After trying countless products over more than a decade of travel, we've narrowed down the best gifts for travelers that have been tested by yours truly.
We've broken down travel gifts for those going on the road, people who love to travel and want inspiration at home, some special items for him and for her and of course that perfect gift for the traveler in your life who loves gadgets and electronics. .
To find the travel gift you are looking for, Click the links below to skip to a section:
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The Best Gifts For Travelers This Year
People usually have the best intentions when getting gifts for travelers, something they think they can use, but it just ends up taking up space in their backpack and never seeing the light of day. Don't worry, we've done the work for you.
When traveling abroad everyone wants to stay connected. If you have a loved one going on vacation, give them a SIM Sticker that they can attach to their existing phone's SIM card. They never have to change SIMS and can simply and easily activate data once they reach their destination. Planet D readers receive 50% of the Global SIM Sticker. Use promo DDSave50
Or, now new customers can buy the Global SIM Sticker or SIM Card along with your choice of data packages all at once! KnowRoaming is now an ideal gift for travelers because you can give the SIM bundled with credit.
Choose the data package that suits them best like a 14 day European unlimited European Data package. Knowroaming prices are competitive and cheaper than most international roaming packages.
Read our review here: KnowRoaming an Easy International data solution
TRAVEL GIFTS FOR HOME
Travel Gifts for Home
Here are some ideas to suit your budget. We've got you covered with ideas from practical and affordable to indulgent and splurge worthy. We have also organized them into different sections to make browsing easier.
Remember the days when you put a pin on a world map to mark where you've been? Well now there's something even better. The Scratch Map has a gold foil layer that you can scratch off as you go. Create your own wall art by showing off your travels.
If you want to show off your travels in 3D, The magnetic globe is the coolest idea, your travel friends can pin all the places they've been onto this handy globe. The globe comes with 30 magnetic pins but you can buy more from MapMagnet on Amazon.
If you have a travel lover in your life, you can be sure they'll love this gift to show off where they've been.
Avid travellers will love putting this beautiful 4K high definition view of the world on their TV when company comes. The best part is being able to yell "I've been there!" If you want to inspire someone to see the world, give them the gift of travel inspiration with Planet Earth II
Pick it up on Amazon Prime or buy the set.
ADVENTURE TRAVEL GIFTS
Adventure Travel Gifts
If you are going into the backcountry without access to clean water, this is the gadget for you! The Steripen sterilizes any water using its UV light. So get water from a stream, lake or pond - you can clean it!
Even if you aren't an adventure traveler, the Stripen is perfect to add to any travel bag. Get water from the tap anywhere, the tap in your bathroom, a water fountain, drink the water in developing countries. Don't worry, the steripen will make it safe. It purifies water in 90 seconds for a 1 litre bottle.
Even if you are staying in a 5 star resort, you are often asked to bring a towel with you when going on an adventure excursion. Instead of packing the clunky hotel towel, use this microfibre travel towel.
It's good for long multi-day treks or just a day at the beach. Quick dry and odour resistant make it a plus to have in your baggage.
If you are going on an overland road trip or doing some independent trekking, the MSR WhisperLite Camp Stove works the best in our humble opinion.
It runs on multiple fuels so you don't have to worry about finding white gas in remote locations. We've have used it in remote locations and even had it run on gas from the petrol station when we couldn't get pure white gas and it worked like a charm. Just be sure to clean it well after each use.
It's lightweight, making it the perfect gift for travelers who like to go off the beaten path.
This rugged case is perfect for the active man. If your guy is adventurous, the Lifeproof case is waterproof, freeze resistant and shock proof. It can handle anything.
We've used it snorkeling, whitewater rafting and just outside int he rain. You don't have to worry about your phone anymore.
The Lifeproof black case is sturdy and masculine just like my guy
A headlamp is truly something everyone should carry when traveling. You'll find that you are open to new opportunities and even if you aren't adventurous, you may go on a trek, need it on a train or bus or power may go out. Headlamps are more powerful than your phone light and it keeps you hands free.
