Sustainable Gift Ideas for the Traveler

November 13, 2020  •   2 min read


The wanderlusters in your life are getting ready for their next adventure, so help them choose better this holiday season with a gift that is sustainably-made, better for the earth, and consciously constructed. We’re sharing sustainable gift ideas for the traveler that have been curated and hand-selected for the highest quality and ethical & environmental manufacturing processes. For the one who loves to roam, uploading principles of ethics and sustainability are sure to be appreciated. Whether you choose to surprise them with a pair of traditionally-made Greek leather sandals for their days on the beach, or a shampoo bar for low-waste toiletries, support sustainable gifting during the most indulgent time of year.  


1. Once Was Lost, Signature Scarf, $89 USD

The traveler in your life will love a multi-use scarf to take on her journeys. These stunning pieces from Once was Lost are completely handmade using traditional weaving techniques, and are ethically crafted in Ethiopia using 100% Ethiopian cotton. Sustainably handmade and Fair Trade Certified, this brand also only uses AZO-Free and REACH Certified Environmentally Friendly dyes. Your traveler friend will love supporting traditional craftsmanship.

2. Meow Meow Tweet, Lavender Coconut Milk Shampoo Bar, $12 USD

All the rage in plastic-free hair care these days, your traveler friend will love this complex floral scented, low-waste, shampoo bar for their next adventure. With a rich lather, this bar will nourish hair, with hemp seed oil and coconut milk. The delicate lavender softens, calms and cools the scalp, cleaning hair naturally. Easily passable through airport security, your friend with the carry-on will love this shampoo (and body) bar!

3. Kyma, Sandals, $170 USD

Kyma, based in Greece, makes these beautiful sandals that are a timeless product linked to Greece’s identity. Born out of a desire to preserve this historic concept in a version of higher quality and elegance, all their sandals are handmade by an expert craftsman using a range of natural, vegetable-tanned vachetta leather. The sandals are made with three-layer soles, providing extra comfort and durability. For the traveler in your life who loves the beach and exploring by foot, these sandals will be the perfect fit.

4. Ecologyst, The 210 Merino Turtleneck, $145 CAD

Previously, Sitka, Ecologyst’s quest to be better to our planet continues to grow. The traveler in your life will appreciate this turtleneck made from 100% Merino Wool and water-based screen-printed ink. Made in Canada, this flattering top is a light-packer’s dream, where it can be worn casually, as a layer, or even dressed up for work. Ecologyst’s repair service provides us with the ability to wear and re-wear our clothes often, instead of prematurely discarding them.

5. Mejuri, Travel Case, $85 CAD

This sleek travel case from Mejuri will be your traveler buddy’s new favourite item. Intentionally-designed to hold all her delicate accessories, this travel case can easily fit in a carry-on or handbag. With fair pricing schemes, Mejuri has built relationships directly with ethical manufacturers who are members of the Responsible Jewelry Council, cutting out the need for excessive markups. With manufacturers around the world, and in Toronto itself, this brand makes luxury accessories accessible.

6. Suitcase Magazine Subscription, $51 USD/year

Some sustainable gift ideas for the traveler include literature! For the traveler who loves to explore the unknown, get better acquainted with a culture and dig beneath the surface, a subscription to Suitcase Magazine is the best gift you can give. The magazine aims to change the way you travel, forget underwhelming tourist clichés and introduce slow travel as the new way to roam. Highlighting cultures around the world, thought-provoking photo journals and sustainable travel tips, the wanderluster in your life will be set to book their next trip.

7. Bambu Living, Travel Utensil Set with Eco-Conscious Pouch, $12.95 USD

Traveling can increase wastage quite a bit, so help the nomad in your life cut down on plastic-consumption with this bamboo cutlery set. Perfect for in-flight, food markets, and takeaway, this spoon, fork and knife set come with a travel sleeve to keep things neat and tidy. All bamboo products from Bambu Living are certified USDA organic and are sustainably sourced from wild bamboo forests, not farmed plantations. Other sustainable gift ideas for the traveler include a spork from Bambu Living – a compact set that can easily be stashed away. 

8. Atla, Flight Pyjama Set, $639 USD

This Scotland-based brand believes in providing an alternative to fast fashion, helping to contribute to a more sustainable future. Their Human Kind Checklist helps ensure they adhere to a strict list of rules when it comes to sourcing their products. These Flight Pyjamas are made using 100% kasuri cotton from Japan, dyed and woven using traditional methods and natural indigo in Okayama. Easy to care for when on the go, this loungewear set will bring comfort and relaxation to your jetsetter friend.

9. Are Studio, Disc Bag, $198 USD

Made by hand in LA, all materials and supplies are sourced from local family-owned manufacturers and businesses in the city. Minimal waste is key to the brand’s values, and every leather hide’s unique imperfections are honoured, making each bag slightly different. Your traveling buddy can keep both hands free and their valuables safe with this Disc Bag, that acts as a chic, modern-day fanny pack.

10. Hiptipico, Leather Embroidered Strap, $132 USD

Based in Panajachel, Guatemala, Hiptipico is an ethical brand that showcases the traditional craftsmanship of Mayan artisans. Handcrafted by indigenous communities using high-quality sustainable materials, Hiptipico encourages local entrepreneurial spirits and empowers families and communities. The travel photographer in your life will love the unique personalization of their gear.

