I’ve written a Christmas gift guide for travellers already on this blog, and – whilst I would still be very happy to receive every single one of the items mentioned within it – I’ve no intention of just rehashing the same list year in year out.
So this year I’ll be focussing on any cool new products that I’ve discovered over the course of 2017.
As I’ve moved house this year, I’ve included a few unique and quirky gifts that would look great in a traveller’s home, as well as some that provide inspiration for travel, and those that are useful, lightweight and convenient for a life on the road.
All of these products cost £50 or less, and I personally use and love them all.
#1 Cabin Zero 28L Cabin Bag (£50)
(but only £35 on Black Friday)
I was actually provided with a 44L version of these in exchange for a review on my blog back in March, but I loved it so much I bought a smaller version for long weekends away.
Seeing as though I currently work full-time for an employer (I work on my blog when I’m not working my day job), a large chunk of the trips I take at the moment are city breaks and long weekends. The 44L cabin bag (whilst still small enough to be classed as cabin baggage) was a little too big for 2-5 days away from home.
My 28L Cabin Zero bag is perfect however!
All Cabin Zero bags come with a 25-year warranty (if you like them on Facebook), YKK Lockable Zippers, thick padded shoulder straps, a padded laptop sleeve, built in Global Tracker (powered by Okoban), and are available in a large selection of cool colours (I have “Orange Chill” which reminds me of the saffron-robed monks in Southeast Asia).
The 28L bag also weighs just 0.6kg. Even the larger 44L one still only weighs 0.76kg!
They’re super lightweight and fantastic for travel.
Buy from Cabin Zero (or get up to 50% of any other product in the Black Friday sale!)
#2 Airport Tag cushions / throw pillows ($24.90)
I actually ended up winning $100 worth of Airport Tag credit in a competition, but now that I’ve discovered the company, I’ve probably spent three times that amount of my own money on their products.
I just think the branding is so unique and effortlessly cool and on trend, and I’ve received so many lovely comments about my cushions. I think they go amazingly well with my new bright red leather sofa.
Airport Tag even shared the photo I posted of them.
— Airportag (@airportag) October 10, 2017
Buy from Airport Tag
I also have a selection of packing bags, an awesome “I haven’t been everywhere but it’s on my list” t-shirt, and a couple of coasters.
You can search the whole range of Airport Tag products here.
#3 Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2018 (£6.99)
I usually ask Father Christmas for one of Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel books every year. In fact I don’t even need to ask him anymore; he just knows it will be on my Christmas list.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll do most of your travel planning for the coming year over the Christmas break, and this book is a fantastic little package of inspiration.
Drawing on the knowledge and passion of Lonely Planet’s staff, authors, and online community, this little book explores the best value destinations to visit in the coming year, the best new openings and experiences, some unique and uber cool places to stay, and the top countries, regions and cities for vegan and vegetarian travellers.
I swear, every traveller you know needs one of these books for Christmas!
Buy from Amazon or Lonely Planet
#4 Simply Cook subscription (from £27)
Name someone who travels a lot who doesn’t love their food. That’s probably quite difficult because food is a large part of what makes a destination so unique. Wherever I travel to I absolutely adore sampling the country’s local delicacies, wandering around its markets, and learning how to cook a few of the dishes upon which its culture is built.
And when I arrive home, man I really miss the food! So what better way to keep my travel memories alive than recreating the flavours in my own home?
I discovered Simply Cook via a free trial, but I loved the dishes I created so much that I decided to keep my subscription running. For £9.99 per month (which between Stu and I is only just over £1 per week), I get 4 recipe boxes (which contain the spices, stocks and pastes required to make the dishes) and recipe cards.
You can choose from a large variety of dishes from across the globe. So far I’ve cooked smoked haddock kedgeree, Iranian vegetable stew, soy and honey salmon, and Thai red prawn curry, and they’ve all been utterly delicious!
Gift subscriptions start from £27 for three months, or you can use my unique referral code “KG6420” to get your first box for just £1. There’s absolutely no obligation to keep the subscription going once you’re received your first box, so if you don’t like it you’ve only spent £1.