We've upgraded recently to the USB chargeable headlamp so you will never run out of batteries.
You never know when you might need a dry bag. You could be in a destination that gets hit by a monsoon or just a bad bout of rain. You many find you're going on a water adventure or you might end up in a water festival in Thailand or Holi in India. Having a lightweight drybag is always good to have on hand for those moments you want to protect your electronics and valuables.
CAMERAS FOR TRAVEL
If you want an affordable steadycam the DJI OSMo is the way to go. We use the OSMO that has an integrated camera where our iPhone is used as a monitor. But you can also get the even more affordable Osmo that uses your phone camera and bypasses the OSMO camera. We haven't used that model, but people we know who have say it works great.
One word of warning, we find that the OSMO has a bit of lag so if you are trying to capture in the moment video, have it turned on and ready to go. It also uses battery power fast so have several extra batteries on hand.
Ever wonder how travel vloggers capture those smooth moving shots that look like something out of a movie? They are probably using a gimbal or the above mentioned OSMO.
We've upgraded from the DJI Osmo to this gimbal where we can attach our Sony RX100 or even our Sony A7S2 and A7R2. It makes for movie style travel videos and it's lightweight enough that I (Deb) can carry it around all day at festivals or events without getting tired.
See our latest video from Bhutan where we shot nearly the entire festival with the Rx100 on a gimbal.
Go Pro is still our favourite adventure camera out there. We use the GoPro for everything from snowboarding to scuba diving.
It's perfect for anything you need to shoot hands free by using GoPro accessories like the car mounts, helmet mounts or wrist mounts. We've taken our GoPro on every water adventure you can think of from scuba and snorkelling to jet boats, kayaks, and whitewater rafting. While we still use the GoPro Hero 5, the new 6 has come out. So go for it. Stay up to date with the latest.
Dave loves the Sony RX100 as a final addition to his two DSLR Sony bodies. I use it for video and vlogging all the time! It fits great on my gimbal too keeping things lightweight but looking like a million bucks.
With a Carl Zeiss lense and 20.2 megapixels, you’ll have professional-quality photos for a fraction of the price of other professional cameras.
We love it. It’s small, lightweight and easy to use and we often leave the bulky DSLRs behind for the day and us this as our camera to capture amazing travel photos.
Want to turn your travel videos and photographs into something epic? Pick up the DJI Mavic Pro drone for your next trip abroad. It's compact and fits right in Deb's over the shoulder camera bag.
The DJI Phantom series drones are amazing too, but are pretty big for travel. They are huge. Once we downsized to the Mavic, our camera gear was a lot less cumbersome. It folds up to the size of a water bottle, taking up little space in your carry-on luggage.
Plus, we don't get a lot of hassles at the border either because it's so small, nobody knows what it is. Take of the propellers and it can easily just look like a gimbal camera.
GADGETS & ACCESSORIES
For the person that already has a GoPro, they can always use an travel accessory to go with it! The amount of add ons for a GoPro are endless and to have a good accessory kit can take years to build. Give them our favourite to take with us to tropical destinations the GoPro dome.
This is the gadget that lets you get those fantastic half under the water shots while keeping the surface in complete focus.
See our tips for how to use the GoPro Dome coming straight from th eCyaman Islands.
For the adventure traveler solar chargers are a must. We've used our Poweradd solar chargers on multiday treks and camping trips. When you don't have power to plug in to, these are excellent.
Hang them on your backpack all day and let the sun charge them and then plug your electronics into the USB outlets. We use all Sony products for camera gear which charge via USB. Good for phones, tablets and cameras.
Buy this portable power bank as a gift for the traveler in your life.
If you read our blog often, you'll know that I recommend the Belkin as one of the best gifts for travelers every year. I can't help it, I love it! The Belkin surge protector not only protects your electronics from power surges, it charges several things at once with 3 outlets and 2 USB ports.
