Last Updated on March 7, 2019
It’s a long time in the making, but it’s finally here: my Holiday Gift Guide for 2017!
If you’re a last minute gift shopper like me (thanks for two-day delivery, Amazon!), here are some ideas for globetrotter girls, frequent flyers, beach babes, backpackers, armchair travelers and practical travelers. As usual, the gifts in my gift guide are all things that I either own, want, or have on my own Christmas wish list, and with a few rare exceptions, they are all affordable gifts which won’t break the bank.
And because the Holidays are a time of giving, I am giving away one of the items in my gift guide – scroll down to find out what you can win:
For Globetrotter Girls
I was in the market for a new travel scarf this year and found a small boutique travel design studio in Denver that makes beautiful scarves (among other things). Waypoint Goods makes soft infinity scarves with a hidden zipper pocket, and I use mine all the time. Even when I’m not traveling, but just out and about in New York, I love these scarves because I can put my keys, credit card and metro card inside, knowing they’re in a safe place, especially when I don’t want to carry a purse with me.
Check out the different colors and some special limited edition patterns here.
***Win A Travel Scarf***
You can win one of these beautiful, super soft infinity scarves with a hidden zipper pocket – in the color and pattern of your choice!
I have teamed up with Waypoint Goods to give away three scarves – to enter the giveaway, simply comment on this post and tell me you’d like to win a scarf 🙂
Please note that the scarves can only be shipped to the US.
I love my RFID blocking wallet, not only because it allows me to travel without worrying about having my credit card cloned again (which happened to me at O’Hare airport a couple of years ago!) but also because it’s a stylish case for my credit cards – so stylish that I even keep my business cards in there! At only $9.99, it is a practical as well as inexpensive gift idea.
Travelon’s anti-theft women’s purses are a great accessory for any trip, be it a quick city break or long-term travel. They are available in different styles and colors, and even come with removable LED light and RFID blocking card and passport slots. The most popular purses are the larger messenger bag ($34.99) and the Classic Mini Shoulder Bag ($29.90).
I’ve been seeing fellow travelers with stylish headbands for years, but never found one that fit me perfectly. However, I recently discovered BLOM headbands, which were created by a fellow female nomadic entrepreneur. The headbands can be worn 14 (!) different ways, they don’t slip, and are made from silky soft rayon viscose fabric made from natural wood cellulose wicks – a super comfortable material. Another plus: They’re inexpensive!
Price: $14.95 to $15.95
You Are Here: A Mindful Travel Journal
Travel journals are a great inexpensive gift for every traveler who enjoys scribbling down notes, stories and memories from their trip.
Everywoman’s Travel Journal
Everywoman’s Travel Journal is a beautiful travel journal. It comes with lined and blank pages, perfect for sketching, and it has plenty of additional information and tips including information on safety for female travelers, natural remedies against common travel ailments, packing tips and lists, travel etiquette, and more. The inside pocket is perfect for ticket stubs, postcards, and other mementos.
Jewelry Roll Bag
This small roll bag for jewelry is every girl’s dream – at least if you are as crazy for jewelry as I am. For years, I’ve been using unorganized pouches for my jewelry while traveling, only to end up with tangled necklaces and lost earrings. This roll bag is a life changer – it has three large zippered pockets (for necklaces and bracelets) and three small zippered pockets (for rings and earrings) and comes with a convenient hang hook.
This Pacsafe Anti-Theft Secret Bra Pouch fits credit cards and cash and can be easily clipped to the front or side of your bra. Perfect for someone who is planning a backpacking trip.
For Frequent Flyers
The Old Fashioned Carry-On Cocktail Kit
This fun little cocktail kit is perfect for frequent flyers who love a good cocktail. It comes with a tiny carry-on tin, a spoon, booze, bitters and cane sugar, and a recipe card.
If this is a gift for your favorite traveling couple, go for the The Moscow Mule Cocktail Kit, which comes with ingredients for two Moscow Mules.
The sets are FDA and TSA approved. You can find all cocktail variations here.
The Perfect Travel Pillow
Even though there are tons of travel pillows out there, really good ones are hard to find. This travel pillow is inflatable and folds up into a small, light easy to pack item. Easy to inflate and easy to clean – perfect!
For Armchair Travelers
These are gifts that are travel-inspired and will look great in your home!