Buy from Simply Cook
#5 Lush solid shampoo bar (£6.50)
Ok I’m cheating a little: this was on my list last year. But Lush are continually improving and updating their product range, so you’ll find some new additions to their shampoo bar collection that weren’t available last year.
For those of you who are not already familiar with Lush (where have you been??), the company, born in Poole, England (where my mum was born and grew up) produce handmade beauty products that are made from natural ingredients and are 100% vegetarian. Lush never test their products on animals, use minimal, biodegradable packaging, and are well-known for being an ethical company with excellent customer service.
Their solid shampoo bars take up next to no room in your backpack, last for over a month and, due to them being solid, you can take as many as you like in your hand luggage. My favourite is still “New” (the red one), which contains cinnamon leaf, clove bud oils and peppermint.
Buy from Lush
#6 Ryanair giftcard (€25)
For those of you who live in the UK (or in fact anywhere in Europe), you’re probably very familiar with the budget airlines, Easyjet and Ryanair. You can pretty much guarantee that wherever you want to travel to within Europe, one or other of them probably run flights to take you there.
I actually prefer to fly Easyjet if I have the choice, but unfortunately they don’t offer gift cards. At least, not yet.
You can buy Ryanair gift cards in €25 denominations, and even that much goes quite a long way with Ryanair.
Buy from Ryanair
#7 A travel experience from Viator (from £11.62)
The older I get and the more I travel, the less need I feel I have for material possessions. Experiences on the other hand form memories, and good memories stay with me forever.
One of my close friends bought me an experience at Go Ape (a kind of obstacle course in the treetops) for my birthday back in June and I had so much fun!
I’ve used Viator to buy travel experiences on multiple occasions in the past, most recently on a trip to Tuscany with my mum when we spent the day exploring and wine tasting in the Montalcino region, and I’ve always found them to professional and reliable.
Viator offer a variety of tours and experiences (60,000 to be exact!) across the globe, and have 17 years of experience behind them.
If you’ve not used Viator before, you can get £5 of free credit towards your first experience by signing up using the link below.
Buy from Viator
#8 USB travel adaptor (£13.99)
I seem to travel with more tech nowadays than I ever have done before, and whereas I only used to need to charge one electrical item at any one time, I now need to charge a lot more (my phone, my portable battery charger, my camera battery, my laptop, my Kindle; the list goes on!).
So I invested in one of these USB travel adaptors, and in hotel rooms where the plug sockets are a bit sparse, or in hostel dorms where you only have access to one charging point anyway, this makes life so much easier!
Buy from Amazon
#9 Clever Travel Companion theft-proof travel underwear (£26)
I’ve never got on with money belts (uncomfortable, impractical, and often very obvious under clothing) so I’ve been on the hunt for an alternative for some time now. When I spotted Clever Travel Companion’s range of travel clothing, I instantly saved these cute little shorts into my wish list, but never actually committed to a purchase because I just assumed they would be some kind of gimmick that looked great but didn’t work in practice. Not so!
I love these shorts so much I actually have three pairs! They’re super comfy, and fit easily underneath most clothing (although if you wear uber tight skinny jeans you may have a bit of trouble getting to the pockets!), and the two hidden pocks can comfortably store money (notes and coins), as well as cards and keys.
They also sell theft-proof vest tops, t-shirts, scarves, and leggings, which can accommodate your passport as well.
Buy from Clever Travel Companion
#10 Lifeventure RFiD bi-fold wallet (£14.99)
Although contactless payment technology is convenient, saves us time and removes the necessity to carry cash, it is not without its security risks. The Lifeventure RFiD wallet shields the contents from radio frequency identification (RFID) readers by stopping the information being transmitted through the nickel and copper coated polyester fabric, consequently reducing the risk of identity theft.
I love Lifeventure products anyway (I have their travel wallet, wash bag, titanium knife, fork and spoon set, and their ultralite packable daypack), and this one is a great new addition to my collection.
Buy from Amazon
So that’s my 2017 Christmas gift guide for travellers! Do you have any cool new travel products you’ve discovered this year that you think would make a great gift for Christmas? Let me know in the comments below!
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