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The Best Gifts for the Jet Setters and Travel Junkies In Your Life

John Samels
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One of the best things about traveling is that there’s no one right way to do it. Whether you’re a road tripper or a pond skipper, prefer grueling mountain hikes, leisurely strolls through new cities, or just lounging on beaches the world over, there’s a brand of exploring for everyone. 

Still, no matter what’s on your itinerary, everyone should be stocked with the right gear to make their global gallivanting as convenient and fun as possible. With the holidays barreling down on us, it’s prime time get the jet-setter in your life something that’ll help them crush their next journey. 

To help you out, we've rounded up great picks for everyone, from wandering dreamers and hardcore hikers, to business-focused frequent flyers and backpackers, plus a few items for all types of wanderlusters in between. 

Amazon/John Samels

RAVPower Portable Charger

Price: $37.99
There’s nothing on Earth more frustrating than being stuck in an unfamiliar place with a dead phone battery. A portable battery pack is a genuine lifesaver on the road, and every seasoned traveler should have one. The RAVPower Portable Charger features a 20,000 mAh battery that can charge a smartphone over four times, and it also features two USB ports to charge multiple devices at once.

Trtl/John Samels

Trtl Travel Pillow

Price: $29.99
Travel pillows are usually one of those things travelers don’t buy until they’re absolutely fed up with sleeping like crap on a plane. And even when they do, they probably wait until the last minute and wind up settling for some overpriced junk from the airport bookstore. The Trtl Travel Pillow is levels better than any of those, offering soft chin and neck support that’s both comfortable and good at keeping your posture straight (meaning less risk of neck strain or kinks once you land). Even better, it also folds up to be ultra slim and compact, meaning more room for more fun stuff in your carry-on.

Amazon/John Samels

Summor Tapestry World Map

Price: $19.69
Half of the fun of traveling is planning your next trip, so if you’re looking to inspire your wandering-but-never-lost friend, colleague, or family member, this excellent world map tapestry from Summor is perfect to keep those inspirational vibes flowing. At 5 by 6.5-feet, it’s absolutely massive and a fun addition to any ceiling, office, or apartment wall.

Amazon/John Samels

Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Packing Organizer Starter Set

Price: $38.90
Packing efficiently for a long trip is a lot easier said than done, but it’s not that tough as long as you have the right accessories. That’s where these packing cubes come in. They make it super simple to organize and stuff a full week’s worth of your wardrobe into a modest carry-on, and even come with a special garment folder that can hold up to 12 shirts or pairs of pants, and ensure they remain wrinkle-free.

Amazon/John Samels

Zoppen RFID Blocking Travel Passport Holder

Price: $9.99
One of the biggest ways you can get jammed up abroad is by losing a passport, which makes it all the more baffling that so many people carry theirs around without any kind of protection or security. The Zoppen RFID Blocking Travel Passport Holder is essentially a travel wallet to keep your passport, credit cards, and important documents all together in the same place while protecting your credit cards from thievery courtesy of RFID-blocking tech.

Amazon/John Samels

Epicka Universal Travel Adapter 

Price: $21.59
Remember that thing we said above about how there’s nothing on Earth more frustrating than being stuck in an unfamiliar place with a dead phone battery? Let us be clear: Being stuck in a country you’re not from without the appropriate power adapter is actually the most frustrating thing on Earth. It happens all the time, and travelers are often left buying expensive cheap ones from pharmacies and roadside gas stations. The Epicka Universal Travel Adapter is a one-stop shop with adapters for over 150 countries worldwide, and also features four USB ports, one USB-C port, and one AC socket. It might seem silly, but this is arguably the most useful gift on this list.

Amazon/John Samels

BIZOND Mini Clothing Steamer

Price: $39.90
Not every trip can be a fun one, especially if it’s for business. Keeping that suit or dress looking crisp from terminal to terminal to cab to important meeting? It’s not easy, but that’s the beauty of this mini clothing steamer from BIZOND, which packs tidily into any bag and can be whipped out wherever, whenever to fix wrinkly duds on the go.

