6 Unique Chicago Souvenir Gift Ideas (for locals and travelers)

chicago souvenir gift ideas

What Makes a Great Chicago Gift?

Thanks for coming by – if you love Chicago as much as I do and live here or plan to visit – feel free to answer ONE (or all) of the questions below. Leave your answer in the comment section. This will help us create better gift lists – as there are so many items we could mention. But we prefer your input. Thanks in advance! πŸ™‚

  • What are your favorite Chicago restaurants? And why?
  • If you’re a traveler – what Chicago landmarks or attractions do you always visit when you come here? Or which do you want to visit that you never have?
  • As a local or traveler – what do you MOST love about Chicago?

This is a unique list of what I think those traveling to Chicago would love. From the usual mugs and t-shirts to a few more original ideas; see my top six picks. Where to get them? Most can be found and purchased online. Hope you enjoy my picks – if so, let me know. As always do spread the word; if you find this list fun or informative – please share on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest pretty please. (and Thank you!) πŸ™‚

1. Chicago Divvy Gift Pass –

Divvy is an exclusive Chicago bike share program that lets you rent a bike by the hour or for a 24 hour period – which you can use to attend an outdoor concert, a Summer festival or take a downtown stroll, bike ride through Grant park, etc. The stations are located plentifully throughout the city and they’re easy to spot as the bikes are baby blue in color and usually lined up in busy areas. A Divvy gift pass would make a great Chicago souvenir gift idea for your current or next trip to Chicago or to give to a friend. For complete details on how renting a bike through the Divvy bike share program works, please visit the Divvy website.

It’s a fun, affordable and convenient way to get around.

2. Chicago Themed Shirt –

There are a ton of awesome and cute Chicago themed t shirts on eBay, our fave online shop. For women, men and kids – from the funny to the artsy and to sports related tees – they have quite the collection to browse and choose from. We quite liked the Chicago skyline shirt pictured below, but there are plenty other designs to choose from. Have a look at either link above.

3. Chicago Souvenir Mug –

We went to (eBay) again and did a search for Chicago themed gift mugs and tons came up. eBay has a fantastic collection of gift mugs for the Chicagoan in you or to give as a souvenir gift. From steins to collectibles and landmark themed mugs to the popular Starbucks Chicago collector mugs. Most of the Starbucks cups I think are discontinued so they’re hard to find at store level, but there are quite a few vintage models on eBay. And many more.

4. Chicago Dabble Gift Card –

Sometimes an activity makes for a great gift idea. Some people love to do as opposed to shop. If this describes you or your gift recipient, then we think a gift certificate from (Dabble Chicago) should fit the bill. Dabble is a marketplace of classes and workshops. So many to choose from that it’s fun to browse through all the offerings. And all classes and workshops are local. Want to learn how to salsa or make your very own craft beer, create a website, make soap at home, cook a certain cuisine, sew, knit, etc – it’s all here. The gift card page can be seen at this link and you can order cards in different denominations starting at $20 – all the way up to $200. What a fun and unique Chicago souvenir gift idea. *sidenote: I just noticed I tend to mention Dabble a lot on this site and probably will continue to do so, because I think what they do and offer is great – so am spreading the good word. πŸ™‚

5. Chicago Attractions Pass, City Pass

The Chicago City Pass is a multi-attraction pass that allows you to visit 5 premium city attractions at 50% off the regular admission rate. This pass will SAVE you tons of money and is a great gift idea for anyone coming to visit. These are just (some) of the attractions you’ll get to visit at 50% off with the Chicago City Pass: Shedd Aquarium, SkyDeck Chicago, Field Museum, Adler Planetarium, the Museum of Science and Industry or the new! 360 Skydeck Observation Deck. This PASS is a HUGE MONEY SAVER. You can grab the Chicago City Pass here – then just enjoy your trip.

6. Chicago Themed Shot Glass –

The old stand by, this item is one many collect and since it’s inexpensive – is great for gift giving as well. Some peeps like to collect a shot glass from every city or state they visit along with magnets. If you want a cool Chicago themed shot glass, we found a great collection of them online. Browse around to see what catches your fancy. You can narrow down your search by price, category, new or used, collectible, etc. Shot glasses almost always make for a nice Chicago souvenir.

Next up: Chicago Cubs Gift Ideas for True Blue Fans

Stay tuned! As we cover awesome gift ideas aimed at Chicago Cubbies fans.

Disclosure: I may be an affiliate with some of these companies, so I might make a small commission if you buy through my links. If so, I thank and appreciate you supporting my website.

