Save Money and Remember the Good Times with Practical Souvenirs

Whenever I’m traveling, there’s always some temptation to spend money on souvenirs. This could mean bringing home little gifts for some of my friends, buying merchandise specific to some of the sights I’ve seen (this is especially a problem during my Disney Parks trips), or splurging on other items that might catch my eye on any given trip. However, while some of these purchase may be worth it, many are not. This is why my wife and I have become adept at finding what we call “practical souvenirs” — let me give you some examples:

Culinary treats

When we were in Paris visiting their Disneyland park (of course), we suddenly found ourselves missing our evening tea. So we searched around and finally found a blend of tea in the World of Disney store that sounded tasty. Better yet, the metal case that housed the tea bore artwork for the park’s 25th anniversary, which we were there to celebrate. Thus we were not only able to satisfy our tea craving and bring the rest home but were also able to resist buying other such merchandise that wouldn’t bring us as much benefit.

Come to think of it, I’m also inclined to pronounce any reasonably-priced delicacy a practical souvenir. After all, you need to eat so why not bring some of the local flavor home with you?

Useful tools and necessities

Funny enough, my next example was also inspired by a foreign Disney Park visit. Moments after I set foot in Tokyo Disneyland for the first time, it started pouring rain. Thankfully, unlike the domestic parks, their Main Street equivalent (dubbed World Bazaar, in case you were wondering) is covered, but regardless, it became clear that I would need an umbrella. With that, I entered their Emporium shop and found a nice Tokyo Disney Resort umbrella for 900¥ — or about $9. Naturally, I ended up using that umbrella for the rest of the day and week before eventually bringing it back home with me. Now whenever it rains, I’m reminded of that time in Tokyo.

Other similar examples could include flashlights, lanyards, Pop Sockets (all the rage these days), sweatshirts, drawstring bags, and many, many more. In other words, things you might actually use again.

Pictures

Finally, it seems like these days a big reason why people enjoy traveling is “for the Grams.” This is to say that people find pleasure in posting about their vacations on Instagram and having their friends, family, and followers shower them with those tasty, tasty likes. Regardless of whether that’s healthy or not, pictures actually can be one of the greatest souvenirs. First of all, photos free (in most cases) can bring back memories just as vividly as any trinket could. Plus, capturing great images can allow you to release your creativity and could also give you something fun and frugal to do while traveling.

With all that said, be careful not to experience your entire trip from behind a camera — there’s something to be said about living in the moment as well.

Hopefully these examples get you thinking about the practical souvenir possibilities for your next trip, allowing you to save money and still have something to remember your vacation by. Happy travels!

Author

Kyle Burbank

Kyle is a freelance writer and author whose first book, "The E-Ticket Life" is now available on Amazon. In addition to his weekly "Money at 30" column on Dyer News, he is also the editorial director and a writer for the Disney fan site LaughingPlace.com and the founder of Money@30.com.

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That’s interesting. Sometimes we will purchase a small piece of kitsch related to the place we are visitng. So in Paris we might have a small arch or eiffel tower. Small ships for a cruise. They aren’t expensive and don’t take up much room.

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