2016 Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide for Travel + GIVEAWAYS

Tis’ the season! It’s officially December, which means it’s time for another Holiday Gift Guide for all the travel junkies in your life. I shared my gift guide last year which you all loved, so I decided to make it a yearly tradition. If you’re feeling stuck or need inspiration to help you choose the perfect gift for that travelling loved one, look no further! These travel goodies have been items I’ve been really digging this year and believe would make excellent gift ideas.

Books

Travel Books

#GIRLBOSS

While I wouldn’t call #GIRLBOSS a travel book, it has definitely motivated me as a business woman. In this New York Times best seller, Sophia Amoruso shares her story of how she went from dumpster diving to founding one of the fastest-growing retailers in the world. If you have someone in your life who is trying to turn travel into a career in one way or another, #GIRLBOSS will be an excellent gift.

Price on Amazon: $9.52 USD

The Kindness of Strangers

In today’s world, it’s great to be reminded that the world is full of good people. The Kindness of Strangers is a collections of 26 inspiring tales of the unexpected human connections that transform the experience of travel. It’s a feel good book that reminds you of one of the many reasons why travel is amazing.

Price on Lonely Planet Shop: $11.24 USD

1000 Ultimate Experiences

Just when you thought your bucket list couldn’t get any longer, Lonely Planet goes and shares 1000 more ideas you won’t be able to say no to. 1000 Ultimate Experiences brings together 1000 ideas, places and activities to inspire and entertain travel enthusiasts.

Price on Amazon: $15.47 USD

Jade Yoga Mat

jade-yoga-mat

I’ve owned several yoga mats, and the Jade Yoga Mat has hands down been my favourite. It’s got excellent grip, great comfort and is eco-friendly. Jade mats are made sustainably with natural rubber tapped from rubber trees, a renewable resource and unlike other mats contains no PVC, EVA or other synthetic rubber. And for every mat that’s sold, Jade plants a tree – with over one million trees planted so far. Jade also makes travel specific yoga mats that are thinner and smaller.

Price on Amazon: $74.95 – $105.82 USD

Journal

travel-notebook_2

Whether you enjoy writing, sketching or just jotting out notes here and there, a journal makes an excellent travel companion. Every time I’ve brought a journal with my on a trip, I’ve always been thankful I did so. It’s so special to be able to look back on these pages years from now and be reminded of these experiences I’ve had. My favourite is when I forget about little things that have happened during a trip, and then I’m reminded once more after flipping through my journal.

Price of Similar Item on Amazon: $23 USD

S’well Water Bottle

swell-water-bottle

This may look like an overly priced, typical water bottle, but it’s more than that. The idea behind the S’well Water Bottle is that the company wants everyone to stop using plastic water bottles. I never travel without it now, and continue to fill it up with clean filtered water no matter what country I’m in to reduce waste.

Every year, over 200 billion plastic water bottles go to landfills globally, which is ridiculous and avoidable. S’well bottles are made with non-leaching and non-toxic stainless steel making it not just healthier for the environment but for you as well. The best part about this water bottle is that drinks stay cold for 24 hours and hot for 12 without exaggeration. The bottle comes in different sizes and different colours and designs. S’well is also a proud supporter of UNICEF to help provide clean and safe drinking water to the world’s most vulnerable populations.

Price on Amazon: $28.99 USD

Gear

Google Pixel

google-pixel-phone-and-live-case

I’ve been using the Google Pixel for the past couple of months and have been impressed. The camera quality, especially in low light, is top quality when it comes to smart phones.  The battery lasts all day long, which is a refreshing change from my last iPhone 6. Also, when you’re battery does die, you can charge it for 15-20 minutes and get another 7 hours out of it. It offers unlimited storage for all your photos and videos, which is a bonus for the traveller. It’s also the first phone with the Google Assistant built in, which is excellent at being my navigator, trip planner, scheduler, translator, plus more.

