If you are planning on hitting the open road and going on a road trip, you might be interested in some ways to keep kids entertained! Below you will find a bunch of ways to keep your kids busy and entertained along the way!
These ideas are a way to keep boredom at bay, and not hear the question, “Are we there yet?!” Some of these are pretty simple to do, and others if you don’t have the items you might invest in them if you want! Either way, hopefully you can find multiple options to help keep your kids entertained on the open roads!
Fun Ways To Keep Kids Busy on Road Trips
Dollar Store Toys
Hit up your local dollar store or even dollar bins at Target. Look for fun toys for your kids to play with. It won’t cost much, they will be brand new toys, so the new hasn’t worn off on them yet! Stickers, dolls, squishy balls, color pads, are a few items that come to mind.
Whether you buy a car bingo set, print one off, it is a lot of fun. You can find them all over Pinterest to print for free. Then give your kids markers to mark off when they see the item that is on their bingo card. This can really help keep them entertained as they are searching for their items!
Dry Erase Boards or Wipe-Clean Books
Consider buying a dry erase board; this will give your kid tons of hours of drawing time, and they simply wipe it away! You can also purchase wipe-clean books that have fun activities in them and many are educational too.
Color By Number
If your child loves to color, get a color by number to keep them busy.
If you have a tablet, or portable dvd player, consider renting a new movie. This is a great way to keep their attention on the movie. You can use Amazon to download a movie or rent a dvd at a Redbox. Then you can return it at any Redbox you come across.
If you child have a portable game system, tablet, or smart phone. Consider getting new games to download. That way they can play a new game to pass a few hours.
Magazines or Books
Pack some magazines and books for your kids. Now if the holidays are coming up or a birthday, consider getting some toy magazines, and let them bookmark toys and other items they might want as gifts. You will be amazed at how excited they get to skim through the magazine then!
Make sure to pack up some good snacks and drinks. A hungry child can get more impatient, so consider having a basket of goodies for them to pick out what they want to munch on.
Slug Bug Game
Teach your kids to look for slug bugs (Volkswagons). Now if you don’t want them punching each other, you can just make it a counting game to see who sees the most.
Pack Favorite Toys
Make sure you pack their favorite blanket or toys. Keep them in a bin or somewhere close, so if they ask for it, you can access it easily. You could also let each kid pack a backpack of toys and things they want to bring with them. That way they know what they have brought and will be excited to play with it. You can limit the items to five, or say it has to fit in the backpack to bring.
Goody Travel bag
Pack up some crayons, a notepad, or travel games to have for each child. You could even toss in their favorite treat to have. That way they feel extra special to have their own little bag of goodies.
Invest in a few disposable cameras, so that your child can take pictures of neat scenery along the way. Then at the end of the trip you can get it developed and they can see all the fun pictures they took.
Make a Map
Create a map of all the places you will be visiting or coming across on your journey. They can follow along and see the next destinations that are to come.
What are some of the ways you keep your child entertained on road trips? I hope these ideas help you to entertain your kiddo’s on your next road trip!
How would you like to win some wipe-clean books for your next road trip, or any other time you want to keep your kids occupied? My friend Danielle, Usborne Books consultant and blogger at The Frugal Navy Wife is graciously giving away a set of eight wipe-clean books to one of my readers!! How nice is that?!
Each wipe-clean book includes a wipe-clean pen and 22 pages of fun, educational activities. These books are ideal for ages 4 and up. The books included in this prize bundle are:
- First Math
- Farm Activities
- Beginning Pen Control
- First Numbers
To enter the giveaway, use the Rafflecopter form below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Giveaway ends April 16th at 11:59pm EDT. The winner will have 48 hours to respond to email to claim prize. Please be sure to read the Terms & Conditions upon entering the giveaway.
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Melinda Roberts says
We usually listen to music or play I spy and sometimes they read books.
Kate S says
For short trips, they bring a couple action figures. For long trips, I hit the dollar store and have travel DVD players.
