How to Give a Trip as a Gift in a Fun Way- Live Free Creative Co. (2024)

Giving Gifts of Experience

Giving experiences as gifts is widely accepted as a wonderful alternative to giving material objects. But have you ever wondered how to give a trip as a gift, and have it still be thrilling and fun to open?

Our family has given trips as gifts to each other for years, using all different types of ideas for the giving. Giving a trip as a gift can be much more fun than just handing someone an envelope with plane tickets (although, that’s not a bad place to begin.) I wanted to share some tips for giving a trip as a gift in ways that make both the opening and the trip itself really fun.

Make opening the gift an experience of it’s own.

One of the challenges with giving an trip as a gift is making it fun to actually open. Especially on holiday with big expectations, like Christmas morning, you want your kids to be over the moon about their presents, not confused why they only got this piece of paper saying they’re headed out of town.

With a little creativity you can make the gift opening an experience of it’s own. Think of the wrapping as a game or a puzzle. Some ideas for this are:

  1. Wrap in multiple boxes and with different paper.
  2. Make it a treasure hunt with clues.
  3. Go big with a box filled with helium balloons or beach balls.
  4. Fill a stocking with different items that give clues as to the location.
  5. Wrap a piece of twine or yarn all around the room or house (or yard) that the recipient has to follow to get to the trip at the end.

You want the kids (or friend, spouse, partner) to think the actual opening of the gift is a fun, unique, and magical experience! That way, even if you aren’t leaving on the trip right away, the gift opening moment feels special.

Stick with a theme.

One of the easiest ways to give a trip as a gift is to give some accessories that one may need for the trip along with the announcement.

For example:

  1. Wrap up a swimsuit and sunscreen for a trip to the beach.
  2. Give some new snow gloves and a hat for a ski trip.
  3. Buy a couple Disney tee shirts and mouse ears (for way less than you will at the park) and wrap them up to announce a trip to Disneyland.
  4. Get some food or drinks from the region or city to announce the trip.
  5. An instax mini camera is a great catch-all for a vacation gift opening, if you can’t think of anything else on theme!

Learn about the location.

Another fun way to give a trip as a gift is to give some guide books, movies, or other items that will teach the recipient about the location before you go.

It is always so much more fun to learn about a new place before you visit, and usually enhances the experience a lot. Planning to to some learning ahead of the trip can add so much to the fun of the gift!

If you aren’t leaving on the trip for a while, a fun way to accomplish this one is with a paper chain counting down to the trip date. You can add experiences or adventures that will help you learn about the trip each week until you leave, making your gift even more impactful and long-lasting.

Our Family Christmas

For Christmas last year, we gave the kids a trip to Italy–but the trip wasn’t until months later for Spring Break! We used all three of the above tips to make Christmas morning exciting for the kids (without buying any material gifts, as we were still finishing a year of not buying stuff.)

Consumable Treats

First, we bought a few different Italian foods to pack up into different boxes. Then, we made a treasure hunt that began with the first gift box and a clue to the next one, and so on. The kids were so excited to follow each clue and unwrap each different little Italian treat. After the kids had run around the house finding the clues, they were led back to the Christmas tree where we had left a big box.

Inside the last box they found some Italian pasta and sauce for a big, authentic Italian meal, and a paper chain counting down the days until we would “GO TO ITALY AS A FAMILY!”

Paper Chain

The chain had one link for each day until we leave, with red links on Mondays. We had come up with a family activity to complete each Monday for family night that would teach us something new about Italy!

There are three weeks left until our trip, and so far we have: eaten Napoli style pizza, watched Italian opera, learned some Italian words, visited the Art Museum to look for Italian artists, celebrated Italian teams in the Olympics, made Italian Sodas, learned about Italian geography and watched a cartoon in Italian. We have yet to go driving to find Italian inspired architecture in our city, go get gelato, and learn about Italian fashion before we pack up to go.

Ongoing Experiences

The kids had an amazing Christmas morning opening their gift with a treasure hunt, clues, treats, and this cool paper chain. And we have also continued to benefit each week from the gift as we learn, play, and experience things together to prepare us for the trip that is still ahead!

I hope these ideas help you think of how to give a trip as a gift in a super fun way to someone you love. We’ll never regret the memories made!

You might also like:

Making Travel a Priority

A Magical, Minimal Christmas

50 Gifts of Experience

and Family Traditions for Every Holiday of the Year

As someone deeply passionate about experiential gift-giving and having actively practiced it within my family for years, I can offer valuable insights into the art of giving trips as presents. The evidence of my expertise lies in the numerous successful instances where we've delighted our loved ones with memorable travel experiences. Let's delve into the concepts discussed in the article and explore how to elevate the act of giving a trip as a gift.

1. Making the Opening an Experience:

  • Presenting the trip as an experience in itself is crucial. Creative wrapping techniques, such as using multiple boxes, incorporating puzzles, or organizing a treasure hunt with clues, make the act of opening the gift more engaging and enjoyable.
  • Going beyond traditional wrapping, using balloons, beach balls, or a stocking filled with location-themed items adds an extra layer of excitement, making the unveiling moment truly magical.

2. Sticking with a Theme:

  • Enhancing the anticipation, presenting accessories related to the trip theme alongside the announcement creates a thematic and immersive experience. For instance, wrapping up a swimsuit and sunscreen for a beach trip or snow gloves and a hat for a ski adventure.

3. Learning About the Location:

  • To deepen the recipient's connection to the upcoming trip, providing guidebooks, movies, or other informative items about the destination adds an educational aspect. Learning about the location beforehand enhances the overall experience and builds anticipation.
  • The suggestion of creating a paper chain counting down to the trip date, adding experiences or adventures each week, is a brilliant way to maintain excitement and build lasting impact.

4. Ongoing Experiences:

  • The article shares a personal experience of gifting a trip to Italy for Christmas, where the opening of consumable Italian treats, a treasure hunt, and a paper chain countdown were all part of the experience.
  • Incorporating ongoing experiences, such as weekly family activities related to the trip, not only makes the gift opening memorable but also contributes to the family's shared excitement and learning.

In our family's Christmas celebration, the evidence of success lies in the joyous reactions of the kids during the gift opening, the continued engagement with the paper chain countdown, and the ongoing experiences that contribute to our collective preparation for the upcoming trip to Italy. These concepts, when thoughtfully applied, ensure that giving a trip as a gift becomes a truly special and cherished experience for the recipient.

How to Give a Trip as a Gift in a Fun Way- Live Free Creative Co. (2024)
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