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The perfect gift for someone going on a sabbatical

Whether it’s for Christmas, their birthday, or a final going-away gift – thinking of a gift to give someone who is going abroad soon is a challenge, for sure! But we’ve got you! Find inspiration on this list and pick something that will make them feel extra special.  

First, let’s get practical! If the recipient is about to go on a sabbatical, avoid giving gifts that won’t be useful to them while traveling. A travel-inspired home decoration might be a great idea for someone returning from a sabbatical and ready to settle back home, but probably won’t be ideal for someone who is about to leave. Keep in mind that when traveling for a long period of time, that person will most likely have to declutter their house and get rid of a lot of things. So let’s not make their job any harder. Make sure to gift them things they actually need and want to have during their trip.


PS: If you are the one going on a sabbatical soon, use this list as your wish list or gift guide to help your loved ones know what to get you before your big trip! 


  • Packing Cubes: to help keep everything organized in their luggage
  • Portable Luggage Scale: because it’s hard to find a scale away from home and it’s very frustrating to be the one holding up the line at the airline counter to repack everything (or having to pay extra!) 
  • Passport Cover: to both protect and style their most precious object
  • Foldable Daypack: a backpack big enough to go trekking, but can also be made small enough to pack in their luggage
  • Dry Bag: to keep electronics and clothes dry, even during a monsoon
  • Hanging Toiletries Bag: to keep everything in one place and organized (and off the floor)
  • Travel-Sized Containers: to make sure all liquids are the right size and avoid having the security agent throw them away 
  • Cable Organizer: a little pouch to keep all USB chargers, etc organized. Because there’s nothing worse than digging for a phone charger and finding headphones instead
  • Noise-Canceling Headphones: a must-have in our book! Great way to feel alone even when surrounded by other people. 
  • Travel Plug Adapter: because we don’t go far without technology these days
  • Portable Charger: for the long rides without access to a cell phone charger
  • Portable Speaker: so they can bring the party wherever they go!
  • Eye Mask: for the airplane ride, but also for those nights when that street light just somehow ends up shining right in their eye
  • Ear Plugs: also for the airplane or any other rides, and to reduce street and party noise when trying to sleep (or just trying not to hear the person who’s talking right next to them – we’ve all been there) 
  • Sunglasses: a must-have when traveling and having more than one pair never hurt anyone!
  • Comfortable Pants: when on sabbatical comfort quickly becomes a #1 priority. No more slacks, button-downs, or heels – hello comfortable yoga pants! 
  • Reusable Water Bottle: to avoid plastic waste from plastic water bottles
  • Water Purifier: because there is nothing more frustrating than arriving late at night in a country with non-potable water and needing to brush your teeth. Or for any adventure to make sure they stay hydrated. Better yet, kill two birds with one stone with a water bottle that has a built-in filter!
  • Notebook: to remember all the crazy adventures they are having
  • Kindle: to read on the go. And you can pre-load it with one (or many) of your favorite books!
  • Headlamp: this will get used more often than you’d think! They’re not just for camping! 
  • Microfiber towel: super useful and takes no space! 
  • Travel Gift Cards: because an Airbnb or Airlines voucher can feel like the best gift when traveling on the other side of the world! 
  • Small Box Filled With Love: ask their loved ones to write a loving message on a little piece of paper, put them all in a small box, and instruct them to read them one at a time when they miss home or are feeling a bit down

We hope you’ve found something they will like! If you have any other genius gift ideas, let us know! We’d love to add them to our list!


“It’s not how much we give, but how much love we put into giving” – Mother Theresa 

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