Does your family take a vacation together? If you do, you’re not alone. Two out of every five grown-ups are planning to take their family on vacation this year. Half of those families will make their trips by car.
That’s probably because driving is cheaper than flying. It’s also slower. Spending hours in a car can get boring, but there are plenty of ways to make a road trip more fun. Try these tips to make sure your next vacation is great, even when you’re stuck in the back seat.
1. Bring Something to Read
You can pack a few good books and comics, or you can bring a tablet or e-reader to have all of your favorites in one place. Some people start to feel a little carsick when they read too long, though. If this happens to you, stop to look out the front window every few pages, or hold the book so you can see the side window out of the corner of your eye while you’re reading.
2. Share an Audio Book
You can also enjoy a story with your whole family by playing a CD or other audiobook in the car. If you can’t all agree on a story, you might have fun listening to a comedian tell jokes or a podcast about an interesting topic instead.
3. Look Out the Window
If you’re driving to a place you’ve never been, make sure to look out the window. Do you notice any animals or cool buildings? What about interesting billboards and signs? The farther you go, the more the landscape will change. It’s also okay to daydream while you look. Enjoy it now, before you go back to school and have to pay attention all the time!
4. Follow a Map
Ask your parents to show you where you’re going and how you’ll get there on a map. Then you can follow along by looking for road signs as you travel (and you won’t have to keep asking how much farther it is!) You can do this on an app, but it’s more fun to use a paper map and trace your progress with a highlighter. When the trip is over, add it to a scrapbook with photos and other souvenirs.
5. Play Car Games
All you need for a car game is your voice and your imagination. Try these with the whole family:
- Cow Counting: Every time you see a cow on your side of the road, you get a point — but every time you see a cemetery on your side, you lose all your points. The winner is the person with the most points at the end of the day.
- Billboard Alphabet: Look out your window for each letter of the alphabet. Once you find an A, start looking for B. Can you get all the way up to Z before you reach your destination?
- I Spy with My Little Eye: The person who is “it” picks something the other players can see. Whoever is “it” then says “I spy with my little eye something beginning with…” and tell the others the letter of the alphabet the object begins with. The players then take turns asking questions that the person who is “it” may only respond to with a “yes” or “no.” After receiving a yes or no answer, that player may make one guess of what the something is. The player who correctly guesses what the object is wins.
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