Fun family car games

Playing family car games is a great way to make the travel time part of the fun when you’re headed on a long drive. There are lots of exciting games you can enjoy to keep you and the kids entertained throughout the whole journey.

Take a look at some of our favourite games to play in the car and try them out on your next family road trip.

Meet the neighbours

When you get stopped in traffic, it can be incredibly frustrating, especially if the kids start to get bored and misbehave. So, when you pull up next to other cars, play a game of meet the neighbours. Each take a window and sneak a look at the cars around you – but don’t stare!

You can then take it in turns to come up with a name and create a character for them. Why are they travelling today, what do they do for work, how do they sound when they talk? It can be lots of fun getting creative and coming up with a whole story for the people in cars near you.

The name game

The name game is really easy to play and require no preparation at all. Choose a category, for example animals, and the first player names an animal, e.g. sheep. The last letter of their animal must be the starting letter for the second player, who could say parrot. The third player would then need an animal beginning with T and the game continues on. If a player can’t think of an animal or repeats something that has already been said, they’re out.

couple and their child laughing in a car

Car colour count

This is a really easy game to play and is great for motorway drives. Each person playing picks a colour and counts how many times they see a vehicle of that colour drives past on the other side of the road. First person to reach 10 wins.

Sing-a-long

We all love to sing-a-long to music in the car, but why not make it a challenge and use it to hold your children’s attention? Create a playlist of your favourite tunes (or listen to the radio to make it a bit harder) and get everyone singing. Then, turn the sound down to 0 and keep belting out that tune for a few seconds. When you turn the volume back up, the person who has managed to keep the best time and matches up with the song wins.

I went to…

The ‘I went to’ game has endless possibilities and gets your children’s brains working. First, set your scene, whether it’s ‘I went to the shop…’, ‘I went on a picnic…’, or ‘I went on holiday…’ to give your kids a guide for their imaginations.

Then, take it in turns to say what you bought or brought, starting with the letter A and working your way through the alphabet. Each player must correctly list all the previous things brought before they can add their own item. Last player to get them all right wins!

mother and daughter playing a family car game

One word story

This is great for working together and getting creative minds working. Each person offers one word at a time to create a story. You never know what’s coming next and you’re sure to have lots of fun coming up with your own tales.

Car bingo

Car bingo is a fun game for kids of all ages, but requires a little preparation time before you set off. Make a list, or a picture card, for each player of things you’re likely to see from your car windows. Include things like: motorway service station, car transporter, burger van, sheep, Eddie Stobart lorry, church, and electricity pylons... anything you think they might see as you travel. First person to complete their card wins.  

If you want to take away the competitive edge of this game, you can turn it into a scavenger hunt and everyone in the car can work together to see all the things on your list.

Word association

An old favourite, word association is a great way to occupy young minds. Your first player chooses a word, then you take it in turns to say another word that’s connected to it. For example, you can start with road, player two could say traffic lights, player three could then say green man, and so on. The faster you can go round the better.

three happy young girls in the car with teddy bears

Place race

If you have a map in the car, you can take it in turns to choose a secret place/river/attraction on a page. You can answer yes or no questions to help others in the car figure out where/what it is, but if they take more than three minutes, you win and get to choose again! The player who guesses correctly in the time gets to choose the next secret place.

Number plate game

There are a few variations of the number plate game, but the one we like to play on our family road trips involves just the last three letters of a number plate. We take the letters and use them as a basis for a sentence that we can use to inspire a short story. For example, a number plate ending in SCR could inspire a story about Surprisingly Clever Rabbits.

Get in touch

Do you have a favourite family car game that you play when you set off on a long journey? Let us know on Twitter! We’d love to hear from you.

If you want to hit the road with your family, the team at Meashams are on hand to help you with all your car hire needs. Take a look at our family cars available to hire and get in touch to arrange yours today.

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