Price in Google Store: $900

Make Your Own Live Case for $50

Daydream VR Headset by Google

vr-headset

I’ve tried several of those cardboard VR glasses and while it was cool, I wasn’t sold on the whole VR thing. This is until I tried the Daydream View by Google. This headset takes virtual reality in your own home to a whole other level. You just pop in your phone (Pixel and Moto only for the time being) in front of the headset lens, and you’re transported to a whole other world. You can travel without leaving your living room, kick back in your personal VR cinema, and play games that put you in the centre of the action. The headset is made with lightweight fabric making it very comfortable to wear and paired with a controller, both are designed to be easy and intuitive.

Price in Google Store: $99 USD

Music Flow P5 LG Portable Speakers

lg-pf-bluetooth-speakers

Music is an essential part of the travel experience. If you have someone in your life who believes the same, then a Music Flow P5 LG Portable Speaker would make an excellent gift. This portable speaker fits perfectly in a carry on bag or even purse or small backpack. It’s a simple design, provides excellent sound and has a long battery life. What’s extra cool about it is it has dual speaker pairing. This means you can pair two of these and create an around sound experience.

Price on Amazon: $61.99

Skyroam Hotspot

skyroam

I really need to rave about the Skyroam Hotspot. This small, but powerful device, has been the ultimate travel companion. The Skyroam is a global WiFi hotspot that offers fast, secure internet for your mobile, tablet and computer in over 100 countries. I’ve tried several competitive devices which have miserable failed to connect me to the online world during my travels, but not the Skyroam. The best part is you pay a low rate for 24-hours and get unlimited internet.

Price on Amazon: $99.99 for device only

Vasa BLÅ Sudio Headphones

sudio-wireless-headphones

The Vasa BLÅ Sudio Headphones are the first pair of wireless headphones I’ve owned, and I’m a fan. Not only are they fashionable but they offer studio quality sounds along some other great features including: cutting edge Bluetooth 4.1 technology, multi-pairing capabilities and up to 8 hours of unlimited beats with unique standby for up to 10 days. These headphones are especially nice when listening to music on a plane. I don’t have to take my headset off every time I use the washroom or worry about a cable getting tangled in my airplane seat.

Price on Sudio Headphones Website: $110 USD

Sony RX100 IV

sony-rx100-iv

I’ve been the proud owner of the Sony RX100 IV for about a year now. This may look like your typical point and shoot camera, but you will be amazed by how powerful this little guy is. This camera would be my first choice for the traveller looking for a great camera that takes excellent photos and video and doesn’t want to lug around a heavy DSLR. The Sony RX100 IV introduces a host of performance-oriented improvements and new features, including 4K video capture, 16fps continuous burst shooting and a very fun high frame rate (HFR) slow-mo video mode. It has excellent image quality, Zeiss lens, 40x super slow motion and up to 1/32000 sec. super-high-speed shutter beyond human perception, tilted screen, control ring for manual, view finder and flash. This has been the ultimate vlogging camera!

Price on Amazon: $898 USD

DJI Phantom & DJI Mavic

dji-phantom-4

If you have a travel-loving-film-maker in your life, the DJI Phantom 4 is the ultimate gift. This is the sexiest drone out there and can take your film making to a whole other level. Even if you’ve never flown a drone before, the many excellent features the DJI encompasses makes your flight that much easier. Some of these features include front sensors to avoid crashes, multiple flight modes, longer fly time, tapfly and active track. It shoots sharp, clean video in 4K at 30fps and Full HD 1080p at 120fps for slow motion.

At half size and same price, the DJI Mavic makes an excellent travel companion, especially for those who travel solo. It has an all-new transmission system with a 4.3mi (7km) *range, 5 vision sensors, and a 4K camera stabilized by a 3-axis mechanical gimbal. This is especially a great option for those who are travelling solo and filming their adventures as it’s less to lug around.

