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small,light&packable gifts to take

Will be spending a month in Portugal starting in about 2 weeks. In past travels to other countries I have met kind and gracious people to whom I like to give something as a gesture of good will. I'll be traveling to Lisbon, Porto, Tavira, Evora, Sintra and small towns in the north as well as Ponta Delgada in the Azores. Any suggestions on what would be nice to give? I've thought of food items particular to the Northwest but in this global economy we can get almost anything at the local stores. Thank you for any suggestions.

Posted by
2542 posts

You are correct about many things being available internationally. Give them the gift of your time and goodwill if they desire it.

Posted by
14 posts

Thank you Mona. Sometimes the interaction is fleeting but memorable and I like to more fully express my appreciation of the encounter. I attribute my tendency to focus on gift giving to the culture learned from my Japanese mother but I will take to heart what you said and look to be creative.
-Paula

Posted by
11437 posts

Oh Paula , i am not a gift giver ( only when I visit family and friends in my travels ) however if you want to take something that doubles as a small token and a conversation starter, why not some nice post cards from your area , they have some that are almost like little folding books . You can then discuss them with the folks you meet .

Posted by
3400 posts

You might consider small lapel pins (like the USA flags many political candidates wear) - perhaps with your state or city on them, or representing some local symbol (in NC I'd go with dogwood flowers or a cardinal). You might find ink pens or pencils with your state flag or similar design to the lapel pins. I also like the post card or picture booklet suggested above.

Posted by
15 posts

I would go with the label pin and also and pen with something from your local area. I still have a label pin a gentleman gave me in Rome when he stopped to answer a questions for me that I will always treasure.

Hi Paula,
I'm going to the Czech Republic with my mom and uncle and we will be meeting distant relatives for the first time. I'm also from the PNW. I'm taking calendars from our local bank that the bank staff have done the photos for. I'm also packing a bit heavier as I'm picking up a motor home but I am taking smoked salmon as even though they might buy it there I don't know if that is something they could afford or would decide to spend their $ on. I'm also looking into Christmas ornaments that are locally made. I enjoy buying ornaments as a souvenir for myself as I handle them on and off the tree which brings back memories but in the meantime they aren't cluttering space.

Have a great trip!

Posted by
4029 posts

There are limits as to what foodstuffs you can bring into Europe, so check if you go down this route.

Lapel badges are more of an American taste than European.

Cards would be light to pack. Tea cloths from your home area would be a useful present.

Posted by
11437 posts

So you mean lapel pins of an American flag ? Wouldn't that be a strange gift ? If someone gave me one I would never wear it . I don't think anyone but an American would wear such an item . A state flower however might be nice .

I am not trying to be mean , but I know my European relatives and friends would not want to wear the flag of another country . Would you?

Posted by
410 posts

Being from Canada (greater Toronto Area) I always take a small jug of the local Maple Syrup; always appreciated by the B&B's we stay in.
Jean