49 Fun Things To Do In The Car (Besides Eating & Sleeping) To Keep Your Kids Occupied On A Long Car Ride

If you are taking a road trip and looking for things to do in the car, then you’ve come to the right spot. These are…

If you are taking a road trip and looking for things to do in the car, then you’ve come to the right spot. These are the best road trip activities to keep the kids busy during a long trip.

things to do in the car

Road trips can be stressful and boring if you don’t have enough things to do in the car to keep your kids occupied. However, by bringing all the right activities, then a family road trip can be a fun way to bond and make lasting memories with your kids.
Every year our family takes a 20+ hour road trip to Wisconsin to see our friends and family. Before each trip, I am always searching for fun, new things to do in the car to keep my kids entertained.

Having three kids, I always make sure we pack A TON of things to do in the car for them. Otherwise, as I know from experience, we will hear the dreaded phrases “I’m bored” and “Are we there yet?” the entire duration of the trip. Even worse, when the kids get bored they start fighting. As a result, I have learned the importance of having fun things to do in the car for them.

To help you out for your next family road trip, I have compiled a huge list of fun things to do in the car. From conversation cards and puzzles to games, travel journals, and more you are sure to find something for you and your family to pass the time.

After reading this list, you will feel so much more prepared when packing things to do in the car for your kids.

This post is all about things to do in the car.

Things To Do In The Car

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1. Talk

Conversation Cards

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One of the best things to do in the car is to talk to one another. Nothing passes the time faster than a good conversation. These conversation cards are a great way to connect with your family as you take a long trip.

2. Travel Journal

Kids Travel Journal

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A travel journal is a fun activity for your kids to document their trip. You can get an adorable travel journal like this one or head over to my travel journal blog post and get my free printables to make a DIY keepsake travel journal.

things to do on road trips

{RELATED POST: How To Create A Travel Journal Your Kids Can Keep Forever}

3. Read

5,000 Awesome Facts About Animals

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Bring along plenty of books for everyone in the vehicle. My daughter has this 5,000 Awesome Facts book and she has been determined to read all 5,000. We are definitely packing this for our summer trip to Wisconsin.

If you or your kids happen to get nauseous from reading in the vehicle just keep reading this post for more fun things to do in the car.

4. Audio Books

Harry Potter Audio Book

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If you happen to be someone who gets car sick from reading then an audio book makes a great alternative. Put on a story the entire family will love such as Harry Potter and listen to the audio book together.

5. Audio Player For Kids

Toniebox Audio Player

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A Toniebox Audio Player is basically an audiobook for kids. Kids can collect the characters and each has their own unique songs and stories. My younger two have their own Toniebox and it’s one of their favorite things to do in the car for long trips.

What’s also really nice is that the boxes have a headphone jack so your kids can listen to the songs and stories with headphones.

6. Sudoku

Sudoku Book For Kids

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These number puzzles are a fun way for kids to pass the time in the car while also challenging their brains.

7. Kanoodle

Educational Insights Kanoodle Gravity

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Kanoodle is another great educational puzzle for kids to do in the car. This game comes with a booklet that has different ways to start the puzzle based on difficulty. Then, you have to figure out a way to fit the remaining pieces to solve the puzzle.

8. Draw

Sketch Pad

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How To Draw Cute Things

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If your kids enjoy drawing like mine, I highly recommend picking up each of your kids a drawing pad like this. I then like to portion some crayons, pencils, and colored pencils into a Ziploc baggie for each.

You can also pick up a How to Draw book like this one if they like learning to draw new things. It will keep them busy for awhile.

9. Family Card Game

Do You Really Know Your Family

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Do You Really Know Your Family? is the PERFECT card game for a family road trip. In this game, you will answer hilarious questions and figure out who knows the family best. This is definitely one of the top things to do in the car.

10. Tell Jokes

National Geographic Just Joking Jumbo

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Add some laughter to your long trip with some funny jokes. Go around the vehicle taking turns sharing jokes you know.

You can also pick up a joke book for your car ride. I recently picked up this National Geographic Just Joking Book for our 20-hour trip and I just know my kids are going to LOVE it!

11. Play Handheld Games

Hasbro Simon Micro Series Game

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This Hasbro Simon Game is a handheld memory game great for road trips. It is easy to pack, takes up very little space, and can keep the kids occupied. When your kids start asking for things to do in the car just hand them this!

12. Play Guess in 10

Skillmatics Guess in 10

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Guess in 10 is another great card game for the car. We have the animal planet and food one but they make SO many different versions.

