Gift ideas for friends abroad

student lovers backpacking in barcelona image by Barcabloo from

If you have friends who will travel abroad on an extended trip, you might feel stumped about what kind of gift to send them when a special occasion arises. Usually, the biggest lament from those who go abroad is either that they miss home or they're not sure what a place has to offer once they get there. That being the case, considering giving your globetrotting friend the gift of home or the gift of adventure.

Food from Home

Very often one of the things people miss most when they've been abroad for an extended length of time is their favourite food. Before you begin assembling your package, check with the postal service to find out if any regulations exist for shipping food. Give your friends items like Twinkies, your mom's homemade chocolate chip cookies, cheap boxes of mac and cheese, and peanut butter. While these items may seem mundane to you, you can count them to be among some of the most difficult items to find when you're abroad---even in westernised countries in Europe.

Photo Book

Stay away from digital photo frames for your friends abroad. While you mind find the designs ever so cool, your friends might find that the European electrical system fries the circuits or there's no outlet on the African plain. But your friends can take a photo book filled with actual photos of your memories just about anywhere with them. Make sure that the photo book runs on the smaller side so that it doesn't take up too much room in a suitcase. As an extra thoughtful touch, add a throwaway camera or a second digital chip for their digital camera so they can send pictures back home to you.

Emergency Kit

Your friends may know when they'll arrive and where they'll go once they get there, but probably have no idea what kinds of emergencies could await them. Pack an emergency kit for your friends travelling abroad. A useful kit includes basics like Band-Aids and pain killers---in many countries you can only buy them in the pharmacy---a list of Western Union stations, names and contact information for people you know in that country, £13 in local currency, and instructions on how to use the phone plus the equivalent of that country's 911 numbers.

Travel Books

If your friends have no idea where to find all the cool sights in the countries they'll visit, help them out. Give them a few of the better known country guide books. These books not only tell you where to stay, how to find the trains, and what to avoid, they also offer activity ideas. From the old ruins of the Roman Empire to the Christ the Redeemer Statue in Rio de Janeiro, these books point out all the must-see places, as well as how to find discounts once you get there.

Most recent