1850 Vintage World Map Art on Canvas – Vintage Map
This gift is on the pricier side but if you love a travelholic, nothing is too much, right? And this gorgeous vintage world map will be well received by anyone who loves traveling. The three panel vintage world map is the print reproduction of an 1850s antique map and is about 6 feet wide and 4 feet tall.
Large World Map Wall Art Canvas
If the vintage look of the above map isn’t your thing, check out the maps in the World Wall Art Shop on Etsy which are more contemporary and colorful.
I just ordered a bunch of prints for my new bestie Kate, who I walked the Camino de Santiago with this year. I know she will be ecstatic when she receives the prints of our epic journey, and I am getting more pictures printed for another friend who I took to Asia this year. Nothing can top personal photo gifts like this, and the prints come in a beautiful gift box. In a time when nobody gets photo prints anymore, this feels like an extra special gift. And at $12.99 for 30 prints, it’s not even expensive.
Price: $8.99 for 15 photos, $10.99 for 22 photos, $12.99 for 30 photos
***Get A Free Photo Gift***
Do you want a free photo gift? Download the MyPostcard app For Android | For iOS and enter the credit code GLOBETROTTERGIRL for a $10 credit! You redeem the credit in the account section. You can use the $10 however you want – either to order prints, or to send some Christmas cards!
Travel Subscription Boxes
This is the ideal gift for a travelholic who isn’t able to take any trips for a while for one reason or another – because this subscription box brings the world to you, without having to leave your house!
Try The World has a couple of travel-themed monthly subscription boxes:
- The Snacks box, with delicious snacks from around the world, like caramels from Japan or cookies from Sweden! ($19 per month)
- The Countries box, with gourmet foods from around the world, including specialty oils, teas and other high-quality products ($39 per month)
Magnetic Antique World Globe
This 10’’ antique world globe comes with colorful magnetic pins, so that you can mark the places you have visited or plan to visit. The magnetic pins mean that the globe will never have any ugly puncture marks! The globe is handmade and will look great on every travel lover’s desk.
Anyone planning to go on a backpacking trip will be spending many hours on public transportation or in noisy hostels – which is why noise-canceling headphones are a perfect gift. I personally don’t travel with expensive headphones anymore after losing a $300 pair, and I think a more economic pair is more appropriate for a long trip anyway – that way they can get scratched or lost without it being a big deal. What I love about the Mpow Over Ear Bluetooth headphones is that they are foldable, have soft memory-protein earmuffs, even have a built-in mic so that you can use them to make phone calls, and the sound quality is excellent.
If you are looking for a smaller in-ear alternative, check out the in-ear noise-canceling TaoTronics ($43.99).
A travel towel is one of the most practical gifts you can give a backpacker, and this quick-dry microfiber towel is thin, compact, lightweight and super soft.
How to Travel the World on $50 a Day
The ultimate backpacker bible on how to travel long-term on a small budget. I love the practical tips in Matt Kepnes’ book, of which the third edition was released this year. There’s detailed information for each region of the world, and plenty of tips on how to save money while traveling – but the book also helps you to choose the right travel rewards credit card, plan your trip and buy the right gear.
***Win A Copy Of How To Travel The World On $50 A Day***
I am giving away a copy of the 2017 edition of How to Travel the World on $50 a Day! All you need to do to win is comment on this post and mention that you’d like to win a copy of the book!
For Beach Babes
Microfiber Beach Towel
This lightweight beach towel is not only fast drying, sand free and absorbent, but it is also super stylish. It comes with a small mesh pouch, perfect for keys, sunglasses and other valuables.
Embroidered Floppy Sun Hat
If you’re looking for a gift for a traveler who is obsessed with getting the perfect Instagram shot, look no further: This embroidered beach floppy sun hat is every ‘Gram addict’s dream!
Inflatable Lounger Boha Bag Air Sofa
The Boho Bag is the number one inflatable lounger in the world. I am sure you’ve seen it on a beach or in your local park – these loungers are everywhere! It is made from premium parachute nylon which means it is super light and soft, it floats on water, and it is easy to inflate.
For Practical Travelers
A water bottle is a useful gift, but this one takes it one step further: it’s a useful and stylish gift. This slim bottle is BPA free, made from recycled plastic and is an eye catching gift.
