Have you ever bought so many souvenirs on a trip that you almost couldn’t get them all home? Join the club. It is easy to get caught up in the excitement of a new place and want to buy everything in sight to remember the experience. However, if you plan ahead for buying souvenirs, you are more likely to buy only what you absolutely must have and skip over the cute little tchotchkes that are not so cute once you get them home. Here are my top travel tips for souvenirs.
Souvenir Tip: Start (or add to) a Collection
Collect similar items each time you travel-whether you save shot glasses or seashells, t-shirts or ticket stubs. Buy something to add to your collection from each destination. Small items such as seashells can be glued into a shadowbox, hung on the wall and enjoyed year after year.
Souvenir Tip: Buy a Photo Album on Vacation
Buy a themed photo album from your destination. When it’s time to organize your photos and other memorabilia, you will have a book ready to be filled. It also helps when you are trying to find that picture of your big catch on that fishing trips five years ago – just pull out the album with the fish on the cover!
Souvenir Tip: Save Your Shopping Until the End of Your Trip
I know how hard it can be to resist shopping while on vacation. I also know how quickly those purchases can add up. Many hot travel destinations are littered with souvenir shops just beckoning you to come and part with your money. Unless you come across a truly unique item, use your trip to window shop and to compare prices and selection. Near the end of your trip you will have a better idea of exactly what you want to purchase and will save money too.
Souvenir Tip: Pack an Empty Suitcase
For those of you who are not going to heed my previous advice, anticipate your souvenir shopping by packing an extra empty suitcase. It should be a soft-sided piece or duffel that can be folded and packed into the bottom of your luggage without taking up much space. At the end of your trip, just fill the empty suitcase with all of your new treasures and check it at the airport!
Souvenir Tip: Ship it Home
Don’t skip the crystal vase or framed artwork that you love simply because you don’t think it will survive the trip home. Buy what you want and ship it home. Most gift shops and hotels offer concierge services that will pack and ship your souvenir. It may be worth the few extra dollars to get what you really want without having to worry about how to get it home.
By planning for souvenir purchases before your trip, you are more likely to enjoy your momentos, rather than having them end up in the garage sale or the attic with all of those other trinkets you simply had to have! Follow these top travel tips for souvenirs and you will be happier with your purchases and certain they will arrive home safely. Have a great trip, and have fun!
Source: Personal experience