Order the mini surge protector today on Amazon
I don't know about you, but phones and cameras never seem to hold a charge all day long. Instead of stressing about running out of battery power, bring a portable charger with you. We love this one because it has four charges in it and can charge two devices at a time. That built in flashlight has come in handy many times too.
Buy this portable power bank as a gift for the traveler in your life.
This mini portable hard drive is a game changer for us. Lightening fast for editing photos and videos on the road, but so tiny it can slip into my pocket. It has really lightened the weight of our computers.
We use the 2TB hard drive for extra space, but the average travellers would only need the Samsung Portable 500GB USB for only $177.99
Find our more Samsung T5 Portable 2TB Hard Drive USB
BAGS & ORGANIZERS
Travel Bags and Organizers
I had been looking for a good carryon that wasn't too large, but could fit all my electronics. However, I also wanted a carryon that could roll when I was in the airport but easily convert to a backpack should I need to go hands free.
I finally found what I was looking for with the High Sierra wheeled backpack with removable daypack. It's three bags in one and fits easily in the overhead compartment. It's actually smaller than any carryon I've used yet!
You can now buy it on Amazon
Packing cubes are great stocking stuffers and an affordable orida for organizing your luggage contents. I stuff clothes, electronics and medication in my cubes. Nothing roams free in my bag. Everything is packed away in colour coded cubes.
I even zip my dirty laundry inside a packing cube to keep it from smelling up the rest of my clothes.
Buy Eagle Creek and Other Packing Cubes on Amazon Starting at $19
We now like to put our carryon bags on our backs (since they are the heaviest as they have all our cameras and electronics in them) and we pull our clothes behind us. Our duffel bags are light and easy to navigate and most of all they are durable.
They are also easy to organize. By using packing cubes, toiletry bags and the shirt folding envelopes, they all fit into our rolling duffel perfectly just like pieces to a puzzle.
If you are anything like us, you have a lot of different memory cards. We don’t like to erase anything until our photos and videos are backed up. Having loose memory cards in our luggage isn’t an option.
They get lost easily, so instead, we keep them organized with a memory card holder. This Power 2000 Aluminum Memory Card holder goes well with our Apple products and holds SD and MMC Memory cards snug as a bug.
Memory card holders are only $6.95 each on Amazon
The other day someone told me I have the most organized wallet they've ever seen. That's because I use the Pacsafe travel folder. It holds all my credit cards, rewards cards, both our passports and money - including change! This organizer transforms into a clutch for a night out on the town too. I don’t want to always carry my large travel tote, so this gives me a bit of class when going out for dinner or drinks.
Are these gifts for travelers not what you're looking for? Try 8 Great Travel Organizers for better packing
As we mature, our wardrobe has matured with us. Dave has never packed so well since he got his smart envelope. His shirts come out almost perfectly pressed instead of a crumpled mess when flying.
After we unpack, we just give them a spritz with wrinkle wiz garment spray and he’s good to go with a pressed and ironed shirt that's great for a night out, conference or keynote speaking engagement.
BEST TRAVEL GIFTS FOR HER
Travel Gifts for Her
Thanks to Laurel Robbins of Monkeys and Mountains, I was introduced to Gaia.com. It's online yoga. For 9.99 a month you have access to all kinds of different yoga classes and instructions.
It's perfect for people who spend a lot of time in hotel rooms and can't get a regular workout,
I can't travel without a silk scarf. It keeps me warm on the plane when the air conditioning is cranked too high, it dresses up my evening outfit, and it keeps me modest when walking into a temple overseas.
A silk pashmina wrap is the perfect gift to give to the lady in your life. She'll love you for it, trust me.
