Queenstown Airport might seem an unlikely place to do your Christmas shopping but our retailers sell a surprising range of beautiful gifts. Check them out! You'll find a lot more than neck pillows and paua souvenirs, and you might even be able to tick off your entire shopping list. As a bonus, there's convenient parking at the terminal and, if you’re up for speed shopping, the first 20 minutes are free.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
Set for summer
Who doesn't appreciate a fresh t-shirt or pair of board shorts for summer? How about a merino top or a high-quality technical jacket? A backpack or gear bag? Outside Sports specialises in equipping people for outdoor fun and carefully chooses the brands it stocks, among them Kiwi labels Mons Royale and Icebreaker, and global favourites Patagonia, The North Face, Arc'teryx and Norrona.
Socks & undies
Everybody needs socks and undies and they certainly don't need to be boring! Outside Sports has a great variety of technical underwear and socks designed for specific sports, while Kapa has colourful socks for young and old, as well as a novelty range that will make you smile.
Accessorise, accessorise, accessorise
When you don’t know what size to buy, go for a belt, gloves, wallet, card-holder, handbag or jewellery instead. Sunglasses, caps and hats are other universal options, especially heading into the height of summer. Again, there are lots of beautifully crafted items to pick from at Outside Sports and Kapa.
No such thing as too much coffee
New Zealand has become a nation of coffee addicts, so a caffeine theme could be a winner. Fuel To Fly sells bags of Ozone coffee beans and AeroPress coffee makers, as well as reusable coffee cups with ceramic lids. Alternatively, Outside Sports sells the supremely insulated Yeti tumblers and drink bottles, while Kapa stocks the Chunky cups and bottles, which were launched in Queenstown in 2017 and feature gorgeous graphic designs.
Gifts you can eat
Edible gifts suit almost any occasion. Fuel To Fly has chosen an enticing selection of New Zealand food, much of it made in this region. Think honey produced by bees feeding on white clover or viper bugloss nectar in Central Otago, olive oils, preserved stonefruit, and small-batch chutneys and pickles.
Something sweet always goes down a treat. The Remarkable Sweet Shop is famous for its extraordinary selection of confectionery and for its homemade fudge, which comes in an ever-changing range of flavours (although fan favourites creme brulee, dark chocolate caramel sea salt, and passionfruit never come off the menu). For the ultimate indulgence, try a 24-piece Tasting Experience.
Chocolate makes every day better
When inspiration fails (or you need sustenance to get to the end of your shopping list), there's always chocolate. Luckily, some of the very best is sold at Queenstown Airport. Patagonia Chocolates are produced by a small team of chocolatiers in Queenstown, drawing inspiration from the owners' South American roots. Look out for their beautifully packaged Christmas cookies, almonds, and gift boxes.
A great read
Books are popular presents for good reason. From children's titles to beach reads, biographies and cook books, you're bound to find something to please at Paper Plus. If all else fails, try the shelves of new releases, which are regularly refreshed.
Board games never go out of fashion. You'll find a collection of classics, such as Articulate, Rummikub and Battleship, at Paper Plus. It also has classic card games, toys, and Lego sets. For something a little different, Kapa has a lovely selection of games and children's toys.
A bit of a puzzle
If you prefer your family fun collaborative rather than competitive, you can't beat a jigsaw puzzle. Grab one from Paper Plus, Kapa, or The Remarkable Sweet Shop.
If you're catching an international flight and need a last-minute gift, you can buy duty-free electronics, fragrance, or a nice bottle of alcohol at Aelia Duty Free. The store also sells a carefully curated range of local products.
When you want to splurge
If you want a truly unforgettable gift, it's hard to beat a scenic flight or a helicopter adventure. You're spoilt for choice at Queenstown Airport and the pilots based here work with other tourism operators to offer a variety of amazing experience packages.