20 Christmas Gifts Under $20 for Travelers


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gift box with bow on coconut palm tree at exotic tropical beach
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Travelers come in many stripes, from minimalist backpackers to 5-star jet setters. We've got holiday gifts for most anyone on your list afflicted with wanderlust, and not one of these ideas costs more than $20. Bonus tip: Add a travel-inspired touch by wrapping a gift in a map.

Moleskine Journal
Photo credit: Courtesy of moleskine.com


Price: Starting at $14 | Buy it at Moleskine
You can't buy many first-class products on a coach budget, but Moleskine notebooks have a reputation for being among the best of their kind. Opt for a classic notebook (starting at $15) or a city notebook ($14) with maps of Paris, London, Berlin, New York City, or Milan.

Nesting Wine Glass
Photo credit: Courtesy of llbean.com


Price: $8 | Buy it at REI
For loved ones constantly seeking out new terroir, nesting wine glasses mean no scrounging for cups before a picnic, and no toasting with plastic cups from the bathroom in a bare-bones hotel. Wine tasters can also bring bottles back safely with WineSkins ($3 each at the Container Store).

Grand Trunk Ultralight Hammock
Photo credit: Courtesy of amazon.com


Price: Starting at $20 | Buy it on Amazon
Where some people require blackout curtains and 800-thread-count sheets, others are fine with a reclined seatback. For the traveler who can sleep anywhere, the Grand Trunk Ultralight travel hammock cradles up to 250 pounds. It comes complete with ropes, hooks, and stuff sack.

Tarriss Jetsetter Digital Luggage Scale
Photo credit: Courtesy of amazon.com


Price: Starting at $15 | Buy it on Amazon
Airline passengers who try to cram the entire contents of their closets into a suitcase risk steep fees for overweight baggage -- $75 and up on the major U.S. carriers. A luggage scale can alert these stuff-it-all-in packers that they're over the limit before it's too late. The Tarriss Jetsetter digital scale holds up to 110 pounds and comes with a lifetime warranty.

Havana Bag 1
Photo credit: Courtesy of envirosax.com


Price: $7 | Buy it on Envirosax
Another problem with overpacking: It leaves little room for souvenirs. Compact travel or "wanderlust" bags weigh just 1.4 ounces and unfold to hold up to 44 pounds of extra stuff for the trip home. With graphics for Sydney, Paris, New York, and more, they also make cute totes for vacationers.

Original Buff Groove
Photo credit: Courtesy of buffusa.com


Price: $20 | Buy it on Buff
Buff headwear will look familiar to anyone who's watched "Survivor." This deceptively simple sleeve of moisture-wicking fabric transforms into at least a dozen different accessories. For legions of devoted fans, it's a must-have item worth collecting in multiple prints.

Luckies of London Scratch Map World Travel Edition
Photo credit: Courtesy of barnesandnoble.com


Price:Starting at $11 | Buy it on Amazon
On a world map that resembles a giant scratch ticket, globetrotters can mark all the countries they've visited. A coin uncovers color and geographic detail beneath the gold foil. Scratch maps of the world are available in multiple sizes and color schemes, including an inexpensive travel-size version.

Backpacker Magazine
Photo credit: Courtesy of amazon.com


Price: $20 or less | Buy it on Amazon
No trips on the calendar? A subscription to a travel magazine can bring vicarious pleasure. Popular titles including Backpacker, Condé Nast Traveler, National Geographic Traveler, and Travel + Leisure all offer a year's subscription for low prices.

Plaid Fringe Blanket Scarf in Pink Plaid
Photo credit: Courtesy of oldnavy.gap.com


Price: $15 | Buy it at Old Navy
This trendy, comfortable style is an ideal accessory for travel. The patterns add effortless flair to an outfit, and travelers can wrap up in the soft flannel to keep warm on over-air-conditioned planes.

Honey I Washed My Hair Shampoo Bar
Photo credit: Courtesy of lushusa.com


Price: $11 to $15 | Buy it at Lush
Shampoo bars free up room in a quart-size bag for carry-on liquids. They come in varieties such as Godiva, a jasmine-scented 2-in-1 bar for cleaning and conditioning hair. They also leave room in a $20 gift budget for travel-size shea hand cream from The Body Shop ($5 each).

The Bitter Truth
Photo credit: Courtesy of the-bitter-truth.com


The Bitter Truth Cocktail Bitters Traveler's Set (starting at $21) contains bottles small enough to be allowed through airport security in carry-on luggage, making it an ideal companion for a globetrotting mixologist. The set includes five flavors -- original aromatic, celery, orange, Jerry Thomas', and Creole -- in a handsome box.

You Only Live Once bucket list book by Lonely Planet
Photo credit: Courtesy of Barnes & Noble


Price: $14 | Buy it from Jet.com
Lonely Planet's compendium of daily adventures will inspire anyone to seize the day and live life to the fullest.

Agloves Grip Touchscreen Gloves
Photo credit: Courtesy of Amazon


Price: $12 | Buy them on Amazon 
With touchscreen gloves, people who live in colder climates can operate a smartphone without exposing their hands to the elements. These have 10-finger functionality as well as grippy dots on the palms for easy device handling.

Darn Tough Merino Micro-Crew Socks
Photo credit: Courtesy of campmor.com


Price: $15 | Buy them from Campmor
All Darn Tough socks are made in the United States and guaranteed for life -- a cut above the usual cotton-poly blends.

Bagsmart travel cable organizer for electronics wires and accessories
Photo credit: Courtesy of Amazon


Price:$19 | Buy it on Amazon
Perfect for the digital nomad who never leaves home without his laptop, phone, and a cluster of adapters and chargers to power and connect them, this handy organizer will help tame the cable chaos once and for all.

Zippo 12-Hour Hand Warmer
Photo credit: Courtesy of cabelas.com


Price:$13 | Buy it at Amazon
If gloves aren't warm enough, a Zippo hand warmer will really heat things up. Fill it with lighter fluid, slip it into a pocket, and get up to 12 hours of toasty heat.

Everytool Multi-Tool Camping Tool
Photo credit: Courtesy of amazon.com


Est. Price: $8 | Buy it on Amazon
Perfect for: Backpackers needing a compact set of sturdy kitchen utensils, as well as a multi-tool.

Wallet Ninja 18-in-1 Pocket Tool
Photo credit: Courtesy of walmart.com


Price:$1 | Buy it from Newegg
With six wrenches, two screwdrivers, a fruit peeler and 9 other essential functions, this credit card sized multi-tool easily earns a spot in his wallet.

Ziploc Space Bag
Photo credit: Courtesy of amazon.com


Price: $11 | Buy it at Walmart
For travelers who need every last inch to count, compression packs are the way to go. Sold in multiple sizes and available at most sporting goods stores, these plastic bags zip shut and have valves that let air out but not in. They're easy to use and can reduce volume by up to 80 percent. (Some high-end carry-ons have compression systems built in.) Be careful not to over-pack with all that extra space, though -- most airlines impose a weight limit for carry-ons.

Anker PowerCore+ mini 3350mAh Lipstick-Sized Portable Charger
Photo credit: Courtesy of amazon.com


Price: Starting at $10.50 | Buy it on Amazon
A USB battery pack is a welcome gift for just about anyone with a smartphone. Balancing cost, capacity, weight, and size can be tricky, though. A 2.7-ounce "lipstick-size" stick by Anker ($13 to $16) holds 3,350 mAh of power -- more than enough for an iPhone 7, for instance, which has a 1,960 mAh battery.

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