Tips for Keeping Kids Entertained During Long Drives

Keeping Kids Entertained During Long Drives

Sharing is caring!

Are you worried about a long drive with your kids? With proper planning, you can make it fun1. Know what your kids like and get some fun, cheap things for them to do. This guide will help you keep your children happy and you relaxed during long trips.

Embrace the Journey

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This post may contain affiliate links. If you click on these links and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

When you’re getting ready for a long drive, think about your kids’ attention. A child can focus for 1-3 minutes for each year of their age2. So, it’s smart to have lots of inexpensive road trip activities and things to keep them entertained. This way, you can switch between activities to keep them interested2.

Understand Children’s Attention Spans

It can be hard to keep kids entertained during long rides. But, a little planning can turn the trip into a fun adventure. Think about 15 minutes of fun for them to really start enjoying the trip2. Have many different activities ready to use. This will help keep them happy and focused all the way.

Stock Up on Affordable Supplies

You can get lots of cheap supplies at places like Amazon, Target, and Dollar Tree. Buying these things early makes you feel more prepared. With plenty of things to do, your kids will stay happy throughout the trip2. Just make sure you have a good variety of entertainment so they don’t get bored, even on long drives2.

Entertainment for Babies

When you travel with a baby, timing is everything. Start your trip a bit before their bedtime. This way, they might stay awake longer3. Have someone in the back play with them to keep them alert. Just before bedtime, stop to change them and let them move around.

Fun toys can make the car ride better for babies. Think about toys that make noise, like crinkly toys or hanging toys. Simple things like fabric strips in a jar might also grab their interest4. Most babies, about 70%, like music in the car4. And nearly half of parents say that toys you can play with, like interactive toys, are great for long trips with babies4.

Babies under 2 don’t stay interested in one thing for very long, about 7-10 minutes4. It’s smart to switch out the toys every 20-30 minutes4. Doing this can help keep everyone happy on the road453.

Toddler-Friendly Fun

Long road trips with toddlers can be a challenge. But, simple and interactive activities are key6. Use fun car games and creative container play to keep your child happy and busy6.

Interactive Containers

Make use of common items like Munchkin snack containers. Or use empty juice bottles to make toys that engage your toddler6. They’ll love finding things in these containers or just playing with stuff like pipe cleaners and pom-poms6. This fun not only keeps them entertained but also helps their hands get more agile6.

Magnets and Velcro Creations

Mess-free activities like magnets on a cookie sheet or Velcro on Popsicle sticks are great for the car6. Let your child use their imagination with magnets or Velcro by making their own pictures6. These games aid in brain development and critical thinking6.

7Starting your journey in the afternoon, near a nap time, is smart. It lets kids sleep, have snacks, and then play when they wake up7. These activities make the trip exciting and unforgettable for your child8.

Preschool Playtime

Heading out with preschoolers? Pack craft kits and busy bags for fun on the go. Put in a plastic bag or pencil case: crayons, paper, stickers, and mini notebooks. These will let kids be creative9. They enjoy workbooks and things like Water Wow! Reusable Activity Pads too. Plus, Crayola Color Wonder keeps them happy9.

Craft Kits and Busy Bags

Car activities for preschoolers can be simple and fun. Include supplies like Wikki Stix, Boogie Boards, and sticker books. They help your child imagine and tell stories along the way9. These activities keep their hands and minds busy. They also help build their narrative skills10.

Puppets and Imaginative Play

Kids can make puppets out of Popsicle sticks and paper. Then, they can have a puppet show or make up stories together11. This playtime enhances their speaking skills and aids in mental development10.

Include craft kits, busy bags, and puppet play in your travel plans. They’ll keep your little ones happy and thinking on the journey10. These activities promote creativity, problem-solving, and teamwork9. A bit of planning turns car rides into fun adventures for your kids11109.

Keeping Kids Entertained During Long Drives

On long drives, keep kids busy with hands-on activities. Portable activity books are a great choice. These include Water Wow and Imagine Ink books. You can also find themed books with word searches, mazes, and I-Spy games. Don’t forget Colorforms and magnetic toys, like tangram sets. They are mess-free and offer hours of creative play12.

Choosing screen-free activities is good for more reasons than one. They not only entertain but also boost creativity and problem-solving. Most importantly, they help you control screen time for a healthy journey13.

Portable Activity Books

Portable activity books are a must-have for long road trips. Look for ones with mazes, puzzles, and stickers. These books don’t need batteries or screens. They offer endless fun for your kids12.

Colorforms and Magnetic Toys

Colorforms and magnetic toys are perfect for the car. They inspire kids to tell their own stories. With options like magnetic tangrams and facial features, there’s a lot to do. These keep kids’ hands and minds active12.

reusable car games

Containing the Mess

No road trip with kids is complete without a little mess here and there. But you can make it easier by using some smart tricks. For example, attach Lego baseboards to cookie sheets for a play area. This way, kids can build without losing any pieces14. Around 70% of kid-friendly road trip activities don’t involve screens. They’re great for both fun and cleanliness in the car.

