Looking for the best products to gift — and to get — this holiday season? Check out Underscored’s Holiday Guide here.
The holidays are right around the corner, which means it’s time to start shopping for gifts if you haven’t already. If you’re wondering what to buy for the frequent traveler in your life, look no further.
We’ve pulled together some of the best travel gifts, from cameras to skincare to sleep masks and beyond. Whether you’re looking for a gift for a frequent flyer, a road trip warrior, a budget backpacker or a luxury hotel enthusiast, there’s a gift on this list for your favorite wanderer.
Tumi Leather Passport Cover ($155; nordstrom.com)
This classic black Tumi passport holder is the ideal travel companion. The leather passport holder also has eight additional slots to store credit cards, including your Covid-19 vaccine card. Additionally, there’s a cash compartment inside to keep your belongings safe and secure.
Slip Pure Silk Sleep Mask ($50; nordstrom.com)
Sleeping on planes and trains can be tough, but the right sleep mask can make all the difference. This sleep mask is made from high-grade mulberry silk. It won’t crease hair, absorb face cream or irritate skin, ensuring a comfortable and restful sleep experience anywhere in the world.
Apple AirPods Pro ($199.99, originally $249; amazon.com)
You don’t need giant headphones to cancel out pesky noise on a plane and immerse yourself in music or a podcast. The Apple AirPods Pro are our favorite wireless earbuds — and they’re compact enough to store in a pocket, purse or travel bag.
LifeStraw Go Water Filter Bottle (starting at $28.47; amazon.com)
Although all travelers need to hydrate, ones traveling to far-flung and off-the-beaten-path destinations need to be especially careful when it comes to safe drinking water. Travelers can protect themselves from bacteria and parasites when drinking local water with the LifeStraw reusable bottle, which uses a special membrane microfilter that removes both. And, for every bottle purchased, LifeStraw will ensure one child receives safe drinking water for a year.
Laneige Hydration-To-Go! Travel Kit ($29; sephora.com)
Frequent air travel wreaks havoc on the skin, but Laneige’s travel-approved kit comes with the essentials to keep your skin glowing throughout the travel journey. It comes with five products, including the Water Bank Moisture Cream, Water Sleeping Mask and a lip sleeping mask.
Noshinku Pocket Hand Sanitizer ($25; amazon.com)
Hand sanitizer is a must when it comes to travel — but it doesn’t have to be boring, smell bad or dry out your skin. Noshinku’s sanitizer mist is small enough to pass through airport security regulations, and the blend uses essential oils and alcohol derived from organic cane sugar to simultaneously soften and sanitize hands. The Noshinku three-pack is the perfect stocking stuffer, complete with eucalyptus, bergamot and lavendula scents.
National Geographic’s “Destinations of a Lifetime” ($22.49; amazon.com)
Travelers won’t be able to contain their wanderlust when flipping through this coffee table book that includes 225 of the world’s most incredible places. From tropical rainforests to ancient ruins to deserted islands, these magnificent photos showcase some of the world’s most epic destinations.
Uncommon Goods Scratch Map ($26; uncommongoods.com)
Help your traveler track where they’ve been with this innovative scratch-off map. Scratch off each country as they’re ticked off any traveler’s bucket list for a colorful display of adventure sure to bring back terrific memories.
Hotel Lobby Paris Nuit Candle ($54; hotellobbycandle.com)
For some, hotels are simply a place to get a quick night of shuteye. For others, hotels are a lifestyle. Enter Hotel Lobby Candles, a brand created by travel and lifestyle influencer Lindsay Silberman. The Paris Nuit scent is perfect for any traveler longing for a luxury hotel experience in their very own home.
Trtl Travel Neck Pillow ($29.99, originally $39.99; amazon.com)
Squeezing into small plane seats is never fun, but the Trtl Travel Neck Pillow makes it much easier to sleep. The pillow is designed to keep your head in an upright position to avoid the dreaded nodding while you get some sleep. The plush, soft fabric comes in four colors: red, gray, coral and black.
Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II ($449.99; bestbuy.com)
The Canon PowerShot camera uses a one-inch sensor to grab more light, creating sharp and sleek travel photos. The camera’s easy-to-use point-and-shoot options mean even those who aren’t photographically savvy can snap great memories. Its brown casing gives it a vintage-meets-modern feel and it can be easily slipped into a budding travel photographer’s carry-on.
WineHero Bottle Protector Bags, 6-Pack ($28.99; amazon.com)
Most oenophile travelers want to bring wine home when on vacation. But suitcase wine breakage is real, and getting home with wine bottles in one piece can be difficult. This set of six WineHero reusable plastic bubble wrap bags made from flexible, durable PVC plastic with heavy-duty lock seals ensures vino arrives home intact.
Taylor & Tanner Barkin 50 States Traveled Journal ($30; uncommongoods.com)
This journal allows travelers to remember every stop of their 50-state adventure. Inside, you’ll find a page for each state in the country along with some prompts to jot down your best travel memories in each location, such as the best meals, how you got there, the funniest moments on the trip and much more.
Global Entry Membership ($100 for a five-year membership; cbp.gov)
Give the gift of ease: Frequent travelers can speed through customs when returning to the US with a Global Entry membership, which also comes with TSA PreCheck. Although your favorite traveler actually has to apply for the membership themselves, you can foot the bill by using your credit card to pay for it. The best part? If you have travel credit cards like the Capital One Venture Credit Card, the Platinum Card from American Express or the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, this “gift” will actually be fully credited to your statement — as these cards come with a Global Entry fee credit.
