Does this sound familiar? You’re 20 minutes into hitting the road for a family trip, and someone shouts “Are we there yet?” Boredom can set in fairly quickly on long car journeys, and sometimes the only way to get through it is to distract everyone with technology until you arrive at your destination.
If that sounds like every family trip you’ve ever been on, then this should help you out. We’ve put together five of the best games to play in the car to help put an end to monotonous road trips.
- I Spy
I Spy is probably the most iconic and well-known time-passing car game of all time, and if you don’t know how to play it by now we’ll be very surprised. But we’ll give you a recap of the rules anyway.
One person takes a look around and picks something - absolutely anything. The only clue they’re allowed to give is… “I spy with my little eye, something beginning with…” and then says the first letter of the object and the other people have to guess what it is.
Even though you want to win, you have to play fair. Don’t “spy” something that’s going to disappear in 60 seconds. Instead opt for something that’s in view of the car for a good few minutes to give people time to guess.
- Would You Rather?
We all know this game, because it’s fun to watch your friends and family stuck between a rock and a hard place. Not literally, of course.
If you’re not entirely sure of the premise of this game, the idea is to present someone with two options that they have to pick from. Neither one is particularly pleasing; the fun is watching them struggle to choose their lesser of two evils. Would you rather hold a spider or a snake? Would you rather take a bath in beans or a shower in custard? It’s the perfect car game for both adults and kids.
- The Name Game
This one can start off easy but trust us, it gets trickier the longer you play it.
The rules of this game are pretty simple. Someone kicks things off by saying a name - any name that pops into their head - and then the next person has to say another name that begins with the last letter of the first one. And so on. Make sense?
Here’s the catch; no duplicates allowed. If you’re a real stickler for this rule, task someone with jotting down all the names that are said. And all the names must be real.
Fancy switching things up a bit or making it a little trickier? A more challenging version of this game is countries or cities.
- 20 Questions
Another classic car game that is second only to I-Spy, 20 Questions is the perfect activity to have on standby when conversation starts to dry up. Not familiar? Let us explain the rules…
One person thinks of something - it can be absolutely anything - and the other people have 20 questions to try and narrow down the options and guess what it could be. If someone guesses correctly on or before the last question, they win and go next. If no one manages to get it right, the ‘answerer’ wins and gets another turn, and it’s entirely up to you how easy or difficult you want to make your answer.
- The Memory Game
Also known as The Picnic Game, this activity is fun and educational - something the parents will love to hear - and is great for all ages. So how do you play?
The first person kicks things off by saying “I went to a picnic and I brought…” then they start at the top of the alphabet and list a food, like ‘apples’. Then the next person continues with “I brought…” and their answer should begin with B, and the next person’s with C, and so on. Get it?
Can your car load of people get through the entire alphabet and remember every item that was suggested? Bonus points if you manage to suggest picnic items that begin with X and Z.
Bonus mini games
- Guess the time
How long will it take you to get to your destination? This won’t last for very long but it gets the conversation going and you could even give a prize when you get there for the person who was closest.
- Spot the landmark
If you’re hoping to get a little peace and quiet for even a few minutes, give the little and big kids something to look for outside, and a little competition never hurt anybody.
If your holiday involves heading north, why not see who can spot The Blackpool Tower on the horizon? At 518 feet and nine inches tall, did you know that it can be seen as far away as Wales and the Lake District? Driving more towards the Yorkshire area? Why not look for the Angel of the North in Gateshead?
- Name that tune
Ever heard of the classic television show of the same name? Well this game is simple; the winner is the first one to correctly guess the name of the “mystery song”. Just choose a theme - like 90s pop songs, movie or tv themes - and start humming, whistling or singing. Think of it as a mini karaoke session too.
If no one fancies taking to the stage, try guessing songs on the radio instead.
Now you’ve got the car games sorted, but do you have your next staycation planned? Why not head to the classic British seaside town of Blackpool? You’d be surprised at the huge amount of activities that you can get up to here, so why not pay a visit to the famous Blackpool Tower. There’s so much to do here you’ll be spoiled rotten.