9 Great Gifts for Travelers: Things They Will Actually Use

Rusty and Susan in COlmar


If you know someone who loves to travel, the ideas for gifts can be a little limited. Sure, you could get them another ‘world’s weirdest landmarks’ book or a new passport holder with more pockets. But what about something they will use? Unless they have specifically told you that something is on their wish list – chances are, travelers don’t accumulate many things related to their lifestyle and interests. And while some people like nothing more than getting new socks at Christmas time (which is also an excellent gift idea if you’re stuck), most of us would rather have something that helps us on our journeys instead.


International power adapter

You don’t have to be a frequent traveler to know that the electricity sockets in other countries are different from your home. If you’re visiting somewhere that uses a different voltage – say, the UK, Australia, or New Zealand – you’ll need an adapter to make your devices work with the power outlets there. Luckily, options are available that let you use your devices with a different plug. You can find a country-specific adapter, which will allow you to plug into a different wall socket, and a world travel adapter. A multi-use socket will enable users to plug in multiple devices in one plug that adapts its charging points to the outlets in the current country for ease of use.


Portable charger

A portable charger is an excellent idea for anyone who spends a lot of time on their phone. When you’ve run out of battery on your phone and you’re in a remote or unfamiliar place, there’s nothing more frustrating. All you need to do is charge it up from a primary outlet and use it as required when out and about.


Comfortable shoes

A pair of good-looking, comfortable shoes will make all the difference when you’re out exploring a new city. Whether you’re walking the streets, trying to navigate an unfamiliar public transport system, or climbing up a hillside on a hike, you’ll thank yourself if you fit in a pair of comfy shoes. If you’re unsure what type of shoes your loved one wears, you can get them a gift card to a store that sells high-quality travel gear, like REI, to let them choose the right pair for their needs and taste.


Anti-theft backpack

A backpack is essential to any traveler’s gear, but not all backpacks are equal. Many travelers opt for small, non-branded bags, knowing that if they get stolen, there’s less chance of them being recovered. But a good-quality bag designed to prevent theft is a better option: it will likely be more comfortable and last longer, and it’s worth the investment. A backpack with built-in RFID protection will prevent anyone from stealing your information with a scanner if they try to break into your bag. Some bags will also have locking zippers and external clips that let you secure them to something, making it even harder to get away with. 


Travel toiletries

If you’re going to be away from home for any length of time, you’ll need to pack toiletries. Most hotels will provide soap, shampoo, and conditioner, but if you’re staying in a hostel or with a friend, you might need your own toiletries. You can get travel-sized bottles of shampoo and conditioner, or you can get a kit that includes all your essentials – from deodorant and shaving foam to toothpaste and mouthwash. Make sure you get one that has a sealable cap, so it stays fresh while traveling. If you can find travel-sized items, for example, their favorite mens aftershave, purchase reusable travel bottles to fill up, so they don’t have to take the whole bottle unless they want to.


Earphones or earbuds

If you love to travel, you know how essential listening to music or podcasts can be. Whether you’re commuting or sitting on a long flight, you can use music to help you relax and stay focused while you travel. But regular earbuds or headphones can be annoying if you use them on a plane or in a busy or noisy place. If your loved one loves to travel, they will appreciate a pair of earbuds that fit well in their ears or a pair of noise-canceling earbuds.


A good neck pillow

You only need to be a frequent traveler to know that long-haul flights are the worst. You will have to sit down for hours on end; sleeping on a plane is not an option, and you will be tired at the end of your journey. So, you need to take a nap before you land. A good neck pillow can make all the difference in resting on a plane. It can help you get some shut-eye, making your journey more comfortable. If you’re gifting for a frequent traveler, get them a high-quality neck pillow. You can find them in all sorts of colors and come in different shapes to find the right one for you.


Collapsible water bottle

Purchasing drinks frequently can become expensive, and everyone knows frequent travelers need to be hydrated. A collapsible water bottle is ideal. For example, you can carry it through security at an empty airport and collapse before filling it up before you board the plane, so you have drinking water without purchasing a bottle. Or, when out and about, you can quickly put the bottle away when it is empty or refill it as necessary at free water-filling stations.



Carrying many books gets heavy and complicated, especially when they have been read and are now unwanted. A digital reading device can be a great alternative and makes a great gift for an avid reader regardless of it they are home or on the road. A Kindle, tablet or other e-reader can help reduce the luggage’s weight and give your loved one a way to read and keep occupied during long transfers, layovers, or rest days. Plus, you can purchase top-up gift cards for birthdays, special occasions, or just because you can whenever you want.



Shopping for gifts can be complicated, but these great gift ideas for travelers can help you to buy something practical they will use and be beneficial for their trips regardless of where they go.


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