Do you have a travel addict on your gift list this year, but are stumped about what they would love? Don’t worry, we can help! We are massive travel nerds and Ash has singlehandedly tried almost all of these products in her quest to compile the best travel friendly ‘bits and bobs’ .
So, without further rambling, here are our recommendations for gifts to give your travel-loving family and friends this year, broken down into great gifts under $30, and then the ultimate travel gifts for only your best pals (or favourite child- thanks mum!).
Best Gifts for Travellers: Gifts Under $50
A journal is an excellent travel companion for any traveller, whether you travel regularly or are embarking on your first adventure. Document your daily thoughts, feeling and experiences, glue in ticket stubs or instant photos from your day, or doodle pictures from your travels.
Both of these gorgeous travel journals are refillable, so you can remove the pages from your trip when you get home and bind them for a permanent memory, and continue travelling with your journal for years to come. (They also ship to Australia, winning!)
This vintage leather journal is the perfect choice for travel-addicted guys and gals. The quality pages inside are refillable with a choice of lined, unlined and kraft paper so every possible use is catered for. It also has a pen slot, card holder and many hidden pockets and clips to keep everything organised.
Buy it here: Amazon
This lovely journal is the a great choice for any traveller. The faux leather cover is luxurious but vegan-friendly and the charms to wrap the journal closed are super cute. Inside the journal is refillable, simply remove the provided notebook and replace with a new one. It also has a pen slot and pockets on the inside of the cover (to keep the notebook in place) that can store tickets, small maps and more from your trip.
Buy it here: Amazon
Packing cubes, the thing every traveller is raving about! They are of the most useful items a in a travellers box of tricks, and make packing your backpack or suitcase on holidays super easy and organised.
These AmazonBasics packing cubes are perfect for every traveller. They have a nice variety of colours, and the cubes are sturdy with quality zips and stitching without being heavy.
Buy them here: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
Travel can involve long transit days and waiting around, your friend will thank you when you’ve got some cards to help pass the time, and you might even make some new friends. We were actually given the Kathmandu playing cards (listed below) as a going away gift by a friend and use them all the time.
These FlexDeck playing cards give you more than a dozen possible games from one deck of cards, and they’re waterproof!
For those in Australia looking for some great local waterproof cards these Kathmandu playing cards are awesome and include handy tips on each card.
A Portable Charging Block
An essential item when travelling to keep your phone and camera juiced and ready to go. We have used this rugged Fospower charging block for a year now and its still amazing! Holds enough battery to quickly charge 2 phones and 1-2 cameras, plus its drop (within reason), dust and water-proof (IP67).
A Filter Water Bottle
Lifestraw have had been one of the most popular names in travel water filtration for many years, and with good reason. This filtered water bottle has a 2 stage filtration process inside the straw that protects against bacteria, parasites, microplastics, chlorine and organic chemical matter such as pesticides and herbicides, and even makes the water taste better! Simply fill up your bottle and suck on the straw to drink safe, filtered water anywhere.
Get one here: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
A Packable Backpack
Useful to throw in your backpack, handbag or pocket for unexpected purchases, keep your dirty laundry in there, or use it as a beach bag to keep everything dry, these tiny packable bags have so many uses.
This packable backpack by NatureHike offers the best of both worlds. Its super lightweight and packs up small, but still offers the functionality of a regular daypack including multiple pockets, mesh water bottle pockets on the outside, and even has padded straps.
But it now: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
A Cute Luggage Tag
This one should speak for itself, you can never have too many luggage tags according to Ash. Help your traveller pal have one for each of their bags and suitcases.
A Passport Wallet
This genuine leather passport wallet is absolutely gorgeous. It holds up to 4 passports and multiple credit cards, has dividers for multiple currencies and assorted other documents, and a generous coin pouch. It also comes in a lovely box making it the perfect gift!
But it now on Amazon! (also ships to Australia)
We swear by these cute and colourful travel wallets (we actually have this exact model, in a different pattern). It has space for 2 passports and multiple credit cards, plus diving log books, International Driving Permits and Vaccination records. Theres a handy pen slot in the main wallet, and a zippered pocket on the back for coins, SIM cards and other bits and pieces. AND its waterproof! This is the perfect choice for your playful and funky travel friends!
Buy one now: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
A Sleep Mask (Eye Mask)
For a cute AND comfortable sleep mask look no further than Alaska Bear! Made from natural silk, this sleep mask is perfect for hot climates and those with sensitive skin. They come in cute colours and patterns too, just pop it in a cute gift bag with some ear plugs and you have the lovely gift!
A Hanging Toiletry Bag
The most useful type of toiletry bag for travel! Hang it on a towel rail, shower door, under your dorm bunk to put on makeup… the options are endless. We have had many people marvel at our cute and handy little hanging toiletry bags during our travels!
