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Wines on the Wing

How to Put Travel Under the Christmas Tree

by Barbara Rogers

Dec 15, 2023

© Alla Rudenko | Dreamstime.com

Travel Tips

Thoughtful gifts don’t need to be tangible objects, and travel is a gift that gives twice — once when it’s “opened” and again when the trip begins. Travel gifts can be as small as a cozy dinner for two or a once-in-a-lifetime trip for the whole family.


Gifts could be a getaway at a country inn, ski lift tickets or an entire ski weekend, a sightseeing cruise, a whale watch or a day or more at a theme park (it doesn’t have to be Disneyland — a nearby fun park is a treat, too). Tickets to a concert or event can be combined with a hotel gift certificate for an even grander gift.


Not all presents fit under the tree, so how to present a family holiday or a dinner for two can take some imagination. Most country inns and many restaurants offer attractive gift certificates, so the recipient can choose the dates. You can give these in a holiday card or, to create a little more suspense, put the certificate inside a wrapped box to put under the tree.


If the gift is an entire trip, look for some related object to wrap. A toy sailboat could be packaged with a gift certificate and a brochure for a Maine Windjammer cruise, for example.


A family trip is a gift for everyone and you can personalize tantalizing gifts for individual family members to put under the tree. Several small individual gifts can give hints of what’s coming, building anticipation until the destination is revealed in a final gift for everyone — which might be copies of the airline reservation.


Think of small things, like a pocket dictionary or phrasebook for the local language or suntan lotion if it’s a tropical destination. You can suit these hints to special interests, too, such as a guide to the regional birdlife for an avid birder. A book about, or set in, the destination could be the final tip-off.


For children, look for engaging stories set in the country or region, or you might find a small toy of a native animal, such as a sloth for a trip to Costa Rica or a hedgehog for England.


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