Find the best gift for a friend going abroad

Last Updated on February 5, 2024


This site contains affiliate links for products and services we recommend. Read my disclaimer for more information. If you make a purchase through these links, at no extra cost to you, I will earn a small commission (for which I am very grateful).


No matter what time if year it is, it’s never a bad time to buy a gift for a friend going abroad!

Maybe you’re scratching your head thinking ‘what the hell do I get my friend/sister/brother that loves to travel and doesn’t want to carry around loads of useless gifts’?

I have the best suggestions for you! The answer is something that they can use during their travels that will make a difference or their life easier somehow.

Below are some gift ideas for your travelling friends or family members, or even useful traveller’s gifts for friends going abroad permanently!

What to Give as a gift for a friend going abroad

Best gift for friend travelling, person scratching countries in Africa on a world scratch map

1. Scratch Map

This is possibly the coolest invention I have ever seen. This gift is called a scratch pad and is perfect for your travelling friend or family member.

Basically, once you have visited a country or region you get to scratch the map and underneath is a colourful backdrop so you can see where in the world you have been.

It’s such a beautiful gift and if they love to travel they are guaranteed to love this.

Scratch maps are fun gifts for people living abroad so they can keep track of everywhere they’ve been.

🎁 Check prices here

gifts for travellers, white and black gopro camera

2. GoPro

This is one of the best gift ideas for family members as it’s a bit more expensive than some of these other travellers gifts.

If they are looking for a decent camera that is hardy and small to carry, then GoPro is the one you should be looking to buy them.

The GoPro is an action cam that can record video and photos so someone can remember their trip AND share it with you.

The reason why I love my GoPro so much is because it’s hardy, waterproof and small. The quality is outstanding for a device that is so small.

It really is an all-rounder camera and video recorder which is also very reasonably priced so I highly recommend this gift if you want to go all out and spoil your travelling friend.

🎁 Check prices here

Best gift for a friend moving abroad, two black and orange solar powered power banks resting against each other, one with flashlight shining

3. Solar Powered Power Bank

If you need a functional gift for friend travelling, this gift has ‘practical’ written all over it!

Everyone knows phone batteries suck these days, so when you’re travelling you should have a power bank so you can keep in touch with your family and friends.

I have been to many hostels that have either had one plug or none at all! Remember the world is sometimes not a technically advanced as you may think.

It’s also handy to take with you on day trips. If I am using data or Wi-Fi throughout the day my phone always dies so I always make sure I keep a power bank as a backup.

Having a solar powered one is not only friendly on the environment, but also if you can’t u electricity to power it up you don’t have to worry so this is the perfect gift idea for travellers.

These are some of the best gifts for someone moving abroad – especially if they’re heading somewhere very sunny!

🎁 Check prices here

4. USB charger

Everything requires a USB port these days!

Camera chargers, phones, tablets, power banks… it all needs a USB port so this is a great gift idea if you’re travelling friend or family member carries a lot of electrical equipment with me.

It’s a very handy piece of equipment and doesn’t require too much room in the luggage!

🎁 Check prices here

Useful gift for friend going abroad for studies, four carry-on bottles inside of a white see-through case

5. Large leak-proof travel bottles

Travel bottles are fantastic to make sure you don’t take an entire bathroom sink with you.

These make the perfect gift for friend going abroad for studies. This way they can spend weekends travelling around and exploring without dragging around giant bottles.

I find them great because I don’t have to think about carrying a million different sized bottles such as shampoo, conditioner and moisturiser.

It also limits me so I don’t take a whole heap of stuff I never need. Being 100ml they are fine to take in your hand luggage and it’s just the right amount to keep you going for the trip.

Plus, how cool do they look?!

🎁 Check prices here

best gift for friends going abroad, yellow door of a white house

6. AirBnB gift card

If you are really stuck on what to get them, then why not a gift card for AirBnB.

AirBnB is a website where you can rent people’s apartments, houses or just one of their rooms.

It’s used by millions of people every year and is a fantastic alternative to a hotel because it’s usually a lot cheaper and you get the comforts of a house so you can cook your own food etc.

🎁 Check prices here

practical gifts for friends going travelling, selection of four turquoise travel cubes

7. Travel cubes

Travel cubes are a traveller’s best friend. It helps you keep organised in that suitcase of yours. It’s a practical gift, especially if you’re a backpacker.

This can separate your clothes so it’s easy to get stuff in and out of your backpack without going through and chucking your entire backpack’s contents all over the floor.

Not only do travel cubes make great practical gifts for friends, but they are also probably the best thing to get as a gift for a friend going abroad to travel.

