No matter if you are looking for a birthday gift or a gift for another special occasion: Finding useful gift ideas for digital nomads that don’t cost the world is not that easy! After all, nomads often live a fairly minimalistic life so buying any big items won’t work. That’s why I have collected some of the best gift ideas for digital nomads and frequent travelers. These are perfect gifts for anyone who’s on a tight budget. Have a look and get inspired!
Best Gift Ideas For Digital Nomads
1. Mobile Hotspot
Every digital nomad, and probably most travelers today, too, need a good internet connection. If there is no internet we can’t get our work done or stay in contact with clients, employers or our family and friends.
Unfortunately, there are many places around the world where WIFI is either terrible or super expensive. A nice workaround: mobile hotspots!
All you need to do is buy a local SIM card, which you can get at most airports or city centers, top it up with credit, insert it into the hotspot, and connect your smartphone or laptop. A great and cheap solution for everyone who likes to stay in a country for a bit longer and can’t get proper internet otherwise.
2. Global Hotspot
Now let’s bring the mobile hotspot to the next level: a global hotspot! Both are brilliant gift ideas for digital nomads. But this one is using a revolutionary technology that works entirely without local SIM cards. All you have to do is press the start button and the portable router connects with an existing network.
I personally LOVE my Solis hotspot (formerly Skyroam) and take it with me wherever I go. It’s a great emergency solution in case there is no other WIFI available. Since you only pay for the days you actually use it, it is also a fairly cheap alternative.
If you want to find out more about this device, check out my Solis review with everything you need to know.
3. Laptop Sleeve
Although I love my laptop more than any other item I own, I have to admit that I don’t really treat it the way it deserves to be treated. Most of the time I just stuff it in my handbag and off I go. The result: They don’t survive too long at my side. And I’m pretty sure there are many other travelers or digital nomads out there, who are just like me.
A proper laptop sleeve won’t protect it from anything, but at least it can save it from scratches and minor hits. A must-have for everyone who frequently travels with their laptop. The Tomtoc 360° Protective Laptop Sleeve comes in many different colors, is super lightweight, and is the perfect protection for your laptop!
4. Keyboard Protector
Since we are talking about protection now, another great digital nomad gift idea is a keyboard protector. Especially coffee addicts will know the struggle: It happens so easily that you spill your drink on your laptop keyboard. One tiny second can kill your most important working tool.
That’s why a keyboard protector is a fabulous gift idea. It is small and light and fits easily into any bag. Perfect not only for the clumsy ones ;) My preferred one is the MOSISO Keyboard Cover– cheap and does what it’s supposed to do.
5. Roost Laptop Stand
Sitting in front of a laptop all day can be very exhausting for your body. Since you have to bend slightly downwards to the screen, your posture changes and your neck and back will hate you soon.
A good way to minimize the impact is to use a laptop stand. The screen will sit higher so that you can keep your neck straight. This will make working online so much easier in the long run! A great solution for digital nomads who can’t drag a big computer screen around with them.
Most digital nomads I’ve met so far use the Roost Laptop Stand because it’s so small and light.
If you want to learn more about what remote work does to your health, check out the linked article. It also gives you plenty of advice to stay physically and mentally healthy while working online.
6. External Keyboard
When you use a laptop stand you will also need an extra keyboard. Why? Well, holding your hands up to your laptop keyboard on the stand is not going to work ;)
Make sure that the keyboard is small and light enough so it can be carried around easily. My recommendation here would be the Anker Bluetooth Ultra-Slim Keyboard, available on Amazon.
7. External Drive
There will never be enough storage on your laptop if you are a digital nomad. Plus, it is a good idea to have a backup copy of your important data. You can either store it online somewhere or/and on an external drive.
This comes particularly handy when you need to access it from somewhere with no internet connection, e.g. on a long train or bus ride. That’s why an external drive is another great digital nomad gift idea. I personally use the Elements Portable External Hard Drive and can definitely recommend it.
8. External Battery
On a 12-hour flight and your phone battery dies? Very annoying. No more listening to music, no more sorting out photos, no more work. The only thing that can save you right now is an external battery.
I bring my power bank, the Anker PowerCore+ Mini, on any type of long-distance drive or flight. Often even on a long hike, too. You never know what happens. Maybe you get lost or need any other type of help just when your phone battery dies. Since it is very small and lightweight, it fits into any bag without difficulties.
9. Portable Speaker
Just a nice little gadget for every traveler and digital nomad who enjoys listening to music with nice sound quality. Hanging around at the beach or going on a hike is way better with background music.
Maybe some digital nomads need it for work? For instance, a video editor needs to hear the sound of his work in decent quality but his laptop speakers might not be the best.
In any case, portable speakers are another great gift idea for digital nomads and travelers alike. If you can’t decide which one to pick, go for the OontZ Angle 3 Enhanced Stereo Edition IPX5.
In a similar range of gift ideas for digital nomads, you can find proper headphones. Every remote worker will need them at some stage. Not only for listening to music, but also for talking to family and friends and, most important, for connecting with clients and employers.
They belong to every digital nomad starter kit and need to be of decent quality. Make sure they have an integrated microphone and are noise-canceling. It’s more or less a personal preference if you decide on earphones that cover your entire ears, like the Bluetooth Headphones Over Ear, or earbuds, like the Symphonized NRG 3.0 Earbuds Headphones. I always go for the latter but buy whatever works best for you or your friend/relative.