For an affordable, durable and useful hanging toiletry bag we love the Kathmandu Kit Classic! It’s the perfect size for one person on a long term trip, or would be a great size for a couple on a short holiday (perhaps with a small makeup bag if you can’t live without a multi-step makeup process everyday). If you need further selling on this bag, it fits full size toiletries (if needed), and has plenty of pockets.
For our Aussie and Kiwi friends get one here!
For our US friends, Kathmandu is kind of like the REI of Australia & New Zealand. Anyway, its a great quality outdoor/travel brand thats just expanding to the US, so try out their toiletry bag! Buy one here…
A Packable Beach & Travel Towel
Who doesn’t love lounging by the beach or pool while on holidays? A cute, packable, quick dry travel towel is the perfect addition to any travellers arsenal.
We travelled with these cute, functional and affordable towels from Dock and Bay for over a year and can’t rate them highly enough (well Ash did, Dan lost his less than 1 month into out trip, but still…). These towels are full size quick dry and sand-free beach/pool towels (full size as in can cover Ash’s big booty easily), that fold up small and are great for any use from hostel dorms to the beach! They also come in fun colours and patterns.
Buy one for yourself and/or your traveller-friend here: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
Travel Sized Perfume
Great for both men and women, a cute and deliciously travel perfume is an excellent gift for frequent travellers. No more worrying about full sized spray bottles, breakages or decanting their regular perfumed into travel bottles. AND they will have a unique scent to remember their trip.
For the ladies Ash absolutely LOVES the MOR range of roll-on perfume, particularly Belladonna (its the one she currently uses- its feminine but not too overpowering), Snow Gardenia and Blood Orange.
Buy them here: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
*I’ve linked to MOR Belladonna, but if you prefer on of the other scents simply click on the sellers name (MOR) or search ‘MOR perfume’ in Amazon for all the scents.
Something that men don’t really consider when shopping for themselves, but important nonetheless! This gift pack gives multiple ‘sample (read travel) size bottles’ perfect for them to just grab and go each trip!
Dan says “As a man I certainly didn’t intend to be using cologne on this trip, but after being on the road for nearly a year I’m glad I did! It can help get you in the mood for a night on the town or a fancy romantic dinner, something to break up the monotony of backpacker life.”
A Bluetooth Speaker
A great gift for travel-lovers who also love having music around. Big things come in small packages these days with bluetooth speakers!
We love Anker banded products as they are sturdy and built to last, but pack massive bang for your buck. This speaker fits easily in your palm, has great sound, lasts 8+ hours and is waterproof (IP67)- perfect for any adventure!
Buy it here: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
If you’re looking for a super compact speaker this is the one! The size of a large strawberry, this tiny speaker has great sound, lasts approx. 3hours of playback and can even pair with smartphones to act as a wireless camera remote for selfies on the road.
Pick one up today on Amazon
Reef Safe Sunscreen
A great gift for the eco-conscious among us. There are constantly new reef-safe sunscreens appearing on the market. In some places reef safe sunscreen is the only option allowed (such as Hawaii- go you guys!)
We love everything about Sun Bum sunscreen! Its reef safe, hypoallergenic, vegan, safe for sensitive skin and recommended by the American Skin Cancer Foundation (SCF)… and its name is Sun Bum, what more can we say?
But it here: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
For our patriotic Aussie friends, we love the Surf Lifesaving Australia reef-safe sunscreen! A local brand we can all get behind, and with Spf50, its perfect for the Aussie summer conditions, and you can even get bottles with cute Despicable Me characters on them!
Buy a Despicable Me tube or Regular tube!
Best Gifts for Travellers: Big Gifts Over $50
Bose are synonymous with quality but affordable sound products. If you’re looking for the ultimate gift to impress a frequent traveller check out the Bose Quietcomfort 35! Wireless, noise cancelling and great sound, these are amazing!
Find them Here: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
If you’re looking for an awesome but cost effective gift, check out these babies by Cowin. With over 10 thousand 4 & 5 star reviews they are the best alternative you’ll find under $100! With active noice cancelling, super comfortable fit, and up to 30 hours wireless playback these are a great option for a frequent traveller!
Find them here: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
For those who prefer less bulk, these Bose Quietcomfort earbuds are the best alternatives you can get for active noise cancelling and comfort in earbud form. The only possible negative is that they aren’t wireless.
Check them out: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
And finally, for great quality but affordable earbuds, you can’t look past TaoTronics. Featuring active noise cancelling and 15 hours playtime these earbuds are the perfect choice. These TaoTronics earbuds also aren’t wireless.
Buy some now: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
A GoPro Camera
With the amazing quality of phone cameras these days theres no need for most people to carry the old point and shoot of 10 years ago. GoPro’s however offer so much more versatility than your phone can offer, all in a tiny package. This is the perfect gift for anyone who enjoys adventure or water based activities, recording road trips from the dashboard, anyone travelling to crazy hot or cold climates, or anyone who loves recording every second of their day (just kidding- but seriously, don’t give one to this person… the internet really doesn’t need any more of those videos!).
