Travel gifts for kids - affordable and practical gift ideas from toddlers to teens

21 Fun Travel Gifts for Kids (That They’ll Actually Use)

In Travel Gear, Traveling with kids by JurgaThis post may contain affiliate links, which means that we may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. More info: Disclosure.

If you are looking for gift ideas for kids, you probably already know how difficult it is to find a fun gift that they’ll actually like and use. What do you get for a kid who has so many toys already? In this article, we are sharing several ideas for travel gifts for kids that will make any kid happy. These are so much better than any toys, take my word for it.

This list contains many practical and affordable travel gift ideas for kids. While these are all related to traveling one way or the other, they can make a perfect gift for any child.

Some of these gifts are meant for toddlers or preschoolers, while most others – for boys and girls from 6 to 12 years old. You will find a few travel gifts for teenagers on this list as well. Read on!

Cool travel inspired gifts for children
 

1. Binoculars

One travel gift for kids that you really cannot go wrong with is binoculars. Choose binoculars appropriate to the age of the child and they will love and use them for a long time.

I suggest you go for the better quality sturdy binoculars with decent magnification rather than toy binoculars.

For young children, I recommend sturdy kids binoculars that won’t easily break. For older kids, you could opt for something like this. For teenagers, it’s best to get good, quality binoculars that will last many years.


2. Kids travel bags

Kids travel bag, a rolling suitcase, or a backpack is a great travel gift for kids of any age. Young children love having their own bag to carry and for older kids, their own travel bag is simply indispensable on any trip. 

Young kids will love ride-on suitcases or rolling kids luggage.

School-going kids usually love to have their own travel backpack, which also comes handy for field trips and on other occasions. I can highly recommend this Osprey travel backpack – it’s a wonderful gift for any child and one they’ll use time and again.

If you are looking for a very practical gift for kids age 4 to 8, I can highly recommend Trunki BoostApak. It’s a backpack and a booster car seat in one and all our three kids have used these for years. We take them on every road trip abroad and we use them at home as booster seats as well. 

***Read also: best travel booster seats***


3. Globe

A globe is a  wonderful gift for all school-going kids, whether they are traveling or not.

You can find globes in all sizes, with or without a light, and even ones that have educational apps connected to them…

For young kids, a learning globe is a wonderful gift that will keep them engaged for years to come. 8 to 12-year-olds will probably appreciate a globe with the built-in light. For teenagers, I would suggest an educational globe with place names.


4. World map or scratch off map

World map is an excellent gift for any child and encourages them to learn more about our world. If you are looking for a very general map with the continents,  check out this world map that’s more meant as a decoration for young kids rooms.  A bit more educational, and perfect for young kids is this kids’ world map. Teenagers will probably prefer this high-quality classic world map.

For avid travelers, a scratch-off map makes a great gift. They can scratch off the places that they have visited and use it to dream about and plan new trips. There is a big variety of scratch-off maps available; here is one of the best-rated scratch off maps that I found.


5. Kids atlas

There is probably no better gift than a gift of learning. A book is always a great gift idea, but if you don’t know where to start and which books kids like, why not get an atlas instead. It’s such a great way to get the kids to read more, while at the same time also learning more about the planet we live on.

There are so many various kids’ atlases, so it’s not difficult to find one that suits any age. School-going kids will love this National Geographic USA road trip atlas or this Kids’ World Atlas by Lonely Planet.

***Read also: best travel books for kids***


6. Waterproof kids camera

Kids want to be just like their parents and one travel gift they’ll really appreciate is a travel camera. There are some really affordable good quality cameras for kids, so you don’t have to worry about the budget. For young children, I recommend choosing a more robust, waterproof travel camera.

Teenagers will be happy with an action camera and you don’t necessarily need to splurge on a GoPro. There are some really nice cheaper alternatives as well.


7. Travel games

Travel games are fun, they don’t cost much, and they make for a great travel gift for kids.

Many of the all-time favorites are included in this 12-piece Gamie Magnetic Board Game Set. Other favorites are Travel Scavenger Hunt, UNO (or UNO Junior for younger children), and of course many more.

Pocket-sized creative story generator Story Cubes provides hours of imaginative play for all ages. Story Cubes are the perfect way to keep your kids busy and entertained not only during the trip but also at home. UNO and Story Cubes are always in our luggage when traveling with kids.

***Read also: what to pack in kids’ hand luggage***


8. Single-player travel games for kids

Travel games are always fun, but our kids also love single-player games that require logical reasoning and planning skills. Our boys have some games from ThinkFun and SmartGames and it keeps them busy for hours.

There are so many single player games that you will have no trouble finding one for a child of any age.  Many of these games are very compact and easy to take with you and are therefore perfect to play at home or on the road.

For young kids, I recommend Rush Hour JrSmartGames Jump’IN, or Noah’s Ark Magnetic Travel GameFor older kids and teenagers – games like Think Fun TipoverThinkFun Gravity Maze Marble Run, or ThinkFun Rush Hour.


9. Travel toys for outdoors

We don’t often take many toys when traveling, but we try to take at least one toy for outdoors. A ball is usually too big to pack, but for example, a frisbee is a great alternative. It’s a perfect toy to keep children busy on any trip, and a foldable frisbee is so light to pack that you can always take it with you.

