The term ‘ethical’ is on many shoppers’ lips at the moment. While the term itself is open for broad interpretation, it’s clear the tide is turning and conscious consumption is not only cool but soon to be essential to everyone’s shopping criteria. Knowing who made your products connects you to the people who have been impacted by your purchase. So, as you flex your credit cards this holiday season why not choose a feel-good find from our ethical and eco-friendly list of gifts for friends going travelling.
Gifts for Friends Going Travelling
This curated gift edit features products from brands that are ethically and eco-minded. Each also has a business ethos that includes giving back to a chosen charity; helping people and the planet.
Travel Wardrobe Staples
Having just launched our own ethical label, We Are Sincere, the rise of ethical clothing brands and established brands changing their practices is very exciting. Pick up a super cosy sweater to keep her comfortable on those long-haul flights or grab a few organic cotton tees she can wear while exploring. Use the code TFTLOVE for 10% off your first order.
Giving Back: 1% of We Are Sincere sales go to environmental projects around the world. That really is a feel-good gift.
A Stylish Pair of Walking Shoes
A good pair of walking shoes is essential for any adventure. Gift a pair of All Birds to your loved one. They are breathable, comfortable sneakers made from sustainable materials (wool, Tencel and sugarcane).
The super-simple designs will mean they will be his or her go-to when travelling as they will go with any outfit.
Giving Back: All Birds is a B Corp certified business. They also participate in the Soles4Souls program, gifting pre-loved shoes to those in need.
Related: 15 Useful Travel Gifts for Women
Zero Waste Essentials
From the moment you leave home for a trip, there are countless moments where you can reduce your environmental impact too.
From carrying your own reusable coffee cup and water bottle to taking your own reusable snack bags and shopping at local farmers’ markets, there are many simple ways you can reduce your burden and travel responsibly when traversing the globe.
Kappi makes a wide range of eco-friendly zero waste essentials from bamboo cutlery to silicone satchels and beautiful rose gold razors, perfect for the eco-minded traveller in your life.
Giving Back: Kappi is a member of 1% for the Planet.
Related: 15 Tech Gifts to Give to a Traveller
We also love our Joco Cups to grab takeaway coffee when taking a fun road trip. Functional and beautiful, the cups and water bottles are made from handblown glass. They are not only safer for the environment and the coffee consumer, but they are also a super stylish addition to any travel kit too.
Giving Back: Joco gives back by removing plastic pollution from our oceans with Take3 for the Sea.
Frank Green also has a fun range of reusable water bottles, travel coffee cups, and even homewares.
Related: 20 Gift Ideas for Women Who Travel
The Adventure Duffle
A rugged travel bag like a piece from Patagonia’s Recycled Black Hole collection would be a holiday gift to last a lifetime of adventures.
Built to last from 100% recycled polyester ripstop (recycled plastic bottles), they are also waterproof and carry the company’s ironclad guarantee where they can be returned for repair.
We have been using one of these Patagonia bags for years now. It’s still a favourite for everything from plane trips to day hikes.
Giving Back: Patagonia is a B Corp certified company and holds a number of ethical accreditations for its supply chain.
The Crossbody Bag
A crossbody is essential for any woman exploring the world. It slips in your carry-on without adding weight or bulk and can be whipped out as a day-tonight number to blend in with the locals in a new city.
This Duffle and Co crossbody is handcrafted from full-grain leather and features two internal zip pouches and a zip pocket.
Duffle and Co. also ask the question “Are you willing to wait?” If you need the product right away, you pay a fast fashion tax of 5%. However, if you are willing to wait a little longer to support slow fashion (4-6 weeks), you’ll snag a discount.
Giving Back: The purchase of this bag funds the planting of 5 trees to support local communities in Indonesia and also provides 6 hours of work to their Bali workshop.
Related: 20 Amazing Gift Ideas for Men Who Travel
The Classy Camera Bag
A camera bag that doesn’t look like a beat-up backpack? That’s always a winning gift for the travel photography enthusiast. No one does that better than Vida Vida. Their large range of leather bags includes the vintage-style Personalised Leather Camera Bag that comfortably fits a DSLR and accessories.
Their leather is sourced from animals raised for consumption, not just for leather. The Vida Vida artisans use that bi-product to handmake all of their pieces. The leather is also processed without the use of harmful chemicals, saving the consumer and environment.
Giving Back: Vida Vida gives to several charities. However, it is their own Bag for a Bag initiative that stands out. They donate a bag to a child in Cambodia, Myanmar, or Nepal for every bag sold on their website.
For those who want a vegan leather camera bag, No More Ugly camera bags might be a good alternative. From their cute and compact vintage style satchel to their classic backpacks, their designs are simple and fashionable. No More Ugly crafts their bags in China from PU leather.
Related: 5 of the Best Books to Gift This Holiday Season
The Must-Have Minis
SAMARA creates beautiful minimalist-inspired vegan leather goods. While their gorgeous travel Jewelry Box caught our eye and a must-have travel accessory for the stylish traveller, consider their Apple Leather Mini too.
The Apple Leather Mini, as the name suggests is made from their vegan leather in combination with their apple leather (made from apple skins – a by-product of the juicing industry in Europe). So, not only is that a beautiful gift, but it comes with a very cool story to tell too.
Giving Back: The purchase of every SAMARA bag contributes towards The Soular Backpack, an initiative founded back in 2015 to provide light to children in East Africa and employs women in Kenya. So far, they have provided more than 8,000 students with light to do their homework each night.
Some other great resources to help you search for ethically-minded gifts for friends going travelling include Ethical Made Easy, The Conscious Space, Good on You.
Skye is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Fit Traveller.
She is a journalist, writer, photographer, intrepid traveller and a former personal trainer with a passion for helping others reach optimal health.
As a TV journalist and producer, Skye has worked for household names such as 60 Minutes, Sunrise, TODAY and Nine News. She has also written for Women’s Health, Fodor’s Travel and Yahoo7 Travel, among many others.
Equally comfortable in a 5-star resort or hiking a far-off mountain, Skye loves the unexpected and enriching life experiences that each trip brings and can often be found in a backstreet chatting to locals with her camera in hand.
Skye is based in Sydney, working to master the balance between motherhood and her appetite for adventure.
Read more about Skye’s story here.