Games For The Car (Or Any Kind of Travel)
With holidays approaching, long travel days might be in your future. Though traveling can be exciting, it can also be a drag with children in tow, long lines in airports, or traffic on the road. Not to mention all of the packing beforehand! But you can cross “keeping kids entertained while traveling” off from your list with these fun games for the car and activities for travel with kids of all ages!
Games For The Car
An oldie but a goodie. Great for long car trips as this game can go on and on. This one builds cognitive skills while being fun enough to stave off the dreaded “are-we-there-yet?”
A, My Name Is…
Update this classic! This well-known song can be sung in different ways, instead of just about what you are bringing to the picnic. Typically, you match a name and a picnic item with the letter of the alphabet; for example, “A, my name is Annie, and I’m bringing Apples.” But you get creative! Have it be a name and an animal, or an animal and a food, or a food and a country, you get the idea. You can also make it harder by not allowing for pauses or saying it all to a beat.
The Lyrics Game
Singing on a road trip is always fun! In this game, someone says a word and everyone has to think of a song with that word in the title or the lyrics. You also have to sing a little bit of the song, at least the line that includes the word.
The Alphabet Game
Find the alphabet while driving. This one is best for a road trip where there are lots of signs, billboards, or even traffic. Use all the signs and license plates to find all the letters of the alphabet, in order.
Finish The Story
Another fun one for all ages. One person starts a sentence, “I walked down the street.” The next person adds to the sentence, “And I saw Bigfoot!” It can get so silly that you are sure to have everyone forgetting how long you’ve been traveling in no time!\
A car classic! Lots of websites have this one available to print and bring along. All ages can play, especially if you get a printable with pictures, and it can be played multiple times with different results. Just like regular Bingo games!
Name That Tune
Play the first few seconds of a song and then let everyone name that tune. All ages can play this one, you can even blast some Encanto and have little ones guessing too!
The City Game
Go through the alphabet naming cities. Atlanta, Burlington, Chicago, Denver. When someone misses a city or a letter, time to start again! This is another game you can change up, instead of cities try naming foods, countries, authors, illustrators, ice cream flavors, etc.
Name The Color
List items that are all the same color, like “grass, Granny Smith Apples, Evergreen trees…” and everyone has to guess the color they all have in common. This one can get tricky, but can also be stretched out longer and longer. Don’t forget to include things in the car, like someone’s sweater or water bottle!
In My Suitcase
This one is just right for younger kids, toddlers, and up. You can list some things in your suitcase (a bathing suit, sunglasses, towel) and they can guess where you are going (the beach!) To make this even simpler, you can say, “I’m going to the beach and I’m going to pack…” and everyone can add some things to the pretend suitcase.
Supplies and Fun Activities for Car Trips
The Chat Pack Game
These cute little Chat Pack cards make traveling much more interesting. They have some just for kids with cool questions that all ages can answer, with things from “what would your favorite day be like?” to “create an animal.” They will help start imaginative conversations!
Metal Lunch Boxes
Metal lunch boxes are great and so versatile when traveling! Use them with Magna Tiles or other magnet toys or letters, or glue a LEGO plate to the inside cover and use it for building. Dry erase markers can also come in handy with these, you can write or draw on the inside and wipe it off with a wet rag or baby wipe. Put all of these things in the lunchbox, or have separate reusable bags for different items so that the lunchbox can be used in multiple ways.
Reusable Baby Wipe Containers
Baby wipe containers are almost as amazing as the wipes themselves! Use the bigger kind to store small toys or blocks or other mini activities. The slim ones (the kind that comes with diaper bags or travel changing pads) are fantastic for markers and crayons.
Hidden Picture or I Spy Books
I’m pretty sure hidden picture books are made for travel! Searching for objects in illustrations provides hours of entertainment, even for children who aren’t yet reading.
Mini Lap Desks
Mini lap desks can save a long car trip! They are just right for drawing, doing small puzzles, snacking, or even resting a book.
Download Smash Boom Best
Hands down, Smash Boom Best is the best family podcast! Binge-listen and then start your own debates. Or act as scorekeepers and see who you think should win.
Another fantastic travel item. These are wonderful if you have multiple kids who all want to listen to something different in the car. Even better, you get to listen to what you want, and no phones/tablets or WiFi needed! Just bring along extra batteries.
If there is one thing you can do to make traveling with kids easier, it’s to have games and activities at the ready. You never know when there might be a flight delay, or traffic jam, or inclement weather that makes the trip even longer. Despite all the curves traveling can throw at you, if you are ready with some fun games and activities for kids, it can actually be a great time no matter what. Instead of one filled with lots of crying and whining from everyone, yourself included. So keep this list handy for your own travel well-being. Happy trails!