What are some things to do in the car on long trips?

I live in New York (not the city) and we are going to Wisconsin for vacation to see family. We drive all the way there and it will take at least 20 hours. It will be my mom, step-dad, five siblings and myself in our van. Does anyone have any ideas of what to do in the car?

If this helps enough, please put me for best answer. Thanks :]

ALPHABET WORDS: Pick a letter and find words or objects starting with that letter. Move through the alphabet. Or play as a memory game – A is for apple; B is for __. The second player must remember what “A” was for, and so on through the alphabet.

BUILDING WORDS: Build a word one letter at a time. Each successive player adds a letter and must have a real word in mind.

BUZZ: Try to reach 100 without making a mistake. Every time you get to a number that’s divisible by seven (7, 14, 21) or has a seven in it (17), say “Buzz” instead of the number.

THE CAR NEXT DOOR: Invent stories about people in the car next to yours.

GEOGRAPHY: Can be played with animals also. Start with an animal or a place name –California, for example. The next person has to think of a place that begins with the last letter of “California”

GROUP STORYTELLING: Someone starts a story and, after a couple of sentences, points to someone else to continue the story.

I SPY: or “I spy with my little eye…” Use color or first letter as a hint. Whoever guesses correctly goes next.

NAME THAT TUNE: Can be played with TV theme songs.

ODDS, EVENS: Two players pick either “odds” or “evens”, say, “One, two, three…shoot,” and stick out one or two fingers.

ROCK, PAPER, And SCISSORS: Two can play. Both players make rock paper or scissors shapes behind their backs, say “One, two, three,” and show their hands.

TWENTY QUESTIONS: One person states they are a person, place or thing. (Or declares animal, vegetable or mineral.) Everybody else gets to interrogate the player with 20 questions, which must be answered “yes” or “no.”

TWO TRUTHS AND ONE LIE: The player tells the group three statements about himself or herself. Two are true and one is a lie. Everyone tries to guess which one is the lie.

License Plate Road Trip Games

LICENSE PLATE ID: See how many different states you can identify on license plates.

Print a U.S. map from the PC and highlight in the states as you see license plates from each one. Try to get all 50 states within a certain time or distance. You might even record the time and date and the state where you saw it. This can be a family project as you build your “collection” of license plates together

Alternative versions of the license plate travel game;

LICENSE PLATE LINGO: Make up a phrase using the letters on another car’s plate. Spot a license plate and call out the letters on it. Then everyone tries to come up with a different phrase using the letters in the order they appear on the license plate as the first letter of each word. For instance KEW could be “kittens eating watermelon” or “kiss every warthog.” When you can’t think of any more look for another license plate.

STATE GAME: Like License Plate ID, above, but with a pre-printed list of states that player check off.


TRAVEL BINGO: Create bingo cards with B-I-N-G-O across the top row. Draw pictures or place stickers of things you might see along the road in the columns under the letters.

TRAVEL GAME TRIVIA: Bring cards from your favorite Trivia game.

Road Maps for the kids!
Give your kids an opportunity to have their own copy of a map of where you are going. Another idea is to draw your own that has the major stops and cities, and a nice happy drawing for your final destination. Show them how far you have come, how much further there is to go and let them mark it with a crayon.

Make a travel game out of the question “How much further?” The kids can follow along and answer the question themselves. Give them a compass to learn to use. If you don’t have a Road Atlas, print a map from Google Maps or MapQuest.

Find Stuff Road trip Games

Counting Cows Travel game.

An oldie but a goodie! Count the cows you see on your side of the car. If you pass a cemetery on your side of the car, you lose all your cows, but only if the opposing team calls “your cows are buried!”. This game gets interesting when distraction tactics are used to either cause your opponent to miss cows on their side of the road or to miss a cemetery on your side of the road. Add a bonus like a colored horse or a rare bird. The team with the most cows wins.

Count Other Stuff

Count blue vans, or count red cars, find 10 horses, count signs, billboards, police cars. Count water towers. How many people pass you on the highway? — count them too!

Scavenger Hunt

SCAVENGER HUNT IN THE CAR: Make up a list of things to find along the road. Give each child a list of items to watch for while driving. For a younger child who can’t read, you might draw a little picture of each item next to the word so they will know what to look for. Work as individuals or together as teams. The list can be made up ahead of time and adjusted for the scenery. Check of each item when they find it.

Scavenger Hunt:
flashing red light
signs in foreign languages
food store
railroad tracks
billboard with a child on it
license plate with “Q”
person with tall boots
person talking on a cell phone

Scavenger Hunt:
flashing traffic light
food store
someone on a bike
flower garden or snowman
pickup truck
Person walking a dog

Scavenger Hunt:
railroad tracks
pond or lake
dirt road
gas station
oil pump
armadillo (even if it’s beside the road!)

Take along some good books to read, or listen to if you like audio books. Get a portable DVD player, watch your favorite shows while cruising. Or you could always interact with your traveling mates, and know more about whats going on in there lives. Happy trails :-).

I have very, very bad memories on trips like that as a child. Two ***** days of driving down to a retirement village in Florida — ugh!! With the cost of gas, it may be cheaper to fly. Try sleeping or reading. To this day, I cannot stand long trips in crowded vehicles. I’d rather walk!

Try to find as many different states on liscense plates as possible.
There’s actually a bingo game you can play in the car. You have to find a policeman, stop sign, etc. I’m sure you can find it in a dollar store.
Of course, there’s video games and mp3 players.

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