If there is one thing that our kids missed during our road trips when they were little, it’s beach toys. They are just too big to pack when traveling overseas, and so we never took any. However, recently I stumbled across this collapsable beach pail and shovel set that is so small to pack that it would make a great gift for any young traveler.


10. Twistable crayons

If you are looking for a great gift idea for young children, I cannot recommend twistable crayons highly enough! 

At home you can use any pencils, drawing markers, paint, or regular crayons, but when traveling, they are all pretty much useless. Twistable crayons provide frustration-free drawing experience for any young traveler. No broken crayons anymore, no paper to peel, no sharpener required, and the little artist’s hands stay clean.


11. Reusable sticker sets

Another great travel gift idea for young kids is a set of reusable stickers. Young children love stickers and a fun reusable sticker set can keep them busy for a long time.

It’s a really great travel gift that is not just very affordable, easy to pack, but also guarantees hours and hours of play fun for the little kids.


12. Hand puppets and finger puppets

Hand- and finger puppets make for another great travel gift for young kids. Hand puppets are light to pack and can be very entertaining, especially for the youngest travelers.


13. Luggage ID tags

If you are looking for a small, inexpensive, and original travel gift idea for kids, why not consider some fun luggage ID tags.

You can find luggage ID tags for Disney fans, luggage tags with monsters, Star Wars luggage ID tags, or some fun colorful luggage ID tags for teenagers.


14. Travel journal

If you are looking for a gift for a child who travels, consider a travel journal. It’s such a wonderful way to document their journey and keep fun memories.

There are travel journals for girls and for boys, for younger children or for teenagers, and there are even some really creative ones. No matter which one you choose, it’s a gift that they will keep and cherish for a long time.


15. E-reader

There is probably no better gift we have ever given our kids, but the Kindle e-reader. They absolutely love their Kindles and they read so many books when we travel – something they wouldn’t be able to do otherwise, since packing a suitcase full of books is really not the best way to travel light. In the car or on the plane, while waiting at the airport or even in the restaurant – e-reader is such a great gift that anyone will use again and again.

We chose Kindle Paperwhite for our kids, which enables them to read in a dark room or in bright daylight. It’s a bit more expensive than most other kids’ travel gifts on this list, but they’ll use it for many years and it’s well worth the investment.


16. Digital Tablet

A digital tablet is probably the most expensive item on this kids’ travel gifts list and one that I think only parents should get for their children. After all, it’s up to them to decide when and how they introduce their kids to electronic games…

For young kids, I recommend Kindle Fire Kids. For older kids – a digital tablet from Samsung – they are much cheaper than iPads, battery lasts longer, and the price/quality ratio is excellent.


17. Swiss knife junior

A Swiss knife might not be the best gift idea for young kids, but a teenage boy will absolutely love it. This original Victorinox Swiss Knife Junior is a nice gift for a responsible, active teenager who loves to camp or spends lots of time outdoors.

18. Headlight or pocket light

Little adventurers just love to explore in the dark! Our kids are absolutely fascinated by their pocket lamps and it’s something they use just as much at home as they do when we travel. There are so many pocket lamps available; for kids, I recommend cheaper LED pocket lights, so it’s no big deal if they lose one.

A headlight is another really nice gift for kids who like outdoor activities like camping or hiking.


19. Luggage Scooter

If you are looking for a gift for traveling kids that have it all, a luggage scooter might be a fun idea. They come in many different sizes and shapes, and the price tag depends a lot on the quality.

Here you can find some popular luggage scooters for kids.

20. Headphones

Headphones are a great gift idea for kids, from around 6 years and older. Not only will the kids love the idea of being able to listen to their own music, but parents will appreciate it as well. After all, we all have our own preferred music style, which is often very different as that of the rebelling teenager…

For younger kids, check these headphones made especially for children. Teenagers might prefer something a bit more stylish like this.


21. Reusable water bottle

Perfect gift for any traveler, a reusable water bottle is an environmentally-friendly gift that kids will appreciate as well.  Not only does it teach them to use less plastic, but it also encourages young kids to drink more water – good for the environment and for their health.

Choose a nice colorful model that suits the kids’ age and you have found a perfect gift that they will use every day.


So, these are some ideas for travel gifts for kids that you really cannot go wrong with. Do you have some great gift ideas for children? Feel free to leave a reply below.

***Read also our travel gift guide for everyone on your list***

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Kids gift ideas - travel presents for children
 

Comments

  1. I love the idea of giving the kids (and adults) experiences as gifts! Creating special memories is the best kind of gift. We usually do a house decluttering and donations before the holidays to prepare. I’m definitelly using some of your ideas for inspiration. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Author

      House decluttering is something all of us should do more, Beth. Great idea to donate some of the unused stuff, we do it all the time too. We also try to get our kids more practical presents rather than toys, especially now that they are older.
      We find that books make great presents as well.

  2. Great tips, I was thinking to buy a binocular for my kids because they love adventure and discovering new things in nature. 🙂

  3. What great ideas for gifts for kids, especially traveling ones. I like some of them even for adults too. I am definitely a big fan of the globe and have been looking for ages to get one

    1. Author

      Thanks for stopping by! Yes, indeed, many of these would make adults happy as well – a good pair of binoculars or a really nice globe…

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