What Travelers Want! My 2014 Holiday Gift Guide & BIG Giveaway

It’s beginning to look a lot like… gift guide season! As your very own personal-shopping, passport-wielding elf, I’ve spent the last 12 months dancing, traveling and searching the world for cool products, functional gear and multi-purpose travel clothes for my annual What Travelers Want 2014 Holiday Gift Guide.

elf angie instagram
Image courtesy of ElfYourself.com.

Hark the traveling angels sing – it’s finally here!

Take a look at the wonders herein, print out the gift guide graphic or Pin it to your wishlist, and then enter to win some of these goodies (the ones with *) below.

Or just Tweet to Santa – whoever that may be for you – and let the shopping begin!

2014 Travel Holiday Gift Guide


1. Boingo.* I don’t leave home for a long trip without Boingo, one of Travel + Leisure’s Top 10 travel apps, and my personal Internet hero. Staying connected on the road is my bread and butter, so it pays to always have a way to check email, post to Angie Away or even just pop up yet another Instagram jump shot. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve fist-pumped on a flight when I found out I could use my Boingo account to connect while flying. It’s one of the best feelings a traveler can get!

$59/month; Boingo.com 

2. CableKeeps Goldie.* I’ve been traveling with my Goldie for a few trips now and it keeps my iPhone cord so neat in my carry-on – no more fumbling around and untangling it at the airport. The bright color also keeps others from “borrowing” your charger — there’s no question this is your device. And it’s not just for iPhones. CableKeeps come in 3 designs and 6 colors – Goldie for iPhone, Nibbles for iPad and Gulp for iPad international.

$13; nicebydesign.com

3. SOL REPUBLIC PUNK Wireless Bluetooth Speaker.The speaker is so loud! Louder than my previous wireless speaker, loud enough to hear over the waves at the beach AND it’s built for rugged (errr, clumsy?) individuals like myself who consistently drop expensive electronics. The Punk packs a punch in a compact and packable size.

$69.99; available on Amazon and Best Buy

4. GoPro HERO4 Black. One big regret I have from my RTW travels in 2011 and 2012 is that I didn’t have a GoPro in my photography arsenal. I could cry thinking of all the adventures I missed capturing with this amazing little camera – but I won’t. I’ll just tell you with every fiber of my being that the traveler in your life NEEDS one, so make it happen!

$499.99, amazon.com


5. ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket. A few gift guides ago I introduced the Storm Logic jacket, and in the ensuing years I’ve worn it a million times. It’s literally the perfect travel jacket & I always take it on trips where the weather permits. I was hesitant to replace my purple original with the new model, and even more hesitant to include something I’ve already covered in this year’s gift guide, but WOW.

The new and improved Storm Logic jacket blew my mind. It has been updated this season with more feminine quilt lines, contrast lining and an internal Travel Pocket System to keep all your items organized, from glasses to passports. You do not need a purse with this jacket! Like the older version, the Storm Logic jacket converts to a travel neck pillow, too – meaning I almost never fly without it.

$160; exofficio.com 

6. ExOfficio Give-N-Go Sport Mesh Boxer Briefs.* I’ve heard rumblings from my male readers (they do exist!) that sometimes my gift guide can be a little too female-focused – imagine that! So this year I’m including the men’s Give-N-Go Sport Mesh Boxer Briefs. Since I obviously couldn’t experience this particular product personally, I passed a sample on to my fella. I’ll spare you the very specific, very detailed description of his first day wearing them, but I will say he went from, “Twenty-six bucks for underwear? That’s crazy!” to “I am spending my entire next paycheck at ExOfficio and buying only these underwear from now on.” Some endorsement, right?

$26; exofficio.com (Black Friday sale! Buy 2 or more and get 25% off Nov. 28 through Dec. 14.)

7. Undercover Underwear.* Lest the ladies feel left out in the underpants department, I’d like to introduce you to UrbanUndercover’s Undercover Underwear.​ You know how travel experts always say take a change of clothes in your carry-on in case of lost baggage? Well, these are the perfect underwear for just that purpose. They’re comfortable, convenient and actually really pretty, and they fold up neatly in a self-contained pocket that tells you if they’re clean or dirty based on how you fold them. You can also store a towelette, backup cash and other small necessities in the pocket while wearing. Really, really great product. Click here to see how the undies roll/unroll.

$24-$32, urbanundercover.com


8. Compass Pendant, Susi D. Jewelry.* Every traveler needs a compass, am I right? That’s why I love this pretty charm from Susi D. Jewelry. All her designs are handcrafted and come with an appropriate printed card with an inspirational saying. A great gift for a traveling lady.