Price of the Phantom 4 on Amazon: $999 USD

Price of the Mavic on Amazon: $999 USD

Manfrotto Tripod

befreelive manfrotto tripod

Every film maker should have a great tripod and Manfrotto is the leading contender. No one makes tripods better than Manfrotto. While I personally only use a tripod about 10% of the time, when I do my BeFreeLive tripod never lets me down. It’s fluid head and easy to assemble legs make it great for getting those beautiful pans and tilts. It’s fairly light weight, folds up nice and compact making it easy to strap on to my camera bag and go off for a day of shooting.

Price on Amazon: $160.88 USD

LifeProof Phone Case

lifeproof-phone-case

I’ve lost my phone to the toilet bowl three times. THREE! So, when I heard of LifeProof phone cases, I knew there was no other option. I believe this is the ultimate travel phone case as it’s water, snow, dirt and drop proof.

Price on Amazon: $49 USD

Fashion & Beauty

JORD Wood Watch

jord-wood-watches

I love my JORD Wood Watch! Not only is it totally unique from any other watch I’ve seen before, the battery is powered by kinetic energy. This means, as long as it’s on my wrist, it will keep on ticking! These watches make the perfect gift for those would love a more earthy, yet classy look around their wrist.

Prices on WoodWatches.com: $129-$395 USD

**To enter to win a JORD Wood Watch, click here and fill in your information telling us which watch you’d like! Prize: $150 store credit – Free Shipping – Free Sizing – Open Internationally.

Airplane Socks

airplane-socks

Every traveller should own a pair of exceptionally comfortable socks.The Heat Holders are like the warmest, bestest hug for your feet. These especially come in handy during a flight when the air conditioning in the plan can sometimes be on turbo.

Price on Amazon: $9.75 USD

Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask

origina-drink-up-face-mask

There’s nothing worse than dry recycled air to make your face feel tight and flaky. The Origins Drink It Up Overnight Mask is one of my favourite must haves on every flight for ultimate skin hydration. I run a quarter size worth all over my face before take off, and that usually keep my face nice an moisturized for about 6 hours. If I need more, I just keep lathering it on. Not only is my skin hydrated, but I look refreshed when I land no matter how long my flight was.

Price on Amazon: $28.49 USD

Packing

Bluesmart Suitcase

Top Travel Items for July 2016 Bluesmart suitcase

For the past 6 years, I’ve been travelling only with a carry-on to avoid losing my luggage, packing to much and extra airline fees. The Bluesmart Carry-on Suitcase had been an excellent travel companion of mine for the last 6 months. It’s taken quite the beating and seen many places around the world already. This suitcase is a smart cookie! Not only can it store all of the things you need for your travels, but it can also do the following:

  • Charge your devices up to 6 times (it has a built in USB)
  • Remotely lock your suitcase from your phone (there’s an app for that)
  • Locate your suitcase anywhere in the world (you’ll never lose each other)
  • Check the weight of your suitcase anytime (make sure it’s keepin’ healthy)
  • 4 smooth wheels (people in front of you won’t even hear ya coming)
  • Ultra-resistant to water, scratches & bumps. (it’s ready for an adventure)

What I really love about this suitcase, is it packs way more than it looks like it can. Which means I always have room for some extra goodies I find during my travels.

Price on Amazon: $538.99 USD

Gregory Mountain Products Cairn 58 Backpack

gregory-travel-backpack

Every adventure traveller needs a good backpack. The Gregory Cairn 58 litre Pack has been the backpack I’ve been taking with my on my adventure travels for the past year. I tried on several backpacks until I found this beauty which fits perfectly with my size. I would recommend this specific backpack for females between 5 and 5’6” feet (you can always adjust it to fit your body exactly).

Some awesome features about the Gregory Cairn 58 Litre Pack are:

  • It’s comfortable and strong
  • Features a breathable back panel and wire-wishbone frame for lasting trail comfort
  • Distributes weight evenly making it feel light to carry and is better on your body
  • Has a built in rain cover
  • Has an innovative packing system features 3 sections that separate your items (ex. dirty trail shoes from clean clothing)
  • Includes a laundry bag built right in

Price on Amazon: $279 USD

Osprey Aether 60 Litre

siya-in-indonesia

For the adventurous fellas out there, the Osprey Aether 60 Litre is a great backpack for multi-day adventures. Siya has been using this pack for the past year and has been really loving it. He loves it’s fantastic storage, durability and most importantly, comfort.

