The 8 Best Gifts to Buy for Travelers in 2018

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If you have a traveler in your life, chances are they’re going to love anything you gift them over the holidays that will keep their life less stressful and more organized when they’re on the road. But with so many options out there, from innovative beauty products to cure travel skin woes to must-have electronic gadgets, it can be hard to know what to get them. Luckily, we at TripSavvy have done the hard work for you, rounding up great gifts for jetsetters and business travelers that make travel days a lot more enjoyable—and help solve some pretty annoying issues on the go. With this list, your recipient can forget dead batteries on phones, sunburned lips, having to lug around heavy books, and dead and stressed skin after an international flight—or losing all of the little gadgets that make life easier.  

Keep reading for the best gifts for travelers, from supercharged battery packs and a miracle body oil to a fantastic e-reader and convertible diaper bag that will hold up after years of travel. 

Our Top Picks

01 of 08

Best Skin Care: Verso Deep Hydration Mask

Verso Deep Hydration Mask

Nordstrom

Hours of recycled cabin air, dehydration, and other stresses during a long-haul flight can wreak havoc on a traveler’s skin, but this face mask delivers intense results before takeoff or after landing. Although the price tag on this face mask is admittedly a little steep—you get four with your purchase, but still—you’re basically gifting your favorite jetsetter a trip to the spa via an easy-to-travel-with package.

The hydrogel packs moisture into weary skin thanks to Verso’s patented Artificial Moisturizing Factor, which keeps skin hydrated for 120 hours and helps it to retain moisture. Meanwhile, the mask’s sodium hyaluronate helps to smooth fine lines and soften skin. Best of all, the results are real and immediate, making it especially great for those that tend to land and then rush off to a meeting or special event. We also love that this mask comes in two pieces—above the nose and below the nose—to better position on the face.

02 of 08

Best for New Parents: Kipling Alvy Black Convertible Handbag

Kipling’s line of nylon bags are known for their durability and toughness—something that new parents with a ton of stuff to tote around definitely need. Parents on the go swear by the brand’s Alvy bag to hold and organize everything they need for a day out with their little ones, and with the handy interior and exterior pockets, there’s truly a place for everything they’re bringing with them.

We love that it can be converted from a tote to a backpack with its brilliant strap configuration, so if the bag gets too heavy to be comfortable on one shoulder, you can change that in a matter of seconds. These bags can take a beating, too, thanks to their tough nylon construction that will hold up after years of travel (this author’s almost decade-old Kipling carry-ons have nary a stitch out of place after 33 countries). Another bonus? Nylon is extremely easy to wipe down to clean. Because it’s not obviously a diaper bag, your recipient will be able to use this tote all throughout their child’s younger years. 

03 of 08

Best for Staying Organized: Cocoon CPG8BK 10.5 x 7.5-Inch Organizer (Black)

No more digging for cords at the bottoms of purses or feeling like your essentials are spread out across a million different places: This organizer is a tried-and-tested lifesaver when it comes to keeping devices and cords together on the go. It’s made up of overlapping elastic bands, textured for grip, that keep gadgets, cords, crossword books, pens, and even a tub of lip balm in place.

The sleek profile, even when it’s bulked up a bit with your must-haves, is still slim enough to fit into a seat pocket on an airplane and handily into your backpack upon arrival. With the design of the bands, there are a million different ways to configure them to hold all your things, and they don’t stretch out or lose their elasticity over time. They’re only on one side, to help streamline things, but there’s a slim pocket on the other side you can slip your phone, iPad mini, passport, or notebook into for safekeeping. 

04 of 08

Best Under-$10: Bio-Oil Specialist Skincare - 2 oz

Bio-Oil Specialist Skincare - 2 oz

Target

Models, celebrities, and beauty experts swear by this all-purpose, don’t-leave-home-without-it oil that’s a favorite in Europe, though it still has yet to take the States by storm. It works by helping to bolster’s the skin’s natural layer of oil—sometimes depleted by soap—by supplementing it with moisture. But don’t think it’s just for dehydrated skin (although it’s a miracle for that, too): The amount of uses this little bottle has is truly incredible. Your favorite traveler should apply some twice daily to help with a myriad of complaints, including stretch marks, uneven skin tone, and wrinkled skin (Bio-Oil’s ingredients help to re-plasticize the skin). A little drop of this oil goes a long way, so recipients will be able to use this baby two-ounce size for trips to come. And with this low of a price tag, it makes a great gift for any traveler on your list (and, hey, grab one for yourself, too).

Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08

Best Adapter: Travel Smart Continental Adapter Plug Set, three-pack

Travel Smart Continental Adapter Plug Set, three-pack

Target

Adapters are a must-have for jetsetters: After all, with the amount of gadgets we rely on to travel—phone, laptop, Kindle, camera if you’re feeling fancy—being able to recharge them once you’re in your destination is vital. Too many chargers out there are bulky, heavy, and can only handle one device at a time, meaning you have to bring three or more with you when you travel and weigh your bag down with these surprisingly heavy little boxes. We like that these chargers get back to the basics, with European and Middle Eastern plugs that slip neatly over your recipients’ existing two-pronged American ones.

These don’t convert voltage, but that shouldn’t be a worry with the majority of modern gadgets (though it’s not a bad idea to double-check before you go). At this price tag, and at just half an ounce for all three adapters, these are cheap and easy to pack. 

06 of 08

Best Stocking Stuffer: Carmex Lip Balm Stick - Cherry Flavor -SPF 15

There’s nothing worse than chapped, sunburned lips on a vacation, and this is a simple-but-perfect gift or stocking stuffer for those who practically depend on lip balm for survival. The SPF factor helps travelers escaping winter for sunnier or wintery climes keep their lips protected from harmful UV rays, while Carmex’s classic formula continues to be a favorite for its heavy-duty hydration—and it delivers a thick layer of moisture without feeling too gloppy as you apply it.

The stick formula is ideal for traveling since it doesn’t count toward the TSA’s liquid requirements, making it one less thing for that overpacked clear Ziploc. We also love that this two-pack lets the recipient take one with them and still keep one in the gym bag back at home (or, if you’re lucky, gift it back to you). And that iconic cherry flavor? It’s still one of the best, even after all these years. 

07 of 08

Best Battery Pack: Battery Pack RAVPower 16750mAh Portable Charger

Travelers who rely on their phones all day when traveling—and, let’s be honest, that includes most of us these days—can often find their battery power quickly disappearing during the day. After all, you’re using them for directions, pulling up tickets, taking (and posting) videos and photos for social media, and staying in touch with friends—and if you’re international, constantly searching for Wi-Fi can drain the battery even faster.

Rather than spending time searching for a coffee shop or bar outlet to recharge from—and shelling over the price of a drink for you and/or your travel companion for the privilege of using it, having a portable battery back can be a lifesaver. This one has plenty of juice: Fully charged, it can revive an iPhone 5.5 times, a Samsung S7 3.5 times, or an iPad Air once.

Give the traveler in your life this electronic hero—it’ll charge two gadgets (great if they travel with a companion) and with the included wall charger all they’ll have to provide is the USB cord they’re probably bringing anyway.

08 of 08

Best for Bookworms: Kindle Paperwhite E-reader

There’s nothing quite so relaxing as being able to dig into a new book on vacation—or so satisfying as picking a long-neglected one back up. The only issue is that books tend to be quite heavy, and in this era of ever-shrinking airline quotes on carry-on and checked luggage weights, bringing along a book or two could make the difference between dealing with overweight fees. Kindles help solve that problem by transforming the reading experience into downloadable volumes you can pull up on the go with this gadget—and thanks to its dedicated Paperwhite technology, it looks as close as technology can get to mimicking the on-the-page experience of reading a real book (plus, there’s no screen glare when you’re reading on the beach—something iPads aren’t able to do).

If your recipient has Prime, they’ll be able to download more than 1,000 titles right away; if not, Kindle books tend to be cheaper than printed ones. It’s the perfect gift for any reader—and with a single charge lasting weeks, they don’t have to worry about the battery dying right as they get to the good part. 

Our Process

Our writers spent 2 hours researching the most popular gifts for travelers. Before making their final recommendations, they considered 35 different gifts, screened options from 32 different brands and manufacturers, read over 60 user reviews (both positive and negative), and tested 3 of the gifts themselves. All of this research adds up to recommendations you can trust.