10 Games and Activities for the Car

We are in our car a lot.  I love taking my boys out hiking, to the beach, and to parks and zoos.  I'd say we have at least one road trip scheduled each week.

Since we are in the car so much I am always on the lookout for fun things to do in the car to keep them occupied and to keep the bickering and whining to a minimum.

Here are some of our favorite games and activities:

1. True or false game--  This is a fun game I use to review some of the things we're learning about in school.  You can use anything you are studying -- artists, geography, math, etc.,  I don't really even prepare any questions ahead of time.. for instance I might say "Slaves were allowed to get married.  True or False?" Then the boys have to answer.  If you decide to try it out yourself don't forget to throw in some silly ones like "George Washington played in a rock band.  True or False?" The giggles are priceless.  Besides you might be surprised at what they'll say!  My boys took over and started asking their own true/ false questions; it is so much fun.

2. Audiobooks -- We rent books on CD through our library at least once a month and have listened (through the years) to the entire Boxcar Children series, all the Magic Tree House books, The Chronicles of Narnia, All of Rick Riordan's books, and so many, many more.  It's a wonderful way to pass the time on the road and it gives us all something to talk about afterwards too!

3. Travel Tangrams-- We found these magnetic travel tangrams our very first year of homeschooling and they were fantastic for keep the boys occupied and best of all-- they were working on math skills without even realizing it!

4. Travel Bingo-- We have a few different ways we play travel bingo.  We find printable sheets from the internet (some with state names for license plates, some with objects and pictures) and we put our sheets inside a 3- ring binder page protector and mark off what we see using dry erase markers. We've also used travel bingo games that you can purchase through the stores like this one.

5. Travel I Spy Games--  This is a game I used to play a lot as child and I have taught it to my kids; it comes in so handy in doctor's waiting rooms, the store, the car, etc.  One person starts by saying "I spy with my little eye something..." and then you give a clue like blue, or that lights up, that's soft, etc. and everyone else looks all around the room (or car!) trying to guess what it is you see.  The first person to guess correctly gets to start the next round.  

6. Scavenger hunt-- My kids got this card game as a gift and it was a lot of fun to play!  Each card has an object on it and you want to be the first one to spot that object.  You collect the cards you've spotted and the one with the most cards at the end of the ride wins.

7.  Mad Libs! - My boys just LOVE Mad Libs and since we only need a pen or pencil to fill in the blank lines it's a perfect activity for the car.  With so many wonderful varieties to choose from there is something for everyone.


8.  Would You Rather? Game-- We have a few of these card decks and while they are meant to be played as a table game with points and chips we often use the cards alone while in the car.  Though we do prefer to come up with our own questions because then the game can be pretty endless (plus we find so many of the cards to be so gross!).   Basically you are given two usually pretty bad choices like "Would you rather eat raw chicken once or be forced to eat your lest favorite food every day for the rest of your life?"  Often we all start discussing (or defending) our choices and we have a great time with it.
Zobmondo!! You Gotta Be Kidding Card Game

9.  Alphabet Game-- Another game that needs no paper or supplies that we often play in the car we have dubbed the alphabet game.  One person chooses a category like animals and begins Aardvark, then each person goes around and tries to see if they can come up with an animal that starts with A also then we go through the whole alphabet.  We do have some variations though sometime we just have one person try to come up with an A word then the next goes on to B etc.  It depends on how long we want the game to last for.  We also tend to accept creative answers like Bushy Black cat for B but every family can make up their own "car rules."

10.  Brain Quest or Smarty Pants Trivia packs-- This car does require one person to read the questions but we often play altogether as a family.  There are lots of grades and categories of questions to choose from so we found that there was pretty much always something for everyone.  The Brain Quest cards are all held together so they travel real well.  When my boys were younger and the skills were more varied we used two or three packs and just took turns asking questions; the younger kids LOVED when they got an answer right to one of the older boys' questions.

What are some ways that you like to keep the kids occupied in the car?


  1. We love 'Would You Rather' too - but I've never come across the actual card decks, we've always just made it up ourselves. The Scavenger Hunt one looks fun :-)

    1. We mostly prefer making up our own questions.

  2. These are great games! My kids loved MadLibs when they were home...so much fun :)

  3. Brilliant! I didn't know brain quest still existed! All great ideas for the kids to stay engaged and enjoy a car ride together!

    1. They're harder to find that's for sure but I did finally find Brain Quest card/ kit things on Amazon.

  4. We do many of these, and we like to play the license plate game. Spot a car from out of state and try to name the capital. It's good work for me and the Mrs. too! #familyfunlinky xoxo

    1. I LOVE that idea; but we'd have to play when my husband is not in the car he has all 50 states and capitals memorized! Thanks for the fun idea.

  5. Oh I’m not keen on long car journeys with mine. They’re 2 and 3 so a lot of the games don’t reallt work for their age and they get car sick so I don’t let them have the iPad. Music and lots of chatting tends to be the way for us lol. Thanks for joining us at #familyfun

    1. We once drove 18 hours when my kids were 2, 4, & 6 but thankfully they never got car sick so movies and the like were the way to go for us. We also listened to lots of kids songs.


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