! It sucks. This section is dedicated to those things that just make your life, as a traveller, easier! First, let’s start with accommodation gadgets they’ll love from portable washing machines to blackout stickers for hotel rooms, we’ve got you. These are things specifically for folks who stay in accommodations on the regular.
These next few are in my “packing hack” category because they solve a problem that frequent travellers have. Whether it’s “shit, I forgot a raincoat” or “Gah, I hate hotel shampoo”, these are things that we’ve found make travel easier.
OK Y’all, let’s talk about travel bags. They’re everything a traveller’s bag should be – functional, fashionable, and fabulous! And, as travellers, we need bags that are all of those things. Here are a few that we’re loving at the moment. Depending on the traveller you’re buying for and what kind of gear they carry you can decide between messenger bags or camera backpacks.
Shop Local: Take It Outside carries Herschel everything (including the Orion travel packs which we love)
Fun fact, we clock an average of 12km a day on foot when we’re travelling. You NEED cute, comfortable and practical shoes when you travel! The On Cloud Sneakers are our current favourite – they’re super comfortable for long-distance walking and they look great!
I’m also in love with TOMS as a company and for their amazing shoes – in fact, I’m in need a new pair because I’ve actually worn right through mine! Finally (but certainly not least), Chaco hiking sandals are high on my own wish list! While I’ve never tried them, I know MANY travellers who swear by them as a transition shoe that can take you from exploring the streets of a new city to hiking in the forest. I’ve linked some here as well.
From packing cubes to device organizers, passport wallets to fanny packs, this is one of the “life hack” things that simply make your travel life easier. We’re particularly fond of the entire BagSmart collection.
Water bottles are essential and what makes a great travel water bottle is first, that it’s convenient to travel with (meaning it has a clip or handle that can attach to bags) and second, it’s durable. Personally, the Lifestraw series is a favourite because it’s a water bottle that also purifies water so you don’t have to worry about where you are in the world and whether or not the water is safe.
SHOP LOCAL: Trail Shop carries these!
Packable & Foldable Bags and Totes
These foldable bags are fabulous for packing along on any trip. They fold down into nothing and are great for times when you’re overweight with your luggage or need an extra bag on the way home. They also double as beach bags & shopping bags while you’re away. Win-Win! If you have a hiker on your list, they’ll love these foldable daypacks that pack away in their suitcase!
Travel-Inspired Home Decor
We, travellers, love nothing more than sharing our stories and recounting our adventures. From map art to funky decor, I don’t know any traveller who wouldn’t love these gifts!
Shop Local: Saltwreck creates beautiful map art that is now as digital downloads or physical prints!
Compact travel games are perfect companions for long road trips or flights. From mini versions of classic favourites to clever new challenges, these travel-sized entertainments make the “getting there” part of the fun. You can find mini versions of most of your favourite games on amazon!
Sage Pocket Pharmacy
Let’s face it – travel makes you more vulnerable than usual to germs and bugs when you’re jet-setting around the world and staying in hotels. This pocket pharmacy was gifted to us two years ago and I (Sara) take it everywhere with me!
One of the biggest complaints of travellers is the airport time itself and for those that don’t have lounge access, it can be a nightmare. For frequent travellers in your life, the priority pass would be an amazing gift – just be sure to check and make sure they don’t already have it!
The truth is, most people take a LOT of pictures on their phones and many travellers these days use only the camera in their smartphones to capture their adventures. A lens kit for your PHONE is a great way to take your travel photography to the next level without investing in an expensive camera. WARNING: Be sure you know the model of someone’s phone before you purchase one of these sets for them.
Staycations & Getaways
What kind of travel gift guide would this be if we didn’t include some local destinations? Never underestimate the power of an experience-based gift. Look, we get it, we’re not travelling as much as we’d like but most people get at least a night or two off each week which makes the gift of a staycation so precious. Wherever you are, research the area and find a resort – they almost always offer gift certificates.
Travel Gifts for Women
Ladies! I’ve got you! If you’re a travelling gal, like me, you’re going to love this section. Feel free to drop subtle hints to your loved ones for birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, etc. Or, just straight up send them this link because THESE are the kinds of gifts that are game-changers for us.
We hope this travel gift guide makes shopping for the travel lovers in your life easy peasy. What are your favourite travel-inspired gift ideas?
Need more gift inspiration? Check out our other guides:
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, we earn a commission if you make a purchase. We would never recommend anything we don’t personally love, and the income goes to keeping this site updated and free for everyone!