How To Pick The Most Meaningful & Cheapest Souvenirs From Your Travels

To me, a trip is incomplete without bringing back a little something from where I go. A travel souvenir serves as a physical memory, keepsake or just an excuse to show off your travels to posterity.

As a Cancerian, I’ve always been a hoarder of objects that help me associate them with an event or memory and not surprisingly, I have tons of souvenirs from mostly all the places I’ve been to. They’re either bought from souvenir shops or collected from events or places.

Aside from my keychains and fridge magnets back home, here’s what my current souvenir collection  looks like:

fridge magnets

Pro Tip for souvenirs: As a frequent traveler, here are some tips from my book on the art of picking up souvenirs.

1) Instead of spending too much money on buying big bulky souvenirs, pick something small and inexpensive – for eg. postcards. Souvenirs are all about a memory of a place and not necessarily meant as any piece of decor.

2) Avoid picking souvenirs at the airports unless you absolutely have forgotten to buy some in the city. Much more expensive and less variety. Usually touristy areas are the best bet though look out for clearance sales and non-mainstream stuff.
The Dollar stores in certain countries could also house a lot of cheap souvenirs. (I picked up a lot of $1 chopsticks at the dollar stores in Japan)

3) Don’t want to spend expensive forex on buying souvenirs? No problem. Some free souvenirs could be sea-shells, event fliers, coasters from pubs, maps, guide books, or even local newspapers!

cherry blossoms japan

Bonus trip for extra-nice travelers: Meeting a friend abroad? Don’t forget to carry souvenirs from YOUR home country for them. You never know how much they may appreciate the gesture. (And if you’re lucky, maybe even part with a nice little keepsake to gift you back)

Here’s to being Souvenir Savvy!

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