The “Back And Gone Again” Holiday Gift Guide

The “Back And Gone Again” Holiday Gift Guide

Ron SwansonWhen it comes to gifts I like simple and thoughtful, however, I do have a list of “welcome home son” gifts so my new adoptive family can shower me.


The above list has been in place for the last 10 years, so feel free to make a big kid happy.

When it comes to traveling there’s a bunch of things a road warrior doesn’t need. Travel pillows, travel scales and travel wallets suck…. basically anything with the word ‘travel” in its name isn’t meant for the road warrior.

Below are some suggestions that won’t break the bank and just might bring a smile to a travelers face.



Evernote – If you’ve never heard of or used Evernote consider it your personal document management system. I rarely carry or write on paper and Evernote makes that easier. Their “PLUS” edition is $35.00 per year and will open a completely new world for them.

Any.Do – I’m a list and task person, and Any.Do makes both of those easier. The free version will suit most but for $30.00 per year their premium offerings allows for collaboration, location-based reminders and a 1.5 Meg monthly upload of attachments.

TripIt – If you have a road warrior in your life purchase the “pro” version. For $50.00 per year, you get features that keep track of hotel and airline points, lets you know if you’re due a flight refund and will alert you if a preferred seat becomes available.

Software is marginally interesting, so let’s get to the fun stuff.


Amazon Fire Stick – Most hotel TV’s have HDMI slots, so why not use that NetFlix or Hulu account on the road. Since it’s small as well as light weight, it makes the cut.

Leatherman – Style PS8 useful tools that you can get through TSA. I use mine almost every day, even if it’s for opening a beer bottle.

WizGear Universal Air Vent Magnetic Car Mount – Looking for an easy way to mount your phone at eye level while driving? This is the answer, but buy 2 or 3 of them since you’ll be leaving them behind in rental cars.


 Friday Afternoon SpeakerIf you’re looking to crack a few beers and listen to tunes then UnCommon Goods has your gear. A Bluetooth speaker and a bottle opener all-in-one. Can’t vouch for the sound quality, but it’s a unique gift that most anybody would appreciate.

Tile – Attach a tile to anything that you value and when you eventually lose it Tile will help you find it. The Tile app will automatically remember the last time and place you last had your item so you know where to start looking.

Priority Pass – A perfect gift for a baby road warrior that hasn’t yet made status for the airport lounges. For an annual fee of $100.00, you can have access to airport lounges for only $27.00 per visit. While this sounds expensive, it gets cheaper if you break it down. Most airport meals will run $10.00 without beer. Airport Internet, if it’s not free, is at least $7.00. That’s $17.00 without additional snacks or booze, so $27.00 for a comfortable seat, snacks, Wi-Fi, drinks and a chance to meet some great people isn’t very bad. They also offer some additional plans if you travel more frequently.


Mini Travel Bar – While I’m not a raging alcoholic, yes I know the first rule is admitting that you have a problem, but my wife did buy me a simple travel bar several years ago. There’s nothing more dramatic when traveling than breaking this out at the end of the workday. The tubes make it under TSA’s 3.4 oz. liquid regulation, and besides no one wants to drink out of cups snagged from your hotel bathroom.

Wireless WiFi Camera – When traveling I like to know what’s going inside my home. Things like “is the dog on the furniture?”, or “is someone drinking my beer?” concern me. Those questions can be easily answered with an IP camera. Make sure they offer an app so you can monitor while on the road.

Travel Router – When traveling it’s rare that I leave home without a travel router. Convert a wired network connection into wireless so everyone can enjoy. Most allow you to connect a USB drive for file sharing as well as stream media from any connected device.

There you have it, some cool gift ideas that won’t break the back and are bound to make a weary traveler smile.

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