Air travel is rather expensive these days – for a family of four, you’re looking at somewhere around $2,000 just in air fare, and that doesn’t cover any purchases once you reach your destination. Thus, more families choose to travel by car rather than by air, but while the classic road trip is cheaper, it’s not always the easiest. As any parent who has driven even 30 minutes with kids has learned, kids get bored, and they get bored fast. That’s where these five road trip activities can help parents from hearing “Mom, I’m bored!” every 10 minutes.
1) Activity Books
These types of books can hold kids’ attention span for a while – and can get them thinking as well. I was able to pick up some learning activity books from Half Price Books, which were helpful. Also, Melissa and Doug have some great travel activity books like color-by-number and scratch art to keep your children entertained.
2) Rotating DJ
We just started doing this on road trips, and it seemed to hold everyone’s attention for a while. Each passenger takes a turn picking a song of their choice for everyone to hear, and then it rotates to the next person. The key to this activity is having an app like Spotify or iTunes that allows you to select songs at random – and with relative ease.
3) Classic Road Trip Games
Keep the classics alive by introducing games like the I Spy, 20 Questions, License Plate Bingo, or the Alphabet Game to your kids. If you really want to keep them occupied, go through all the games, and see which ones they like the best.
4) Travel Trays
Take a cookie sheet (like the kind you can find at the dollar store), spray paint it with Chalk Board paint, and that’s it! This travel tray is so helpful because it’s multi-functional. Kids can use it as a coloring tray, chalk board, magnet board, and even a food tray. Just be sure to pack some coloring pages, colors, chalk, and magnets like paper dolls and alphabet letters for kids to enjoy.
5) Bucket Pulley System
This system from Kids Activities Blog was too genius not to include in this article. Though it isn’t necessarily an activity, it seems like it would be a road trip lifesaver. In short, a rope is tied between both passenger handles on the ceiling of the car. Then a bucket is tied to that rope, and can be passed back and forth from the front to the back. The bucket can be filled with food, activities, your smartphone, or simply anything to keep from having to turn around every 5 minutes.
Hopefully these five activities will entertain the entire family so your next road trip is a successful one!