MIAMI — For the third year in a row, I’m happy to serve as your #avgeek Secret Santa shopping guide. Avgeeks are a unique breed and sometimes it can be hard to find them the perfect gift. So below are my 10 gift picks that the avgeeks in your life are sure to love.
If you can’t fly on Etihad’s highly rated First Class Residence Suite, you can at least splurge on the champagne served in that ultra-exclusive cabin. Bollinger’s La Grande Année Rosé 2005 is blended from Pinot Noir (70 percent) and Chardonnay (30 percent) grapes and is a lovely champagne.
The shopping available at AirportTag.com is an avgeek’s dream. If I had to pick only one item here (and it was painful, believe me), it would be this worldwide airports duvet cover, a bargain at $99 for twin size. It features brightly colored luggage tags from airports from around the world. Go to sleep with visions of terminals dancing in your head.
I always said when I won the lottery, I’d build a custom home and include furniture made from aircraft parts. One piece of furniture I’d be proud to have in my home is this InterFlight Studio bench made from parts of a McDonnell Douglas DC-10, created by artist Facundo Poj.
At one time, I had a large collection of airline dishes bought on eBay and at a now-defunct shop in Lambertville, New Jersey. I eat off Delta Air Lines first class silverware I bought during a hangar sale in 2005. So consider bidding on this pair of hand-painted Pan Am oval plates from the 1960s on eBay.
When my daughter was born, I decorated her nursery in Baby Aviator (Cranky Filer can attest to it). My thinking was that it’s never too early to start creating an Avgeek. You may want to buy this Phonetic Alphabet Map Art Print from the LuvOfMineDesigns Etsy story. Get them started learning their Alphas, Bravos and Charlies right from the start!
If you want art for grownups, check out the huge collection of vintage aviation art posters available at AllPosters.com. Consider this 1960s Delta Air Lines poster touting the carrier’s service to Jamaica. I had this actual print hanging my office when I worked at the carrier.
No good aviation geek worth their salt doesn’t have at least two or three airplane models lying around. At my peak, I had 31 of them. So consider this sleek, aluminum Concorde desktop model airplane from the A Simpler Time website.
I attended my first major air show, in Singapore, in 1994, and I was hooked. Every true #avgeek should attend at least one major air show in their lifetime. The Paris Air Show is being held in Le Bourget in June 2017, so why not spring for a pair of tickets for this year’s event?
On October 7, I went to a press conference in Washington, D.C., where Qatar Airways announced a major Boeing jet order. Ray Conner of Boeing presented CEO Akbar Al Baker with a gift — a picture frame made from the window of a 727, the first jet ever used by the Doha-based carrier. Find a home for two aviation-related photos with this mirror frame, made a window on the Airbus A300-B4203, offered by SkyArt.com.
I’m a big Star Wars geek, and in my opinion, that’s not too far of a stretch from being an #avgeek. So why not buy this Death Star bedside table lamp, which features colorful LEDs in the space-station base and in the shade. And no light bulb is needed, because the LED lights will last for 60,000 hours, or about seven years.