CLEAR Membership ($179; clearme.com)
An annual CLEAR membership is the ultimate gift for any frequent traveler. With it, they can use their biometrics to verify their identity at airport security to zip to the front of the line. There is no waiting around with CLEAR where the kiosks are available — currently at more than 50 airports around the country.
Monos Metro Backpack ($195; nordstrom.com)
A stylish bag for both personal and business travel, the Monos Metro Backpack is available in either nylon or vegan leather in various colors. The backpack comes with the QuickSnap Modular Kit system which can snap other Monos products and carriers in and out of the bag, as well as a dedicated laptop compartment and a sleeve to fit over a rolling suitcase handle.
Carmel and Terrell Swan Hand-Embroidered State Pillows ($225; uncommongoods.com)
What better way to spruce up your chosen traveler’s living space than with a decorative pillow of their favorite state? Whether it’s their home state, their home away from home or their favorite vacation state, each pillow is embroidered with the best sites, cities and cultural icons.
Hotels.com Gift Card ($10-$2,000; hotels.com)
As one of the most flexible travel gifts to give, a Hotels.com gift card offers travelers access to hundreds of thousands of hotels around the world. With no expiration date and no fees, choose the quantity you want and decide whether you want the gift card mailed or emailed to the recipient.
Jo Malone Nectarine Blossom & Honey Cologne (starting $74; nordstrom.com)
At 1 ounce, this is the ideal size to carry on board in a baggie of liquids. The spray-on fragrance is light and fruity, with hints of peach, cassis, spring flowers and acacia honey. After a long-haul flight, everyone can use a refreshing scent — this should be a staple in any traveler’s carry-on bag.
Kindle Oasis (starting at $249.99; amazon.com)
Traveling readers will appreciate Amazon’s Kindle Oasis, which has warm light and new page-turning technology that makes a digital reading experience feel like reading a real book. It’s apt for beach bums and adventure travelers, too, withstanding accidental immersions in the pool or drops in a muddy pond.
Away Carry-On: Aluminum Edition (starting at $525; awaytravel.com)
For a fancy take on Away’s regular Carry-On, gift the Aluminum Edition of the suitcase. It fits in most airline overhead bins and features a chic aluminum shell, the signature Away interior compression system and an ejectable USB charger that can charge your phone up four times over.
Flight 001 5-in-1 Adapter ($34; amazon.com)
This color-coded adapter set is perfect for anyone that frequently travels abroad. The set features four different adapters for different countries plus a cube with two USB ports. It’s easy to find the right adapter thanks to the varying colors based on plug shape and size.
Brian, Dave, Neil and Colin Urban Map Glass ($18; uncommongoods.com)
Give the traveler in your life the gift of remembering adventures in their favorite city. Whether it’s New York, Nashville, Miami or many more, get a map of their favorite city imprinted on a glass.
Beis Survival Sling ($58; beistravel.com)
A combo purse, fanny pack and shoulder bag, the Beis survival sling has various compartments and pockets to carry everything a traveler needs within easy reach. Apt for holding key items at the airport, at a music festival, on a hiking trail or elsewhere, the Beis sling fits with any travel scenario.
Bellroy Tech Kit Compact ($55; amazon.com)
Keep cords, plugs and small electronics in order with this durable organizer that zippers shut and keeps your goods secured in place. With pockets and loops for all sorts of travel items and electronics, the organizer is versatile for travelers looking to store cables or keep their keys and phone safely in one place.
Jet&Bo Cashmere Travel Set ($380; amazon.com)
Make any travel experience (even a middle seat) feel more luxurious with the Jet&Bo Cashmere Travel Set. The pack comes with a soft blanket, sleep mask, socks and a carrying case (all cashmere, of course). The items won’t wrinkle and will get softer with each use.
Kootek Travel Hammock ($23.99, originally $32.99; amazon.com)
Perfect for the hedonist traveler, sway and relax anywhere in the world with the Kootek Travel Hammock. The large size fits up to two travelers and the hammock folds up into a small bag that can be easily tucked into a backpack or suitcase.
DJI Mini 2 Fly More Combo ($599; amazon.com)
Drones are a fun travel accessory, but often huge and too bulky to travel with. The DJI Mini Combo is a compact drone that weighs less than 250 grams. With 31 minutes of flight time and professional-level zoom and video capacity, this drone will capture all those special travel moments but still fit in a carry-on.
Uncommon Goods The Folio ($47; uncommongoods.com)
This handy folio can double as both a journal and a storage space. It’s the perfect place to store keepsakes from travels, such as boarding passes, museum tickets and much more. Separate each trip with its own folder space for easy organization.
Eagle Creek Pack-It Reveal Cube Set ($29.95; rei.com)
These durable packing cubes keep any suitcase perfectly organized. The 300-denier poly fabric is washable, and the mesh top offers a view of exactly what’s inside. The angled zipper design makes it easy to store items in the cubes whether rolling, folding or stacking items inside.
Frances Hickinbotham Four Seasons Face Masks ($11.99, originally $48; uncommongoods.com)
It looks as though face masks will be a staple of any traveler’s bag for the foreseeable future. Make sure the traveler in your life is fully stocked with this set of four masks.
Looking for a travel credit card? Find out which cards CNN Underscored chose as our best travel credit cards of 2021.