$28; susidjewelry.com 

9. Grace Scarf, Rethreaded.* This is my favorite hometown Jacksonville product! Rethreaded is helping to stop the cycle of sex-trafficking by training those affected in a brand new vocation. And that’s where the awesome Grace Scarf comes in. The scarf is made of individually cut strips of t-shirt that are stretched into strands. Once stretched, each strand curls — eliminating all errors made in the cutting process, resulting in a perfect strand to add to the bundle. Once bundled all the unique strands are then tied together into a beautiful scarf. And voila – you have the Grace Scarf. Please, please, please shop at their online store this holiday season. It’s for such a great cause!

$20, rethreaded.com

10. Globe & Airplane Pendant, Peggy Li Creations. You’ve probably seen Peggy Li’s creations before on The Bachelorette, The Vampire Diaries, Hart of Dixie and more. I wore her Globe & Airplane pendant at TBEX Athens and received so many compliments from the travel bloggers in attendance. Another wonderful piece for the traveling lady.

$49; peggyli.com

11. WoJo Wallet.* This sweat-and-grunge resistant wallet can go anywhere! Made of silicone and neoprene, it holds cards, IDs, cash and even a key. Super versatile, sleek & slim, it tucks into yoga pants, cycling shorts, a swimsuit, without all the bulk of your regular wallet. A really fun, functional find for the active traveler.

$12.95; wojowallet.com 


12. Sanuk.* For a super casual, super comfy travel shoe, check out Sanuk’s new line of flats. I’m sporting the Kats Meow lately, a pointy canvas shoe with the rubber sole Sanuk’s are famous for. Great for boating, beaching or just kicking around the airport. Available in prints and solids.

$70, sanuk.com  

13. Tieks.* I’m now the proud owner of FOUR pairs of Tieks, and they are my go-to travel shoe. Sometimes I bring them all, they’re just so versatile and easy to pack. Mine are starting to look a bit like they’ve been through a war zone, so it’s likely time for a new pair. And that’s why they’re on my wishlist yet again =)

$165+, tieks.com


14. FabFitFun.* Most folks have heard of BirchBox, a monthly subscription that brings sample sizes of luxurious beauty products right to your door. BirchBox is one of my favorite ways to try out new goodies in convenient travel sizes, but sometimes I want more than beauty products. This year I’ve been loving the FabFitFun box. My last shipment came with a super cute Jessie Steele apron, Great Soles Pink Ribbon Ballet Barre socks, full-size beauty products from Dermalogica, the Honest Co., CHI and LaNatura, a Gramr Gratitude Co. thank you note set and a 3-month subscription to FitFusion. It was well worth the price AND I love that I get to try out new goodies without having to shop for them myself! A great gift for the time-crunched traveler.

$49.99 every three months, fabfitfun.com 

15. Yogasphere Yogi Pro Kit.* This summer, I attended a really fun yoga retreat in Costa Rica, and since then I’ve been working to add yoga to my travel experience as much as I can. Recently I started packing the Mama Kuka Yogasphere straps in my carry on. The straps are slim, colorful, comfortable yoga circles that help me stretch out my tense muscles when I’m traveling.  A dollar from each purchase goes to charity.

34.99; mama-kuka.com

16. T-Spheres.* Need to relax on your long-haul flight? Yes, I think that’s a given. Next time you travel, throw a few Tranquility Spheres in your carry-on. T-spheres are an aromatherapy massage tool that work in your connective tissue to release knots. Infused with scents like geranium, grapefruit, lavender and my favorite, peppermint, they’re a perfect stocking stuffer for the frequent flier in your life.

$20, tspheres.com 

17. Beauty for Real True Color Lip Cream. I originally received this gloss in my FabFitFun box, and now I’m totally sold on the brand. It’s not just lip color though. That on its own wouldn’t be enough to warrant inclusion in the holiday gift guide. This one comes with a convenient built in mirror on the side AND an LED light. It’s just about the best thing to happen to lip gloss in this century. So helpful on the red carpet, in the airport, and in a blackout.

$22, beautyforreal.com


18. Foodie-Trips.* Looking to really wow the foodie in your life? Why not give the gift of a chef-curated culinary adventure trip from Foodie-Trips? Say, 5 days in Paris to learn the art of pastry making or perhaps a visit to Northern Italy for rustic cooking lessons? All trips consist of small groups and custom trips can be arranged for Toronto, NYC, London, Rome and Paris. It’s a wonderful gift for someone who finds food culture fascinating. (*Ok, so I’m not giving away a $4,000 trip, but they did provide a copy of 1,000 Things to Eat Before You Die for the giveaway. Thanks, Foodie-Trips!)

