Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travel List

International travel may have dwindled down to a small fraction of what it was last holiday season, but you can still explore your own country and work on your bucket list in the meantime. Back in October, Lonely Planet released the 2nd edition of their Ultimate Travel List. In addition to 200 new destinations, it also has an updated ranking of their 500 best places on the planet and belongs on any serious travelers holiday shopping list.

The hardcover version is available on Amazon as well.

Travel Banter Conversation Starter Cards

Putting a bunch of travelers in a room can often produce mixed results, especially when it comes to conversations. Thanks to these conversation starter cards, you can have 98 different exciting discussions about topics like embarrassing language failures and the craziest street food you ever tried. Each card has a question on one side and a travel photo on the other. Some questions are quirky, while others are more thought-provoking, but they remain light-hearted throughout the set. The photos and questions were submitted by the #CultureTrav community, which has a Twitter chat every Thursday. 

You can purchase via their website with PayPal or on Amazon Prime.

An Airbnb Gift Card

With over 6 million rooms worldwide, it’s hard to go wrong with an Airbnb gift card. You can also use the cards for Airbnb Experiences, which offer the best opportunity for variety. And when you join the experience, your guide will most likely be the one who designed the experience. So, you won’t have to worry about having a guide with very little personal connection to the tour or dining experience they are giving you. Whether you take a pasta-making class in Italy, learn to make Eastern European pastries in Poland, or devour a Goofellas burger in the same chair where Robert DeNiro sat in the 1990 Scorsese classic, your options are only limited by the imaginations of the various hosts.

Well Told Mugs

Well Told puts maps on their mugs, glasses, flasks, etc. The Lake Map mugs are perfect for coffee or tea (and for your holiday shopping list). From Lake Tahoe to the Finger Lakes, these 15 oz. ceramic mugs are a perfect gift for travelers and coffee/tea lovers alike. Just looking at the detail of the drawings will have a calming effect, whether you happen to be sitting on a lakeside bench or listening to the rattling of elevated subway trains and other street noise from your NYC apartment. They offer free shipping on all orders over $50 plus 10% off if you sign up for their mailing list.

A Dollar Flight Club Subscription

On average, Dollar Flight Club subscribers save more than $500 per international flight. The keys are time and destination flexibility. If you have those, then a Dollar Flight Club subscription is a small investment. You can easily save more on one flight than the cost of an annual subscription. Sign up, select your departure airport or region, and you’ll get notifications when flight prices from your preferred airport(s) dip between 60-90% below the standard fares. Deal alerts are delivered daily, sometimes hourly, via SMS/email for premium members. The premium plus tier includes first and business-class flights. Free trials are available for both tiers. 

Here is a list of other discounts and perks for premium members.

Headleveler Travel Pillows

Headleveler started back in the 90s by creating pillows for the chiropractic, orthopedic, and physiotherapeutic markets. They now sell directly to consumers via their website and Amazon. This makes them perfect for any holiday shopping list for travelers. Their standard travel pillow measures 19×14″ and is ideal for anyone who travels by bus or train. If you purchase directly from their website, you can customize your own pillow. They are currently offering free shipping on all orders over $150. Use code NC2020 for $10 off.

A League of Kitchens Gift Card

The League of Kitchens is an immersive culinary experience which connects curious foodies with immigrant cooks from around the world. Argentine, Bengali, Lebanese, Nepalese, and Uzbek (to name a handful) immigrants invite guests into their homes for intimate cooking workshops. Some even take you shopping with them beforehand.  And they’ve recently started offering online classes. They start at $60 per device, plus the cost of groceries. Before you sign up, you can check out the list of items you’ll need. Gift cards are available for the exact amount of an online, taste of, or immersive class. 

For other in-home dining experiences, check out Bonappetour.

Plaine Products

Refill, reuse, and rejoice with these toxin-free hair, body, and face care products, which come in reusable aluminum bottles. In 2020 alone, Plaine Products reduced the use of plastic bottles by 200,000. You can take their travel-size soaps, moisturizers, toners, and beauty oils in your carry-on. And they won’t take up much space in your check bag either.  When the bottles are empty, you simply send them back and get new ones in the mail.

They are currently offering free shipping on orders of $100 or more. Subscribers get 10% off.

The Spigen Slim Armor Pro Max Phone Case

More than 2/3 of the world’s population now has a mobile device of some sort. And chances are that Spigen makes something to make your device either safer or more useful than it already is. Their Slim Armor Wallets hold up to two credit cards. They also sell a variety of chargers, as well as tablet, watch, and speaker accessories. Perfect for any holiday shopping list for travelers. 

For a complete list of their mobile accessories, check out their Amazon store. eGift cards are available via their website.

The TripsGeo Collapsible Cup

While the Well Told Lake Map mugs are perfect for around the house, the TripsGeo collapsible cups are ideal for taking on the road. Especially if you are tired of putting Styrofoam cups in the trash and trying to find a place to recycle the endless stream of plastic and glass bottles that you’ll end up using otherwise. These food-grade silicone cups support hot or cold beverages, and once collapsed, they are less than 3 1/2″ in diameter.

They are currently offering 40% off on their website. You can also buy on Amazon. Here are some Instagram story highlights that show just how easy these TripsGeo collapsible cups are to use.

Country Bathhouse

Country Bathhouse helps you feel great naked. Their bath soaks combine essential oils with Epsom Salt. And the 8 oz. containers are easy to take on the road. Unless you are staying at a luxury hotel like the Tokyo Station, or a resort-style hotel like the Aston Cirebon, you won’t get much in terms of toiletries beyond a basic bar of soap and small bottles of shampoo/conditioner. Their shower steamers, bath bombs, and soaks can go in your carry-on, and everything else will take up very little space in your checked bag. 

They also sell monthly box subscriptions with free shipping and your choice of bath, shower, or both. 

An Urban Adventures Gift Certificate

Probably the best-known company for city tours, Urban Adventures has a strong foothold in most major cities and offers a mix of public, private, online, and customized tours. Some of their tours were created in partnership with Lonely Planet and the New York Times. Gift certificates are available for specific tours or in set amounts, starting with 10 USD.

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