Year 2 of my traveler gift guide and I’m excited to give you some fun, unique, personal, and practical ideas for you and your family. I try to travel light so to make it on the list is a real honor! In no particular order:
Lexon Nano Mini Speaker
For under $30, this portable bluetooth speaker is the size of a golf ball! It’s so fun to jam on vacation and this is a great stocking stuffer as it comes in over 12 colors. It’s a gift that’s guaranteed to be used!
If you haven’t tried packing cubes, you’re missing out. It’s tough to explain how effective and genius they are until you use them. I bought mine for a pretty penny from REI but you can find them at WalMart too. Packing cubes also allow you to stay organized throughout your trip, save time rummaging through everything, and save space. Amazon link to a great set here.
Professional family pictures on your travels?! If this sounds fussy, it’s not. It is quick and easy. Book online with Shoot My Travel and pick your photographer and see their portfolios. They have photographers in over 300 destinations across the globe.
We arranged a time and place and showed up. The shoot took about 30 minutes and we ended up talking and learning about the city from a local who gave us great recommendations. The pictures arrive to your inbox in 1-2 days and you pick your 30 favorite images online with the option to purchase more.
If you’re going to pay for family photos, why not have them in a unique place? Also, you can enjoy your trip knowing that you got a good shot of the family.
Vlando Travel Jewelry Box
Instead of digging earrings out of your make-up bag or bringing a ziplock – keep everything neat and organized. This little box comes in lots of colors and looks luxe but is under $10! Vlando also has lots of options for sizes and customization. This is something that might seem unnecessary, until you’re rifling through your makeup bag for earring backs.
You know how people say “What’s the one thing you’d bring to a deserted island?” For me it’s a Kindle Paperwhite (they now have a new waterproof version too). It’s how I remember what I’ve read, learn words, save great quotes, and always have a good book on hand without weighing down my bag. I thought I was a “book in hand” kinda girl – but Kindle is just too too good.
Elder or Child Sponsorship
This is the ultimate gift for a family. When you sponsor a child, elder, or family it’s a great reminder of the true meaning of the holidays. My kids have learned so much from our sponsored boy and his family in Guatemala. We email him and he writes us back. Emilson is my son’s age and feels like part of the family now after 4+ years. You can pick from lots of countries and profiles to find the perfect match for your family.
This may not be a “wow” present in the moment, but this gift will reveal its beauty over the months. Unbound.org is the best way to do this with over 98% of sponsorship money going directly to the families. Read my post on gifting your kids culture here.
Ticket Stub Diary
This is for the concert or sports buff. It’s a great way to collect memories and can serve as an alternative keepsake to avoid expensive gift shops. The experience is the gift 😉 I made one of these for my son and husband for all of their games with a $1 binder and clear page inserts. You can make this personalized so easily or have your kids craft one for mom or dad! You can also order one on Amazon here.
The Gift of Planning
The idea of planning a trip can be overwhelming. To keep travel fun and stress-free gift aconsultation with a travel expert. Small companies like Peep Travels who specializes in destinations like the up-and-coming Slovenia (pictured on right) and Italy are a great way to let the experts hook you up with great itineraries so you don’t have to spend 20+ hours researching and reading. Most of these smaller companies will tailor your trip to exactly what you want.
Let the experienced guides do the work. Their savings will likely make up for their nominal fees and your travel experience will be richer and more authentic. Google someone in your area or seek out a travel agent. Not sure how to gift this? Buy the Lonely Planet book from that country and put a fun note in it. What’s better than the gift of a curated, authentic, stress-free trip?! nothing.
This isn’t something you’d necessarily buy for yourself but it is fun to get and would make you smile and sing Lionel so why not? Great stocking stuffer and practical as contact info is located on the back of the luggage tag linked here.
Last year’s list linked here has cool subscriptions and more practical packing tips so check it out. Happy holidays friends. Remember, experiences over things 🙂