Best gifts for backpackers

20+ Thoughtful Gifts For Backpackers They Actually Need 2021

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Having someone in your life who travels the world constantly can be difficult. Apart from missing them, it’s a nightmare buying them presents! We’ve put together this list of some of the best gifts for backpackers so you can give them something super practical but also thoughtful and fun too.

Thinking of something that will fit in their luggage, be useful AND thoughtful can be tricky. I know that my family are always complaining that they’ve wanted to buy me a gift but I can’t take it with me. They’ve actually got kind of used to it now and have begun to buy me things that I not only want but things that come in handy too.

You could buy the traveller in your life the boring things, like a decent water bottle, a sexy safe money belt or a practical rain jacket, but those things are on their own packing list for a reason! The fun travel gifts are on this list and are less likely to be in someone’s backpack already.

Whether you’re buying unique stocking stuffers for Christmas, making up for lost birthdays or considering buying a going away present, this gift guide for backpackers so you won’t be stuck for choice!

Electronic Gifts For Backpackers

Buying electronics for someone about to embark on an exciting trip will definitely make you flavour of the month! These are great gift ideas for backpackers as they probably won't buy anything from this list themselves!

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Experience Gifts For Travellers

Airport Lounge Access

Airport lounges are the perfect place to start any trip, whether it backpacking around Asia or going on a luxury all-inclusive holiday to the Caribbean! Buying an access pass for a backpacker is a great gift because rather than spending some of their holiday money on over-priced meals in the airport, they can have unlimited food, drinks and WiFi all included! Usually the lounge passes are around $25 – $35 and give access for between 2 and 5 hours. There are comfortable seats, quiet areas, showers and some places even offer complimentary massages!

Browse these different airport lounges and pick the one you need!

Classes/Day Pass (Get Your Guide) or Activity Voucher (Tinggly)

Sometimes experiences are better than material gifts, and if you know someone who likes to take part in activities, then consider buying them a lesson or class in a new country. It could be a surf lesson in Bali, an evening river cruise in Cambodia or a wine tasting afternoon in Perth. There are hundreds of different activities to choose from, in just as many countries so get creative and choose something they wouldn’t necessarily pick for themselves but would love!

Get Your Guide has some awesome day passes that allow the user to skip the line at many city attractions, and there are also plenty of fun classes offered too.

Get Your GuideGet Your Guide

Diving Course

Something that is on many people’s bucket lists is learning to scuba dive. There are so many dive shops out there but it’s often not an expense that backpackers will have the budget for! Why not purchase a beginner’s course for them so that they have the opportunity to learn a new skill and perhaps enjoy a lifetime hobby!

Pro Tips

The most famous diving company is Padi but SSI are cheaper and still just as good. Padi has a few more dive shops around the world but if you get your certificate with SSI, you can still go to a Padi Dive Centre and scuba dive with them. We decided to use SSI and still got an amazing course and the qualification to dive pretty much anywhere!

Get Your Guide

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Subscription Backpacking Gifts

Spotify Premium

At home, free music is easy to access because of the constant access to WiFi. However, whilst travelling, it can be hard to get a good internet connection. This can be a real pain, especially on long travel days – sitting on a rickety train for 12 hours with no music or entertainment can bore the most enthusiastic of travellers!

Spotify Logo

With a monthly Spotify Premium subscription, the music can be downloaded and listened to offline. With their new headphones and rechargeable phone case, a backpacker will never have to go without their favourite playlists again!

Pro Tips

Spotify also often does a deal where you can get 2 months Premium membership for free so look out for that!

Audible Subscription

Another great subscription gift is Amazon’s audiobook platform. Audible has over 425,000 audio books that can be played on the free app anywhere. Sometimes listening to a book is better than reading one because you can close your eyes on that bright sunny beach, or on the cramped aeroplane and enjoy being read to.


A lot of travellers will cancel their Netflix subscription to save a few extra pounds every month before their big trip. A great gift is to re-subscribe them for their travels, because Netflix is available even on a phone so can be watched anywhere.Netflix Logo

Pro Tips

Using a VPN allows you browse Netflix’s full database from any country! Astrill is a good VPN that we regularly use to watch Netflix shows that aren’t available in the country that we are currently in.

Rosetta Stone

Do you know a backpacker eager to learn a language whilst on the road? One-to-one classes are great, but if you’re travelling then you can’t set up a base for spending time with a tutor. With an online resource like Rosetta Stone, you can use their online software and choose between 20 different languages to learn. It’s a great way to supplement learning whilst in a new country!

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Travel Accessory Gifts For A Backpacker

Sometimes it's the little things that count - buy your travelling friend or family member an accessory that will make their adventure easier!

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Buying presents for travellers doesn’t actually have to be difficult. You could buy one large gift, or a couple of small things as a little hamper set if they already have a lot of luggage! And Mum, if you’re reading, this is our Christmas list for this year 😉

If the traveller in your life is a little more picky, then browse our full list of trip essentials here!

Have you bought any gifts for backpackers that should be on this list? Let us know in the comments!

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