10 Smart Travel Gifts
November 15, 2016 | By Tyler Govaars
Smart travelers travel well. They’ve spent more time logging miles than binging on Netflix and get where they’re going efficiently and in style. They know what to take with them, what to leave behind and what they can buy when they land. Essentially, they’ve spent a lifetime navigating airports, packing light and seeing the world.
We’ve rounded up our favorite gift ideas for the well-traveled individual in your life — essentials that offer both in-transit utility and packing ease.
The 4-in-1 Lens from Ollo ($79.99) can drastically upgrade travel photos to the next level, adding dimension and clarity. The multi-lens clip comes with a fish-eye, wide-angle and two macro lens additions, and the lightweight design works on both the front- and rear-facing cameras on the iPhone 6/6s and 6/6s Plus. (The iPhone 7/7 Plus Core Lens set is available now for preorder.)
Glass Water Bottle
If ever a water bottle could be called sexy — and trendy — the reusable Harlow Water Bottle by BKR ($35) is it. With colorful interchangeable silicone sleeves, it’s useful, durable and comes with a celebrity following. While you’re being eco-friendly, you’ll also look fashionable with it tucked into your purse, daypack or resting on your nightstand.
Your phone is often the most important device when traveling, allowing you to text over Wi-Fi, take photos, listen to music, watch movies and read the news. The last thing you need is to run out of batteries leaving you out of touch and disconnected. This Moshi iGlaze ion battery ($99.95) features a two-piece case and battery set, so it can deliver extra power when you need it and is removable when you want a slimmer profile. Available for the iPhone 6/6s.
These neatly designed packing cubes fit together like Tetris blocks in your luggage, maximizing the space you have and making it super easy to grab something out of your suitcase without having to dig through all of your belongings. The F1 Spacepak Essentials Kit ($115) in sea-foam green includes three packs, one for your clothes, undergarments and toiletries.
Traditional Turkish towels are popular among travelers for good reasons: They are chic, lightweight and multipurpose. Throw this Nordstrom “Lucky” Towel ($34) in your day bag and use it for an impromptu picnic at the park, a fast-drying beach towel at the beach or a scarf in the evening if the temperature dips unexpectedly.
State-of-the-Art Ear Buds
Bose’s original noise-canceling headphones are a longtime staff favorite for travel, but when you are packing light, these in-ear QuietComfort 20 Acoustic Noise-Cancelling Headphones ($249) are a lifesaver. An inline microphone lets you take calls easily, and the compact design is perfect for conserving space in your carry-on bag.
This Malin + Goetz Essentials Kit ($30) comes in a useful TSA-approved clear travel case and is stocked with best-selling favorites from its popular all-natural bath product line. A fun mix of aromas are included in the six-piece set like grapefruit face cleanser, bergamot body cleanser and peppermint shampoo.
These little grips for your phone are endlessly helpful. Stick a Pop Socket ($10) on your iPhone or tablet and it acts as a convenient stand for media viewing, a mount for your car, a stabilizer for one-handed browsing and can be repositioned anywhere on the device as many times as needed.
This rain-resistant Filson Duffle ($395) is a classic travel piece that can will come in handy for years to come. It works for short jaunts, long weekend getaways and overnights in the city, but it’s also absolutely essential if you’re taking a small puddle jumper, as small planes restrict luggage to soft bags under in a certain size.
Flat-rate daily plans make this little device an attractive option for international Wi-Fi access and convenience. Renting the XCom Mifi 2 ($7.77/day for two countries) makes extended contracts with your cell phone carrier unnecessary, plus it works in 44 countries, so it’s easy to get online and avoid roaming charges no matter where you are in the world.
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