If you don’t have the card game just have each person come up with something and write it down. Then, as a group ask ten questions to try and figure out the answer. After asking ten questions, everyone can guess what the answer is.

13. Take Pictures

Polaroid Camera

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How fun is this?! Bring along a Polaroid camera (or just use your phone) and let the kids take pictures during the road trip. Not only is it one of the fun things to do in the car, but it also will leave you with awesome pictures to document your family trip!

14. Play Guess Who

Guess Who? People & Pets

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Guess Who? Animal Friends

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Games like Guess Who? are always great things to do in the car. We have the pets and people version but there are a few other versions such as this animal friends one.

If you don’t already have the board game or you are tight on space in the vehicle, you can also find a ton of printable Guess Who games online.

15. Weave

Ultimate Weaving Loom & Loops

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Bring along a weaving loom and let your kids create different projects. My daughter has this weaving loom and loves making all sorts of patterned pot holders. It keeps her occupied for a long time!

16. Origami

Creativity For Kids Origami

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Another arts and crafts activity for the car is origami. This is a fun beginner set you can bring along and your kids can learn the art of paper folding. Do note, if you get this set you’ll need to bring a pair of scissors because some of the patterns require cutting.

17. Make Friendship Bracelets

Friendship Bracelet String Maker Kit

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My kids love doing friendship bracelets on our trip. It keeps them busy and then they have cute bracelets to give to family and friends when we get there.

18. Magazines

Ranger Rick Magazine

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Magazines are another reading material to keep kids occupied. If your kids like animals I highly recommend these Ranger Rick Magazines. The regular Ranger Rick Magazines are geared for 7+ and the Ranger Rick Jr. are for ages 4-8.

19. State License Plate Game

License Plate Travel Book

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As you travel, see if your family can spot a license plate for all 50 states. You can get a cool license plate travel book like this that has stickers you put on each state as you find them. You can also just print out a map of the 50 states and have your kids color them in as you spot them.

20. Bingo

Auto Bingo Game

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Magnetic Bingo Game

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My kids love playing bingo on car rides. I always keep bingo cards in our vehicle and my kids play them even on short trips.

These bingo cards have different items you may see on your trip such as a fire truck, yield sign, motorcycle, power line, etc. When you find an item on your card just slide the tab over. See who can find 5 in a row first or who can find their entire card.

They also make another cool travel bingo. With this bingo game, the pieces are magnetic so they stay on the board.

21. Play Hangman & Tic Tac Toe

On-The-Go-Game Pad

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Hangman and tic-tac-toe are classic games that can be played in the car. This game pad is perfect for your travels! It has hangman, dots & boxes, fortune teller, tic-tac-toe, and categories.

22. Play Mad Libs

Mad Libs on the Road

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Getting a Mad Libs book like this is a funny way for kids to pass the time. This game helps reinforce concepts they’ve learned at school like adjectives, nouns, and verbs.

23. Play Rush Hour Traffic Jam

ThinkFun Rush Hour Traffic Jam

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Rush Hour Traffic Jam is an awesome logic game that kids can play from their seats. The object of the game is to move the vehicles in such a way that gets the red car out of the traffic jam. As they complete the puzzles, the cards get more and more challenging.

24. Play With a Fidget Toy

Shashibo Shape Shifting Box

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This shape-shifting box is such a cool fidget toy for the car. Each cube can create more than 70 different shapes! It even has magnets so you can combine more than one box and create even more shapes. Definitely a great fidget toy to bring along!

25. Play I Spy

I Spy Travel Cards

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I spy is a fun travel game that our family plays all the time. Have someone pick an object that everyone is capable of seeing and then say “I Spy Something (color of the object)”. Everyone then has to look around and find something that color and guess until the right answer is said.

Whoever gets the correct answer gets to go next. You can also pick up some I Spy Cards like this that say things like “I Spy a Red Car” or “I Spy Something Round” and you have to find those items.

26. Ask Would You Rather Questions

Would You Rather Road Trip

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Would you rather questions are ALWAYS a hit with kids. These kinds of questions can be silly and also thought-provoking making them great for passing time in the car.

27. Trivia Questions

Quiz Whiz

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Pokemon Trainer Trivia

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Quiz each other with trivia questions on your drive. A book like this National Geographic Quiz Whiz would be perfect for your road trip!

If you have a Pokemon lover at home like me, you could also bring along this Pokemon trainer trivia game for them to play. My kids love it because they can play by themselves or with each other (you can play this game with up to 4 players).

