Best Travel Games for Kids – a guest post

Anyone who has been on a long haul journey with children will know how difficult keeping them entertained can be. When just ten minutes into the journey, cries of “Are we there yet?” and “I’m bored!” can have you tearing your hair out before you’ve even reached the motorway.
Chessington Holidays have put together some ideas to keep the whole family entertained until you reach your destination.
0-1 Years
Very young children can feel a little unsettled in unfamiliar surroundings. Taking along a favourite toy can help keep them entertained and comforted, whilst singing nursery rhymes and playing peek-a-boo can make them feel more “at home”. Try putting something silly on your head, a newspaper or drinks cup for example and asking “Do you like my hat?” This can lead to lots of giggles from your little ones (N.B. Please don’t do this if you’re the driver).
2-5 Years
Treasure Hunt
Prior to setting out on a long journey draw some pictures of things you are likely to come across on your trip, such as a man in a hat, a girl with a dog, a fluffy sheep, or safari animals  — give each player ten things to find and the winner is whoever finds all of the things on their card first.
One or the Other
A lovely simple game which can be lots of fun for all involved. Give two options and ask the child to pick their favourite. Jelly Babies or milkshake? Pink or green? Dancing or splashing in puddles? You could make it more tricky by picking two things they don’t like and making them choose: kissing a frog or smelling Daddy’s socks?
In My Suitcase: A classic memory game
The first player thinks of a word beginning with the letter “a” and then says the sentence “In my suitcase I have…” adding their word, “an apple” for example, at the end. The next player repeats the sentence adding a word beginning with “b”, e.g. “In my suitcase I have an apple and a banjo” and so on through the alphabet until a player either forgets the list of objects or can’t think of an object to add to the list. The game can be adapted to make the words as silly or as difficult to remember as you like.
One Word at a Time
Each member of the party helps to make a story, but only by adding one word at a time. Each player can say just one word to take the story in a completely new direction.
Just a minute?
All players, except the timekeeper, close their eyes. The timekeeper starts the clock or stopwatch. Each player puts up their hand when they believe that exactly one minute has passed. The winner is whoever gets closest to 60 seconds — a lot harder than you may think!
Keeping children entertained on long haul trips can be difficult but it can also be lots of fun with just a little forward planning and a few games up your sleeve, and remember, please be considerate when choosing your music.

Of course, if they fall asleep, enjoy the peace and quiet while you  can, or listen to your own choice of music!

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