Road trips don’t have to be this way! Hours in the car with your family can be just as much fun as the destination itself. To help make the time pass a little more quickly, Christian Brothers Automotive has pulled together the top 10 summer road trip games for kids of all ages!
So settle in, buckle up and prepare for some fun.
1. Grocery List
The Grocery List game will seriously test your memory. It’s straightforward, too. One person begins the game with the sentence, “I’m on my way to the grocery store to pick up ___.” That blank can be filled in with apples, bananas, cereal, or anything else found in a store. For this example, let’s stick with apples.
The first person begins, “I’m on my way to the grocery store to pick up apples.” The next person has to continue the list. “I’m on my way to the grocery store to pick up apples and bananas,” and so on. Each person must first repeat the previous players’ list items, and then add one of their own. Each time a player misses an item or repeats an item, they’re out. Continue adding items until the last person can recite the entire list without a mistake!
2. Interrogation Room
Interrogation Room is a game better suited for friends than family members. Each person takes a turn in the “Hot Seat,” where they’re asked 5 questions. The player has the option to skip 1 of the 5 questions – but only one. These questions can range from “what’s your favorite color” to “what’s your biggest secret?” As you get to know each other more intimately, everyone is a winner!
3. I Spy
I Spy is a classic car trip game that still holds up. In case you missed out in your childhood, I Spy begins with the first player finding an object in the car or on the side of the road and saying, “I spy with my little eye, something ___!” That blank can be filled in with a color or any other description. For this example, let’s use a “tree” as the object.
Player 1 begins, “I spy with my little eye, something green!” Player 2 then makes guesses and asks “yes” or “no” questions to learn more information. “Is the object tall?” “Is the object outside the car?” After 5 incorrect guesses, Player 1 wins.
4. The Swear Jar
The Swear Jar is intended for older passengers, but can easily be played by kids as well. At the beginning of the road trip, everyone agrees on one word that will be the “Swear Word,” or taboo. For example, the word “bathroom.” For the remainder of the trip, a tally is kept of how often each individual uses the off-limits word. When the group arrives at the destination, the loser buys a round of drinks (or has to share their dessert).
5. License Plate Game
The License Plate Game is excellent for long road trips because it can keep you busy for hours. As you drive across the country, keep track of each license plate you see. The goal of the game is to collect all 50 states by the end of the trip. This game is easiest when driving across multiple states, but can still provide surprising victories when you spot a state’s license plate on the wrong side of the US.
6. Zitch Dog
Zitch Dog is another game guaranteed to keep the entire family occupied for hours. Every time a passenger sees a dog in another car, that player yells, “Zitch Dog!” If the dog sighting is confirmed by other passengers, the player receives a point. Keep this going throughout the entire road trip and at the end of the car ride, the player with the most “Zitch Dog”s is the winner.
7. Team Storytelling
Team Storytelling isn’t just a game for your college creative writing class. This game requires extensive use of your imagination as you piece together an entire story one sentence at a time. To play, the first passenger begins with, “Once upon a time, there lived a ___.” Player 1 can fill in that blank with whatever they choose.
For example, “Once upon a time, there lived a beautiful princess.” Player 2 must then add the next sentence, “The princess lived in a tall tower guarded by a fire-breathing dragon.” As players take turns adding sentences, a story develops. At the end of the game, everyone wins!
8. Alphabet Game
Much like the License Plate Game, the Alphabet Game requires keen observation skills. As you drive down the road, each passenger is on the lookout for words beginning with a particular letter. Beginning with the letter “A”, each passenger must complete the entire alphabet in order.
For example, if the car drives past a billboard advertising “Awesome Apples at the Next Exit,” the first player to spot the billboard has an “A” for “Awesome.” The letters must be collected in order and no word can belong to more than one player.
9. Would You Rather
Another game geared towards older players, Would You Rather requires imaginative questions and uncomfortable answers. The game itself is easy to pick up. Each player takes turns being asked an extreme “would you rather” question. For example, “Would you rather eat an entire barrel of marshmallows or take one bite of cat food?” As the game continues, everyone learns more about each other.
10. Name That Song
And finally, another classic. Name That Song is a game that can be played with or without the radio. Simply turn on an iPod or hum a tune, and the first person to guess the song correctly gets a point! Continue to play until you reach your destination. Whoever guessed the most songs correctly at the end of the trip wins the game.
Road trips can be a fun bonding experience.
However, a bit of preparation can keep a great adventure from devolving into a mess of claustrophobia and boredom.
By playing a few of these road trip games, your family can keep up the good spirits for hours on end. So drive safe, and have a great summer!