Travel Loot

17 Charming Global Gift Ideas Under $300

by Team Gentedimontagna
Kantha Photo courtesy of Kantha.

You need a big-ticket gift for your favorite traveler. Without, you know, actually buying them a big ticket to somewhere. We have more than a few ideas. Seventeen, actually.


It's hard to travel without your one, true love. So bring that bitch with you! Luggage company Arlo Skye launched their first travel bag for pets, and it easily sits on top of carry-ons and check-ins. Made of breathable memory foam for a comfy passage, the bag has exits on the top and side, four-way ventilation, zippered pockets, and an easy pack-and-fold compactness. Every purchase means a 10 percent bone thrown to NY-based shelter Animal Haven. ($250)

We love this small resort wear line (its name means "door wide open" in Spanish) for its versatility and easy elegance. Tie-back tops and pareos round out the line, but the tie-waist culottes feel particularly of the moment — any moment, whether its walking cobblestone streets or chasing the water's edge on a sunset beach stroll. ($168)

Choose your leather color and monogram for your zip pouch, passport case, eye mask, and luggage tag in this personalized and very handsomely packed travel kit for your favorite frequent flier. ($170)


Engrave a delicate bracelet with the latitude and longitude of your loved one's favorite place on Earth. The bangle has a hinge and snap closure and looks great in sterling silver, rose gold, or 14- or 22-karat. ($190 and up)


Those little white buds hanging in our ears are ubiquitous, but think about what's missing from your sound experience: depth, warmth, richness. Master & Dynamic, premium quality audio tool builders, have jumped into the wireless earbud market with a version that's compact and handcrafted in acetate. The stainless steel case is also its charger. And you can customize your fit so that the buds stay snug and stay put. ($299)

Local Lejos designs contemporary home products like bowls and baskets using traditional global techniques. The Francois set is a curated collection of seven woven designs made in Rwanda. They can be functional (on a table or shelves) or decorative (hung on the wall) or both. ($255 for set of seven)

Three sisters came together to launch a line of ethically made resort caftans in handmade fabrics from artisans all over the world. The Laos robe is available in chocolate and desert sand and can be worn around the house or out and about. A portion of every purchase goes to sustaining heritage crafts and supplemental education and child welfare in the communities in which they work. ($145-$160)


It's almost like you can tell the mark of a good hotel or restaurant by whether it has Aesop toiletries in the loo. The Australian line is edging into the home with its first design object, a beautiful solid brass oil burner made by Henry Wilson, a burgeoning designer from Down Under. All it requires is a few drops of your favorite oil and a tea light to get going. ($170)

The bright, bold graphic designs of artist Karan Singh will turn any living room wall or corridor into a bright spot. Featuring iconic global imagery — lucky cat, paper fan, cherry on top — the designs explore the tensions between fine and commercial art and are sold in limited editions of 15. ($100 and up)


Any good traveler needs a good bag. This sharp option in leather and canvas has compartments for easy access, an adjustable strap for comfort, and do-good overtones. Designed in Austin, Texas, each baag sold helps fund a year of education for a child in need. ($250)


Knit in Brooklyn from pill-free, curl-free, breathable, consciously-sourced Royal Baby Alpaca fiber from Peru. It is a primo throw blanket for keeping cozy all winter long. ($295)

Think about souvenirs in a new way. With Tyler Morris Woodworking's beautiful hardwood leaf press, you can preserve finds from your latest treks, hikes, forest bathing excursions, or simple walks in the park. The press kit includes the 50 sheets of blotting paper twelve acrylic (plexiglass) frames. ($150)

Couldn't we all use a little extra protection these days? The 14k-gold hamsa pendant is truly teeny-tiny. The ancient Middle Eastern amulet symbolizes luck, happiness, and good fortune and comes with a white diamond and a gold cable chain. When you buy on the Olivela site, 20 percent of the purchase goes directly to charities benefitting the education of Syrian refugees through CARE. ($295 in rose, white, or yellow gold)

Lined with traditional Haitian oil painting on canvas, this backpack makes for easy slinging over the shoulders before a hike up a mountain, along a beach, or on city streets. Comes in tanned black or bright yellow. Every Deux Mains purchase supports the Haitian economy, through fair trade, up-cycling, a dignified workplace for women, and a 100-percent solar-powered eco factory. ($154)

A School House Electric exclusive, this retro poster, matted and framed, is designed by Ello There and printed on archival paper composed of 100 percent cotton rag. An heirloom for the outdoorsy folks in your life. ($299)

Soraya Hennessy's cheeky handmade bucket bags are pure fun in the sun. The line celebrates the beautiful work of Wayuu artisan women in Hennessy's native Venezuela, with an American twist. ($285)

Hand-stitched in Bangladesh from six layers of recycled sari cloth, the premium quality, ethically made, fair-trade kantha quilts are a beautiful handicraft and symbol of redemption: Women removed from sex trafficking are retrained in the Bengali tradition of blanket making. Wrap yourself (or someone you love) in this generous, dignified textile. ($60-$220)

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