Top Easy-to-Pack Gifts by Age for Under $50


With our family situated a good few hundred miles north of us, we’re always traveling during the holiday season. And while we beg and plead with them to only buy items that we can fit in our suitcase, we’re always left trying to explain to the kids why we can’t bring anything home from Grandmom’s house. And since they’re fervently against gift cards and anything wearable (other than the signature pair of holiday footie pjs), we’re all too often left with a gigantic shipping bill.

So with that in mind, I’ve rounded up a few unique gifts (all under $50!) that will not only fit easily into your suitcase or carry-on, but won’t make your kids roll their eyes when they tear off the wrapping.

For the wee ones

You can easily stuff Apple Blossom’s soft jingle balls ($16) and blocks right into your diaper bag. For a bit more of a splurge, the cashmere balls from Kistner ($45) are to die for.

The handknit Boogaloo dolls from Bla Bla Kids ($38) are the perfect travel companion or bedtime friend for little girls and boys.

For the preschoolers

Turn any outfit into a costume with the bright fun capes from Ellie Bellie Kids ($30) or the Kennedy and Friends’ gorgeous tutus ($39). And if your kids wear them in the airport, it’s a great way to make sure they don’t get lost going through security.

The personalized books from Shutterfly ($39.99), complete with your child’s photo and name, are sure to keep them occupied even after the trip home is over

For the tweens

Those tweens can be pretty darn picky, but chances are, you’ll be able to find them a Klutz book they’ll love. Try My Style Studio ($21.95) for the future Project Runway contestant, or the Klutz Book of Paper Airplanes ($16.95) for the budding pilot.

The affirmation bracelets from Loved Unconditionally ($21.95) are a great to appeal to your tween’s jewelry obsession but emphasize and support her inner strength

Kristen Chase is the co-founder/editor of Cool Mom Picks, a cheeky shopping website featuring gifts and gear for kids and the moms who love them, most of which are indy, artisan quality, and not often found at your local mall. Aside from the daily features, giveaways, and special “subscriber-only” deals and special offers, you can find some great toys and playthings on the Cool Mom Picks Safer Toy Guide, plus a slew of travel friendly holiday picks at their Holiday Gift Guide.

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