Some additional features of the Osprey Aether 60 Litre are:

  • Custom-moldable hip belt balances firmness and cushioning for optimal support and comfort
  • Back panel is lined with flat spacer mesh for a smooth and breathable contact surface
  • Peripheral frame effectively transfers weight to the hip belt
  • Top-loading main compartment can also be accessed through a curved side zipper on the front of the pack body
  • Wide-mouth sleeping bag compartment is easy to load and unload
  • Top lid converts to lumbar pack with a built-in belt
  • External hydration sleeve in the back panel simplifies refilling and helps protect pack contents from spills (hydration reservoir sold separately)
  • Large stretch-mesh front pocket makes it easy to quickly stash and access extra gear
  • Zippered hip belt pockets and dual-access stretch-mesh side pockets provide secure storage and organization
  • Features dual side compression straps, removable sleeping pad straps, trekking pole attachment and 2 ice-axe loops and handle wraps

Price on Amazon: $218.15 USD

Packing Cubes

Packing Cubes

Packing cubes will revolutionize the way you pack for your next trip. Today more than ever, travellers are forced to be more conservative with space as well as how much luggage they can take with them, getting creative with how you pack is essential. Packing cubes help travellers keep organized, pack more and still take up less space.

Price on Amazon: Set for $24.95 USD

Stocking Stuffers

Ear Planes

ear-planes

If that special someone has troubles with their ear pressure during a flight, Ear Planes will become their saviour. I’ve tried several things to help my ears pop on a flight which have worked. However, Ear Planes have been the most effective. They relieve ear discomfort, clogging and popping with the exclusive CeramX™ filter that regulates air pressure naturally. I pop them in before the plane doors close on each flight until we are in the air and the seatbelt sign is off. I then pop them back in before we start descending. Since I’ve been using them, I haven’t had any issues with my ears.

Price on Amazon: 3 pairs for $13.83

Essential Oils

essential-oils-for-sleep

I am obsessed with using essential oils, especially the ones from Synergy Blend set. Some of my favourite essential oils are lavender and Palo Santo. I dab a little bit of lavender oil behind my ear and on my wrists one a flight to relax me and even help me sleep. There are essential oils that help with jet lag such as chamomile, sweet marjoram, mandarin and clary sage to relax and calm and rosemary, bergamot, grapefruit, lemon, peppermint and eucalyptus to enliven.

Price on Amazon: $34.95

Melatonin

natural-sleep-pills-melatonin

Melatonin is a hormone made by the pineal gland, a small gland in the brain which helps control your sleep and wake cycles. These natural sleep aids are very helpful during long flights or flighting jet lag. You can find these natural sleep aids in health food stores, where you can talk with a specialist that will help find the right brand for you.

Coconut Oil Saches

coconut-oil-saches

Oh, coconut oil, how I love thee! Coconut oil is great for everything, which is why I always carry these coconut oil sachets with me on my travels. If you’re feeling dry on your flight or after a day in the sun, run some of this magical oil all over you. You can eat it and even give your hair a treatment. It’s really multipurpose and an excellent stocking stuffer for any kind of traveller.

Price on Amazon: 10 for $8.54 USD

***

I hope this list helps you during your holiday shopping. Now, comes the extra fun part…

For the next 7 days, starting today, I’m giving away one of these items above to one of you! That’s seven giveaways in total! To enter, you must be subscribed to my YouTube channel, have clicked on the little bell beside that subscribe button (so you are notified when I release a new video), be following me on Instagram and leave a comment on each Instagram photo of the giveaway you want to win. UPDATE: THE WINNER HAVE BEEN SELECTED! See below.

Good luck to everyone and thank you so so much for your support since you found me! This giveaway is for you guys as the biggest thank you, and I truly hope you enjoy it!