11. Electronic Cable Organizer
This is a problem that we all know: every electronic device has its own cable. Trying to keep them all nice and organized in your bag usually ends up in complete cable chaos.
But worry no more! This super handy cable organizer, like the ProCase Travel Gear Organizer, helps you keep it all tied together and structured. Perfect for everyone who travels a lot and works online.
12. Remote Jobs
Yep, you read that right. While you can obviously not find a remote job for someone else, you can help them find one. How? With FlexJobs!
FlexJobs is a fantastic online job portal that gives you access to thousands of hand-screened open job positions. Here you can find all types of flexible jobs, such as remote jobs, part-time jobs, or flexible-schedule jobs.
Big corporate companies such as Apple, Dell, SAP, and Hilton use this platform to look for new employees. But you will also be able to find jobs with smaller companies or even start-ups. Whatever you prefer!
You can buy your friend (or whoever) a gift certificate for e.g. 1 month, which is only USD 14.95! A truly life-changing gift that is surely much appreciated!
13. Productivity Planner
While there are many people out there who prefer to plan their week on digital tools, others love using a proper paper-based planner. While I have always considered myself as the former one, I found this paperback productivity planner a little while ago and believe it is completely genius!
First of all, it helps you set prioritized goals for each week. At the end of the week, you can reflect on your achievements and rate your productivity, which is a great way to spot weaknesses and improve. In addition, this Productivity Planner that I’ve found on Amazon also contains many inspirational quotes to keep you motivated.
Definitely a brilliant gift idea for every digital nomad, freelancer, or entrepreneur!
14. Foldable Backpack
Although, digital nomads are usually not hardcore backpackers they surely like to go out and explore the country they have just settled in. Since you don’t want to carry around too much luggage, many nomads don’t bring an extra backpack.
Here is the perfect solution for that: The HIKPRO 20L Backpack is foldable, super small (pocket-sized!) and weighs almost nothing. Perfect to fit in your big backpack during flights and a handy alternative to the usual day bags.
Yes, books are always a great gift idea. There are some books that are particularly useful for travelers and digital nomads.
Vagabonding by Rolf Potts, for example, is brilliant for everyone who wants to learn about finances, cultural shocks, or frustrations you might experience during your travels. All with a good portion of humor – an absolute classic.
The Art of Non-Conformity by Chris Guillebeau is a must-read for every digital nomad. It inspires its readers to live life on their own terms and to look further than the normal conventional lifestyle.
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg teaches you very interesting facts about habits and shows how to get rid of the bad ones and exchange them for good ones. Life-changing knowledge! Seriously.
Become a Digital Nomad by Denise Mai (yep, that’s me) helps you prepare your digital nomad lifestyle and gives you the best tips and tricks on how to make the most of your location-independent life, e.g. how to save money while traveling, how to make friends, how to stay fit, how to find the best accommodation and much more!
If you want to find more must-read books for digital nomads and travelers, head over to the linked blog post to find 17 super inspirational and helpful books and ebooks.
16. Gift Cards
I know, it sounds boring. But honestly, some vouchers or gift cards are just the perfect presents. Here are some of my favorite gift ideas for digital nomads:
Airbnb gift card. Digital nomads move places more or less frequently. Some like to stay in Airbnb long-term, while others only use it for a couple of nights. Either way, a great choice.
Uber voucher. Digital nomads are usually dependent on public transportation or taxis. Uber is common in so many cities today, that you can’t go wrong with some credit for that.
Miles. Are you a member of any frequent flyer program but don’t really need your miles? Or maybe you are collecting credit with a supermarket bonus program? Often they can be exchanged for air miles, too. Travelers or digital nomads, who fly a lot, would probably appreciate it if you transferred some miles to their account.
Skype credit. Many people use Skype today to stay in touch with family or friends or to connect with clients and employers. A Skype credit is a great gift idea for every nomad.
App store voucher. There are so many apps out there that are super helpful for digital nomads. Just think of Headspace for meditation, Evernote to keep track of all important small notes, or Rescue Time to increase productivity.
For more helpful apps for digital nomads, have a look at the linked post to find more than 20 great apps for nomads.
17. Your Time
Yep, it sounds corny. But your time is probably the most valuable gift idea for digital nomads. Because they move around a lot they don’t get to see their family and friends as often as they wish to.
So if they are around, they would love to enjoy your company. Maybe you can plan a little road trip or a fun night out or simply an evening cooking dinner together?
As said before, many digital nomads are living fairly minimalistic life. They don’t care too much about materialistic possessions. Experiences are far more valuable to them than any other gift you could buy.
Next time they are around, make sure you can spare a little time to spend with them. I guarantee they will be very thankful.
Gift Ideas for Digital Nomads: Got Some Ideas?
As you can see, there are quite a few great and affordable things you could buy your digital nomad friend or relative. There are plenty of choices that can either be work or travel-related and many small gadgets that can improve the life of a traveling remote worker a lot.
Even if you don’t have much money to spend, you can get the perfect gift: Your time. Experiences are far more valuable than any type of big present you can ever make. So in case you are on a small budget, simply spare some quality time and you are going to make your nomad friend happy.
I hope these gift ideas for digital nomads gave you some inspiration for what you can get your loved one for Christmas, a birthday, or any other occasion.
Do you have other ideas of what to get for a nomad? Let us know in the comment section below!