The Wanderlust Wish List

“What do you want for Christmas?” “All your frequent flyer miles.” La Défense, France.

Let’s be honest. It’s hard to find the perfect gift for someone who loves to travel — I’m referring to the wanderlusters (not a real word, but roll with it). By definition, we yearn for experiences not things. This list could be for you, or it could be for someone you love. Some are more practical, others more whimsical. Regardless, I can promise that as a wanderluster myself, these are the types of gifts we are looking for this holiday season.

Disclaimer: As much as I wish this was sponsored, the opinions expressed below are truly my own. The photos, however, are not mine and I claim no rights to them. The exception being me and Santa, and the chocolate near the end. Happy shopping! 


#1 Filtered water bottle ($30)

seychelles water bottle
Courtesy of

If you’ve read my post on how I afford to travel, you know that I suggest investing in a filtered water bottle. This is the most practical gift on this list — I’ve taken my filtered bottle on every trip since receiving it as a gift from my parents. I have the Seychelle pictured above. Here’s the link to it on Amazon.

#2 Unique Travel Themed T-Shirt or Decor ($10-$30) 

Use a website like RedBubble and search tags like “travel,” “wanderlust,” or “adventure.” The only disadvantage is that these gifts are usually custom and therefore more pricey. If you’re not sure what their tastes are, grab them a gift card to their favorite store (in my case, H&M for those who wanted to know in advance). Remember, we’re saving every penny for our next trip. If we happen to look good at the same time, well, that’s just luck. 😉

#3 Dinner at your (their) favorite restaurant ($30+)

This is one gift that can’t be substituted with a gift card. We eat by ourselves often enough. Do this if they’ve been away for awhile; it’s the perfect opportunity to catch up. Plus, who doesn’t love tikka masala?

#4 Print out pictures of our trips together & frame them ($5-$10)

It will show that you cherish our memories together just as much as we do. My mom takes 1st place in this category. We have pictures (and scrapbooks) scattered throughout our house from all our trips. Reminiscing of past adventures is second only to experiencing new ones.

#5 iTunes gift card ($15-$100)

If your wanderluster is anything like me, they stream YouTube music videos because downloaded music is a luxury that we’ve chosen not to afford. This gift has other variations: pay for their Spotify subscription, buy them an actual CD, or (if you’re feeling generous) get them concert tickets.

#6 Books for Inspiration ($5-$15)

excuses to excursions
This picture is copyright of the Blog Abroad, and used with written permission of Gloria Atanmo.

You know, for those long layovers. I personally suggest a recent purchase of mine. If you’re looking for travel inspiration, then this is a must have! Gloria Atanmo has been an instrumental figure in helping me discover travel blogging. Get your copy of her ebook (or one for someone you love) here

Other gifts of similar purpose include Sudoku, word cross, travel magazine (one edition or a subscription), and for those especially challenged by adulthood, coloring books.

#7 Passport Cover ($5-$15)

These aren’t my thing, but some people are really into them. I have a plain black cover for my passport and don’t plan on changing that any time soon. You can either order these online or pick one up on your next trip (typical souvenir).

#8 Imported food from a country they love ($5-$15)

All the chocolate I brought home from Russia. Moscow, Russia.

Especially if your wanderluster lived abroad, they will appreciate food more than you think. After returning home to Utah from Russia, I missed my babushka’s home cooked meals. Or even something as simple as the Russian brand of chocolate would have helped my “homesickness” for Russia. Check out your local import store or look online to see what’s available.

#10 Support for our somewhat hectic lifestyle (PRICELESS)

Typically in the form of a card, hug, or conversation (but let’s be honest, it will probably be a Skype call). We know not everyone (especially our parents) comprehend our priorities and why travel holds #1. If your remember nothing else from this list but this, know that we are happy and nothing would make us happier this holiday season than having your unconditional love and your credit card info.

If there’s anything your wanderluster has asked for Christmas, drop a comment below for the rest of us!

Cheers. xx

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