These fold up easily to pack away in your luggage. They're stylish for both men and women, they keep the sun off your head and keep your head cool. It's a good thing to have in a hot climate. I bought my Panama Hat in Panama and fell in love with it but you can buy yours on Amazon
A sarong is the most versatile piece of travel clothing any woman can have. It can be used as a cover at the pool, a towel, a beach blanket, and even a skirt. I've used it to cover up when going into temples and I've even used a muted coloured sarong as a head scarf in Muslim countries.
What woman doesn't love jewelry? Show the one you love how much you appreciate her love for travel with a world globe necklace. I have a similar one to this in the shape of Africa that is close to my heart since we cycled the continent of Africa and it is what started our blog!
This 10K yellow gold world map goes for $202 on Amazon
Enjoying our best gifts for travelers? Discover more at the Best Gifts for Her, the travel lover in your life
This scarf is perfect for anyone who wants to look fashionable, be comfortable and carry travel items that no-one will even know you are carrying. It has a special hidden pocket that can be used for your passport, phone, small guide book, glasses, lip balm or any other item you want to secretly stash!
No one will ever know you have a secret pocket hidden in your scarf, making it the perfect place to keep your items safe!
Enjoying our best gifts for travelers? Discover more at the Best Gifts for Her, the travel lover in your life
BEST TRAVEL GIFTS FOR HIM
Travel Gifts for Him
The world is become a noisier pace by the minute and airplanes can be the worst. From screaming babies to loud talkers, long flights can be frustrating. Put on these Beats Studio Wireless headphones and they drown out all the sound.
With padded ear phones that cancel noise, the travel man in your life can watch his favourite flick in peace and quiet and if he decides to nap, the headphones will keep him from being disturbed.
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If your guy has a beard or moustache this is the perfect gift for him. It is designed for both corded and cordless use and has a vacuum so that you don't get all that unwanted hair all over the place. The blades never need sharpening and it looks pretty cool too.
For the outdoor lover who likes a bit of style, show him that he doesn't have to completely rough it in Mother Nature. The Handspresso makes a perfect cup of Joe, just like the coffee shop.
Got a man that is always up at the crack of dawn and out the door for a run. Dave loves his Arcteryx jacket. It's breathable, lightweight and waterproof. It's the perfect outerlayer jacket for the travel lover.
Dave has had this jacket for 4 years now and wouldn't trade it for the world. And hey, I love mine too!
TRAVEL GIFTS FOR WELLNESS
Gifts for Wellness
Airplanes make your skin dry. They are not the best environment for health, that's for sure. So drink plenty of water, use your eye mask to sleep and then spritz with Dermalogica's Hydramist. As a former makeup artist for TV, this product was my go to favourite. It is perfect for sensitive skin with pure ingredients.
I know that nobody likes to look at people’s bare feet when travelling. I was guilty of this in my backpacking days. I used to always travel in flipflops. Now, I care about the people around me and slip into my ballet flats on the flight.
They are comfortable and stylish and I’ve even worn them out of the airport too. These babies have very good grip and I wore them once walking around Peggy's Cove in Nova Scotia and they held their grip nicely on the rocks.
Compression socks help with circulation and leg exhaustion. Compression socks have come a long way. I tried them once a few years ago and they felt like they were squeezing my legs, my latest pair are so cushiony and cozy. The merino wool keeps odours away and they feel comfortable on a flight.
People may have their noses in their smartphones, but nothing connects you more to the moment than taking out a pen and paper and writing about your experience. I love a flexible elegant journal and this one caught my eye.
Our friends Katie and Geoff came up with an amazing idea for adult colouring books from around the world. Colouring is pure therapy and it will get you in the mood to explore the places inside. Each illustration comes from a real life photograph taken by Katy and Geoff on their non stop adventures around the world. Buy it today on Amazon for less than $10.
Do you have suggestions some great gifts for travelers? We'd love to hear, leave them in the comments below.
Disclosure: The links above are affiliate links that we have used personally or that you will find add value to your travels. We receive affiliate commissions, but it's no extra cost to you!