We asked the world’s most experienced travelers — our in-house medical and security professionals and Global Rescue’s Safe Travel Partners — to curate a list of 20 must-have gifts for people who love to travel. The following recommendations can be part of your holiday wish list or thoughtful goodies to bestow upon your loved ones. 

Sustainable Sunglasses 


You’ll appreciate Baijo (pronounced Bah-hee-oh) sunglasses in a multitude of ways: lightweight frames won’t hurt your ears after hours of wear, the company is 100% carbon neutral and every sale helps protect the planet’s saltwater flats. Consider the best-selling Bales Beach sunglasses, named after the flat in Islamorada that’s a magnet for tarpon and square groupers, as essential gear for your next fishing trip. The bio-based nylon frame has additional side coverage built into the design and polarized lenses in six different colors, like Cuda gray and Permit Green.
$249 for glass and $199 for polycarbonate lenses. 

On-wrist Intelligence 

If you’re monitoring your health and fitness, a smartwatch might be even smarter than your smartphone. Not only can you measure your heart rate or blood pressure, track your sports activities, check your elevation (handy for runners and hikers) and detect a fall before it happens, you can also pay for purchases, benefit from turn-by-turn satellite navigation and stream music. It’s one of the items on Dan Richard’s holiday wish list this year. “I’ve been a fan of satellite watches for a long time. They are great for travel, adventure and finding your way home if you get lost,” said the Global Rescue CEO.
Prices range from a few hundred dollars to nearly two thousand.

A Nut-astic Snack 


Sure, you can buy nuts almost anywhere: a big box store, the grocery store or your local food co-op. But are the nuts roasted on the day you buy them? They are if you order from Nuts.com, a family-owned business based in New Jersey. Depending on your dietary needs — and your taste buds — you can select from organic, raw, roasted, salted, unsalted, 50% less salt, seasoned and even chocolate covered. Nuts are an easy-to-pack source of protein whether you’re on the trail or on your way to your next travel experience. Not sure what type of gift to give? Try a variety pack, gift tray or gift certificate.
New customers get free shipping when they spend $29 or more 

Hardcore Rain Gear 


From base layers to rain gear to head wear, Canis spent two and a half years engineering gear in Switzerland, testing it around the world, and re-engineering based on the results. If you live in rain gear, you’ll want to check out their pieces made of lightweight, three-layer high-tenacity nylon. Take a look at the Nunavut jacket which is loaded with pockets, or the minimalistic, packable Wapiti rain jacket.

Hangboards for Climbers  

Training during the off-season? Safe Travel Partner Send Edition recommends hanging up this Metolius Wood Grips Compact II Training Board over a doorway. You can use it to train your fingers to better hang on to slopes, pockets or pinches. You can add it to your overall training program — which you’ve designed with a climbing professional — and start with the biggest holds first. Trango Rock Prodigy Training Center, a two-piece construction to help with shoulder alignment, is another option to help increase finger strength.
Both can be found on REI.com; $79.95 and 139.95 respectively. 

Curated Medical Kits  


You are planning a multi-generational — from toddlers to teens to grandparents — family trip in the New Year. You are going to a remote location with a variety of outdoor activities. What do you pack in your first aid kit? Let Wilderness Medical Systems build a custom kit for you; perhaps the Pamir Kit, which is suited for destinations/locations more than eight hours from U.S.-level medical care. Sealed in a rugged, waterproof bag, there are enough supplies for 6 to 10 people covering a variety of travel mishaps — blisters, sprains, burns, rashes, stings and wounds.

Waterproof Reading

Do you love bringing books on your travels? Jerich Eusebio, operations specialist at Global Rescue, recommends a waterproof Kindle Paperwhite. “Books are not very practical to bring when traveling outdoors, and I love the outdoors,” Eusebio said. “The Kindle Paperwhite does an excellent job making this happen. Not only do I get to read my favorite (e)books the way I want them (seemingly printed on paper) but I also get the security of knowing that if I accidentally drop it while traversing a river it will survive.” Retails for $159.99 (without ads) on Amazon.com 

Hand Tools for the Outdoors 


Anglers, hunters and outdoor enthusiasts are particular about their gear. That’s why many turn to Outdoor Edge for knives and axes with a functional design, best edge holding steels, state-of-the-art production processes and a lifetime guarantee. The Colorado-based company also offers a lightweight axe called the WoodDevil and a mealtime multi-tool called the ChowPal. The ChowPal slides apart to reveal a full utensil set — folding knife, fork, spoon, can opener, bottle opener, flathead screwdriver and graduated wrench — then slides back together for storage in a nylon pouch.

Travel Pillow That Transcends Traditional Shape 

Whether you’re a business road warrior or a leisure traveler anticipating a long-haul flight in the near future, a good travel pillow is essential when it comes to sneaking in some shut-eye. But if you’re still toting around the traditional U-shaped pillow, it’s time for an upgrade. Resembling something closer to a scarf than a pillow, The Trtl Travel Pillow features a fleece-covered plastic frame that provides unshakeable support to one side of your neck while remaining comfortable to wear.

