5 Easy Road Trip Games for Kids

happy little girl with family sitting in the car

The hot weather is here and the kids are out of school for summer vacation. Many of you are planning to enjoy a favorite American pastime, the road trip. In order to avoid the dreaded “Are we there yet?” question, road trip games be a great way to keep kids of all ages entertained on long car rides.

License Plate Game

The rules are simple – try to spot a license plate from each of the 50 states. There’s so much to love about this game! Not only can it be played by the whole family but it can be an ongoing game that continues over the duration of your trip. We recommend putting a list of the states in the notes on your smartphone before your trip to reference later. As a bonus geography lesson for the slightly older kids, print out a map of the US with labels and throw in some colored pencils. As the kiddos spot each of the states they can color it in on their map. We went ahead and found a printable map for you.

Scavenger Hunt

Who doesn’t love a scavenger hunt? The kiddos are hunting for the items on the list; however, rather than gathering the items, they are just trying to spot them from the car (or at any of the stops you make as well – your call). This game can be fun for kids of all ages – just create the list according to their ability. If you have kids that are a variety of ages, you can go the extra mile and make them each their own list! This can also eliminate any unnecessary competition and arguments that may ensue.

Need some inspiration for what to include in a Road Trip Scavenger Hunt? Think of all the things you might be passing along the way. A cow, an airplane, a truck towing a boat, a moving truck, a body of water, a person walking a dog, a cloud that looks like something, someone wearing a uniform, etc.

Animal Name Game

One person starts out by naming an animal and the next person names an animal that begins with the last letter of the previously named animal. For example, a string of answers could look like this: Tiger, Rattlesnake, Elephant, Tarantula, Aardvark…

 It keeps going in order until someone repeats an animal that has already been said or can’t think of an animal.

“That’s not something we see every day!”

This game is always good for a laugh! Like many of the other road trip games it can also be an ongoing game played over the length of your trip. The goal is to spot things you don’t see on a normal day. 

You can also make this one a speed game to see who can spot the most unusual items in a set amount of time.

Who Am I? Curiosity Questions

This one is definitely going to be age-specific, because let’s face it – most teenagers aren’t going to want to play a game that involves divulging information to their parents. Again, you can cater your questions to the age and interests of your kids.

I prefer keeping my lists in my phone so I’m not constantly shuffling through papers. So add your list of questions to your notes and when you’re ready to play, just pick a question on the list and let each family member take a turn answering it. Even the driver can play this one! Not only do you get some interesting answers, but as an added bonus the family gets to know each other better in the process.

Feel free to make up your own questions, but here is some inspiration to get you started:

– If you could trade places with someone for a day, who would you choose and why?
– If you could only eat one type of food for every meal every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?
– If you were trapped on a desert island and could only have 3 things with you, what would they be?
– What makes you the happiest?
– What do you like best about your best friend?
– Who is your hero?

When all else fails, there’s always 20 Questions!

We promised road trip games for kids of all ages! So adults check these games out for your car ride.