The image quality on GoPro video’s is insanely good, and the wide lens view allows so much more in frame! We met other travellers in Sweden who had incredible photos of the Northern Lights on their GoPro, as the wide angle lens got way more in view than a standard camera or phone… unfortunately we didn’t see the northern lights 🙁
A Packable Rain Jacket
Essential for any trip! Rain is an easy way to ruin a sightseeing day if not prepared. These are the best rain jackets for men and women right now!
Women’s Rain Jackets
One of the smallest and most versatile packable rain jackets around, the Marmot Precip has been a traveller favourite for years! Perfect for hiking, cycling or just wandering around, this is an outdoor enthusiasts favourite with breathable waterproof fabric, packable hood, cute colours, and super compact packable design.
Buy one today: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
For a really cute, but still packable, and affordable, waterproof everyday jacket check our the Zegolo Rain Jacket. You’ll feel right at home wandering cities and countryside in this gorgeous trench coat style rain jacket. Totally waterproof, with long length and pinstripe inner lining, this jacket is will make you feel a little but fancy and is available in heaps of colours!
Buy now: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
Men’s Rain Jackets
Just like the women’s version, the men’s Marmot Precip jacket is a favourite for travellers heading to rainy destinations, or to pack just in case! It fits great, packs up really small, is totally waterproof and comes in many nice colours.
Buy one today: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
Guys are getting more and more fashion savvy, help them along with this dashing and affordable rain jacket by Gioberti. This lightweight, waterproof but breathable jacket looks great, is available in various colours, and is super packable. Perfect for outdoor adventures or exploring in town.
Check it out here: Amazon US | Amazon Australia
A Kindle E-reader
The ultimate book lovers travelling companion! While they might be a little hesitant, we 100% promise this will be their favourite gift once on the road. A kindle gives you the ability to bring thousands of books on your trip, has inbuilt lighting for night time reading (or power cuts), and the newest version is even waterproof; perfect for that beach holiday (or reading in the bathtub)!
The ‘carry-on only’ travel style incredibly popular among regular travellers. It allows a greater flexibility during travel (as you are simply carrying a smaller and lighter bag) and can significantly cut the cost of travelling on budget airlines (no checked bags or lost luggage). Whether its a backpack or suitcase they prefer, we feel the carry-on lifestyle is only going to continue growing in popularity (especially for short trips and holidays).
Best Carry-on Backpack
The best carry-on backpack on the market in our opinion is the Osprey Farpoint (or the womens-model the Osprey Fairview). Ash has owned this backpack (the unisex Farpoint) for a few years now and its never failed her. It truly has everything you could need in a carry-on backpack. Plus Osprey has a lifetime warranty on their backpacks, so in the unlikely event something goes wrong they will repair or replace it for free! (I’ve even heard of them replacing luggage damaged by airlines).
Best Carry-on Suitcase
For those who prefer suitcases, these are some of the best options on the market right now for a lightweight carry-on!
Left: Samsonite Omni Hardside Expandable 20″ Suitcase
A big name in luggage, this Samsonite suitcase is the perfect go-to carry-on for any occasion. With a built in TSA lock, lightweight but sturdy construction, and 10 year warranty this suitcase should last a long time. Whether you’re looking for a colourful new suitcase, or a professional black one, you’ll find this case available in many colours!
Buy now: Amazon US
*Unfortunately not available on Amazon Australia (and shipping from the US is expensive), instead check out my Australia recommendations below!
Right: COOLIFE 20″ Luggage
For a more budget-friendly option, you can look past the COOLIFE carry-on suitcase. It has similar specs to the Samsonite above without the price tag. Also available in various colours and with a 2 year warranty this is the perfect affordable gift.
Buy now: Amazon US
*Also not available on Amazon AUS, see below for the best Aussie deals!
Best Carry-on Suitcases in Australia:
Premium Luggage: Delsey Clavel 55cm Carry On Luggage
If you’re looking for a reliable, lightweight carry-on check this cute Delsey carry-on out! It’s expandable, water resistant (including the zippers), and has a built in TSA lock.
Check it out: Amazon Australia
Budget Luggage: Wanderlite 3 Piece Luggage Set
For those who want quality without the price tag, have a look at this Wanderlite Luggage Set. It’s actually 3 hardshell suitcases, a 20″, 24″ and 28″, and all are waterproof and include TSA locks. Gift them all for the ultimate luggage package, or gift the carry-on and keep some for yourself (you sneaky thing 😉)
Check it out: Amazon Australia
And that’s a wrap guys… see that I did there! But anyway, we hope you’ve gotten some inspiration on what to add to your gift list for your travelling friends and family this holiday season!
Please share this with YOUR friends and family to help them navigate the gift-choosing minefield too!