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Believe it or not, it’s time to start thinking about your holiday shopping! Do you have some pint-size travelers on your list? Are you planning a family trip soon? If so, then check out this gift guide for travel-loving kids. It will make your shopping a breeze and ensure they get a gift they will love!
For a smart, practical gift, look no further than luggage. Every traveler needs it, and kids love having their own.
Depending on the age of the child, you may want to choose a rolling suitcase or a backpack. Fortunately, there are literally hundreds of choices out there. You can go with bright colors, polka dots, favorite characters, or cute animals.
Just be sure that whatever piece you buy can be rolled or carried by the child themselves. You don’t want to give a kid a bag he loves but mom hates because she has to carry it. So, choose wisely!
Money or Gift Cards
You can never go wrong giving money or gift cards for a travel lover, regardless of age. Money can be spent on something they need for their next trip or used for souvenirs while on vacation.
If your favorite little traveler is taking an international trip soon, consider giving them money in the currency of the country they are visiting. This will guarantee they have their own spending money for the trip.
Gift cards are great too because there are so many options these days. You could give one that can be used to prepare for an upcoming vacation (such as a Cabela’s gift card in advance of a camping trip).
Or give one that can be used while traveling (such as a Disney gift card for a trip to Disney World).
You could even give a generic one, like a Visa gift card, that could be used for a variety of things.
The next item on my gift guide for travel-loving kids is a camera. This gives young tourists a sense of freedom by allowing them to take their own travel photos. It encourages them to document trips in their own way. And, it can foster a love of photography in a young person.
Compass and/or Maps
Maps are also wonderful mementos of past trips. Frame a nice one of their favorite location along with a photo of them there.
A compass is another nice gift for the kid who loves hiking, camping, or navigation. This is another way to teach some important life skills through travel.
Books about Travel
An excellent way to inspire wanderlust in kids is to give them books about traveling. To teach them about different places around the world, choose a nonfiction book. One of our favorites is the Atlas Obscura Explorer’s Guide.
Alternatively, pick fiction books that are set in various locations across the globe. My son loves the 39 Clues series, which combines history, art, adventure, and famous locations worldwide.
Regardless of whether you are heading to the ski slopes or the beach, you need sunglasses to protect against the bright sunlight. Kids need sun protection as much as adults do.
So, for a fun gift, give sunglasses to the mini adventurer on your list. For an older child, look for a high quality pair of sporty glasses. For a younger child, choose something fun and silly.
Another travel necessity on my gift guide for travel-loving kids is a high quality travel pillow. These can help a young traveler sleep on a plane or in the car. They can also give your child more comfort while in transit.
Choose one that is the perfect size, shape, and color for your favorite little traveler. Combine it with a travel blanket and they will be ready for any adventure!
Any kid who travels needs a good pair of headphones. Their parents and anyone else within earshot of their electronic devices will thank you for this one!
There’s a ton of amazing options on the market these days for kids of all ages. Plus, they are not very expensive, so it is a win-win gift for everyone! For an extra bonus, pair the headphones with a new movie, video game, or digital book to enjoy during their trip.
If you are shopping for a child that loves outdoor activities while traveling, consider giving them outdoor gear. Things like a snorkel set, snow shoes, ski goggles, hiking boots, a backpack, a portable hammock, fishing gear, or camping gear make perfect gifts.
Think about your child’s favorite activities or what they will be doing on an upcoming trip to determine the best type of gear to buy.
Regardless of whether your travel-loving kid is into camping, road trips, or flying to faraway cities, having their own water bottle can come in handy when traveling.
Look for one that is insulated and easy to transport. Collapsible water bottles with a clip make travel a breeze.
Another excellent gift for little adventurers is a travel journal. They are especially wonderful for young writers and artists who like to document travel in their own way.
A travel journey can encourage your child to spend more time writing. These journals can be used to remember past trips, and to jot down ideas for future travel as well.
For kids who are scared of the dark, sleeping in a strange environment, such as a hotel room or tent, can be difficult. To ease their anxiety, buy them a small flashlight they can travel with.
It can be used as a nightlight or just to give them a little piece of mind after the sun goes down. They can also use it to read in the car at night on a long road trip.
I hope this gift guide for travel-loving kids helps you with your holiday shopping this year. If you need more gift ideas, visit my gift guide for Disney travelers, how to give the gift of travel, the best gifts for travelers, and unique gifts inspired by travel. Also see our post on creating travel-themed Easter baskets for your kids!
To improve your family travels, see our comprehensive guide to happy travel with kids.
If you have other ideas for travel-loving kids, leave me a comment and let me know! I would love to hear your ideas. Happy travels!