NEW YORK – Today’s travelers want to be comfortable, organized and connected. With those themes in mind, here are some gift ideas, starting with suggestions from three folks who travel for a living.
GOPRO AND A POWER STRIP
Brian Stacey, director of new product development for Tauck, the cruise and tour company, says his must-haves include Creative Labs noise-cancelling headphones for air travel, and a GoPro camera, which he describes as “the hottest thing out there.”
He also loves the Orvis businessman’s backpac. Among the things he stashes in it are a bottle protector from TravelSmith to bring home wine or olive oil without worrying about spills; and a Belkin power strip. With a power strip, he can charge five gadgets with one hotel room outlet. If he’s traveling internationally, he only needs one adapter.
POLAROID AND LAVENDER
Harriet Lewis, vice chair of the tour company Overseas Adventure Travel, recommends the new digital Polaroid camera. She can take photos of people she meets and print copies on the spot.
Lewis’ personal comfort items make great stocking stuffers: scented herbal wipes (Herban Essentials, and lavender oil. She sprinkles lavender on bed sheets and in her bath, and rubs it on her temples and wrists. (Some travelers sprinkle it on luggage and clothing, as it’s said to repel bed bugs.)
ALL ABOUT THE BAG
Edward Piegza vowed never to check bags again after an airline lost his family’s luggage on a trip to London. Piegza, founder of the small-group luxury tour company Classic Journeys, now uses a carry-on zippered Victorinox bag, which won’t tear when stuffed. For kids and teens, he recommends a High Sierra wheeled backpack with detachable daypack. His sons have used their High Sierra bags for more than 10 years in two dozen countries.
Piegza also recommends Nike Free running shoes – lightweight, comfy and quick-drying; fun, customizable luggage tags from Zazzle.com; and a Gorillapod stand that secures iPhones to anything. Combined with a timer app, “you can take some great selfies in spectacular settings.”
Finally, for the ladies, Piegza suggests a pashmina wrap. His wife treasures hers because it’s soft, light and easily accessorizes various outfits. It also folds up small but is big enough to serve as a blanket.