Designated Trash Containers

A designated trash container is a must for mess-free car rides14. On top of the list for car trip essentials are water, snacks, and art supplies. These items can produce trash, so keep a bag for rubbish handy. It helps maintain the car’s neatness after every snack break or activity15.

Always remember to clean out the trash container during your breaks16. This simple step keeps the car organized and pleasant. With a bit of preparation, your trip can stay clean and focused on the fun ahead161415.

Road Trip Milestones

Want to keep your kids happy while you’re driving? A road map helps a lot. As you drive, mark off the states or cities you’ve passed17. When you hit a new state or a certain mileage mark, party time! Play a fun song, share a treat, or cheer loudly together17. These moments make the journey more fun and make your kids feel great.

Map Progress

Get your kids into the trip by having them read a map or use an atlas17. They can help find where you are and see where you’re going. This keeps them interested in places and excited about the trip’s path.

Celebrate Achievements

18 Did you know that about 45% of kids get bored on long drives18? Celebrating the little wins can change that. When you cross into a new state or hit a big mileage number, pause to celebrate. Use a fun song, cheers, or a treat17. It makes the journey much more enjoyable for everyone.

17 After many road trips spanning 8,500 miles with kids, it’s clear: tracking and celebrating is key17. These small tasks and celebrations make the trip exciting for your children. They will be ready for whatever adventure comes next.

Plan for Pit Stops

When you plan your road trip, look for fun or kid-friendly spots near your stops. This gives your kids a chance to play and use up their energy19. Even a quick visit to a park can make them happier and your trip better19. Stopping to see interesting places on your way can turn a boring drive into an exciting journey.

Explore Nearby Attractions

Before you leave, find cool spots like museums or zoos on your route19. This makes for fun and learning stops that keep your kids entertained and curious20. Don’t forget about audio books. They can make the drive time fly by for everyone20.

Burn Off Energy

It’s smart to stop often, especially with kids, so they can play and stay happy20. Bring along healthy snacks to keep them full and content on the journey20. Playing games in the car, like Mad Libs, road bingo, and drawing maps, makes the trip fun and educational20.

active breaks during drives

Make sure to have interesting stops to explore and let your kids get active. This makes your road trip fun for everyone19. A new playlist for the trip can also add to the joy for kids and adults alike20.

Technology Time

Technology can make long trips more fun for kids, but it should be used right21. Car TVs changed travel entertainment back in the late 1900s21. Now, tablets and phones keep children busy and happy on the road21. They can play games that suit their tastes and ages21. Don’t forget charger extenders to keep the devices alive and headphones to make the space quieter21.

Screen Time in Moderation

21 Cell signal boosters help keep us connected and entertained while traveling21. Geolocation games mix real life with tech, making exploring fun for kids21. Audio books are a good choice for road-trip relaxation and sleep21. Photo apps let kids be creative with their memories along the way. It’s all about finding balance between digital and real-life fun22.

Most Americans choose cars for travel, especially before 202422. The JEXtream® RG2100 provides Wi-Fi for up to 20 devices22. The SyncUP DRIVE® hotspot in cars offers Wi-Fi for five devices plus car health updates22. It also has features like monitoring driving and roadside help22. The SyncUP TRACKER is tough, tracks locations far away, and gives peace of mind22.

23 Surveyed staff agree that tablets are essential for entertaining kids on travels23. They suggest iPads because of the many kid-friendly apps and books for iOS23. Sascha Segan recommends 7-inch tablets for children, as they are cheaper options23. iPod touch is also great for games, movies, and music23. Educational systems like LeapFrog and VTech offer learning fun for various ages23. Nintendo and Sony game consoles are also good for travel and have parental controls23. For headphones, Etymotic Ety Kids 5 are a safe choice23. The Logitech Mini Boombox makes a perfect music companion for trips212223.


To make long drives fun for the whole family, focus on the journey. Know what keeps your kids’ attention and have fun activities ready. This way, you can make the trip enjoyable for everyone, from babies to preschoolers24.

Keep in mind, the journey is an adventure in itself. So, aim to create good memories and have fun on the road24.

Mix in games and challenges that don’t need screens, like word games and bingo. These activities can engage your kids and help them learn during the drive24.

Also, plan stops at places your kids will love, like zoos or museums. This can make the trip more exciting and give everyone a chance to stretch their legs24.

Remember, it’s all about enjoying the journey and your time with family. With some planning, you can turn long drives into special moments together. So, get ready for a road trip that will make everyone happy and bring you closer as a family.

Sharing is caring!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.