There are very few things more likely to ruin your last days of the trip than a realization that you are expected to come back with a handful of souvenirs. For your friends, it is about “sharing is caring,” while for you yourself it may be as a form of capturing memories, feelings and associating great experiences with… things.
We at CuddlyNest propose a couple of better options on how to show your loved ones you care about them, in a more thoughtful and sustainable way than getting a new magnet for their fridge.
There is nothing like waking up in the early morning, getting a cup of coffee in your hotel and walking the old stone streets and watching the city waking up. If you want to tune in, we recommend to take your coffee and morning croissant (or burek) with you and enjoy your breakfast while fully in the mood of the city. Carrying the notebook, or sketchbook, and a pencil with you at all times is not necessarily, yet rewarding. Be it a short note, city sketch, or a pressed flower in your notebook, you can freeze the moment and save the vibe. Capture everything in an authentic way, and bring the scene full of emotions back home. It will feel much more special 10 years from now than that magnet, we bet for it!
If you are on a family holiday and time on your own is not an option, then getting a postcard may be just what you are looking for. Sharing not only memories but moments from your trip in more or less real time during your extended gap year trip with friends and family at home can be one of the best ways to keep your loved ones up to date with your travels. Moreover, it costs almost nothing to send a postcard back home no matter if you are sharing your best memories from your Europe trip, or want to excite your stay-at-home gang about the amazing Thailand beaches.
Another option for the same postcards is analog images, shot by you, for your best friends. Now, this is not to say that you won’t get any postcards from your trip. But your camera can be taken anywhere you go, and the small film rolls take no space in your bag. What’s better, you choose to capture the moments of your own trip, instead of sending over anonymous scenery with Paris sights.
Collect, but Think First
If you are into material memories, but travel long term, it may be advisable to get your travel memories in the form of useful and daily pieces. We prefer to get a beautiful, light and small but meaningful and practically usable things, like handmade cutlery from the villages of Croatia, or a small piece of jewelry from your Orlando trip. Used daily, it will stay with you forever… or, until it breaks.
If something useful is not crucial, collecting coins from every country you visit is another option. Get your middle-punched Danish crones, Vietnamese dongs, Turkish lyrics, and French euro coins to stay with you long after you have visited the country. The best thing about coins? Get the one issued the year you are traveling to the country – it will be living documentation then.
Whichever way you choose to bring the experiences back home and share with your loved ones, forget not the importance of the experience itself. It is not about the souvenirs; instead, think about the ways to enhance and enclose the moment.