11. et Cie Studios, Petite Indigo Square Pouch, $40 CAD

Born from an attachment to making things with your hands, et Cie Studios is all about collecting the old and discarded to creating the new and treasured. With fabrics sourced from Japan from vintage indigo, the traveler in your life will appreciate this pouch that is an ode to a country rich in heritage and culture. Et Cie offers patch & repair services on all indigo pieces, so no matter where this pouch travels to, it’ll last a lifetime.

12. Accidentally Wes Anderson, $44 CAD

From the IG account @accidentallywesanderson with a community of over 1 million, Accidentally Wes Anderson tells the stories behind more than 200 of the most beautiful, idiosyncratic and interesting places on Earth. Authorized by Wes Anderson himself, this book travels to every continent, identifying quirky landmarks and undiscovered gems that mimic the legendary filmmaker’s iconic style. Perfect for the traveler in your life who loves unexpected narratives, stunning photography and the beauty of this world.

13. RaisCase, The Back At It Bandana, $24 USD

For the traveler who likes to roam lightly, RaisCase’s The Back At It Bandana is the perfect intersection between health, safety, chic and practical. Versatile, washable and multifunctional, these beautiful, 100% cotton bandanas can be worn as a protective face covering, scarf, or headband. RaisCase uses handmade, artisan fabrics of the highest quality and designs, manufacturing everything from their facility in San Diego. Using 100% of its waste, this family-owned business’s values align with those of your earth-loving traveler friend.

14. Sonder Stays, Getaway, $200 CAD +

For the traveler who can’t get away these days, a stay with Sonder will be just the thing they need to quell their wanderlust. Akin to Airbnb, Sonder is an internationally-recognized hospitality brand that offers lofts, apartments, studios and hotel rooms across the world. Their mission is to provide an exceptional stay with comfort and modern design, at an accessible price. Their contact-free service also eliminates stress, letting your traveler friend soak in vacay vibes in their own city, for the perfect weekend getaway.

15. Monos, CleanPod UVC Wand Sterilizer. $109 CAD

For the germ-conscious traveler, the CleanPod sterilizing wand from Monos is an eco-friendly alternative to wasteful sanitizing wipes. Portable, easily stashable, and chemical/mercury-free, this UVC wand can kill up to 99.9% of germs and other pathogens in 30 seconds. The light has the capability to scramble up bacterial genetic code, rendering germs useless. Part of proceeds from each sale goes towards the United Way India COVID-19 National Response Fund, helping to provide food and supplies to hard-hit rural areas in India. With safety measures this legit, the wand-erluster in your life will be all set to take on the world.

16. Maude, Wipe, $12 USD

These water-activated, 100% compostable towels are made for personal care, anywhere. Conveniently compressed, they expand with water for an on-the-go refresh for the entire body. Naturally hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, and pH balanced, these towels gently clean skin and sensitive areas. Made from OEKO-TEX Certified viscose, each towel can be used twice, returning to the earth safely. For the traveler who likes to wander minimally, these towels wipe come in handy when showers are a distant dream of home.

17. Matador, FlatPak Toiletry Bottles, $34.99 USD

The FlatPak toiletry bottle from Matador is an ultralight, space-saving bottle designed for efficient travel, perfect for storing shampoo, lotions, liquids, etc. These bottles are 5x lighter and 3.5x more compact than traditional silicone travel bottles of the same volume. They only take up as much space as their contents, and are pliable enough to fit into tight spaces. For the traveler who is conscious of how wasteful disposable mini toiletry bottles are, these FlatPaks will be just the thing they need for and eco and easy trip.

18. Monos, Carry-On, $267 CAD

For the earth-conscious traveler, luggage from Monos will be a practical gift that aligns with their mindset. Monos is Climate Neutral Certified, the first luggage brand to join this certification in achieving net zero carbon emissions. They’re also 1% for the Planet members, donating 1% of revenue to environmental causes. Their ethos is centred around excellent design, where they believe in high-quality products that will accompany travelers on a lifetime of journeys. Help the traveler in your life carry on roaming the world, sustainably.

19. Campfire Stories, Cards, $14 USD

For the roamer who loves backcountry travel, gathering around firepits, and exploring wild terrain, this deck of cards from Campfire Stories will make your loved one’s next trip much more enjoyable and interesting. Included in this deck are 50 prompts on a range of fun topics, a great way to liven up a circle, learn something new about friends, and indulge in meaningful conversation. These prompts for igniting stories by the fire can be taken anywhere and played by anyone.

20. Hello Sunday, Oro Perfume Oil, $36 CAD – FSHS2021 for 20% off  

A beautiful blend of 9 essential oils, this roll-on perfume is perfect for sultry summer days and nights. For the traveler who is roaming minimally but still wants the indulgence of scent, this gorgeous vegan perfume is water-free and encased in glass, allowing for its natural ingredients to shine, while also helping your traveler friend reduce their plastic footprint. Dedicated to cultivating the power of plants, Hello Sunday believes in nurturing the relationship we have with ourselves and with the earth. Help your traveler friend get their vacation rolling with this gift!

You might also like: The Sustainable Guide to Bali


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