Price: From $28
This is a great bag for a one or two-day trip – I’ve been using it so frequently since getting it earlier this year that I’m asking myself how I used to travel without it before that! The bag is big enough to fit a change of clothes and shoes, toiletries, and other travel essentials, but what I love the most is the interior laptop compartment, since I always travel with my laptop. There is also a small card slot inside the bag to protect passports and credit cards from RFID signals, and a zipper compartment on the outside for things you want easy access to, without having to open up the main compartment. I love that the bag has short straps as well as a shoulder strap, because that way I can use the bag while cycling and have been able to bike to friends’ houses and spend the night there.
If you have been following me for a while, you know about my ongoing love affair with travel organizers, aka packing cubes. There’s just no better way to keep your belongings organized while traveling! This set of nine packing cubes (one large, one medium and one small packing cube, one large, one medium and one small compression bag, and one bra/underwear bag) is a fantastic gift for practical travelers.
This anti-theft backpack by ibagbar is not only one of the best looking backpacks out there, but it is also one of the most affordable ones for the features it has: a USB charging port with built-in charging cable, a compartment for a 15.6-inch laptop, multiple other compartments and a reinforced zipper pocket. Additionally, it’s water resistant and lightweight – perfect for traveling.
My biggest pet peeve when I travel is when there aren’t enough outlets for all my devices. Bringing my own power strip has been a life changer, so trust me, this is a gift that any practical traveler will appreciate. The K-century Travel Power Strip Surge Protector with two outlets and a four USB port can support six devices simultaneously! Since more and more gadgets are USB-powered, this is a great gadget to bring on any trip.
If you are looking for a gift for someone who is planning to travel internationally, the LOOP world adapter charger with dual USB charging ports and a universal AC socket is a gift that will be greatly appreciated. It works in more than 150 countries and charges three devices at the same time.
I don’t delete my memory cards, and neither should you. Hard drives do crash, and losing original photo files hurts – trust me, I’ve been there. If you know someone who is passionate about travel and photography, this is a perfect, inexpensive gift. There are a number of different models on Amazon, ranging from little pouches with 22 slots ($5.98) to anti-shock toolbox-like memory card cases ($8.99) and water and shock resistant carrying cases ($11.99).
I don’t know how there are still people out there without portable chargers, because I honestly use mine every day and don’t know what I would do without it! If you know someone who still doesn’t have one, gift them this power bank with a built-in flashlight and two USB ports, which means you can charge two devices simultaneously. It fully charges an iPhone up to ten times and has a super-fast charge output.
A smaller option would be the Jackery Bar travel charger which also has an emergency flashlight ($15.99) and has an option that comes with built-in lightning cables (one for iPhone, one for regular USB devices), meaning you won’t have to carry around your charging cords. It claims that it is twice as fast as the original iPhone charger ($22.99).
Waterproof Bluetooth Speakers
The Honstek K9 Outdoor speakers with dual drivers promise 16 hours playtime for your smartphone. They are waterproof, shockproof and dustproof, and are small enough to attach to a backpack via the portable hook.
A cheaper alternative is the AYL Soundfit, a water-resistant speaker with ten hours battery life. While they are not submersible, they can withstand an accidental drop in water.
Travel Books for Inspiration
If you are buying a gift for a special someone that has a trip planned for next year, a travel guide makes for a thoughtful and useful gift. Try not to go for generic travel guides, but choose one that matches their personality. Many cities have special travel guides for coffee lovers, beer lovers, architecture lovers, etc. Are they into walking? Buy a guide with the best walking tours in their destination. Street art lovers? See if you can find a street art guide.
It doesn’t even have to be a travel guide for an upcoming trip – it can also be a travel guide for hometown exploration. Most people don’t know their own backyards that well, so help them explore their own hometown with a travel guide – the ‘Not For Tourists’ books are a good starting point, or the 111 Places In XXX You Must Not Miss series.
A New York-based urban explorer like me for example will love The New York Nobody Knows: Walking 6,000 Miles in the City ($6.67) or The Brooklyn Nobody Knows: An Urban Walking Guide ($15.95).
Millennials will love Lonely Planet’s You Only Live Once: A Lifetime of Experiences for the Explorer in all of us ($21), and world explorers with a bucket list will appreciate Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travel: Our List of the 500 Best Places to See (which is a steal at only $8.15) or National Geographic’s Destinations of a Lifetime: 225 of the World’s Most Amazing Places ($27).
Disclaimer: Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a small commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking through the link. As usual, I am only recommending products that I’ve used myself, want for myself, bought for myself or put on my personal gift wish list. I recommend these items because I find them helpful and useful, not because of the small commissions I make if you decide to buy something through my links. Please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel they will add value for the traveler(s) in your life.