Holiday & Birthday Gift Ideas for a Nomad, Rubber Tramp, Gypsy, Road-Warrior, or Whatever Your Particular Traveler Chooses to be Called


Christmas is just around the corner, and some of you may be wondering what you can possibly buy a person who lives in a van, car, or RV of any kind, and may or may not have an address you can send a gift to in time for Christmas.

Nomad’s live simple lives, their needs are specific, and excess baggage is something they don’t have room for. Space is tight, and even one extra thing that isn’t needed, can get in the way and be a nuisance rather than a pleasure.

Here are a few suggestions:

#1 The number one thing I would suggest is money. I know, I know, boring….uninventive etc. but I think that for many Nomad’s, it is the most useful thing. If someone is a wealthy Nomad maybe this wouldn’t be the right choice, but for those that are living on a strict pension or a tight income of any kind, this is probably the best gift you can give them.

It could be given to them through PayPal or in some other form. Perhaps you could set up a savings account (arrange it with them) in their credit union (or bank) and label it Auto Repairs/Maintenance, or Auto Insurance, or whatever, so that they will have a little bit of something to fall back on if they have a break down of some kind. Paying someone’s auto insurance for for 6-months or even 1-month, would be an incredible gift. In this manner, family and friends could get together and each put a little something in there. With any luck, the Nomad won’t need to delve into it for anything serious, but as you know all vehicles need maintenance and insurance is unavoidable, and this is a gift that is bound to be appreciated. A security net of some kind is a wonderful gift for someone on a tight budget, it offers peace of mind, as well as maintenance on what is probably the most important thing they own; their vehicle, because their vehicle is their home, their safe harbor, their warmth, comfort, and traveling vessel.

#2 – Yep, another boring and obvious suggestion; gift certificates, but there are a lot of options that would be great for a Nomad. This allows them to purchase what they want or need, and therefore the giver is ensuring their money has not been wasted and the receiver gets what they need. I feel there is so much waste at Christmas, with people buying gifts for each other that the person doesn’t need or want, just for the sake of having something to open. Van-dwellers live simple lives, and don’t have room for excess, they only have room for specific items.

Many rubber-tramps use Amazon to make their purchases. They can have items shipped by general delivery to whatever town they are currently in, and this way they get what they need. If they need a new solar panel, auto parts, new tires, stove, repair kit, drain, heater…whatever! they use the gift certificate to help with the purchase. Amazon gift certificates can be purchased digitally and delivered digitally, how easy is that.

#3 – If you want to buy your Nomad something a little more light hearted and fun, then why not buy them some entertainment. Being stuck in a van during a dust or snow storm that goes on for days, can cause van-fever. If they have a laptop, smart phone or tablet, you could buy them a gift certificate to VUDU, or Flixter. They can then download movies to their laptop or smart pad, and watch them even if they don’t have internet at the time. I have a number of videos on my laptop, and they have saved me from total brain-numbing boredom a number of times. It’s probably a good idea to find out which service they use to ensure they get just what they need. This also applies to music downloads from Amazon or iTunes (check to see what service they use)…there aren’t too many people out there that don’t like music, and these days a person can download just one track from an album, therefore getting just their favorite song and making the $$ go further.

The options for gift certificates are endless. If they are in a specific town or visit a place regularly, perhaps you’d like to treat them out to dinner, or a day at the spa, or maybe even a gift certificate for a grocery store. You know what you’re particular Nomad would appreciate the most, and a visit to their favorite hot springs just might be the best gift you can offer.

Gas cards are another great gift certificate. I cannot describe how wonderful it feels to have a tank full of gas and a new horizon in my view. I get goose bumps at the thought.

#4 – Some other ideas would be annual expenses. If they have a dog, how about paying their annual vet bill for shots, auto insurance is another, or their phone bill, or a backup service for their laptop so they don’t lose all their stuff if their laptop dies. I use Carbonite, I think it costs $59.99 a year, knowing that all my photography and writing is backed up has been such a relief when my laptop has died in the past. (If you’d like a $20 gift certificate to Carbonite, just send me your email address and I’ll send you a referral along with the gift certificate from Carbonite).

THANKS FOR SUPPORTING THIS SITE BY ACCESSING AMAZON VIA ANY OF THE LINKS IN THE NOMAD STORE $. I’LL MAKE A SMALL PERCENTAGE ON YOUR PURCHASE AND IT WON’T COST YOU ANYTHING EVEN IF YOU BUY SOMETHING DIFFERENT. Please return here to enter Amazon each time you place an order, in fact, why not just bookmark the page, and re-name it Amazon 🙂 

#6 – Many traveler’s use their Nook or other smart pad to read books on. It’s an obvious choice because we can own 200 or more books, and they don’t take up any space. Smart pads have a lot of uses, I like to play solitaire on mine, as well as read and watch movies. It’s also been a life-saver when my computer has died, because I’ve still been able to get online and do basic stuff. So if they have a Nook, a gift certificate to Barnes and Noble would surely be appreciated, if it’s a Kindle then it would be Amazon. If they don’t have a smart pad, maybe they would like one.

#7 – Inevitably, there is probably someone reading this post who has a friend that has it all. Perhaps they are financially set, and can afford anything they want and there is nothing they need. For them I would suggest donating some money to their favorite cause or charity. Perhaps it’s environmental, wildlife, child abuse, or health or some other cause. Donating some money in their name is a very generous gift, and one that the giver, and both receivers can feel good about. It takes up no room, but it helps someone else, and that is truly one of the best things a person can do during the season that is known for spreading good will.

#8 – And if none of these seems appropriate for your particular Nomad, there is one final suggestion, just ask them. Your phone call or email asking them this question, just might be what they needed most at that moment.

I hope you like these suggestions. I know I haven’t covered everything here and that there are a lot of other options, but my intention with this post is to get the ideas rolling in your head, you know, get the juices flowing a bit.

If you have any ideas you’d like to add to help people out, please put them in the comments section below and I’ll approve them as soon as I can.

Thank you for reading this, if you know someone who might benefit from this post, or you just enjoyed it, please feel free to like and share it in any manner you choose.

Until next time ~ Have fun gift giving…and Happy Holidays to You All.

Roxy ~ A Nomad for Nature


This post first published on

Please visit my photography store, where you can buy prints, cards, gift bags, tote bags and more…oh, and of course; gift certificates,


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