Sarah Jackson says
We LOVE to use Usborne books!
Sarah Jackson says
We also play games and use activity books
Listen to Adventures in Odyssey.
We love books, and autio books. I spy in car, and silly stories, someone starts the story then when I say stop the next child or grownup goes. Thanks for giveaway.
Jennifer Wolf says
Ispy games and Bento boxes packed full of their favorite snacks are my 2 favorite road trip activities!
Becky Gorga says
I love the Usborne wipe-clean books! We incorporate them into our class work!
Stephanie Phelps says
I usually keep them busy with I-spy and singing the abc’s.
Candace Galan says
I like to sing in the car with my kids, they love it!
Christine Mayfield says
Coloring books and dvds
Margaret Hadam says
We listen to audio books, but I also clip to their clipboards a stack of worksheets, color by number, and coloring pages. They use colored pencils in the car.
Darcy Carmichael says
Our children will play cards with each other or the older ones will read to the younger ones.
Bridgette Cooper says
We pack lots of snacks & coloring activities to keep the kids entertained on long car rides!
Sabrina A. says
We turn to DVDs more often than I’d like but they also love to play i spy and read books. The wipe clean Books and bingo sound like great jdeas to try!
I Love your site and have gotten some great tips over the last several weeks. Thanks so much from a busy homeschool mom!
Gayle Drake says
I really like many of Usborne’s products. Would love to win!
I am not super experienced with this yet, as we haven’t taken very many long trips, but books, small tins with legos, craft stick puzzles and movies as a last resort when we drove to California. 🙂
Karla Slager says
We play play abc eye spy where we look for the letters in order, kids love audio books and Adventures in Odyssey. Activity books are great too.
Amanda Moore says
I absolutely love Usborne wipe clean books!! I hope to win!!
Lisa Coomer Queen says
We usually play either I see something…..or see how many different states we can see on license plates. Thanks!
Jennifer Z says
We LOVE Usborne books!
We listen to maestro classics or audiobooks.
Lizzy R says
activity books, magnetic games, adventures in odyssey!
We sing and play games. We also keep a notebook of the different license plates states we see.
Rebekah M says
Our go to is putting a family movie in to have the children watch
Tricia Hope says
We play car games like A my name is Anna and listen to story cds
My son loves telling us about all the trucks and construction vehicles he sees.
Rachel Zillmann says
Thank you for your encouraging words here.
I love Usborne books we don’t own any but get them from our local library!. We are driving to Floida this summer so this would be so helplful to have
We keep our toddlers busy by placing toy money in real wallets(the more pockets, the better). They pay each other for small toys in the toy bag.
Cathy Coibion says
We usually sing or play I Spy!
we like to play games and read
We usually play the license plate game and listen to music. The kids also like to watch movies.
yvonne galindo says
just in time for our new addition
a m says
We love to listen to audiobooks on loan through our library’s Overdrive app. Beatrix Potter, Winnie-the-Pooh, Paddington Bear. If your library offers an app with access to audiobooks, definitely take advantage!
Tawnya Gardner says
I am always looking for things to keep the kids happy in the car even on short trips around town too!
Corina Montreuil says
Songs, snacks, and books!
Books on CD
Ashley Chassereau Parks says
We bring lots of books, snacks, cds, and dvds on long trips!!
I pack each child a special bag with snacks, activities, and games.
Drawing and writing
Rachel B. says
My kids would love these books. We have special car toys/activities that they can only use during long trips. We do also take a tablet along for really long trips so that they can watch a movie, but I prefer not to rely on that.
I’ve figured out that my kids like variety on long road trips. They like to do many different things and it is nice to bring each of them a lap desk to write or play on.
We play games, listen to audio stories and watch movies.
Kristin P says
We usually read books, bring a few fav toys, listen to music and watch a movie/show on the iPad
Tanishe Wade-Megghross says
We normally sing songs from when we were little.
Michelle Catallo says
magnetic board games and books
Angelica Dimeo says
By singing songs and putting on age appropriate music
My kids love busy books/activity books and playing card games on road trips. Thanks for the chance to win such an amazing prize.