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Author: Missy

Musings from Chicago is a blog dedicated to all things about the Windy City - from fashion and travel to tech and dining. We try to cover a little bit of what interest us and hopefully interests you as well. :) We love to interact, so please follow on Twitter and or fan us on Facebook.

51 thoughts on “6 Unique Chicago Souvenir Gift Ideas (for locals and travelers)

    1. Hi, Shannon:

      Let me know what blog you came from, so I can leave a recip comment? The Chicago attraction pass is fantastic for seeing a lot of our wonderful landmarks and attractions – all at once and at one price.

      Thank you for the visit.

  1. Chicago was one of my favorite cities to visit, we did a road trip there after high school graduation and I will never forget it! I wish I would of got some of those shot glasses while there, what a fun memory!

    1. Hey, Laura:

      Glad you enjoyed your visit to Chitown after high school graduation – and there’s still plenty of time to snag a shot glass online via eBay. Should you want to relive your fun time here.

      Thanks for coming by and leaving a comment.

  2. I traveled to Chicago years ago for a training workshop when I was managing at UPS. I loved Shedd Aquarium and Navy Pier. Just standing out there looking over Lake Michigan was such a treat for this Texas Gal who usually sees acres and acres of fields. Beautiful city!

  3. I have only been once to Chicago. It was such brief trip, because we meet a friend and flew out of there. The airport was humongous! I remember loving the skyline as we drove in. My hubby and I want to make a weekend trip up there.

    1. Hi, Haley:

      Glad you enjoyed our skyline, it’s beautiful – day or night. Do come back and visit with the hubby. You’ll have a great time – and thanks for coming by the blog.

  4. Love the idea of Dabble! I live in nearby Indianapolis, so we get up to Chicago at least once a year – so many fun things to do!!! In fact last year, my daughter’s class went to the Museum of Science and Industry for a field trip – it was tons of fun.

    1. Hi, Pam:

      Dabble is great, mostly because of its sheer variety of offerings. Looking for something unique to do? I would definitely give Dabble a try. Thanks for coming by – and glad your daughters class enjoyed the Museum of Science and Industry. It’s a great museum. πŸ™‚

    1. I do too. I have a few shot glasses from a few different cities, my fave are the ones I picked up in New Orleans a few years ago. They do make great souvenirs.

  5. I am born and raised MN but have never been to Chicago!! My word!! These are super cool gifts, but it would be even cooler if I could somehow get my butt up there myself and get them!!

    1. Leila: Yes! it would, but you can get some of them online too. Probably most of them via their respective website. Minnesota sounds awesome too, I’ve never been – but I’m sure it’s lovely.

      Thanks for coming by.

  6. Oh I’ve always wanted to visit Chicago! I’ve actually only ever been to the airport! Not good enough! I’m in Texas so it’s a bit far but I sure hope to make it to stay longer sometime soon. This list would be really helpful!

    1. Shannon:

      I’ve heard this before a few times, where just an airport stay is as close as some have made it here. I say, hey there’s always next time. And hope you do make it one day!!!

  7. I’ve never been to Chicago, but I’ve always heard it’s a hopping place to go to. These would make great gift ideas for someone who is a fellow Chicago lover or even as a nice souvenir to have.

  8. I love the shirt too! What a good list of items for a Chicago visit. I love the city pass, we try and do that in every place we visit, it almost always saves lots of money. I’ve never heard of Dabble before, I’m going to have to look them up. Thanks for the great list!

  9. I think I would take the blue bikes for 24 hours and the Dabble certificate. Sounds like Chicago has plenty to do and see. Oh and I will take that attractions pass as well. Hello from Australia.


  10. I loved visiting Chicago! I think my favourite thing about the city was the architecture and the overall layout. We rented kayaks and paddled down the Chicago river which was beautiful and fabulous to be able to get exercise and be outdoors in the middle of the city! I also loved the pizza!

    1. Hi, Ronni:

      Yes! I would say that is a big coincidence, hope he enjoys his stay. And no you’re not a loser for only making it to the airport. The airport itself is beautiful.

  11. I’m with Erin (American Mom in England) above: it’s been way too long since I’ve been to Chicago! (Hint: hubby and I were there the first year of our marriage. We’re now going on 20!)

    Thank you for this great list, and for your sweet comment over at my blog, too. Blessings!

  12. I have never been to Chicago, well unless you count my brief layover at O’Hare. My husband and I have a tradition where whenever we travel to a new place we have to find a unique shot glass to bring home for our collection. Over our 15 years together we have quite the collection.

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