Amazon/John Samels

Hydaway Collapsible Water Bottle

Price: $25.95
Staying hydrated before, during, and after a flight is one of the best ways to avoid jet lag and keep your energy up, but grabbing a new bottle of water all the time gets expensive (and carrying one everywhere can take up a bunch of precious space). The Hydaway Collapsible Water Bottle is a super compact reusable bottle that crumples down into something smaller than a hockey puck, so it’ll squeeze into even the most packed carry-on or backpack.

Huckberry/John Samels

Topo Designs Dopp Kit

Price: $49
Topo Designs makes some of our favorite bags and travel products, and this leather-bottomed Dopp Kit is no exception. This durable Cordura bag features a ballistic nylon upper, a water-resistant interior, and is conveniently triangle-shaped so that it sits securely upright when you're fumbling around inside.

Huckberry/John Samels

#100 FZ Jacket

Price: $63
Even if the forecast promises crystal clear skies and warm temps for your entire stay, having a jacket at your disposal in case things go sour on the road is every travel junkie’s saving grace. Enter the PackMack #100 FZ, a breathable-yet-waterproof and wind-shielding shell that’ll protect you from unexpected nasty weather, and helpfully packs down to the size of one of its pockets so it won’t take up a lick of space in an already-crowded pack.

Amazon/John Samels

Hummingbird Hammocks Travel Hammock 

Price: $64.95
There are few greater joys in life than being able to sling a hammock between two trees and lay in complete quietude, watching the clouds roll by while the sun shines down on your face. That’s precisely why this ultralight hammock should be on the packing essentials list for any backpacking, hiking, or road tripping enthusiast. It weighs just five ounces, packs up smaller than a coffee cup, and can support up to 300 pounds.  

Leatherman/John Samels

The Leatherman Skeletool CX

Price: $79.95
We’re firm believers that everyone should invest in a Leatherman, but for adventurous wanderers on the move, they’re an irreplaceable piece of gear. The Skeletool CX is an ultra-lightweight multi-tool equipped with a stainless steel blade, a pair of needle nose pliers, regular pliers, hard-wire cutters, a large bit driver, a bottle opener, and a functional carabiner. It may not have everything you’d need to get out of a jam, but if all else fails, there’s still a bottle opener. 

Nike/John Samels

Nike Air VaporMax Flyknit 3

Price: $190
Footwear can be a traveler’s best friend or worst enemy, so investing in quality walking/sprinting-to-the-terminal gear is one of the best things any astute travel junkie knows to do. The Nike Air VaporMax Flyknit 3 is a favorite travel among Thrillist editors thanks in large part their supreme comfort during long-haul trips (looking at you next-level heel-to-toe cushioning) and the fact that they're super breathable and lightweight. They're also fashionably versatile, can be dressed up or dressed down depending on where you need to be before you leave/when you touch down, and are easy to slip and off when you're trying to breeze through security. 

Away/John Samels

The Away Bigger Carry-On

Price: $245
Road-hardened travelers know that a carry-on is the best protection against misplaced baggage, and most modern carry-on bags can comfortably carry enough clothing for at least a week’s worth of traveling. The Away Bigger bag is the perfect hard-shell carry-on case because it’s compliant with international and domestic carry-on regulations, features “whisper quiet” 360-degree rolling wheels, and comes equipped with a TSA-approved pop-out battery for on-the-go charging. Is it the cheapest piece of luggage on the planet? Certainly not. But it is one of the best for the money, and will last whoever you give it to year after year, trip after trip, thanks to a lifetime limited warranty. 

Bose/John Samels

Bose Quiet Comfort 35 II Noise Cancelling Smart Headphones

Price: $349
There is almost nothing more luxurious than being able to descend into a cone of silence while flying, and these Bose noise-cancelling headphones are some of the best on the market. Not only are they packed with tech to dull out crying babies, rattling engines, and more, but they also have Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa built-in. They also boast unparalleled sound quality, which should do a number to help lull you to sleep or simply enjoy whatever podcast/movie/album you want to zone out to in peace.

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