Christmas 2020 is going to be tough for a lot of avid travelers. Most of us are stuck in our home towns, or even inside our homes, and many of us are missing out on planned trips. If you’ve got a travel lover in your life, consider boosting their spirits by giving them one of these Christmas gifts for travel lovers that can be enjoyed from the comfort of their own living room (or, at the most, their own city!).
Most of these Christmas gifts for travelers can be purchased quickly and easily on Amazon, and then delivered straight to the recipient’s doorstep. They’ll arrive faster than a postcard (on that note, I sent a postcard from Cuba to Canada in 2014 and we’re still waiting!) and they’ll put a smile on the face of anyone who is missing their adventurous trips abroad.
The Best Christmas Gift for Organized Travelers – A Wanderlust-Inspiring Calendar
Every December I jump on Amazon and order a 1000 Places to See Before You Die wall calendar, which I hang on my kitchen wall and dream about all year. I’ve been ordering these large, photo-heavy wall calendars for almost ten years, and it has been a real pleasure to see how, over the years, more and more of the featured destinations have becomes places that I’ve visited. Sure, my 2020 calendar didn’t have much written on it, but that hasn’t stopped me from ordering my 2021 travel wall calendar anyways!
1000 Places to See Before You Die also makes a page-a-day desk calendar, which is the perfect Christmas gift for any traveler chained to their cubicle (or home office!) in 2021. There’s something really satisfying about ripping off one beautiful, brightly-colored travel photo each day, knowing that as the calendar gets smaller your next trip is probably getting closer and closer!
The Best Christmas Gift for Foodie Travelers – An International Snack Subscription Box
I’ve been a subscription box fanatic for many years, and while I’ve mostly focused on beauty product subscriptions (all those little samples are perfect for travel!) I have dabbled in snack box subscriptions as well. I love knowing that every month I will receive a carefully-curated box full of delicious treats, and I’m so jealous of readers who live in the USA who can access Amazon’s wide library of snack subscription boxes. My top choice is MunchPak, a snack box that comes in three sizes (5+, 10+ or 25+ snacks per month!) and features a range of snacks from around the world, every month! A single box could contain German cookies, Polish candies, Bulgarian nuts and even Canadian soda. It’s almost as fun as browsing a foreign supermarket!
The Best Christmas Gift for Readers – A Book to Inspire Their Next Trip, at Any Age and Any Budget
Everyone loves a beautiful and useful coffee table book, and for a restless budget traveler stuck on their sofa, the Lonely Planet’s updated Ultimate Travel List is a must-have addition to their travel book collection. This is the perfect Christmas gift for travel lovers who are thinking ahead to future trips, with inspiring, adventurous travel destinations ranging from the well-known (like Australia’s Uluru) to the truly obscure (a national park high in Tajikistan’s Pamir mountains, anyone?). This new second edition was updated in autumn 2020, making it perfect for post-pandemic travel planning.
While the Lonely Planet famously targets budget and adventure travelers, National Geographic often serves up travel content that is perfect for more-experienced travelers, including those who are still seeking adventure but may want to find it in a more comfortable way! Another beautiful coffee table book is National Geographic’s Journeys of a Lifetime. Also featuring 500 breathtaking destinations (is that a coincidence?), this book clocks in at six pounds and is densely packed with colorful photographs and informative, inspiring text. Give this gift to someone who would dream of sailing down the Mississippi River on a traditional steamship or climbing Mount Fuju during Japanese cherry blossom season.
The Best Christmas Gifts for Travel Lovers Who Also Love Languages – Lifetime Access to Rosetta Stone’s Language Learning Library
If you had told me back in February that it would be at least twelve months before I could travel internationally again, and that I would spend most of the upcoming year alone in my house, I would have done things a little differently! One of my major regrets about my many months of social distancing and self-isolation is that I didn’t spent enough time improving my foreign language skills. If only I’d had one of these Rosetta Stone bundles, featuring language-learning workbooks in one of five languages (English, French, Spanish, Italian or German) plus lifetime access to Rosetta Stone’s entire library of virtual language learning software (including nineteen more languages, for a total of 24 comprehensive language courses). If there’s a traveler in your life who has always said they want to learn a foreign language, now is the perfect time to gift them this software plan!
The Best Christmas Gift for Travel Lovers Who Really Miss Staying in Hotels – Comfy, Cozy, Hotel-Inspired Bathrobes
Last year, I spent more than 200 nights in hotels, and I know I speak for many avid travelers when I say that I miss hotels so much. Even the most mundane things, like little shampoo bottles, miniature coffee makers and doors that open with keycards seem special when they’re in a hotel room. If there’s a travel lover in your life who has mentioned that they miss the experience of staying in hotels, why not help the recreate the hotel experience at home with a comfortable, cozy, hotel-inspired bathrobe? Depending on where they live, they might prefer a lightweight, waffle-knit hotel bathrobe (similar to what you’d find in a hotel along the Mediterranean coast) or a fluffy, warm, microfiber robe that comes in a never-ending variety of colors and lengths (snuggling up in one of these will make you feel like you’re spending the night in a Scandinavian ice hotel!).
The Best Christmas Gift for Travelers Who Want to Relive Past Trips – A Scratch-Off Wall Map of the World
When the only trips you’re taking are to the office, the supermarket and the park across the street from your house, it’s natural to want to reminisce about all of your past adventures around the world. Enter these super-cool scratch-off wall maps of the world, which come complete with pins for hanging and a scratching tool to reveal the countries underneath the metallic gold covering. I recommend buying the 24″ x 36″ size, and consider adding an inexpensive frame to help your giftee show off their beautiful new map.
The Best Christmas Gift for Travelers in North America – An Epic Road-Trip Atlas to Canada, the USA and Mexico
While many travelers are reluctant to get on board an airplane at the moment, many are open to shorter getaways that are closer to home. Enter the National Geographic Road Trip Atlas: Adventure Edition. Somewhere between a traditional atlas of North America and a super-helpful guidebook, this coil-bound atlas will help road-trippers plan their perfect North American driving vacation, including the best routes to take and the best stops along the way. Some of my family members are big motorcycle fanatics, and they always bring a hybrid map-guidebook like this on their two-wheeled adventures. This version was updated in 2020 for trips planned in 2021; don’t cheap out on an older edition from a different publisher, as it may include roads that are now closed, and it may omit faster, more scenic new roadways.
The Best Christmas Gift for Every Travel Lover – An Actual Staycation
You don’t need to book a flight or take a road trip to have an authentic vacation experience. The ultimate Christmas gift for travel lovers this year is the experience of taking a real vacation, close to home. If someone in your life is really, truly missing the experience of traveling, give them the gift of a staycation in their own hometown or region. Jump over to Booking.com and reserve a night, or a weekend, in a hotel close to their home. With both occupancy and rates being lower than ever, hotels are offering five-star service at budget prices, and many properties allow guests to change or modify their reservation up to twenty-four hours before check-in. Look for hotels with staycation-friendly features like a swimming pool, bicycle rentals, complimentary room service and/or pet-friendly suites.
Stocking Stuffer Gifts for Travel Lovers This Christmas Season
My list of stocking stuffers for travelers is freshly updated for the 2020 holiday season, with updated information about inexpensive, portable, packable, lightweight travel essentials including travel adapters, travel pillows, travel toiletries and more.
Are you like me? Itching to take an international trip this holiday season, but also wanting to follow local and global public health guidelines by sticking close to home? If so, what gift would help boost your spirits this (hopefully once-in-a-lifetime) holiday season?
Let me know in the comments!