Looking for a unique gift idea for a friend who loves to travel? Look no further! Below are fun, creative, and useful gifts that every traveler will love to receive this holiday season.
Pretty much every holiday gift guide for travelers recommends neck pillows, passport covers, and scratch-off maps. We tried to get a bit more outside of the box for this list. Funky artwork from around the world, a portable booty sprayer, and the lightest high-performance cooler on the market are just a few of our favorites.
We hope you find just what you’re looking for on our list of the Best Unique Gifts for Travelers and happy holidays!
Don’t forget to check out our web story: Best Unique Gifts for Travelers!
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1. Wireless Phone Charger
A wireless phone charger isn’t just a great gift for travelers, it’s a great idea for anyone this holiday season! No one likes keeping up with chargers so having a stationary charger that you can simply set your phone on is both convenient and practical. Pick up a wireless charger by Courant and your gift will be stylish as well!
With a variety of styles, colors, and fabrics to choose from, you can find the perfect gift 0ption for the holidays. The quality and reliability of Courant is unmatched so you can rest assured that your gift will last for years into the future. Plus their packaging is ultra-chic so just add a bow and you’re good to go!
We love traveling with our Courant wireless charger because we can charge both of our devices at once without worrying about multiple cords or outlets. It helps us stay organized while getting work done on the road. You’ll want to order one as a gift and pick another up for yourself as well!
2. Lightweight Cooler
If you’re purchasing a holiday gift for an outdoor enthusiast, a lightweight cooler from Rugged Road Outdoors is the perfect choice! Most coolers on the market are bulky and heavy, but the Rugged Road 65 is the world’s lightest high-performance cooler weighing in at just under 10 lbs!
But this cooler isn’t just lightweight, it also has an indestructible shell and can keep ice cold for 7+ days! And not only is it a great camping companion, but it floats upright so it’s great for a day out on the water as well. And with enough space to fit 65 12-ounce cans, it’s the only cooler your outdoor enthusiast friend will need to stay hydrated on their camping or floating adventure.
Surprisingly, our favorite thing about Rugged Road Outdoors isn’t even their coolers – it’s their mission! 10% of their annual profits go to the Rugged Road Foundation which builds wells around the globe to ensure clean, reliable drinking water for communities that need it. So when you give a Rugged Road 65 as a holiday gift, you’re also helping to better the world!
Plus Rugged Road coolers come with a 3-year warranty so if anything goes wrong, they’ve got you covered.
3. Portable Bidet
I may be a tad spoiled since I spent a few years living in Vietnam where booty sprayers are the norm, but going back to only using toilet paper isn’t very appealing. And anyone who’s traveled to SE Asia or Europe is probably well attuned to the benefits of a bidet. In your own home you can invest in a toilet seat with a sprayer (and a seat warmer!) but if you’re on the road, it’ll be harder to find.
The Tushy Travel is a portable bidet and will make a fantastic holiday gift for anyone who loves a clean tush as much as they love traveling. Not everyone is as into a bum sprayer as I am so this unique holiday gift is probably best saved for someone you know really well.
4. Spices From Around the World
If you’re looking to buy a holiday gift for a foodie friend who loves to travel, consider giving them this Around the World Spice Set! They can create some amazing Indian dishes using the Garam Masala and Chai Spices or an island-inspired meal with the Cuban Island Spice.
They’ll receive the following spices in medium-sized glass jars:
- Chai Spices
- Chinese Five Spice
- Herbes de Provence
- Tan-Tan Moroccan Seasoning
- Bohemian Forest
- Cuban Island Spice
- Garam Masala
- Za’atar Seasoning
The Around the World Spice Set will inspire your friend to whip up their favorite dishes from the exotic countries that they loved visiting. It’s both a useful and nostalgic holiday gift for any foodie!
5. Try the World Subscription Box
If you’re looking for the perfect holiday gift for your traveling foodie friend, the Try the World Subscription Box is a great option. You can choose the “countries box” which includes a curated selection of gourmet foods from around the globe, or the “snacks box” which is a variety of sweet and savory snacks made by small-scale artisanal producers in a variety of different countries.
Your traveling friend will be happy to learn that the items in their monthly subscription boxes are sourced from their country of origin. And Try the World usually partners with small, family-owned companies. So the various foods they’ll be sampling are guaranteed to be authentic and delicious!
