10 Road Trip Games to Pass the Time on a Long Ride

We’ve all been on that long car ride that seems never to end. Everyone on the trip has a different taste in music, and you can only hold a conversation about nothing for so many hours. This experience can be doubly painful if there are kids in the car. Unfortunately, there isn’t much that can be done to save you from the torture – unless you have a fun road trip game to pass the time. To help you prepare for your next long car ride, here are 10 games that you will actually enjoy, during the ride to help get you there.

  1. 20 Questions – This game is great for car rides, because it distracts you from the ride, and is great for kids and adults alike. Basically, one person thinks of something, and everyone else in the car asks “yes or no” questions to try and determine what that something is. After 20 questions, if no one guessed correctly, the first person reveals what it was.
  2. Never Have I Ever – Another great game for kids and adults. One person says “Never have I ever…” then names something they haven’t done. Those who have never done it, raise their hands, and those who have, don’t. This game is great with kids to talk about experiences, but can also be fun with a group of adults, discussing more adult experiences.
  3. Rock, Paper, Scissors – This game can literally occupy two children for hours in the backseat of a car. Both players make a fist, chant “Rock, Paper, Scissors” while swinging their fist, then they yell “shoot” and make a hand gesture. “Rock” is keeping the hand in a fist, “Paper” is an open hand, and “scissor” is a V-shape with the pointer and middle finger. Then, “rock” beats “scissor,” “scissor” beats “paper,” and “paper” beats “rock.” In this way, the game can go on forever. In a car of adults, you can spice it up by adding points, betting, or dares to the game, making winning more important.
  4. I Spy – This is probably more geared to kids, but it can help pass the time with adults, as well. Someone says, “I spy with my little eye, something…” Then, the person says a color, a shape, the first letter of the object, or something else to distinguish the item. Then, the other people in the car try to guess what it is. Whoever guesses correctly gets to go next.
  5. While You Were Sleeping – This game is perfect for a trip with people who fall asleep during the ride. If one member of the car has a bad habit of falling asleep during the ride, take that time to make up a ridiculous story. Then, wake the person up and try to convince him or her that it really happened. Coming up with the story is fun, but watching the person try to determine whether you are telling the truth or not can be even more fun. And, it can be a good reminder not to fall asleep during the trip.
  6. The Alphabet Game – In this game, you are trying to find words from billboards, road signs, etc. in alphabetical order. Once a word is spotted, no one else can use it. This can be done as a team with kids, or competitively where the first one to get through the alphabet, wins.
  7. You Wouldn’t Buy – This game allows you to put funny combinations together and can be a great way to laugh yourself out of boredom. You come up with something that doesn’t go together, then state “You wouldn’t buy…” that combination.
  8. Don’t Say It – Come up with a list of words which can’t be said during the road trip. These should be common words that will likely be said during the ride. Then, every time someone says one of the words, they lose a point. At the end of the trip, the person who said the words the least wins.
  9. The License Plate Game – This is a great game for kids, and can help keep them focused on looking at the passing traffic, rather than the clock. Give them each a piece of paper, and ask them to write down the name of each state license plate they see along the way. If the ride is long enough, they just might get to see a plate from all 50 states.
  10. Six Degrees of Separation – Popularized in the 90’s with Kevin Bacon, this game is based on the premise that any two people on earth are no more than six relationships apart. That morphed into a game where you try to connect two celebrities to one another in less than six moves. You connect them by linking the celebrities to other celebrities based upon movies they were in together.

A long car ride can be painful, boring, and a tough way to start a vacation, but with this list of road trip games, hopefully, you’ll arrive at your destination in better spirits.

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