9 Perfect Travel Gifts (2015 Edition)

Are you looking for the perfect gift for the traveler in your life? Here are 9 travel-tested products that will make any budding traveler smile.

9 Perfect Travel Gifts (2015 Edition) 9 Perfect Travel Gifts (2015 Edition)

Visiting Isla del Sol on Lake Titicaca, in Bolivia

My trip to Isla del Sol in Bolivia was short but very sweet. Check out these stunning photos and learn about some of the folklore behind this special place.

Visiting Isla del Sol on Lake Titicaca, in Bolivia Visiting Isla del Sol on Lake Titicaca, in Bolivia

Becoming a Shaman

I've been teasing you with tales of transition for months now. So finally, here it is: my next big step in life - I'm becoming a shaman.

Becoming a Shaman Becoming a Shaman

Travel Vaccinations – Yes or No?

by Nora Dunn on November 23, 2015

I’m just going to come out and say it: I don’t believe in travel vaccinations. Or at least, I don’t believe in getting vaccinated to the hilt before traveling. Here’s why, along with some guidelines for what to get (and when, and where), as well as what 17 other travelers do.


Travel Vaccinations: A Money Grab?

Years ago (in my pre-Professional-Hobo days), I took a vacation to South Africa. Knowing I’d be in malaria-land and visiting various spots with potential for exotic ailments, I visited a travel clinic in Canada and asked what I needed to do.

The doctor gave me a list of “highly recommended” vaccinations, including (but not limited to) the full range of hepatitis shots, malaria medication, and a yellow fever shot just for good measure. In addition to the travel clinic visit charges, this amounted to hundreds of dollars in vaccinations requiring multiple visits.

When I balked at the hepatitis vaccination regime, the doctor put a map of the world in front of me.

“All the blue countries on this map are countries that have a hepatitis problem. So really, if you want to travel at all, you should have these vaccines,” he said, logically.

Just about every country on the map was blue, except for North America.

When I told a friend visiting from the UK what happened, he said “Isn’t that funny. Before I started my trip, I went to a travel clinic in the UK. They put that same map in front of me! Except every country on my map was blue except for Europe!”


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In this series, we’re exploring the various careers of world travelers, and how they make ends meet financially while living abroad. Yes, financially sustainable full-time travel is possible!


Jon & KachJon Howe and Kach Medina Umandap of Two Monkeys Travel Group have been living and traveling around the world for about 2.5 years. They hover between active travel and expat life; after a stint of travel, they like to choose a place to live for a while to make a deeper connection with the people and places they visit. They’ve amassed a variety of skills that allow them to work anywhere in the world. Read on to learn more about how they do it!


Where have you traveled to?

We’ve been to Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Singapore, India, The Maldives, The UK, Croatia, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Colombia, and Brazil.


Please describe what you do for income.

We both started out teaching English in Hanoi Vietnam, but when we traveled around India, we trained as yoga teachers and massage therapists, specializing in Ayurveda therapy. When we moved to Peru, we taught private English classes and turned the spare room of our apartment into a massage therapy room. In October 2014 we started to take Two Monkeys Travel more seriously and it started to generate some income for us, as well as simply supporting our travels.

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9 Perfect Travel Gifts (2015 Edition)

by Nora Dunn on November 9, 2015

It’s that time of year again! Here is a collection of travel-friendly products and services that I’ve had a chance to test-drive over the course of this year – and can heartily recommend to you. They make perfect gifts for the traveler in your life – whether or not they’re always on the road.

And as you’ll notice, you’ll get some customized discounts on some of the goodies in here….


Kinivo Bluetooth Headphones

2015 kinivo

As an ultra-light traveler, I’m an earbud fan. Period.

But the folks at Kinivo convinced me to try their BTH240 wireless bluetooth headphones by sending me a pair. Skeptical as I was, I was immediately impressed with how small they folded up into their little pouch, which fits amicably in my purse. And these headphones can actually be worn under the hair (around the neck instead over the head), so I don’t feel ridiculous or conspicuous, and they’re designed to stay in place on the ear nicely. The band however, isn’t adjustable, and as such they’re a bit big (on me) when worn this way.

But it’s a small concession to make considering the great quality of sound, and the bluetooth connectivity; I don’t have to worry about cords getting tangled or keeping my phone within cord’s length. My phone stays in my purse while I toggle music, adjust volume, and even take calls (there’s a noise-cancelling microphone for phone use) with the multi-function buttons on the headphones.

So…I’m a fan.

Kinivo just released the next generation of these headphones: the BTH260 which has a longer battery life, high definition sound, and a super-comfy over-the-head style.

Try out the BTH260 headphones by clicking here and using the discount code URBN2015 for $30 off!


SteriPEN Ultra

2015 steripen

SteriPEN is a handy tool that sterilizes water with ultra-violet light and makes it drinkable in about one minute.

I used a previous version of the SteriPEN when I traveled through Asia years ago, and I found it not only useful, but also cost-effective and environmentally friendly in that it saved me from buying bottled water everywhere I went. But when I downsized my packing list, my SteriPEN was one of the (regretful) casualties.

So I was thrilled when SteriPEN sent me one of their latest models: the SteriPEN Ultra. This thing is slick, easy to use, and USB rechargeable. I use it all the time in Peru, and one charge lasts forever (I’ve only charged it once in months of use). (See also: Dealing With Parasites: A Guide to Clean Water Around the World).

If you know somebody who is traveling to a developing country, the SteriPEN Ultra is an epic stocking stuffer.


Anatomie Pants – Kate

2015 kate pants

I’ve long been a fan of Anatomie’s designer travel clothing, and have become something of a poster child for them. Every year I buy something new from Anatomie to complement my travel wardrobe, and I love just about everything I get.

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Financial Case Study: Natalie Sisson, Suitcase Entrepreneur

11 | 02 Financial Case Studies

Natalie Sisson, suitcase entrepreneur, has built multiple 6-figure businesses while living out of a suitcase over the last 5 years. Here’s how she does it:

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Visiting Isla del Sol on Lake Titicaca, in Bolivia

10 | 26 Bolivia

My trip to Isla del Sol in Bolivia was short but very sweet. Check out these stunning photos and learn about some of the folklore behind this special place.

Read the full article →

Financial Case Study: Dalene and Pete Heck – Writers, Photographers, Media Marketers

10 | 19 Financial Case Studies

The inner workings of the careers and incomes of full-time travelers Dalene and Pete Heck, whose multi-faceted businesses allow them to live on the road.

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Digital Nomads: Internet Speed Makes a Difference. (Do you Care?)

10 | 12 Life as a full-time traveler

Should internet speed be the main priority for digital nomads when choosing destinations? It’s debatable. Here’s some food for thought.

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Financial Case Study: Rachel Denning & Family, Online Teacher and Web Services

10 | 05 Financial Case Studies

Rachel and Greg Denning and their 6 kids have been living on the road since 2007. Here’s how they earn money and financially sustain their travels!

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How (and Why) to Visit Your Hometown Without Going Crazy

09 | 28 Life as a full-time traveler

When you travel long-term, visiting your hometown isn’t always easy. Here’s how – and why – to visit your hometown and make it a success for all.

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