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The latest gift trend: Booking travel 'experiences' instead of buying 'stuff'
The newest trend in holiday gifts doesn't take up space in carry-on luggage or add weight to checked bags.
It doesn't even need to be packed.
Rather than giving holidaymakers new gear for travel — electronics organizers, Yeti thermoses, yet another airplane pillow — some are giving travel itself.
A survey of more than 1,000 Americans by the computer company Adobe showed that while 51% of respondents plan to purchase physical gifts this holiday season, 17% plan to give "an experience" instead.
Survey respondents cited spa treatments (25%) and concert tickets (25%) most often, while others said they planned to give plane tickets (21%) and cooking classes (16%) as gifts.
"Experience gifting" — as it is known — isn't new. But it's finding traction this holiday season as a push for minimalist packing converges with a pandemic that has made travel a top priority for many in 2022.
More experiences, less 'stuff'
Migle Rakauskaite, the chief marketing manager at travel experience website Tinggly.com, said the pandemic is prompting an increase in travel experience gift purchases.
"Gifting traditions are changing," she said. "People seem to value quality time together and doing something meaningful. Experience gifts are so much more valuable than the regular 'stuff.'"