Business travel can be stressful enough but having to travel for work during the holidays can leave you feeling guilty and pressed for time. You’re out of town when you should be at your child’s school play, spending time with family, and shopping for gifts.
Why not check some gifts off your shopping list while you're on the road? Here are some souvenirs that make good holiday gifts as well.
Wine Tote with a bottle of wine: Most souvenir shops carry wine totes. When you get back home, add a bottle of wine (maybe from the region you just visited) and, voila’, you’ve got a gift that any adult on your list will love. This sturdy canvas wine tote, with a clean classic design inspired by the Chicago flag, can accommodate up to 4 bottles of wine.
Tea Towels: Most souvenir shops also carry tea towels, the more sophisticated cousin of the kitchen or dish towel. Pick up a bunch of pretty ones (like these or these) and use them to wrap gifts or some homemade cookies in.
Story, Coloring, and Sticker Books: One of the hardest things about traveling for work is missing time with your kids. Bring back a story book, coloring book, or sticker book about the city you traveled to. It’s a great way to share your travel experience with your child while reclaiming some of that quality time you missed. Some stickers and fun temporary tattoos from Brooklyn-based company, Annie Draws Stuff, make great stocking stuff-ers for kids.
Little Luxuries: Treat your significant other to some small luxury that they wouldn’t buy for themselves. And opt for something made by local hands or a local brand. Your favorite guy probably spends $5 on his socks. So, treat him to these supple socks, hand-knit by the 125-year old company that makes socks for the Royal Family. Meanwhile she deserves a much-needed break. So surprise her with these candles from the London-based brand, Club 22. The rose gold container, chic design, and luscious scents will turn a simple dinner into a special occasion and a sudsy bubble bath into a spa moment. .
A tote bag to replace the Christmas stocking. If your holiday tradition includes putting small gifts inside a Christmas stocking, pick up a tote bag from the city you’re visiting to hang by the fireplace instead, like this one or this one. Then fill it with local treats from that city, for example pralines and Cajun popcorn seasoning in New Orleans or local teas and biscuits if you’re in London.
Traveling to Chicago for business? We asked Hilary of H. Bune Designs to tell us what she'd recommend to a visitor who only has two hours or an afternoon to spend seeing Chicago. If you love architecture or history, she suggests taking the Chicago Architecture Foundation Riverboat Tour. Hilary, who loves the tour enough to have taken it three times, says it's perfect if your free time is limited because the tour only lasts about 90 minutes