How To Make It Easier For Your Family To Gift You A Vacation

Everyone has different tastes and preferences when it comes to holiday gifts: Some people have the latest tech gadget on the top of their wish lists, while others may be dreaming about a bottle of specialty sriracha or the trendiest beauty products.

The one gift that's always appreciated? A nice vacation. Your time away will be even sweeter knowing that your spa treatment or three-course dinner are paid for by a loved one.

Getting your next big trip funded is now easier than ever: You can simply zap over a link to friends and family member who have probably been pulling their hair out to find the perfect gift for you anyway. Ahead, we round up the best travel gifts available for under $500, in case you want to trade presents for an unforgettable experience.

illustrated by Paola Delucca.
Skyhour

Good news for frequent flyers: Receiving flights as a gift has just gotten a lot more convenient. The recently-launched Skyhour has been likened to "the Venmo of travel", allowing time in the sky to be purchased and sent using credit card payment. Each Skyhour — as in "hour spent in flight" — costs $60. The credit is valid with over 350 airlines around the world, including Delta and JetBlue. Check out this video to see how it works.
illustrated by Paola Delucca.
Uber

Getting to and from the airport can be very stressful, and Uber credit can make that trek a lot more manageable. Uber gift cards are available on Amazon starting at $25, and can be a huge help if you use the service regularly. Do note that the gift value is only redeemable in cities within the U.S., so it will only come in handy for your domestic trips.
illustrated by Paola Delucca.
Airbnb

Now you can finally rent that crazy Airbnb listing you've been dreaming about. The homesharing platform offers digital gift cards — with a $200 maximum limit — directly sent to the recipients email, so there's no risk of losing the physical copy. However, recipients are required to accept and link the coupon to their accounts within 90 days of the card being sent out, so remember to stay on top of it.
illustrated by Paola Delucca.
CheapOAir.com

With a gift card from one of the biggest flight search engines out there, there's no excuse not to hop on an amazing deal as soon as you spot one. CheapOAir.com's gift cards can be used towards the purchase of airfare on the site — with fuel costs and taxes excluded. The best part? The credit never expires.
illustrated by Paola Delucca.
OpenTable

With over 3,500 restaurants around the world taking part in the rewards program, OpenTable's gift cards are where it's at. The sender can gift dining credit of anywhere between $20 to $250 by email or post. The restaurant can be specified, or you can let the recipient make the decision. Note there there is a $4.43 shipping and handling cost if you decide to mail out a physical gift card.
illustrated by Paola Delucca.
XpresSpa

Killing time at the airport is about to get a lot more enjoyable: Your loved one can treat you to a quick mani-pedi at XpresSpa, a luxury travel spa with 53 stores across 22 airports in the United States, Amsterdam and Dubai. There are five locations within JFK Airport alone, and the gift cards carry a value between $25 and $500. Note that these cards can only be redeemed in U.S. locations.