Road trips can be loads of fun. I remember growing up, my mom and dad would buy us tons of snacks and used to put a small old box tv in the middle of our minivan. We used to watch all sorts of movies, ate tons of snacks, and always fought for the back seat. You know! More leg room and a you can actually lay out on it! We used to also play card games, listen to music, you name it. Now a days it’s a tad bit different. I try to keep my kids unplugged as much as possible and try to do fun activities instead. Don’t get me wrong, I do pull out the tablet too and let them watch 1 to 2 movies depending on the length of the trip. Here are a few boredom busters you can do for those long road trips.
1. Road Trip Bingo
A few weeks ago I was checking out the dollar section at Target and ran into these Road trip Bingo cards. When I saw them I knew that I just had to have them for our road trips. These have been a lifesaver. These cards have little sliders on each square and you slide them shut according to the things you see out your window. It can anything from an Exit sign to a park or even a bird in the sky. The first one to get Bingo wins!
Get yours here!
This is an easy card game to play with the kiddos. I found a kids version at Target as well but you can use any deck of cards really. This is a fun one for my girls as well. They love it. It definitely keeps them entertained on the road. Just make sure to keep all the cards in their box after they are done playing. You would be surprised as to how fast you can lose cards on a road trip. I swear that they vanish if you don’t put them away immediately.
Get a similar one here!
3. Tell Me A Story
This is another card game that I found at Target. I swear that there summer selection this year was perfect for all of our road trip needs. This set of cards was a fun one. Each player picks three cards. The cards each have a different picture. Each player then has to create a fun story using the three cards that they chose.
Get a similar one here!
4. License Plate Game
This may be one for older kids that can already read quickly. I remember playing this one with my siblings and my parents. We used to look at every single car trying to get all 50 states on our road trips. I even got Germany once. I will never forget that one. There is a fun way to play it now though. Each child can get a board and every time they see a car for that state they put the license plate for it on the board.
Get the board here!
5. Activity Books
Activity books are my all time favorites. I get the Usborne Activity Books. Each page is a new activity for them to do. There are also several different types of books to choose from. I love their Travel Pad for ages 5 and up. For younger children ages 2 and up I really recommend the Sticker Books. The sticker books are educational, fun, and filled with loads of stickers.
You can view all of their activity books here.
If you need any book recommendations just send me an email and I will help you out.
6. Travel Journal
This is another fun activity for older kids to do. You can have them write a travel journal. On their way to the destination they can write about what they want to do, places to visit, or anything that may come to their mind. On your way back from your destination they can write about their different experiences and places that they visited while there.
Check out this children’s travel journal here.
There is a nature journal as well found here. This journal can be used for camping trips, hikes, etc.
7. Window Stickers
Another fun activity for kids to do are window stickers. These stickers can be put on and off without them leaving a mark. You can buy various types and have your little ones create a scenery with them. For instance, you can buy some stickers that are for space with some astronauts, stars, planets, etc. and have your child create a space theme and even have them put them sun and planets in order. OR you can get the ABC and 123 ones and teach your younger ones the alphabet, numbers, and colors.
You can get them here.
8. Read A Book
During the summer our kids tend to lose track of what they learned in school. Reading is a great way to keep the mind active. My daughter just finished Kindergarten and with the help of the reading books from Usborne, she is able to read a book from front to back with very little help. Each book has a fun or silly story that helps keep them engaged and wanting to read more. Make it fun for them and they will love it even more. My daughter’s favorite book this summer is How Zebra’s Got Their Stripes. She has read it maybe like 30 times already and we are not even halfway through our summer break yet.
The Reading With Usborne books are amazing. I highly recommend those for beginning reading levels (elementary through middle school).
9. Wipe Clean Books
Wipe clean books are my next favorite books. Can you tell I like books? These books have fun activities in them where they can do them and erase them and do them again. Each book has several options and they are all educational and engaging. You can view the entire collection of Wipe Clean books here.
10. Movie Time and Netflix
When nothing else is cutting it, movie and Netflix it is for some quiet time for mommy and daddy. This is when I take advantage of them being zoned out for one movie to take a nap or catch up on work. What I do is I bring my tablet and put on Netflix or Hulu for them. They have so many options for kids that it gives me enough time to have some me time on the road.
Get 2 weeks free of Hulu by using this link!
11. Coloring Books
Another fun activity for your kiddos to do is color. I always took them to the Dollar store and got them some crayons and let them pick out a coloring book for the road. Just knowing that they had a special coloring book that they got to pick out made it so much more exciting for them. Usborne has a nice selection of coloring books as well here.
One thing I do to get my little ones excited about the road trip is that I have them each pick out their favorite activity books, games, activities, books to read, snacks, and drinks. Letting them choose and be a part of it makes them much more excited about sitting on a seat for the next 10 hours. Best of all, they each have their own travel backpack that they can each stuff with their favorite stuffed animal, books, and games. They would go overboard with it but I didn’t mind. The smiles on their faces makes it all worth it.
Well there you have it. All the must-haves to have a fun road trip with happy children. And do NOT forget the overload of snacks and drinks. Games are not fun without some snacks and something to sip on. Feel free to comment below with any other activities or road trip boredom busters that you may do with your little ones. I would love to hear new ideas.
If you are flying, read some of my favorite airplane boredom busters here.