We usually listen to music or sing songs. We also love water wow books.
Cindy Hebert says
We usually listen to Disney music. They also get to bring along a backpack of amusements they choose. I also make certain everyone brings their pillow pet, a lap blanket and their favorite stuffed animal. I’m pleased to say all of my children opt to bring along at least one book.
Mindy H says
We like to listen to Audiobooks.
Sarah Viarrial says
We are going on a trip and going to try out the Playaway recorded books so everyone can listen to what they’re interested in.
Our kids bring a pile of books to read, we listen to books on CD, they bring a few favorite toys, and we let them watch one movie per day if it’s going to be a multi day trip. When we were moving 2/3 of the way across the country, a friend of ours put together a bag for each of the kids with goodies from the dollar store. Every so often they would get one new item from their bag to keep them entertained.
We chat and listen to music.
My kids are 4 and under, so singing, playing I spy and reading aloud is what we do. Also puppets!
We play I Spy and other similar games!
I just found the Wee Sing in the Car. It would also double for getting the kids to learn camp fire songs.
My kids love snacks and watching movies, but I like reading and games.
Ashley Y says
Music or books!
Brittany M says
I pack a bag full of little goodies for them. Mostly cars or activity books. We’re traveling across the country for our move this summer so I better think of some good ideas to keep them busy!
My kids enjoy books, games and puzzles on road trips. Depending on how far we’re traveling, sometime we keep track of state license plates, or play road bingo.
Krystle Lynch says
Great post and thanks for introducing me to Usborne Books. Will have to research this, my daughter loves her mini whiteboard but would love an actual activity book!
Snacks and lot’s of silly dollar store goodies and crafts. That way if something gets lost or broken, it isn’t heartbreaking. We also enjoy singing silly songs.
Autumn Rowland says
We watch movies. It sounds terrible but it was so easy on our 10 day trek from texas to ohio to alaska
Snacks, music, books, coloring, talking about things we see outside or where we are going and what we are going to do when we get there. We do devices at home, but we have a family rule of no devices in the car.
April P says
We love books on CD, our favorites are The Penderwicks and Adventures in Odyssey
Jo-Ann Brightman says
We play car games like I Spy and I have some items I only use in the car for trips.
Angelia Osburn says
My son loves it when we sing or I put in a CD with a story and he follows along with the book. Snacks work great also!
We love listening to Adventures in Odyssey episodes, singing to our favorite Christian radio station, reading books, snacking, DVDs, etc. We also love Usborne books!
Music. The kids like to listen and sing along with various music genres with us. As our toddlers get older we will find other ways.
I get a variety of things from the dollar store, coloring books, little toys, calculators, food, whatnots, and I throw one of them at the kids whenever they start squawking.
LeAnn Harbert says
They watch videos in the car.
Sue D says
We used to use books on tape when traveling.
Dawn Brosnan says
We like to play a version of the alphabet game. Foods, Animals, cities and then we go through A-Z.
We sing along to K-Love and listen to Adventures in Odyssey!
Stephanie Olmsted says
I havever been buying sticker activity books from the Dollar Store. They have like five different ones: fashion, friends, animal, cars. My kids love them. A bag of pens. The also have dot to dot, cross word puzzles, word searches animal and other thing now them. Good for the price. Also have a few first read book.
Kara Marsh says
Portable DVD player with educational videos!!!
Now that our kids are all older, we love playing the alphabet game, and random rounds can start anywhere with someone just calling out the first few letters!
Tara Johnson says
Audiobooks & drawing/coloring
A new activity every hour of the trip, especially if it’s a long trip. We use coloring books, puzzles, game apps on tablet, stickers, bingo car games printed out, magnet games, ect. 🙂 Oh and don’t forget a portable dvd player! I found a decent one on amazon for 100 bucks!
Krysten T says
My kids like listening to music. The real test will be when we drive 12 hours to Florida this summer with my high maintenance 2.5 year old.
