Whether it’s for business or pleasure, one of the individuals on your shopping list seems always to be on the go. And while the destination may be exciting, very few of us actually enjoy the experience of flying, with cramped seating, bad plane food and the neverending prospect of a cancellation or delay.
So why not get the traveler on your Christmas list a gift that will make the experience more enjoyable? We’ve got you covered with some gift ideas that are sure to send your favorite traveler off in style and comfort on his or her next trip:
1. Comfort gift set
Plane seats aren’t the most comfortable places to rest, but a plush neck support pillow and eye mask set will provide some relief. Throw in some really good earplugs and your traveler might actually be able to catch some zzzs without waking up with a crooked neck.
2. Portable GPS
Your traveler won’t have to spend time trying to find his way or wandering in circles in unfamiliar territories with this device in his arsenal. Now, I know what you’re thinking: Doesn’t everyone have a smartphone now? True, but you don’t want to drain that battery, because opportunities to charge can be few and far between. Which brings me to…
A number of companies sell smartphone cases that can store enough power to charge your phone many times over, extending battery life for days without needing to plug into a wall. It also couldn’t hurt to buy your friend an extra USB charger, as they inevitably get left behind.
A luggage scale is the gift that keeps on giving, saving your traveler countless dollars on overweight baggage fees. With this handy tool, your traveler can rest assured his luggage is under the weight limit before arriving at the check-in counter.
Your traveler will appreciate an inspirational read that motivates him to step it up a notch in his personal and professional life. Avoid self-help books, which can send the wrong message (no one wants to be reminded of their personal failings at Christmas). Instead, opt for a good memoir, some language books, or better yet, travel books.
This assortment of seasonings is perfect to add a slight dose of flavor or spice up meals everywhere your traveler goes. And airplane food needs all the help it can get.
7. Laptop bag
Everyone travels with a laptop and probably a camera, e-reader or tablet, and a million other things. Find one bag that can carry them all. The best bag will be the maximum size allowed as a personal item on a plane, but made of a lightweight material to help avoid shoulder fatigue. Bonus points if you find one that can easily attach to the top of a rolling carry-on, saving your traveler the strain from long treks across terminals.
Thick, but soft socks or ballerina flats will also do; the latter for her, of course. No one wants to keep their shoes on for the entire long-haul flight, but planes tend to get cold, and most economy class seats, while providing blankets, don’t offer slippers.
Travel candles can help make a sterile hotel room feel more homey, while also helping to knock out any unpleasant odors. Anyone whose ever been stuck in a smoking room will appreciate this gift immensely.
10. Make a pledge
If your traveler has a travel fund on GoFundMe, myTab or any other crowdfunding platform, pitch in! Plane fare doesn’t come cheap these days and every little bit helps. If your traveler doesn’t have a fund, you can create one in his name and ask friends and family to contribute.
There are a number of tablets to choose from, ranging from cost-efficient to top-of-the-line, and they’re so multifunctional it’s almost foolish to travel without one. Your traveler can use his tablet to video chat, email, keep a travel journal, research destinations, book tickets, make reservations, and even download some beach reads. A tablet also gives him the option of traveling light, leaving the laptop at home.
12. Passport holder
No one needs an excuse to use a passport cover — they’re just fun. But they have added benefits, such as slots to place important items you’ll need throughout your travels, such as your plane ticket, itinerary, a credit card, and some money for a cab upon reaching one’s destination.
13. Coffee pods
Don’t let anything get in the way of your traveler and his coffee fix. Try getting a variety so your traveler has something for any machine he might encounter. Or buy some cold brew bean bags. Just soak them in water overnight and your traveler will wake up to fresh, rich coffee in the morning. If your traveler is really particular about his coffee, buy some refillable cups and let him take his own blends when he’s on the go.
14. Portable espresso machine
While a portable espresso machine isn’t a practical gift if your traveler likes to rough it and go backpacking, it’s perfect for the coffee connoisseur who wouldn’t be caught dead at Starbucks. There are a range of options, from a stovetop espresso maker, which can also be warmed over a fire when camping, to this fancy Handpresso Outdoor Espresso Set, which uses air pressure from small CO2 cartridges to force hot water through an espresso pod and directly into your cup.
15. Crumpled map
Crumpled City maps are made of soft paper, so they can be crumpled up and shoved into pockets without tearing or falling apart.
Everyone’s smartphone comes with earbuds these days, but no one wants to keep those in for 8 hours straight. Find some comfortable over-ear headphones with a lot of padding. It’ll help drown out noise without giving your traveler an earache. If you’ve got the cash, you can also upgrade to noise-canceling headphones, a traveler’s best friend.
17. Earphone case
It’s beyond annoying to search for a set of earbuds, only to discover they’re in the bottom of the bag, tangled in knots. An inexpensive case will save a lot of frustration.
18. Water purifier
In those moments when purified water is out of reach, a portable purifier will get the job done using tap water in a minute or less. Water bottles with a filter built in, like those made by Bobble, are some of the best for travel.
Do you have any additional gift ideas for travel addicts? Let us know in the comments below or on our Facebook page.
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