GIVEAWAY WINNERS:

Day 1: Two Music Flow LG Portable Bluetooth Speakers – luminousandwild

Day 2: Jade Travel Yoga Mat – lifewithaview15

Day 3: Lonely Planet Books – lizzywanders

Day 4: JORD Wood Watch – Makaiy07

Day 5: Sudio Headphones – emmafitzvest

Day 6: 6 Pack Essential Oils – tilyahoop

Day 7: Google Pixel and Live Case – sannesam

**If you are a winner, please send me an email at hopscotchtheglobe[at]gmail[dot]com to claim your prize.

***

Thank you to everyone who entered!

Kristen Sarah has one of the leading YouTube travel channels and is the head honcho of award-winning travel and lifestyle website, Hopscotch the Globe. She’s also a television host and actress. You can catch her most recently guest starring in Season 4 of Angry Planet and Season 1 of Fabulocity.

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39 Comments

  1. December 19, 2016 / 3:57 pm

    Fantastic list! It really is the ultimate guide! Thank for sharing this 🙂

    • December 20, 2016 / 8:49 pm

      I’m glad you enjoyed it! I put a lot of thought into it and these are absolutely some of my fav travel items.

  2. December 11, 2016 / 3:15 am

    Some awesome ideas here. I wish the drone cam was in someones budget for me!

    • December 15, 2016 / 7:22 pm

      You can start a drone fund 🙂 A gift card you can put towards it would also be nice.

  3. Colleen C
    December 10, 2016 / 11:42 pm

    Thank you so much! I have new travel goals now! We just hot back from Paris and there are a few things listed here that would have made our trip go a lot smoother. I’ve subscribed and followed. Thanks for the giveaways, too.

    • December 15, 2016 / 7:22 pm

      Thanks! I look forward to connecting with you. Have fun in Paris! How long are you going for?

  4. December 10, 2016 / 12:40 pm

    Damn…. I wish I could get the cam and drone ☺

  5. Briana Munoz Flores
    December 9, 2016 / 4:17 pm

    I just started traveling so thank you so much for these gift ideas for myself and my friends! Love your channel!

  6. Kaia
    December 8, 2016 / 2:59 pm

    The Backpack is what I need!

    • December 15, 2016 / 7:24 pm

      I’m in LOVE with my backpack. It’s so important to invest in the right backpack.

  7. December 8, 2016 / 2:27 pm

    These prizes look amazing! Really hoping to win sooooomething, but I was already following you everywhere anyway! 😉

  8. December 8, 2016 / 2:29 am

    Kristen ur amazing I love your channel haven’t missed a thing so far, you have been my big time inspiration, all the giveaways are kickasss… I really hope I could get the Sony Rx 100 and the drone because I’m planning to start travelling and also planning to start a travel channel so I would love that…India loves you kristen

  9. Katelin
    December 7, 2016 / 8:26 pm

    You\’re such an inspiration. I want to grab all of these items and begin traveling more! Did you travel before starting your channel? I have a hard time carving out the time and saving money for big trips.

  10. Brenna Ford
    December 7, 2016 / 6:23 pm

    These are all so awesome!

  11. Felicia
    December 7, 2016 / 3:42 pm

    Love the video lots of cool wish list ideas !

    I’m super excited about the Osprey Aether 60 Litre backpack , on my last trip in Central America I gave away most of my stuff and traded my backpack out for a Guatemalan bag made from authentic Mayan dresses. I shortly flew home after that and my backpack made it all the way down to Argentina with a new traveler. Now I need a new one for south east Asia!!! :)))

    • December 8, 2016 / 5:59 pm

      Super stoked about this awesome giveaway !