Cairngorms Adventure 


If you are comfortable riding your mountain bike on loose, rocky trails and muddy singletrack descents, H+I Adventures offers a bike tour in the Cairngorms, Britain’s highest mountain range situated in the eastern Highlands of Scotland. Not only will you bike through heather-clad hills, ancient glens and secluded lochs, you’ll be sampling a range of Scotland’s finest whiskies and gins, dining at family-run restaurants, and perhaps spotting the herd of wild reindeer on Cairngorm Mountain. H+I, based in Scotland, offer five tour dates in 2022.

Multipurpose Travel Towel 

A lightweight, quick-dry microfiber towel isn’t just for the beach. “An extra-large microfiber towel in your carry-on bag can be an emergency blanket during a long day of travel, a rolled splint for an injured foot on the trail, or clean up assistance in an airport lounge shower during an unexpected layover,” said Garret Dejong, senior specialist in medical operations at Global Rescue. “Having a microfiber towel as part of your travel toiletries, no matter how spartan, just makes sense.” L.L.Bean offers a Sea to Summit Tek Towel in three different sizes.
$24.95 to $39.95

Travel Tokens 


Not interested in knickknacks or keepsakes from your travels, but want to remember the trip somehow? The Wander Club offers a way for travelers to remember their adventures: engraved tokens for every national park, state, country and landmark you visit. You can hang your stainless-steel tokens, engraved with your favorite destinations, on a leather keychain or a backpack. Not only will your shelves be free of dustables, your purchase feeds a child in need through nonprofit partner, Rice Bowls.
Tokens are $5 to $7; leather or vegan Wanderchains are $2

Mapping Outdoor Adventures 

Whether you’re snowmobiling, hunting, hiking or climbing, BaseMap will help you plan, navigate and share your outdoor adventures. This mobile and desktop mapping application combines everything in one convenient application: research data, public and private land ownership, GPS tracking, 3D imagery, custom markers, offline maps and more. The app is free, but the best gift is BaseMap Pro, which includes direct communication to Global Rescue and access to field rescue services ($5,000 maximum).

Heavy-Duty Hydro Flask 


U.S. Ski and Snowboard provided these awesome hydro flasks to Global Rescue’s 2021 Photo Contest winners. These matte black 16-ounce bottles — complete with leak proof lid, flex strap and U.S. Snowboard Team logo — were the talk of the Global Rescue office. BPA-free, Phthalate-free, top rack dishwasher safe, and proceeds support an Olympic sports organization providing leadership and direction for tens of thousands of young skiers and snowboarders.

50 Gripping Tales of Adventure  

“Past Explorers Club members were first to the North Pole, first to the South Pole, first to summit Mount Everest, first to find the deepest part of the oceans and first to walk on the moon,” writes Richard Wiese, president of The Explorers Club in the 2020 updated edition of As Told at The Explorers Club: More Than Fifty Gripping Tales of Adventure. These true-life stories by members of The Explorers Club will delight fellow explorers, history buffs, geography gurus and even armchair adventurers.

Taste the World


Would you try a mango in Malaysia with the flavor of onion soup? Did you know the honeycrisp is a designer apple created at the University of Minnesota? Have you seen the vending machine in Texas that dispenses full pecan pies? Gastro Obscura: A Food Adventurer’s Guide, contains more than 500 tales of incredible ingredients, food adventures and edible wonders from around the world. Order at Atlas Obscura or from your local bookstore.

Bug-Out Bag  

Director of Communications Bill Mcintyre has his eye on the Seventy2 Survival System. Why is it called Seventy2? The first 72 hours of a survival situation is extremely critical, and these kits have been designed — with the help of first responders, doctors, special forces operators and mountain guides — to provide the gear you need in a potentially deadly situation. This bug-out bag, made of heavy-duty waterproof canvas, comes with a tent, water filtration system, fire starter and first aid kit, to name a few items.

A Customized Expedition Vehicle 


Cliff climbs and rock crawling in off-the-beaten-path locations across the United States is on your bucket list, but you’re going to need the right vehicle. Check out TOURIG, a Colorado-based builder of high-performance expedition vehicles. You work with a design consultant to go over the features and function of your van, approve and tweak the design of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter or Ford Transit van conversions, then answer periodic questions — to get the details just right — during the build process. The result: the perfect vehicle for on- and off-road adventures.
Pricing varies

A Lifesaving Gift

This item is something Global Rescue mentions in any blog having to do with first aid and survival. It’s been used by the U.S. Army since 2005 and is proven to be 100% effective by the U.S. Army’s Institute of Surgical Research. “A tourniquet is a lifesaving and extremely practical gift for somebody who likes to travel. They are small, lightweight, can be taken anywhere, and can potentially save somebody’s life,” said Adam Bardwell, supervisor of operations at Global Rescue. “I prefer a CAT tourniquet — they are the most user-friendly.”

Travel Protection Membership


Give the gift of peace of mind to the traveler in your life. A Global Rescue membership ensures your loved one is not alone when they board that plane, train or ship. In fact, they are traveling with a virtual team of experts — a paramedic, a translator, a logistics expert, an intelligence analyst and a security advisor. It’s like having a protective detail on standby, prepared to help when you need medical or security advice or a field rescue. Annual Global Rescue travel services memberships start at $329