Here you are, suddenly browsing gifts for someone going to London. You only just found out that your best friend / child / grandchild / niece / nephew is going to study abroad in London—and it’s caught you quite off guard. Yes, it’s a long way, yes, you’ll worry about them, and, of course—you’ll miss them like crazy!
But, you’re also incredibly happy for them, too. This is the trip of a lifetime, after all. Think Harry and Megan, Big Ben, Platform 9 ¾, traveling on red buses, watching musicals on the West End, not to mention all of those cheap flights to mainland Europe. So, to send them on their way, why not treat them to thoughtful London gifts to help them make the most of their adventure?
Read on to find a comprehensive list of great gifts for someone going to London to study. From budget-friendly keepsakes to blow-the-budget backpacks, you’re sure to find something to mark this very study abroad trip!
9 great gifts for someone going to London for study abroad
1. Travel themed hanging photo display
This great little pack includes hemp rope, rainbow-colored wooden pegs and cardboard frames with a variety of cute travel-themed patterns for displaying photos. Your loved one can use the set to hang visible reminders of their nearest and dearest back home, or to show off snaps of the new places and friendly faces they’ve discovered in London.
2. Customizable leather passport holder
Send your student traveler to London in style with this beautiful leather passport holder. Not only is it the perfect pouch for a passport, it also has three pockets that can be used to hold boarding passes, bank notes, and credit cards. It’s available in a wide range of wanderlust-inspired designs with tons of fun quotes to choose from—and you can even add customizable text to the front cover. The perfect example of both a sentimental and useful travel gift for a student studying abroad.
3. Moleskine Voyageur travel journal
This beautiful travel journal is available in brown or blue, and is of the same high quality that you’d expect from a Moleskine product. This is a great gift to give before your loved one heads off on their adventure, as it includes packing lists, to-do lists and budget pages, as well as lined pages for writing and a pocket in the cover to store souvenirs like tickets
4. Europe Scratch Off Travel Map
One of the many benefits of living in London is that flights to mainland Europe are short and cheap. As your loved one travels, they can scratch off the gold foil of the country they’ve visited, to make a lifelong memento of all the places they go to while they’re studying abroad. The map is 32.5 x 23.4 inches and comes in a sturdy cardboard tube for safe transport in a backpack or suitcase, making it one of the best gifts for someone traveling to Europe!
5. Polaroid pocket photo printer
Save your friend the trouble of finding a photo printer in London by giving them this pocket-sized photo printer. They simply download the app, transfer photos from their phone to the printer via bluetooth and select their favorite pictures from their study abroad trip to print. The printer uses zero-ink paper, meaning that they won’t need to buy expensive ink, and the paper is sticky-backed so that the photos can be conveniently stuck into a journal.
6. JBL Waterproof portable bluetooth speaker
Make your friend the life of the party on the beaches of Ibiza or while doing morning yoga with friends in the Plaza Torre Eiffel! Everybody needs a portable speaker to bring their favorite tunes abroad with them, and your friend is no exception! And, at less than 7 inches long, it can be easily packed into a backpack for that next weekend getaway.
7. A stylish but high quality carry-on backpack
A huge part of any study abroad experience is traveling to other parts of your host country and, in this case, to other parts of Europe. The Cotopaxi 35 L backpack opens like a suitcase and has built-in compartments to keep all of the essentials organized, without the need for additional packing cubes. There’s also a hidden sleeve big enough to hold a laptop.
Pro tip: This pack is compliant for fitting not only in an overhead compartment, but also under an airline seat. This means you’re giving your loved one the gift of simple check in and budget airfares, too! We can’t get enough of London gift ideas like these.
8. Osprey 65 L backpack with wheels
Similar to our carry-on study abroad backpack recommendation above, one of the best gifts for someone going to London to study abroad is a high-quality backpack. This 65L option from Osprey, from high-quality materials, padded straps, and a padded hip-belt, can be easily carried when necessary but also features two large, durable wheels. Perfect for when they’re bumming around the train station, waiting to travel to Paris and beyond!
What’s more, this Osprey backpack opens like a suitcase, making it easy to store and access contents quickly. For a quick airport experience, its loose straps can be tucked away into a zippered compartment to avoid getting caught up in conveyor belts. #TravelPro!
9. A water-resistant, classic trench coat
The first thing you learn while studying abroad in London? It’s probably going to rain. A lot. Help your friend fit in with the locals and keep themselves warm and dry with this classic unisex trench coat from New York Rain. It’ll set you back a few dollars, but will prove to be a worthwhile investment that they never forget in the tube station or the back of a hack!
P.S. A mini travel umbrella would round out this gift perfectly.
Make your London gifts ones to remember!
Buy thoughtful gifts for someone going to London to let a loved one know how much you care for them and, when they’re far from home, it’s often a great reminder to them of the special people in their life.
Have you bought one of these gifts, or do you have other suggestions? Add them to the Comments section below.
Authored by Kay Brown
Kay is an international teacher, currently living in Yangon, Myanmar. She blogs about travel and expat life in El Salvador and South East Asia at Kaybee Travels.
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