6. Birchbox Subscription
Speaking of giving a subscription box as a holiday gift, a Birchbox subscription is another great gift idea for anyone who loves travel. And it’s so simple! You’ll just need to purchase a subscription gift card for a 3, 6, or 12-month subscription, and the recipient will have the ability to customize their box according to their personal preferences.
Gift boxes contain travel-sized beauty products for hair and/or skin so they can try out some new brands and also stock their suitcase for upcoming trips. Boxes are available for both men and women and will be both totally useful and will be a fun surprise for them every month.
7. I was Here Travel Journal
I took an extended world trip back in 2013 that lasted for about 15 months. I kept a travel journal for most of the time which is great because I recounted some hilarious stories that I might have otherwise forgotten. But there’s one place I visited that I have absolutely no recollection of – Sri Lanka. I couldn’t tell you when I was there or where we went. I didn’t journal at all and because it was before social media was really a thing, I have very few photos of my time there.
So if you’re looking for a holiday gift for someone who’s on an extended trip and may have problems remembering the daily details just like I did, the I Was Here Travel Journal is the perfect pick up! It’s a guided travel book that encourages travelers to record their daily encounters while on the road.
The I Was Here Travel Journal has space to record itineraries, reviews, and any local tips, as well as pages for note-taking and a pocket for collecting memorabilia. It’ll help your friend to remember what they did on a day-to-day basis in each country so they don’t repeat my Sri Lanka experience!
8. Airplane Footrest
Looking for a holiday gift for someone who loves travel but hates long plane rides? Maybe they have trouble stretching out or sleeping in cramped quarters? Sleep Ride is an airplane footrest that essentially turns a seat into a recliner! And it’s super lightweight, compact, and easy to use – it just hangs on the tray table in front of you.
This is an especially useful gift for anyone who suffers from leg swelling during flights. Add a pair of compression socks to your gift and make their next long plane ride much more comfortable.
9. Mini Photo Printer
If you are buying a gift for someone that plans on traveling to remote areas of the globe, this mini photo printer by Canon is a really unique gift idea this holiday season. Whenever we’ve visited off-the-beaten-path places around the world, locals want to take a photo with the funny-looking blonde-haired foreigners. But they don’t always have a phone or a camera or a means of printing the photo.
Having the ability to snap a photo with someone and then immediately print it out and give it to them is such a fun way to leave your mark on the people you meet. Even when not traveling to some faraway destination, printing photos is a bit of a lost art so it’s just a fun gadget to have in general.
10. High Tech Hoodie
The High Tech Hoodie by Loungeroo is the perfect holiday gift idea for anyone who loves to pack light when they travel! It conveniently converts into a travel pillow so there’s no need to carry both. And it has a hidden kangaroo pouch for protecting any valuables from naughty pickpockets.
Plus the High Tech Hoodie is ideal for varying weather conditions as it’s both wind resistant and has a plushy soft interior to keep warm. And the double-lined hood keeps ears warm on chilly nights. A light packer will love this gift because it packs down super small to take up less space in their bag.
11. Foldable Duffel Bag
If you’re looking for the perfect holiday gift idea for a traveler who loves to shop, consider gifting a packable duffel bag. That way they can pack the duffel in their suitcase on the way to their destination, fill it with treasures, and check it on the way home. Regardless of their shopping habits, having an extra bag when you’re on the road is always a good thing.
This Ultralight Stuff Duffel by Osprey is so compact it stuffs right into its own pocket! There’s a padded shoulder strap included to make it comfortable to tote around and you know it’s a quality bag since it’s from Osprey.
12. Hip Insulated Water Bottle
Some countries around the world have clean water that you can drink directly from the tap. And others are pretty contaminated so visitors need to stick to filtered water. Regardless of what country they’re visiting, they’ll love a hip, insulated, and sustainable water bottle so they’re not wasting a bunch of money and unnecessary plastic on single-use water bottles.
We love Super Sparrow insulated water bottles because they keep hot beverages really hot (for up to 12 hours), and cold beverages really cold (for up to 24 hours). So your traveling friend can take their hot cup of coffee or their favorite ice-cold beverage with them on any adventure!
Plus Super Sparrow water bottles have really fun, unique, and eye-catching designs that your traveling friend is sure to love. You can add a variety of accessories to customize your bottle to fit your friend’s preferences. Add a bottle sling to make it extra easy for your friend to grab their new water bottle and go anywhere!
