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Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 12, and even though you’re on the road with not much more than a backpack as a companion, there are plenty of ways to make your mom feel special, no matter how many miles are between you and her. Here, a gift-giving guide to Mother’s Day for backpackers!


Shop Amazon

It’s easy to hop on Amazon and find the best gifts for your mom. They even have shopping sections designated for this special woman in your life. Select a few of her favorite items and have them shipped home. Sure, you’ll be a few weeks late on the delivery, but it’s the thought that counts!


Shop Amazon
Sara Guilbeau and her mom looking out on Mt. Vesuvius in Italy © Courtesy of Sara Guilbeau


Send her some Mom-Inspired Paraphernalia

Nothing shows your mom how much she means to you than by sending her some mom-inspired gifts! One company that has some great options is Evil Queen. This candle company’s products are handmade in Los Angeles. They are also vegan-friendly, made with recycled jars, and are filled with sass! There is even an entire section of candles dedicated to Mother’s Day. Our favorite is the ‘Super Mom,’ which reads, “omg mom, you were right about everything.”


Send her some Mom-Inspired Paraphernalia
Kelly Iverson and her mom motorbiking in Krabi, Thailand © Courtesy of Kelly Iverson


Top Up and Give her a Phone Call

It’s easy to forget to check in whilst traveling abroad. Oftentimes, we go for weeks without the occasional, “I’m alive,” message to keep your mom cool and collected while you embrace your inner wanderlust. This Mother’s Day, however, be sure to top up credit and give her a ring. This way, you can shoot your mom a call via Wi-Fi on Sunday, May 12. Catch up, tell her how much you miss her, promise to be more responsive even when you are abroad — she will appreciate it more than you know!


Top Up and Give her a Phone Call
Meaghan Elizabeth traveling with her mom © Meaghan Elizabeth


Create a Mother’s Day Photo Album

Keep your mom in the know by creating her a photo album! We know you have some great shots of your travels.  Whether you own the most expensive DSLR or a cell phone, the destinations are sure to speak for themselves in a custom made photo album. Create one that she will cherish forever.


Create a Mother's Day Photo Album
Alex Klemovich and her mom in the Cayman Islands © Courtesy of Alex Klemovich


Give her a Special Shout-Out on Facebook

Compile photographs that portray the best memories you have with your mom and curate a shout-out like no other! She will appreciate the publish PSA more than you know. Of course, this means your mom has to have a Facebook page and know how to use it. If your mom is one of the rare, cool moms that do, be sure to give her a shout-out!


Give her a Special Shout-Out on Facebook
Melissa Goldrosen and her mom in Istanbul © Courtesy of Melissa Goldrosen


Recruit a Friend For Some Assistance

If you are struggling to access Wi-Fi in order to send your mom a gift while traveling abroad, recruit a friend from back home to help make your mom’s Mother’s Day the best it can be! Shoot them an IOU and get a friend to bring her to the movies or deliver her favorite meal from her favorite restaurant — whatever it is your mom loves, makes sure it happens this Sunday, May 12!


Recruit a Friend For Some Assistance
Lola Mendez and her mom traveling in Chiang Mai, Thailand © Courtesy of Lola Mendez


Want to be the child of the year? Fly home for Mother’s Day!

If you really want to make this Mother’s Day a holiday to remember, why not be spontaneous and book a flight home to surprise her? Yes, this is the most dramatic of endeavors to make your mom’s special day even more special, but it’s been done before. Be sure to coordinate with at least one person in order to pick you up from the airport to best implement the surprise!


Want to be the child of the year? Fly home for Mother's Day!
Kirsten Muolic and her mom traveling the world © Courtesy of Kirsten Muolic


Send a Personal Message or Postcard with the help of Mad Monkey Hostels in Cambodia

Join us on Sunday, May 12 at all of our Cambodian properties for Mother’s Day events!


Send a Personal Message or Postcard with the help of Mad Monkey Hostels in CambodiaSend a Personal Message or Postcard with the help of Mad Monkey Hostels in Cambodia
Ryan Christopher and his mom in Varadero, Cuba © Courtesy of Ryan Christopher


Mother’s Day at Mad Monkey Phnom Penh

At Mad Monkey Phnom Penh, we’ll be hosting a Mother’s Day brunch for only $10 which includes a postcard and stamp. After you write your message, we will take it to the post office for you and ship it…for free!


Mother’s Day at Mad Monkey Koh Rong Samloem

Join us on the island of Koh Rong Samloem for Mother’s Day — we realize that we have no Wi-Fi, so we’ve come up with a plan so that your mom can still get the Mother’s Day message she deserves!
First, take a picture with our Mothers Day Beach Mural with your special mothers day cocktail to send to your Mom. Let her know that you wish she was here! We can also record a video message with the mural to make it that bit more personal!
Afterward, one of our staff members will venture to the mainland to get Wi-Fi with your mother’s email and deliver your personal message. Then, enjoy our Mother’s Day inspired cocktails including the Make Mama Proud with The Rehydration — Royal D Slushee (only $2.50) or Don’t tell Mom with The Dehydration — Royal D and Vodka Slushee (only $3.00).


Mother’s Day at Mad Monkey Siem Reap

At Mad Monkey Siem Reap, you can get a free Cambodian-inspired postcard and stamp if you spend $5 at the bar or restaurant on Mother’s Day. Chow down or enjoy a refreshing drink before sending your mom a card that she’ll remember forever!


Mother’s Day at Mad Monkey Kampot

Last but not least, Mad Monkey Kampot will help you send a card to your mom on Mother’s Day — we’ll provide the postcard and all you need to do is pay for the postage. Also, if you post #madmonkeymothersday with our Instagram Wall by the poolside bar, you will receive a free beer or spirit! Lastly, enjoy all day Mother’s Day margaritas and mojitos for only $3.


Mother's Day at Mad Monkey Kampot
Happy Mother’s Day from Mad Monkey Kampot © Courtesy of Mad Monkey Hostels


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About the Author

Mad Monkey is Southeast Asia’s leading hostel operator — born in Cambodia with more properties in Thailand, Indonesia, Australia, Laos, and the Philippines. We pride ourselves in creating meaningful and sustainable travel experiences for our guests, whilst promoting socially responsible tourism.