Holiday gift guide: 9 gifts for the extravagant traveler
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You don’t need to spend a small fortune to land on the perfect gift for the most discerning travelers in your life — but if you have the means to go all out, it’ll definitely help make this year’s holiday season one to remember!
We’re rounding up some of our favorite high-end, yet practical picks, from the latest and greatest smartphone to an iconic roller bag designed to last you for decades.
iPhone 11 Pro
I was entirely sold on Samsung’s Galaxy Note10 as 2019’s traveler-friendly smartphone of the year — until Apple released the iPhone 11 Pro. Starting at $999, the Pro is not cheap, but if you’re looking for industry-leading quality in a do-it-all device — that also supports Apple’s must-have Messages app — you won’t do any better than this. From the extra-long battery life to unmatched image quality, it’s truly the best smartphone I’ve ever used — it even let me capture some truly extraordinary photos of the Northern Lights! Buy: Apple, $999
DJI Mavic 2 Zoom
More than a year after its debut, DJI’s Mavic 2 Zoom remains my top drone pick, thanks to its versatile 2x lens, excellent photo and video quality, and top-notch flying performance, with far better reliability and range than less expensive alternatives. It’s also compact and lightweight — I’ve managed to bring it along on a handful of trips, even when I opt to leave the rolling bag at home. Buy: Apple, $1,440
Apple Watch Series 5
The latest Apple Watch starts at $399, but your extravagant traveler commands nothing but the best. They’ll look dashing in a Series 5 with the 44mm Ceramic Case and Space Black Link Bracelet, commanding a whopping $1,749 — before tax. All models include the same hardware and software features, like an always-on screen, fitness tracking, an integrated compass and much more. Buy: Apple, $399-$1,749
Sony RX100 VII
For most photography, a top-of-the-line smartphone will usually do the trick, but sometimes you really need a powerful zoom — Sony’s RX100 VII is the camera to get, especially if you’re after a pocketable form-factor. Despite being small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, Sony’s top point-and-shoot offers a 24-200mm zoom lens, a large 1-inch sensor (for top-notch image quality) and exceptional performance, snapping extra-smooth 4K video or full-resolution photos at up to 20 frames-per-second. Buy: Amazon, $1,298 (as of 11/6/2019 9:30am EST — Details)
Bang & Olufsen Beoplay H8i
With a perfect 10/10 score, Bang & Olufsen’s H8i offers the best sound quality of the bunch, and the headset looks fantastic, too, with natural, black and pink finish options. You’ll get excellent audio quality, industry-leading noise-canceling performance and up to 30 hours of battery life, plus a comfortable, lightweight design. $312 may sound like chump change compared to some of the gear you’ll find here, but I honestly wouldn’t recommend spending any more for a higher-end set. Buy: Amazon, $312 (as of 11/6/2019 9:30am EST — Details)
Samsung Galaxy Fold
Samsung’s Galaxy Fold is the first smartphone-tablet hybrid, theoretically serving to replace both devices, as long as you’re willing to compromise a bit. It isn’t the best tablet, and it certainly isn’t the best smartphone — with a 4.6-inch display, when folded, you’ll have less screen real estate than with any other flagship device on the market — but it’s the 7.3-inch panel you’ll have after opening up the device that really makes this early-adopter favorite shine. And, as airlines continue to move away from seat-back entertainment, always having a large display at your disposal certainly won’t hurt. Buy: Samsung, $1,980
Sonos is synonymous with quality audio, and now the company’s sound tech is available in a portable package, complete with a long-overdue compatibility feature: integrated Bluetooth. The internal battery offers 10 hours of portable power in a water-resistant package, and you can seamlessly integrate the speaker with your existing Sonos setup once you bring it home. Buy: Amazon, $399 (as of 11/6/2019 9:30am EST — Details)
Rimowa Original Cabin
We’ve generally been quite happy with the Away luggage lineup, but if you’re really looking for a lavish pick, you can’t go wrong with Rimowa. I took the Original Cabin bag on a recent trip to Japan and fell in love. From the buttery-smooth wheels to the intuitive lock mechanisms, the build quality is unlike anything I’ve seen on another bag. If you can afford the $1,150 price tag, this is the luggage to get. Buy: Bloomingdales, $1,150
Zero-G Weightless Experience
Looking for a very special gift for the loved one that already has it all? A Zero-G Experience flight is the ultimate once-in-a-lifetime splurge. Tickets start at $5,400, but you can also book the entire plane if you prefer — for a cool $165,000, your gift recipient and up to 33 (!) friends can experience weightlessness all alone, with a private flight on the company’s modified Boeing 727, G-FORCE ONE. Buy: Zero-G, $5,400
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