13. Comfy Travel Sweats
If you travel often, you know the importance of having comfortable clothes for the plane (or train or bus). A pair of sweats that are cozy but not too bulky will make the perfect gift for your traveling friend.
Have a little extra to spend this holiday season, consider buying a cute matching set from a local female designer in California – Dazey LA. We love all of her quirky designs and her home designs are also pretty amazing. We highly recommend following her Instagram page for some home and fashion inspo.
Use code WANDERING-WHEATLEYS for a sweet little discount on cozy sweats from Dazey!
14. Packable Puffy Blanket
If you’re buying a holiday gift for a US National Parks lover, you absolutely must check out these amazing parks-themed packable puffy blankets by Rumpl! The designs are retro, colorful, and so unique. And they pack down super small into their own stuff sack.
Rumpl blankets are water and stain-resistant and machine washable so they can be used in inclement weather during camping trips, no problem. Plus they combine the same technical material that premium sleeping bags and jackets are made from so they’re extra warm and cozy.
And even when they’re not going along on a camping trip, the Rumpl National Parks puffy blankets are stylish and warm enough to have around the house. These blankets are a wonderfully unique gift for anyone who loves the outdoors!
15. Packable Puffy Coat
When you’re short on suitcase space but plan on traveling to areas that might get chilly, a warm jacket that is also lightweight and not bulky is key. So if you’re looking for a great holiday gift for an avid traveler and you have a larger budget to work with, consider investing in a high-quality packable puffy coat.
They’re pretty pricy, but Mountain Hardware and Patagonia make some amazing puffy jackets that are wind and water-resistant, super durable, and made with goose down so they’re incredibly warm. Plus they’re lightweight and pack down into their own pockets. REI has those options as well as a few more affordable ones if you don’t want to drop a few hundred dollars on a gift this holiday season.
16. Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones
Anyone who has been on a long plane, bus, or train ride knows just how important comfortable headphones can be when traveling. Earbuds work for a short while but begin to hurt your ears after a bit. We prefer over-the-ear headphones for long-haul travel but they’ve got to be wireless and foldable for easy packing.
These Bose QuietComfort headphones have world-class noise cancellation and a noise-rejecting microphone system for clear sound while on calls. They’re also Alexa-enabled to give easy access to music and podcasts. Plus they’re Bose so you know they’re the highest quality!
17. Travel Coffee Press
Looking for the perfect gift for a coffee lover this holiday season? This Travel Coffee Press by AeroPress is compact and durable, making it perfect for travel. But it also makes 1-3 cups and is a breeze to clean so it’s great to use at home as well! It’s an ideal way to make smooth coffee without any bitterness at home or on the go.
This is an especially good holiday gift idea for any coffee lover who also loves to camp. Getting a fresh cup of delicious coffee while in the middle of nowhere can be a challenge. But the AeroPress is easy to pack and light enough to bring anywhere!
18. Vintage Travel Print
If you’re looking to buy something for an art lover who also loves to travel, these cool vintage prints from around the world make a unique gift idea. Just pick a print from one of the countries that they’ve loved visiting and then choose the style – on canvas, on metal, in a frame, just a print, or a set of notecards or postcards.
Travelers will love the nostalgia that this holiday gift envokes, and it’s totally creative and one-of-a-kind. Plus they’re brightly colored and should coordinate with any room.
19. Custom Nature Earrings
Want to buy a holiday gift for a nature-loving friend? Why not turn one of their favorite photos into a pair of totally unique earrings? Maybe it’s their favorite viewpoint on a hike or a mountain they’re proud of climbing – just pick a photo that has some meaning and have it turned into a pair of keepsake earrings.
These custom sterling silver earrings by Uncommon Goods are made of waterproof resin so they’ll last for years into the future. Handmade in Hawaii by Morgan Lane Tanner, this is a keepsake treasure that’s sure to be a hit this holiday season!
20. Vintage State Postcard Puzzle
Looking for a gift for someone who loves traveling around the US? Or just someone who has a lot of pride in their home state? This vintage state postcard puzzle is a fun gift idea that will not only provide them with hours of entertainment but also a piece of art once they’ve completed the puzzle!
Besides, who doesn’t love sitting around in their jammies, drinking hot chocolate, and working on a puzzle with their family during the holidays?
There you have it – 20 awesome gift ideas for anyone who loves to travel! Did we miss any cool travel gadget? Comment below so we can add it to the list!
Still looking for the perfect holiday gift for an avid traveler? Check out our favorite inspiring coffee table books!