🎁 Check prices here

best gifts for someone moving abroad, black shoe bag with dark blue and white shoes inside

8. Shoe bag

Shoe bags are a fantastic idea to stop your luggage getting dirty by your worn sneakers or muddy boots.

I really wished I had one of these when I travelled through India because all my stuff got so dirty and dusty because I didn’t have a separate little bag for my shoes.

This is a great little travellers gift for a friend going abroad that’s affordable and practical at the same time.

🎁 Check prices here

Useful gifts for friends going abroad, orange toiletry bag

9. Hanging toiletry bag

We all need a toiletry bag when travelling, but a hanging one makes it 10x more practical especially if you’re a backpacker.

A hanging toiletry bag is a great affordable gift for friends going abroad – especially if they are going to be staying in hostels.

This is perfect because you can just hang it up when having a shower and not get it dirty and wet.

🎁 Check prices here

Fun Gift Ideas For Travellers, image of a person relaxing in a hammock looking out over a lake surrounded by trees

10. Travel hammock

This is a super fun gift, a hammock!  It’s light, practical and perfect if you’re hiking or going to the beach.

You can also sleep in it, it’s a great tent alternative if you’re travelling to a warm place. I think this is such a fun gift to give, you may even keep it for yourself!

A travel hammock is a great gift for a friend moving abroad as they’ll be able to treasure it – and maybe bring a bit of home with them!

🎁 Check prices here

Fun travellers gifts, golden inflatable swan

11. Inflatable swan

After seeing Anna’s (from the travel blog Anna Everywhere) Instagram page I am now convinced that travelling with a giant inflatable swan should be compulsory.

It may not be entirely practical, but it doesn’t take that much room as it’s inflatable, plus it’s fun and your travelling friend or family member will have the coolest photos!

🎁 Check prices here

Don’t all these gifts for travellers look amazing? I think I am going to have to buy some of these for myself! These traveller’s gifts are perfect for Christmas, birthdays or even a good luck present when they hit the road. Tell me which one is your favourite. If you have any other useful suggestions for a gift for a friend going abroad, I would love to hear them too!

Frequently Asked Questions

✅ What is the most useful item for traveling?

By far the most useful travel item is a set of travel cubes. This is probably the best gift for a friend going abroad if they don’t already have some.

✅ What to get someone who is traveling abroad?

While this will vary slightly person to person, some of the best gifts for travellers are travel cubes, solar-powered power banks, leak-proof bottles, and a hanging toiletry bag. If you can afford a bigger gift, a GoPro is also a great gift for a friend going abroad.

Other articles you might love:

Love this article?  Pin it for later!

Pin with image of a person relaxing in a hammock looking out over a lake surrounded by trees with text reading "11 Practical and Fun Gift Ideas For Travellers"

Sharing is caring!

Leave a Comment

The Comments

  • Rhonda Albom
    December 3, 2016

    Great collection of gift ideas. I have travel cubes and love them. That map is brilliant, but if I were shopping for myself from your list I would go for the USB ports.

  • kartusekjan
    December 3, 2016

    Great post. The map looks like an amazing gift and also the solar power bank is something to consider 🙂

  • Luxe Adventure Trvlr (@jdomb)
    December 4, 2016

    I love my travel tubes! I never have to worry about finding travel size since I just refill and go. Plus, I don’t have to buy crappy travel sized shampoos that just dry my hair out since I can refill my tubes with my regular products. Definitely a must for any traveler!

  • Indrani
    December 5, 2016

    A great fun list. I am in love with the inflatable swan 🙂
    The map is certainly different and unique!

  • Cristina
    December 5, 2016

    I need that scratch map in my life! :). Great list. I will not go and write a long letter to Santa :). Great article!

  • mappingmegan
    December 5, 2016

    Fantastic list! I got a scratch map last year for Christmas and I love it! It’s fabulous because it’s one of those things you can continue to enjoy over many years as you cross more countries off the list!

  • Perviz Surti
    December 6, 2016

    I love this list! A waterproof phone case is a must when traveling!

  • Trisha Velarmino
    December 6, 2016

    These are all amazing. If I would be given an items from the list I would love to have the scratch map, that is so cool. Who ever invented that he/she is awesome. I also would love to have a new Hero 5, Air BnB gift card is also a good idea. Plus that cool Hammock. I would surely be glad to receive these items this coming Christmas 🙂

  • surfologymag
    December 7, 2016

    What cool gift ideas!! As a travel, would love to have them all. But what really caught my eye was the Scratch Map… just love it!!! And I guess if you’d scratch a wrong country… well, you just had to go there after that! 😉 Loved all the ideas.

  • Tracy
    December 14, 2016

    First, I love the Scratch Map and second, I am adding AriBnB gift cards to my list!!

    Great list!