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Saturday, November 6, 2010

Giving The Gift of Travel 11.6.10

The holidays are coming up quickly and, sometimes, it can be difficult to figure out what to buy for everyone on your list. Well, how many people on your list like to travel? Almost all of them, right? Your gift options just got easier! Give the gift of travel these holidays and your recipients will thank you all year long. Not only will your gift be useful, but they can use it to go wherever they want!

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So, now you want to give the gift of travel, but you need to know how? Luckily, since I brought it up, I'm going to give you some excellent suggestions. There is a huge selection of travel gifts you can give, ranging from luggage to miles, making it easy to fit a great travel gift fit into your budget and work for the person you're giving it to.

Frequent Flyer Miles. If your recipient has a favorite airline, this is a good addition to their already accumulating account. There are many airlines right now who have incentives for you, perfect for the holidays:
  • Buy Delta miles by November 30 and get 50% more miles as a bonus! This is also good for gifting miles and transferring miles. You must buy, gift, transfer in increments of 2,000 miles, but you will look like an even bigger gifter with this deal.
  • Alaska Airlines would like to give you 25% bonus miles when you buy, gift or transfer by Decmber 31st. You must purchase, gift or transfer in increments of 1,000 miles. 
  • American Airlines wants to give YOU a gift for each one you buy for others. For every 6,000 miles you buy/gift by November 30, you will receive 2,000 bonus miles for yourself. You can earn up to 20,000 bonus miles. That's enough for a free ticket! You must buy in increments of 1,000 miles.
  • JetBlue is getting in on the gifting action, too. If you buy/gift TrueBlue points by January 15, 2011, you will get an additional 25%. You have to have a JetBlue account to buy or gift.
Think frequent flyer miles are a little bit impersonal? Well, you can always buy an airline gift card! Each airline has these in all denominations (usually $50 or more) and they are just as easy to use as a credit card when purchasing travel. Whether your giftee travels frugally on Southwest or internationally on Lufthansa, you'll find just the right fit for them.

You have a Disney-lover on your list. This one is super easy. You have three choices for this person. 
  • You can get them an all-purpose Disney gift card (buy online or at any Disney Store location). They can use this in the Disney Store, on the Disney Store online or for anything Disneyland or Disney World, including park tickets, dining and shopping. 
  • Another other option is for the receiver who makes a trip to Disney regularly. You can help them out by buying Park Hopper tickets to Disneyland or Disney World. Disneyland tickets are also available at Disney Store locations and Disney online and or for a discount at your local AAA travel store and Costco's website. (You must be a member of either of these to get the discount.) These tickets are good for an entire year from purchase.
  • CityPASS is another great idea, as it includes a 3-day park hopper pass to both Disneyland and California Adventure and 1-day general admission to Universal Hollywood, SeaWorld and the San Diego Zoo or San Diego Zoo Wild Animal Park. 
Give the gift of a good night's sleep. I'm not talking about a new bed, but sort of. Buy hotel gift cards from their favorite hotel or hotel chain. You can gift them any denomination that feels comfortable for you, whether it's the equivalent of one night or one week. Everyone enjoys when their travel bill gets a little lighter.

Give the gift of organization. If you have a novice or intermediate traveler on your list, you can help them pack easier and lighter with some of these fun items.

Delsey Helium Fusion 25" Expandable Suiter Trolley, Sky Blue
New carry-on luggage is always a welcome gift, especially when it's as useful as this Delsey Heluim bag. It meets carry-on restrictions, holds a ton, is lightweight (even when full), rolls smoothly and fits perfectly in the overhead bin. It comes in black and blue and it's my choice of rolling carry-on. In fact, I'm in the market for a second one, so this is on MY Christmas list as well.

Eagle Creek Travel Gear Pack-It Cube, Palm

Pack-it cubes are all the rage. They keep your clothes neat and organized and easily packable. They come in a variety of sizes and colors, making packing with them like a big puzzle...except less confusing.

Pack Flat Back Up Bag by TravelonThe Travelon Pack Flat Back Up Bag is a nifty gift for those that travel to shop. It folds to practically nothing, fits right inside your regular bag and then unzips into a full-size carry-on when purchased souvenirs take up more space than you came with.

Travel Accessories 1-Quart Zip Bag with Bottles by Travelon Clear

Using those kitchen zip-top bags as your 3-1-1 bag is fine, but they are rarely reusable and aren't really all that user-friendly for your toiletry bottles. This great plastic quart-size bag has a sturdy zipper and a flat bottom. Your liquids will fit better and you can fit MORE in one of these. Even if something in your bag decides it needs to be freed from the confines of its bottle or tube, it will all remain inside this bag, instead of everything else in your carry-on bag. You'll wonder why someone didn't think of it sooner.

Knock Knock Travel Organizer

Help your fellow traveler plan the vacation of a lifetime with the Knock Knock Travel Organizer. This binder is the best accessory I own, because it holds itineraries, packing lists, budget estimates, receipts and more! Whatever you need this to do, it does. There's even a fun map in the back with stickers to mark where you've been and where you want to go.
I came across this funky map and knew it needed to go on my wishlist. It's call the Scratch Off Where You've Been Map. It uses the "technology" of scratcher tickets and is a fun alternative to those boring pin maps. You scratch off all the countries you've been to and continue to scratch each time you travel. Cool, no?

Do you want these things for yourself? If, like me, you are the traveler and you want any of these things for your own holiday list, go to Kaboodle and start your list now. You can easily add anything on the internet to it with just the click of a button! I love it and have made various lists. What's even better is that you can email a link to your list to everyone who will be buying you a gift this year (or next or two years from now) and they can shop directly off of it, getting you exactly what you want! Add to it all year and be set for your birthday, Christmas, Hanukkah, Easter, Kwanzaa, Bonfire Day...whenever!

So, what's new with Shereen Travels Cheap? Guest blogging, that's what! In an attempt to spread my blogging net far and wide, I've had the privilege of submitting articles to a few places and having them put up for all eyes to see. Here's what's out there, should you be interested in reading more of what I have to say on various budget travel subjects. Click on the logos to go straight to the article.

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