$1,750-$4,000; foodie-trips.com

Neither snow nor sleet nor a broken pinky will prevent Elf Angie* from delivering goodies from this holiday cache worth $1,200 USD to a few lucky travelers.  It’s super easy to enter via the Rafflecopter widget below. May the odds be ever in your favor!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Winners will not receive a personal visit. 😉

**Occasionally companies will get in touch with me to do reviews of their products. Some of the ones I liked most from 2014 appear here in the gift guide with my honest opinion; others get returned to sender if they’re not up to snuff. And other items, like the GoPro, are just personal favorites I can’t live without. Rest assured, I only include goodies I personally approve of and use!

91 thoughts on “What Travelers Want! My 2014 Holiday Gift Guide & BIG Giveaway”

  1. Enjoying your recommendations. I just got my 2nd pair of Tieks and I do love my ExOfficio Storm Logic Jacket, but I’m ready to try the new and improved version. My husband does love their Undercover Underwear – a great stocking stuffer!

  2. Do I have to choose just one thing?!

    I love Peggy Li’s World Traveller necklace. Fine jewellery is so much easier to travel with (I think) and it’s so simple and beautiful.

    I really need to get some CableKeeps Goldies! My cords are on great tangle most of the time and it frustrates me to no end.

    I’m also really excited about Bonigo WiFi! We don’t have WiFi on planes (yet…) but Boingo runs in ‘most’ airports and even a lot of hotels in Australia. An annual pass would be perfect because I can use it in Australia or abroad!!

  3. this is the best gift guide i’ve seen yet – i could put every single one of these things to good use! my scuba trips would be eighteen times awesomer if i was gopro enabled and i’d be even cuter if my feet had a pair of tieks on them. if i’m not the lucky winner i’m gonna have to go on a shopping spree before my trip to the amazon next month!

  4. I am in definite need of a GoPro – over a year after a trip to Tanzania I’m still waiting on the friends who took the videos to pass them along. It’s time I started taking my own!

    The Tieks are a close second… I’ve been debating a splurge for awhile now.

  5. Definitely the Tieks, seems so comfy and super handy for travelling. But of course the Boingo as well. Because the name (and hopefully service too) is awesome! Great contest!

  6. Whoa, global Wifi from Boingo would be an absolute game-changer… and I have been so tempted to pull the trigger on a pair of Tieks! Thanks for this perfect gift guide and fun giveaway!

  7. This is an AMAZING GIVEAWAY!! I would be so happy to win just one of any of the items. It’s hard to pick just one to be most excited about but I guess if I had to pick one thing it would be the tieks because I am absolutely obessed with getting a pair. Thanks so much!! 🙂

  8. I’m pretty much the definition of butter fingers so the tough SOL REPUBLIC PUNK Wireless Bluetooth Speaker sounds perfect for me.

  9. This is just awesome. So cool to see such awesome gear and accessories. I would love to win the Tieks…been eyeing those for a while now!

  10. Love these ideas, especially since I’m packing for my honeymoon right now! It’s a surprise destination for me and will take 3 separate flights to get there, so these could really come in handy!

  11. Pick me pick me! I have been thinking it’s time to get a GO PRO so that’s #1 on my list, but Boingo is intriguing as we will need reliable internet after we move to Mexico next summer. SO many great things, thanks for all the ideas!

  12. I enjoyed your holiday guide so much last year–and this year is AMAZING! Awesome job. I really am lusting after that GoPro. I’ll be taking a dream trip at the beginning of next year, and I would absolutely love to capture every wet minute of it with this camera. Happy Holidays!

  13. The Tieks! I love mine (gold, nonetheless) and travel in them everywhere! I just have away a $100 gift card to tieks on my blog and folks were all over it. Great items, going to snag a few for the fam!

  14. Thanks so much for the giveaway, Angie! I think the Bluetooth speaker would be an awesome gift but really everything you listed is awesome. Happy holidays!

  15. I am most excited about the GoPro HERO4 Black and the Sol Republic Punk Wireless Speaker! I love electronics and these are the best brands!

  16. I’ve been seeing the GoPro HERO4 Black around on various blogs, and the clarity seems to come out pretty amazing with those…so that’s what I am most excited about in the package. Thank you for hosting!

  17. I swear, every time I travel I want to kick myself for not having a Boingo account yet! Great list, Angie….awesome things to add to my travel girl wish-list!

  18. I love the fact that the Grace Scarf serves a larger purpose, to end sex slavery. The Ex-Officio Storm Logic jacket is quite an awesome gift, too. Thanks, Angie!

  19. I’ve had my eye on a pair of Tieks for ages, but just cannot justify the cost…$175 + shipping costs to the UK!! So I keep entering every single competition I see that mentions them! Fingers crossed 🙂

  20. Awesome list Angie! I will have to buy a few of these for my work travels. I lost quite a few pics on my Romania adventure so a camera other than the one on my phone would definitely be the way to go. GoPro HERO4 Black.

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