3 Car Games to Pass the Time on a Road Trip

3 Car Games to Pass the Time on a Road Trip

Australia is a BIG country, and some of the places we travel to can mean plenty of hours (or even days) of car time.

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So, what options do we have to avoid the inevitable irritations and boredom that may ensue, especially when children are involved?

Well… you could try sleeping the entire trip (unless you are the driver of course!), or you could encourage anti-social behaviour by having a car full of headphone-wearing passengers watch their own movies or music playlists. We tend to think a little old school, and love encouraging everyone to pass travel time with your family and friends more interactively.

Sure, sometimes there’s only so many hours catching up and general chit-chat will pass, but that doesn’t mean you try a few car games for kids, have some fun, share some laughs and enjoy your drive together.

1 - I Spy

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This game is so famous it even has a movie in its name

“I Spy” is an absolute classic. It’s one of the best car games for kids, encouraging them to get creative, whilst potentially learning some things about the external environment.

In case you’ve never played “I Spy” before, it is simple to learn and play:

  • Each person takes turns to be the “spier” and all others take turns to guess the answer.
  • The spier chooses an object either inside or outside the car, can be a part or accessory of the car as well. keeps it to themselves and says to everyone else, “I spy, with my little eye, something beginning with…” and then tells everyone the first letter of the item they have (or are) looking at.
  • Everyone must then guess what the object is, and the spier’s reply must simply be a “yes” or “no”.

    [When I was a kid, we had to tell everyone whether the object was inside the car or outside. If outside, things can get interesting because you may have gone past the thing you saw, and everyone else has to try and remember what things have passed by already – this gets much more interesting]

  • Everyone then takes it in turns to guess and spy. There doesn’t need to be winners or losers in this game… in fact, it’s probably best to avoid a potential tantrum that’s scoreboard related!

2 - Number Plate Cricket
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If you’re a cricket fan, this can be quite a competitive little game. The rules are fairly simple:

  • Each person in the car takes turns being the batsman.
  • Essentially, the last number on any number plate of any vehicle that is travelling in the opposite direction is counted as a score. So, each car going past in the opposite direction gets its number plate reviewed by all players (just to make sure there’s no cheating). As long as more than one player agrees with the last number (that’s furthest to the right) of the number plate, the batsman at the time will score the number of runs from 1 to 9.
  • If the last number is a zero, then that batter is out for that turn and the next player becomes the batsman.
  • The game continues like this until one batsman scores a total of 100 (cumulative – not from one inning) and then the game starts again

3 - Name That Song

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Music is probably the best companion during on road or off road trips.

A car game for the music buffs!

Firstly, find some obscure playlists and have one person control the music device. This person forwards to the next song on shuffle, and everyone else must try and name the song and artist.

If no one is able to correctly identify the song and artist, half points can be awarded for naming either song or artist.

Keep track of the scores to determine who is the musical genius. Mix things up with different playlists and, if you are in mobile network range, pick some “out there” genres and see how everyone goes.

These are just a few of the easy car games that can keep everyone from getting too bored or annoyed on your next long-distance commute.

What are your favourite car games to play with passengers on your road trips? We’d love for you to share them with other readers in the comments section below.

Happy travels.