Nomad Friendly Gift Giving Guide
IT’S ALMOST CHRISTMAS!?! WHERE HAS THE YEAR GONE?
I don’t know about you, but for us it seems like it was Spring just a few days ago! Now that I think of it, I haven’t heard Jingle Bells but once, how can that be? Maybe it’s the fact we haven’t been shopping…and inundated with Michael Buble’s latest holiday mix.
In general we prefer to focus on spending time with the people we love and less on the gift giving part of the holidays. However, we still exchange some gifts and this means it’s time to get down to travel gift giving business.
If you’re still reading, it means you probably have a wondering friend or family member and you have no idea what to give them. Finding the perfect gift for an RV’er , backpacker, hitchhiker or the luxury traveler can be a real brain drainer. Even more draining is figuring out what gift they will actually use, and even worse what gift might fit in their limited space lifestyle. Never fear, we have listed our favorite gidgets, gadgets and all things for living on the road. Here are a few items that have made our travels a little more enjoyable. (oh, and we weren’t paid to recommend these products, we really like these things and would be happy if you decided to give us another! Ha!)
For the Coffee and Tea Lover: French Press
Cost: around $20 – $40
Why we like it: A French Press can be used for coffee or loose leaf tea; we love anything that’s dual purpose! A French Press is one of, if not the best way, to get maximum flavor from all your leaf and bean drinks. It’s easy to use, electrical power isn’t necessary and you get rich flavor. You can prepare hot or cold press coffee / tea, it’s simple cleanup and eco-friendly. We recommend a double walled in stainless steel, it keeps drinks warmer longer and you don’t have to worry about glass breaking. For the on-the-go drinker try the stainless Bodum Travel Press….we have 2 (thanks mom)!
For the Sweet Blooded Outdoor Adventurer: ThermaCELL Insect Repellant
Why we like it: Bugs bite and Nikki is a magnet for them…and that’s what makes this one of our favorite outdoor accessories. It’s portable, provides a 15 x 15 foot coverage area and its effective against 98% of mosquitoes, black flies (the worst) and no-see-ums. Seriously this thing really works! We purchased ours when living off the cord in Virginia and the no-see-ums attacked at full force. No more deet laden sprays and no more bug bites! If you’re short on space get the ‘portable’ version, for us we bought the LED lamp version and we use it all the time for soft light at the campsite (don’t forget rechargeable batteries).
For the Hydro-Maniac: Camelbak All Clear
Why we like it: Drink water safely…anywhere! This UV light kills most every type of bacteria so you can literally scoop up water from an old gross pond, click the button, and drink! Now we’re not saying it’s gonna taste great, but if you’re in an emergency situation you can safely drink any water! We want one so we can carry less water when hiking, especially when we’re doing a river crossing, or ending at a waterfall! There are other brands like SteriPen if you want to compare the specs.
For the Eco Minded: Solio Xcellerator
Why we like it: Solar panels are expensive and not every day is sunny. The Xcellerator provides a rapid charge even in low light conditions. Our Solio Bolt charges 2x faster with the flat Xcellerator attached.
The Xcellerator comes with a small 2000-mAh HUB battery pack but it also charges other solio models that have a battery pak. If your cell phone, e-reader, camera, etc runs out of juice just plug directly into the USB port on the solio and voila! You have instant charging power ANYWHERE! Great for the traveler who forgets to charge up before heading out, and the perfect gift for the eco-minded.
For the Sedentary or the Active: Personal Activity Tracker
Why we like it: We don’t have one of these….yet. Love the idea. It’s like a pedometer on Crack! You can track your movements, sleep patterns, set goals, document food intake, and most models offer some sort of motivating social ‘badge’ interaction and progress reports. Coolest feature: a buzzer that reminds you to move if you’ve been still too long! There are several brands offering a similar take: Nike FuelBand, FitBit Zip & One, and the Jawbone. Not sure which one we’ll get, but we totally want one! (hint, hint) 🙂
The Word Lover: E-reader or Tablet
Cost: from $79-$150
Why we like it: Between the two of us we have an e-ink reader and a tablet and love them both. With the Tablet we can store all of our books, magazines, movies and more all in one device! It satisfies all of our multimedia desires and then some. When we feel like diving into a good novel we pick up the e-ink reader because it’s easier on the eyes for long periods of reading (it’s not a backlit digital screen). They’re both light weight and no more magazines and books taking up the very valuable storage space! Yeah for more space and less paper! It’s a no brainer.
For Those who Capture Every Moment: Human Proof Camera
Cost: $200 – $400
Why we like it: When you live on the road you never know where you’ll end up, or what the weather’s going to be like. When you arrive at that National Park and it happens to be snowing, are you really going to leave your camera in the car? Panasonic, Nikon, Go Pro, and several other brands now make Waterproof, Shockproof, Freezeproof, and Dustproof cameras that capture crystal clear photos and HD video no matter what the weather’s like outside your door. So go on, take that camera into the waterfall with you and ‘click’ away!
For the Directionally Challenged Road Warrior: RV GPS
Why we like it: While we haven’t had the opportunity to test out this exact unit, it’s on our wish list. We have the 7710 and love the long list of built in options like campgrounds, Boondocking BLM locations, rest stops and more points of interest than we’ll ever need. The updated 7720 LM now has all of this plus WiFi, weather, video and a fuel log. It’s the all in one ultimate RV gadget!
For the Music and Movie Lover: Amazon Gift Cards
Cost: Any amount you want!
Why we like it: Most every traveler I know relies heavily on music and movies to keep them entertained on long hauls. It’s easy, no in store shopping required to redeem and especially perfect for anyone who won’t be around to unwrap a gift with you (no shipping), and a great ‘green’ option: consider the paper and fuel saved! Hooray Mother Earth!
We’ve hyperlinked with Amazon shopping so that you can 1-click and buy. If you click from our site we do receive a small commission and we thank you for helping keep us on the road. Happy Shopping!