December Gift Guide :: An Experience {& Giveaway!}

[trip style = staycation + active & adventure, etc...]

{Editor's Note: Each December our editors round up the year's must-haves for Trip Styler's traveler gift guides. In the next few weeks leading up to Christmas we'll feature a variety of gift ideas for travelers of all stripes and styles. This year we're kicking things off with an experience---and giveaway!---versus a giant box under the tree.}

'Tis better to give than to receive; but store line-ups, out-of-stock signs and crowds can zap the joy out of Christmas gift-giving. What about an experience gift instead? It's just as thoughtful and there'll still be a present under the tree---perhaps just in envelope form!

I came across zozi earlier this year and l-o-v-e-d the concept: a website dedicated to local experiences in 63 cities throughout Canada and the US. From Vancouver to Virginia Beach browse activities like a full-day guided Mt. Baker backcountry skiing trip, a sailing cruise for two with cooking lesson and cocktails in San Francisco or sipping boutique tequilas and whiskeys in NYC to name a few.

The Giveaway :: $200 to use toward a travel experience for two people with zoziSee entry details below.

Started by a guy who saw a spitting image of his corporate self 30 years into the future, he quit his job, sold everything and went traveling. Like those HSBC ads lining most airport jetways, some would call this pursuit heroic and others would call it irresponsible. Fast forward a few months and continents, and then while diving in Australia he came face to face with a school of bull sharks and had two more epiphanies: a} his fear of sharks was largely irrational, and b} most other peoples' fears are irrational too. So under a banana tree in Byron Bay he wrote the business plan for what's now an city-based, experience hub for amateur and seasoned adventurers.

Peruse the site for gift-giving purposes, inspiration or to take on a personal challenge as a trip style = staycation or active & adventure trek out yonder.

PS - this weekend I'm going to Dallas, Texas, so I just browsed the local offers which include a concealed handgun license and shooting range course or a high-flying powered parachute ride. Now if those experiences don't get you up close and personal with a bang-up, big and bold Texan encounter, I'm not sure what does.

How to win {You can enter up to 3 ways, but you MUST start with STEP 1 to be qualified to enter.}

  • Step 1: Comment on this post {below} and tell us tell us what travel or staycation experience gift you'd love to receive.
  • Bonus entry: Like the Trip Styler PAGE {not an individual post} on Facebook. If you're already a fan, share any of Trip Styler's status updates pertaining to the contest. In both cases, tell us you've done so by commenting below.
  • Bonus entry: RT the following on twitter...   I entered to win 2 travel experience #Christmas gifts from @zozi {Via @tripstyler} Enter:

Details Open to residents of Canada and the USA 21 years or older. Entries will be accepted Dec. 7 – 15 {end of day}, 2011. Winner will be chosen via and announced on Dec. 16. After prizing notification, winner has two days to make contact.

[photos by zozi]