28. Do A Scavenger Hunt

A scavenger hunt is a great way for kids to stay busy in the car. If you are looking for one you can check out my Road Trip Scavenger Hunt Post to print off my FREE scavenger hunts for the car. Then, just slide them in a dry-erase sleeve and bring along a dry-erase marker for endless fun.

things to do in the car when you're bored

{RELATED POST: Road Trip Scavenger Hunt For Kids Free Printable}

29. Play 2 Truths & A Lie

My kids love this game. Take turns coming up with two statements that are true and one statement that is a lie. Then, everyone else has to guess which one is the lie. Some statement examples are “Today I found $5. I’ve never been on a roller coaster. I was named after a famous person.”

30. Play Scattegories

Scattegories Game

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Scattegories is another fun game that can be played on road trips. Go back and forth choosing topics like foods, movies, things on a beach, pets, etc. The goal is to come up with as many items that fit into the category that start with the designated letter.

31. Play Battleship

Battleship Classic Board Game

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Battleship is another game you can play in the car. You can download a printable battleship game or just bring along the board game. They do make a mini travel-size version of this game however, the pieces in the mini-game can be hard to play with due to size and not staying in well.

32. Rubik’s Cube

The Original Rubik’s Cube

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A Rubik’s cube is a great fidget puzzle toy for long car rides. It challenges the brain and keeps your kids occupied. They also make a 2×2 version for younger kids.

33. Tell A Story

Tell a story where everyone contributes. Have someone start the story. Then, after 30 seconds let the next person add to the story. Keep going around the vehicle letting everyone add to the story for 30 seconds.

See where the story goes! This is one of the fun things to do in the car that even the driver can participate in.

34. Do Word Search Puzzles

Word Search for Kids

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Word Searches are word puzzles that make a fun activity for the car.

35. Play Sussed?

Sussed? The Wacky ‘What Would I Do?’

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This card game is fun for the whole family. Similarly to the Do You Really Know Your Family game, these silly questions will determine who knows who best.

36. Play Chess

Magnetic Travel Chess Set

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How cool is this magnetic chessboard? My kids just learned to play chess this year so we might just have to get this board before our trip this summer!

37. Watch a Movie

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites

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Portable DVD Player

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Bring along a DVD player and some DVDs to watch on your trip. You can also surprise your kids with some fun movie snacks for them to enjoy while they watch like these cookie dough bites.

38. Alphabet Game

The alphabet game is always a great option for the car. Start with the letter A and try to find something that starts with it. Once you find an item then move to the next letter in the alphabet. See if you can find something for each letter.

39. Listen to Music

Kids Headphones

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Blast the music and sing along to the songs together or bring some headphones for everyone to listen to their own.

40. Riddles

Difficult Riddles For Smart Kids

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Bring along a riddle book like this one and work together as a family to solve them. See how many you and your family can answer correctly.

41. Wave to People

When I was a kid, this was one of the top entertaining things to do in the car. Have your kids wave to people in the other vehicles on the road and count how many people wave back. This simple game is a great way to spread kindness.

Whenever I’m driving and see kids waving and playing this game it makes me feel nostalgic and puts a huge smile on my face.

42. Mental Blox Go!

Learning Resources Mental Blox Go!

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Mental Blox Go! is a great lap game for the car. It is geared for children ages 5+ and works math and problem-solving skills.

43. Crossword Puzzles

101 Fun Crossword Puzzles For Kids

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Another great word game choice for the car is crossword puzzles! They make all sorts of puzzle books each geared for different age groups.

44. Play the Number Game

Have someone go first and think of a number 1-50. Then, each person guesses what the number is. Whoever is the closest to the correct answer gets to go next.

45. Look & Find Books

Where’s Bluey?

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Bring along some Look and Find books like this Bluey one for a little quiet time in the car. These are especially great things to do in the car for toddlers who cannot read yet.

46. Listen to Podcasts

Put on a podcast such as Brains On! Science Podcast for Kids and listen together as a family.

47. Play Name That Tune

Turn on the radio and scan through the channels until you come to a song. The first person in the vehicle to name the correct title of the song gets a point.

48. Play on Electronics

Nintendo Switch

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While we all want to keep our kids’ screen time to a minimum, sometimes we have to get rid of those expectations while we are traveling. When you just need that quiet time let the kids play on a Nintendo Switch or tablet.

Make sure to charge the electronics up before your trip. It can also be helpful to download a few new apps for their tablet or get a new game for their switch.

49. FaceTime Friends & Family

With how busy our lives can be sometimes we don’t call our loved ones enough. Being in the car on a long road trip you have plenty of time on your hands to catch up with family and friends.

I hope you and your family have an awesome road trip. I’d love to hear which things to do in the car were your kids’ favorites.

This Post Was All About Things To Do In The Car

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