Ideas like this are always appreciated with 2 boys! Thank you!
As missionaries, we travel a LOT when we are in the US, visiting churches and family in distant parts of the country. My husband loves to crank up the music for the kids to listen to and sing along with. We also just have long conversations. I enjoy those periods of enforced togetherness.
We like to listen to Adventures in Odyssey. We’ve done Melissa and Doug water paint activity books in the car. Listening to music helps too, and snacks!
Michelle Proper says
I usually bring travel sized games and play games with visual sights!
Movies, books, dry erase activity book games ?
We LOVE Usborne!! The kids read well in the car, so we always have some of their library books, coloring books, Brain Quest cards, action figures, and/or DVD’s.
We usually listen to some kids music or look for different animals.
Sandi Miller says
Thank you for the opportunity
We love to play I spy and sing songs!
Richard Brandt says
“99 bottles of beer on the wall…”
My kids get car sick so we can’t do anything involving reading or looking down. We do a lot of audiobooks and singing as well as I Spy and Seek & Find games with stuff outside the car.
Books, games, and activities are always helpful at keeping the little ones entertained!
Melinda tinkham says
Not joking, my daughter has come up with a game like 20 questions about food or the quiet game. Those are her choices ?
Brenda F. says
We play the ABC game, and then try to find numbers up to 20!
Elizabeth B says
We try to listen to audiobooks in the car, but some of mine get car sick, so focusing on something visual helps, so for long trips they have to watch movies.
Christine Gould says
My kids are readers, so it’s not usually too hard. They like to have an individual pad of blank paper for doodling, and when the trip is really long occasionally the oldest two will play a game on the tablet. As a family we play the alphabet game (find the letters outside the car).
Dandi D says
We have lots of books for the kids to read and we listen to a lot of music.
Heidi Weber says
With 3 kids who’d rather be running around, trips are hard to do. Try to come up with I spy-like games.
DVD’s and coloring books. My kids would love these!!!
Jaune Farrar says
We utlize Disney Junior for short trips or her little dress up characters and then music for my oldest. On longer trips we play a lot of the alphabet game. Thinking up things for each letter of the alphabet and remembering each of them.
Deb Kauffman says
We sing, listen to audio stories, read, do activity books, play I Spy…
Patricia Young says
We have 5 children. As of today they range from 9 yo and up.
Depending on their ages over the years, we have done everything from liscence plate bingo, to I spy, watching DVD s or singing with the radio.
Lindsay Bade says
We bring small toys, snacks and coloring books to keep the kids busy! Singing some of their favorite songs keeps them happy too!
Nicole Lancaster says
My go-to way of entertaining my kids in the car is coloring books, workbooks, and little travel games like Connect 4.
Katelyn Hutskow says
K-Love Christian Radio … dancing and singing along! Don’t forget some good snacks too.
Lori Forget says
Would love to win these! 3 girls under 6. And one with low muscle tone! These would be great!
Joy Bryant says
We are actually in airplanes more than car trips, but I love magnet sets. Of course the ipad is always a tried and true backup.
A couple years ago, we got a mini van with a DVD player. It’s been a lifesaver for long rides. We pop a movie in and away we go.
Kira | A Better Life Lived says
Great giveaway! Books and music are my sons favorite while on car trips!
We read books, sing songs, and say rhymes to pass the time while riding in the car.
Judith Martinez says
We listen to music or audio stories.
These are great suggestions! My family of 8 happens to love road trips. We even drive to Florida every year (24 hours door to door one way). Our favorite game is 20 questions for sure. We also play several variations of 20 questions.
Here are some more we love – COLOR CAR https://www.growingplay.com/2015/12/color-car-road-trip-game/
QUIZ QUESTION – https://www.growingplay.com/2015/12/quiz-question-road-trip-game/
I SPY MEMORY LANE – https://www.growingplay.com/2016/01/waiting-game-i-spy-memory-lane/
Thanks again for the great list!