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Tips to keep your kids entertained on long drives

Keeping the kids entertained on long journeysLong drives can be a fairly daunting experience, even without taking children into account. The sheer cost of travelling from one end of the country to the other is a worrying enough factor and it may be that you worry about the condition that your car is in. What's more, there's the question about what music to listen to as well!

Add children into the mix and the journey becomes a totally different concept. Suddenly your lack of good music is irrelevant, as is the cost of petrol. All you will care about is how to restrict the amount of "are we there yet?" cries that come from the back seat.

So how exactly do you keep your children entertained when they're in the back seat of the family car for a few hours or more? Below are some tips of ours. If you've devised any cunning methods of your own, feel free to let us know what they are!


I-Spy books have been around for decades and I can remember being fairly obsessed with them when I was a child myself. Available in all good book shops as well as at motorway service stations, they cost a small number of pounds and let children look out for objects that they may see on journeys and award themselves points when they do so. Of course, there's always the other version of I-Spy, too but you'll have to be willing to join in with that yourself!

Travel games

Travel games come in all shapes and sizes these days. As well as things like mini Connect 4, there are also travel versions of other classics such as Battleships and Snakes and Ladders. But just because a game doesn't have the word 'travel' written on the packet, that doesn't mean it's restricted. Top Trumps is one of the most popular games of all time and that can easily be played by passengers on the road.

Audio books

There are numerous audio books available for children, keeping them engaged, quiet and educating them too. And they don't have to be listened to by everyone in the car either, so long as your children are happy wearing headphones.

In-car entertainment

Technology has come a long way over the last decade or so and portable DVD players are now relatively affordable and travel friendly too in terms of size. Set your kids up with a child-friendly movie and they'll be quiet and happy for the duration of the journey.


Many children love maps: they're colourful and interesting and suggest adventure. Some children love being able to help with navigation so hand them the A to Z, or even the Sat Nav, and let them help you with directions. They'll have a sense of importance in making sure the journey goes to plan, and you'll have a happy, interested child on your hands.

If you've got any other tips of your own, let us know what they are!

published: 15/07/2014 12:19:52

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