“Actually the best gift you could have given her was
a lifetime of adventures.”
– Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
Gift giving season is upon us. Have you considered the gift of travel for your loved ones?
So many of us already have all the Stuff we can ever use. Experiences such as travel are another matter entirely. Material gifts from the mall or the catalog can easily be duplicated, broken, forgotten or lost in the shuffle. Gifts of travel can be much more personal, memorable, and unique to the recipient.
A gift of travel can say “I know what you really want and I want you to have it.” A certificate to be used for a river cruise, a visit to the ancestral homeland, or a return trip to a favorite destination can show that you really are paying attention and want to provide just the thing.
A gift of travel can say “I want to be with you.” Plans and deposit on a romantic weekend away or an extended family escape for cousins who hardly know each other can make it clear that time and experiences together are what you most want to create. (This sort of gift has the added benefit that you get to go along too!)
A gift of travel can be created to be flexible. Working with your travel agent (that’s me), you could actually book something and present the total package arranged to the smallest detail. But if you are less confident of your recipient’s travel availability, your gift can be presented as a gift certificate signaling your intent to provide a particular experience with as many details as you wish to include. With this approach you avoid cancellation or change penalties and the recipient gets to participate in the anticipation and planning of the trip. I will be happy to advise and help with any of these arrangements.
How do you get maximum impact on presentation of a gift certificate? (A lone envelope under the tree can look underwhelming.) This is where you bring your own creativity to bear by accessorizing. When I gave my husband (and myself) a cruise around southern Spain I was able to put together a nice collection of small useful or consumable things from Spain: a unisex apron with olives and leaves on it, Mario Batali’s cookbook on Spain, a nice red Spanish wine and a great chunk of Manchego cheese (thank you Concord Cheese Shop for selection help on the last two). Travel brochures and maps are great starting points. Add other inexpensive accessories which increase enthusiasm for the trip, and you will have something to wrap and present along with the note or your intentions. Mittens for everyone going on the ski trip, flip-flops and suntan lotion or sun block for the Caribbean beach trip, or a new stole or tie to wear on formal night on the Mediterranean cruise – all present options for clever gift presentation at the gift exchange.
Shopping for and selecting travel as a gift can be very quick and easy. Let me know if I can help you sort, select, and provide props!
Boundaries divide. Travel Unites.
11 December 2014