Emma, we would love to take the kids camping in France this summer, and to save money we would like to drive, but how will we ever survive the long car journey and keep the kids amused? I’d love to know your ideas
Let’s face it, the “getting there” is rarely ever the highlight of the holiday! Long journeys with little ones can be really daunting. We dread the thought of moaning, whinging and squabbling on the long road to our destination and wonder whether we’ll all arrive in one piece. Not anymore! Here are my top 10 very best in motion games for cars and planes…
Games for Cars and Planes: Our Top Ten
1. “Are we nearly there yet?!” a personal favourite of mine! Take a picture of your car from the side, print it and cut it out. Punch two holes, level with each other, at either side of the picture. Now take a long piece of wool or string, and thread the picture of the car onto it. Tie the string up inside the back of your car, facing the kids. Every time you make a stop you move the car on a little way, to show how your journey is progressing….voila, question answered! You could even do the same thing on a plan!
2. Make a bottle full of buried treasure. Fill an empty bottle 2/3rds full with rice. Now hide in it lots of tiny little things like a paperclip, a safety pin, and a little button. Write on the front the number of things that are hidden. The kids take it in turns to shake the bottle and try and uncover something…keep going until each individual item has been discovered: there’s a treasure treat when everything has been found.
3. Exchange Travel Tickets for Goodie Bags. This one is such a hit with our little ones. At the start of the journey, give each child a little bag containing brightly coloured pieces of cardboard, shaped like tickets. For every 25 miles you travel (or more if on a plane!) you ask them to give you a ticket. This marks the passing in time , and helps them to understand how long is left until you arrive. In return for their ticket, they get a little goodie bag containing one wrapped up toy, a drink and a snack. Not only do they enjoy their treats, but they look forward to giving you their next ticket too!
4. Play Pirates and Princesses. Travelling in theme can be so much fun. Choose whatever your child likes best and act out the role for the day. Of course, as parents you get to be captains, so it’s fun for you too!
5. Have a Treasure Hunt. Make a list of items you would like your little one to find for you during your trip. If you’re travelling on a plane, you can start in the airport and then progress to things they can find on the plane. For example, a bottle of perfume (duty free), a funny hat, a lady with tall boots on, a magazine, a pilot, a lifejacket, and so in. If it’s a car journey, you can include things you might find at a petrol station, or things you might see out of the window.
6. Get creative with pipe cleaners. Pipe cleaners make great animals, insects, and all sorts of monsters…hours of fun and very light and portable
7. Have Aluminium Foil-fun! Give everybody a sheet of foil and tell them to get creative transforming it into whatever they choose: jewellery, an animal, a hat…whatever takes their fancy.
8. Guess the sound. Everybody makes a silly sound…neigh, ding-dong, creeeeeaaak, cuckoo etc. The rest of the family has to guess what is making the noise. This is a great one for ensuring lots of laughter!
9. Start making a scrapbook. Give each child a scrap book in which they can collect souvenirs from their holiday…leaflets, maps, photos etc. They can also draw pictures in it and write in it, or whatever they like. This is a fabulous activity which they can start on the journey there, finish on the journey back, and it’ll also amuse them in restaurants whilst they’re away.
10. Let them unravel a whole roll of sticky tape! This is a wonderful, crazy holiday treat. Perhaps this is one for the confines of the car only, but seriously, give them a roll of sticky tape and let them stick it wherever they like, they will love it, and it will amuse them endlessly 🙂
Try out these Games for Cars and Planes on your next Holiday – return to our homepage to start looking for your next child friendly holiday now.