Backpackers are a notoriously difficult bunch of people to buy anything for. There are usually two types: those who pack as little as possible and those who pack everything but the kitchen sink!
Fortunately, if you understand that and know the kinds of things they need, it can be far more straightforward than you might think. This post will cover six amazing things that every backpacker would love (regardless of whether or not they are over or under pack).
OK, so starting with something that might sound sacrilege to those who regularly trek, walk, or indeed, backpack. After all, shoes are highly personal things, and most folks will tell you that they need to select their own pair of footwear. However, it makes the first spot on this list purely because if you look at the feet of your average backpacker, you can usually tell that they don’t think enough about the various places their feet will walk. You can see some who sport flip flops, while others opt for clumpy hiking boots. Unfortunately, these are both great examples of what not to wear when traveling throughout the world.
Instead, you should go for something more akin to a trail shoe. Trail shoes are typically made from a mix of materials, such as a mesh upper, rubber outsole, and a cushioned midsole. They often include gaiters that allow the wearer to walk in shallow water. Some of the best gaiters are made with a waterproof, breathable membrane that also keeps out dirt and debris.
The shoe should be supportive enough for long distances and flexible enough for uneven ground. They represent the best of all possible scenarios and are, thus, the perfect gift! Nevertheless, you must ensure to choose a well-known brand such as Salomon or Moosejaw.
It is often possible to find excellent discounts on even these top brands if you search around. For example, if you are looking for Moosejaw promo codes, you can simply check online and see what comes up. The same will be valid for almost any other brand you can think of. However, the main point here is that you can buy your backpacking mate a fantastic pair of shoes from the top brands and even save some money to boot (pun not intended!).
What can you buy the backpacker who has everything or wants for nothing? Insurance, of course! Insurance is an attractive option because you can bet your bottom dollar that they will not have considered insuring themselves (especially if they are younger). Therefore, you can be a sensible friend who buys them a gift that is actually helpful and something they will genuinely appreciate. It is up to you how much coverage you want to get, but if it is a gift, you shouldn’t be stingy and try to get the highest level that includes most things. However, if you are also on a budget, you should ensure that it contains medical evacuation to a developed country where they can be treated appropriately.
Travel First Aid Kit
So it seems as though this list will have a heavy focus on the scarier aspects of traveling, but this will be the last medical-related gift you see here, promise! Nevertheless, a first aid kit is a really great gift as it will ensure that they can administer first aid to themselves or others in an emergency, which can sometimes be the difference between life or death. However, there are three caveats:
- It must be portable and easy to pack.
- It should come in a robust case that is waterproof and tear-resistant.
- It should be suitable to the environment they will be backpacking in (e.g., tropical, polar, etc.).
Collapsible Water Bottle
Drinking enough water while reducing plastic waste can be challenging in less developed countries; making a collapsible water bottle the perfect present. Ensure any you buy is tough enough to last the course and BPA-free. You can purchase a carrying case to put around their shoulder for hands-free drinking for extra points!
Anyone who has visited places less traveled knows that the noise can sometimes be overwhelming. By getting them a decent pair of noise-canceling headphones, you will be ensuring them a decent night’s sleep throughout their trip!
Personal Hygiene Kit
By buying them a personal hygiene kit, you are not commenting on their current standards but instead emphasizing the importance of keeping clean and well-groomed when on the road. Too many backpackers think they can forgo personal hygiene when in less developed locations. This is unhealthy and can cause all manner of issues, but it is also rude and generally considered poor form. Almost everyone worldwide makes an effort to look their best, even in unfavorable circumstances. Therefore, anyone traveling to another country should also make an effort to stay well-groomed. A small personal hygiene kit can assist in this process.
Also, Backpacker Meals
So there you have it, a mixture of exciting and valuable gifts that you can purchase for the backpacker in your life. From the correct footwear to insurance, there are plenty of things you can get that will make their lives far more enjoyable on their travels.