Research Travel Tips Part 2 - Pamiątki (Souvenirs)
The all important souvenir (pamiątki). When we travel somewhere we all want to get something to remember our wonderful time, but with the new airline regulations this does not allow us much, especially if you are at or near your limit for baggage. Of course if you have money to spend on baggage then this is not an issue, but for most of us it is.
It is customary to exchange a small gift when visiting people. So when I went to Poland the first time, I had a number of larger gifts for certain people I would be meeting, but at the family reunion, there would be many. What I decided to do was to get a post card from the town I lived in and then write a message on each one commemorating the event. I also spent a lot of time at banks scrounging up NH State quarters and I attached one to each card. This would give everyone something to remember me by and not cost me a lot of money & and they were small to pack. Back in the day of that first trip, You could have more than one bag to check, so I had made sure that the same bag would allow me to bring back my haul. Remember you want to have something for others to remember you by but at the same time keep it light. This all has to be figured in to your luggage weight.
On your return trip you must also keep weight in mind. I now limit what I buy for souvenirs. I love collecting coffee mugs and had done so in the past as well on the first two trips to Poland. Since coffee mugs are now out of the question, I pick up lapel pins from cities I have visited as they are much smaller and lighter. I resorted to taking home a few travel guides and stubs from tram or bus rides. Receipts can be a souvenir if kept in a scrap book after you return home. I have received almost everything you can image as a gift, such as a jar of honey, pickles, bottles of vodka. Although you may be able to bring them back, they must be included in your weight limits. Security regulations do not allow glass to be taken on a plane. Do you really want to pack anything liquid or breakable in your checked baggage? Remember that the air pressure change can cause containers to leak out all over your belongings.
It will be interesting to hear comments from others on how they have dealt with souvenirs and baggage limits. I would enjoy some fresh ideas.