Professional: Souvenirs All Around

Perhaps most of them are useless kitsches but travelers simply love them. Souvenir shopping is an important part of many peoples’ vacations. What kind of products tourists buy? Where are the fantastic souvenirs produced anyway?


An Ode to Souvenirs: Sentimental Journey

Kevin Eagan

Souvenirs can be collectables, trophies, and kitsch at their kitschiest. But mostly they're reminders of good times. Mention the word souvenir and a thousand images spring to mind: the personalized mug from Niagara Falls (Jack! Jake! Jane! Janet!), the jackalope postcard from New Mexico, the Seattle Space Needle replica made of genuine Mount St. Helens ashes, the gold dancing Elvis telephone from Memphis. They're kitschy, they're colorful, and they're as much a part of American culture as the...

Souvenirs and Shopping in Egypt

Larry Brain

The Egyptians have had a tourist industry for over 4000 years. Trade with the Mediterranean civilizations and movement of the ancient Egyptians up and down the Nile to visit temples probably resulted in some souvenirs. The most famous ones were the "reverse" souvenirs, the purchase of offerings such as cat mummies to offer to the gods. Some of these traveled back home with the tourist, but most were taken from the souvenir merchants (the priests) to the temple alter. After Napoleon invaded an...

Made in Ukraine?

Samuel Dorsi

Why do we see this inscription on our souvenirs less often? A Ukrainian gift shop recently opened in Kyiv. Here you can buy a gift or another beautiful thing, and all merchandise originates from Ukraine. This shop, it turns out, is one of few in the capital and elsewhere in Ukraine because selling and making Ukrainian souvenirs is not a profitable business. The trouble is that genuine Ukrainian souvenirs have been elbowed out of the domestic market by Chinese conveyor-line products whose cost...

Entrepreneur’s Tide Comes in with Beach Souvenirs

Bill Alen

The little souvenir bottle filled with seashells and sand that you brought back to Milwaukee from Sanibel Island may have made a round trip. That’s because your keepsake, which evokes memories of golden days on the beach, could have been made by Visionary Products, a Glendale company that does a million-dollar business in beach bubble ornaments, starfish-wearing sunglasses and trinket boxes topped with mermaids. “We brought some of the creativity of the gift industry to souvenirs,...

Mackinac Island: Tourists Want To Stretch Dollars

Tourism Review News Desk

With the economy in the dumps across the U.S., gift and souvenir shop owners are seeing changes in their businesses, although perhaps not in the ways people might expect. Patty Schoenborn of Birches on Market Street on Mackinac Island says her tea sets are still one of the store's most popular items. The store's china is all made in the United States. "We've seen a big increase in people trying to find things that are made in the United States that are economical," she said. These days, Mrs....