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06 Mar 2015

Holiday Driving Games for Older Children

Long Road Ahead? 5 Classic Driving Games for Older Players

Long family car journeys usually go one of two ways – they can either be the best or the worst experiences of our lives, but with the right ideas and a little imagination they can easily become some of our best holiday memories.

Of course, keeping older children entertained or off their electronic devices is a challenge. Trying to engage with someone who already ‘knows everything and didn’t even want to come on this stupid holiday in the first place’ can be frustrating, but with these 5 ideas you are sure to get them putting their smartphones down and interacting for real. #FamilyTime

1. Name that car… song… bird?

We’ve all played this game – see how quickly you can recognise the make and model of the cars around you. Great game when you can recognise the headlights of a VK Holden Commodore from 200m away. No matter what the interest, there is a something you can name that will keep everyone entertained.

2. Ready Mr. Music?

You can play ‘name that song’ but there’s a lot more games you can use the radio for to get all the children, especially the older ones involved.

  • Hum-Along: Each player takes a turn humming a tune and everyone else tries to guess the song.
  • The random radio game: Randomly choose a radio station and the first person to guess the name/artist of the song playing wins.
  • The ‘guess what’s coming next?’ radio game: Turn the radio off and everyone chooses a word. Turn the radio back on and the person who’s word is said first wins. Easy and surprisingly enjoyable.

Older children will love playing these games, or variations of them. And with the added incentive of potentially making Mum and Dad look ‘really old’ because they don’t know who PitBull is – these games – like the songs they are based on, are sure to be a hit.

3. If you could… If you had….

  • If you could speak for an hour to anyone, alive or dead who would it be and why?
  • If you had a million dollars and only a day to spend it all what would you do and why?

Creating unrealistic scenarios and giving everyone a chance to imagine what they would do is great fun for all ages. When you combine this with the family car trip you can end up with hours of laughs while learning more than you probably wanted to know about your family members.

4. We’re playing driving games with or without you…

For this one, pick a theme and the person who picks the most items matching that theme wins. For example; name as many actors as you can with black hair, name songs that have “Love” in the title, name movies that are set in New York city. Alternatively, you can always turn this into a more standard game of 20 questions or “Celebrity Head” and take turns thinking of a celebrity and everyone has 20 questions to guess who you are thinking of.

5. It’s getting rough back there…

The day that you go on a family road trip and the kids sit calmly and leave one another alone for the entire trip is probably a long way off. So why not use this energy constructively? Luckily the list of driving games that (safely) involve physical movement are almost as long as the ones that don’t, so without further ado, allow me to share with you some of the classics:

  • Corners. You know the drill – let inertia determine which way to fall, and then simply let gravity take affect as the kids lean from one side of the car to the other. Seatbelts must stay on so this generally works better when there are 3 in the back seat.
  • Punch Buggy: The old classic – see a Volkswagon beetle and shout punch buggy while hitting the person next to you in the arm.
  • Rock, Paper, Scissors – this old classic can be adapted to any situation, and usually the adaptation that occurs on long trips makes the game a little more physical.

Its important to make sure that the driver takes a rest every two hours – so while the driver takes a break and stretches make sure the kids have the opportunity to have a stretch and use-up some energy. Count the number of jumping-jacks everyone can do. Hopefully the road trip can continue peacefully and you all have a great holiday.



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