  12. Olga
    December 7, 2016 / 11:45 am

    Hi Kristen,

    At first, I started to watch your youtube videos because of the Canada. I think it is a great country, I would like to move there someday. I am originally from Kazakhstan and now studying in France. So it was really fun to follow your travelings inside the Canada and see you always smiling with excitement in your eyes 🙂 And than I started to watch your other videos like spellbound. It sooo inspiring! Before, I used to love traveling, but now it is quite a hard time. I\’m doing my PhD thesis, and sometimes it can be very frustrating and exhausting. But you and your videos make me feel much better and take actions to actually change my life and not only raving about it. It helps to appreciate life and savor each moment. Thank you for this! And it is very sweet of you to organize this huge giveaway. Thanx a lot 🙂

  13. Chloe Wakeley
    December 7, 2016 / 9:29 am

    That S’well bottle looks amazing!!! Love lonely planet books! Great ideas!!!

  14. December 7, 2016 / 1:40 am

    Books and Journals are my all time favourite gifts!
    That HTG Pixel Cover tho.. ❤️

  15. December 6, 2016 / 9:15 pm

    You are so inspiring. If you are ever hiring look me up. I want to travel so badly. I’ve already spent a year in Barcelona but it never seems enough. As soon as I get home my soul hurts after a while. How do you do it?

  16. Bianca Sciocchetti
    December 6, 2016 / 8:51 pm

    Thank you for posting this! All the gear looks so cool and I will definitely have to consider getting some of this for Christmas! I think the books and packing cubes are my favorite.

  17. December 6, 2016 / 7:00 pm

    Love this gift guide, with travelling for work all the time i can definitely agree with the whole post. Some amazing products for when your out and exploring the world !!! I have those socks and think every person traveling in a plane needs a pair!!

  18. Emi
    December 6, 2016 / 5:41 pm

    Wow all of your gift ideas are really cool!! I love your channel and your blog, you are so inspiring!

  19. Celina
    December 6, 2016 / 4:48 pm

    Awesome give away and really thoughtful gift ideas ! I love your channel and your blog keep going :*

  20. Ericka
    December 6, 2016 / 4:00 pm

    Im dying to get a s’well! Hopefully Santa brings me one this year 🙂
    These all look like epic gifts! Except for origins.. Tested on animals, despite their lovely eco packaging and trees everywhere, i was devestated when i found out! I’ve been using a rituals intense cream instead and it works just as well, without the hidden sadness! Great blog and vid xx

  21. Lizette Vargas
    December 6, 2016 / 3:48 pm

    I love the journal and socks gift idea! My feet are always cold on airplanes and one must not travel without a journal! Thank you.

  22. Martin Hossell
    December 6, 2016 / 3:47 pm

    On these “buy this for travel” I usually have nothing that interests me, but the Skyroam is something I woUtd buy. A bit pricey though

  23. Johanna Mikkola
    December 6, 2016 / 3:37 pm

    Greetings from Finland!
    You and Siya inspired me so much! 🙂 Im insicure shy girl from little village from west-Finland, but while im travelling im confident, strong woman! 🙂

  24. EmilyT
    December 6, 2016 / 1:47 pm

    Love love love lonely planet guides, keeps the wonderlust alive!!

  25. December 6, 2016 / 12:46 pm

    It would be great to have all of them, but I am looking forward to the lonely planet books, journal or the camera. hoping for the best!!

  26. Mishka
    December 6, 2016 / 12:32 pm

    Honestly want all these things .. especially the lonely planet items , love travel books <3

  27. Johanna Mikkola
    December 6, 2016 / 12:03 pm

    Greetings from Finland!
    You and Siya inspired me so much! 🙂 Im insicure shy girl from little village from west-Finland, but while im travelling im confident, strong woman! 🙂

  28. Maki
    December 6, 2016 / 11:09 am

    I really love all the items especially when their Eco friendly and give back to the planet. It makes you feel good of where your money is going toward. Thanks for sharing !! Can’t wait to see your new airstream as well, it’s going to be so cool!

  29. Lauren Cisneros
    December 5, 2016 / 7:57 pm

    I love you and Siya so much!
    you guys are the reason I want to travel and vlog about it, such wanderlust <3

  30. Megan
    December 5, 2016 / 3:16 am

    Awesome giveaway! Fingers crossed.

    • December 5, 2016 / 7:35 am

      Aren’t the items just great?! I absolutely love all of them. Do you have a favourite?

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