Keeping the kids entertained

Let's be honest, there are times when car journeys with children can be, well, trying to say the least. From the inevitable, 'Are we nearly there yet?' to the demands for food/drink/a rest stop, travelling can become a headache – and that's before you've even factored in a traffic jam or two.

So as hundreds of parents prepare to pack up and hit the road this February half-term, here at insurance4carhire.com, we've come up with our pick of the best ways to keep the kids – and you – entertained on your journey.

So as hundreds of parents prepare to pack up and hit the road this February half-term, here at insurance4carhire.com, we've come up with our pick of the best ways to keep the kids – and you – entertained on your journey.

Car Blockbusters

Every time you pass a vehicle, take a peek at the three letters at the end of its registration, then use these to come up with a short sentence. For example, PIW becomes Peter Is Wicked. As a general rule, the sillier the sentences, the more fun this becomes – especially when you get tricky letters like X thrown into the equation.

Car Bingo

This is a great game to encourage children to take note of what's around them as you travel. You can either design your own cards or find some on the internet. Each player has a card of drawings/words of things to look out for en route, like an aeroplane, a horse, give way sign, bridge etc, and once you see each one, you cross it off on the card (so remember to take pencils with you). Just like number bingo, you can play for individual lines or you can just go straight for a full house.

Keep them 'Appy

Modern technology has become a lifesaver for many parents, and whatever your children are into, be it Disney, dinosaurs or dolls, you can guarantee there's an accompanying app for them to enjoy. But there's a big old marketplace out there. If you've got younger children, it's definitely worth checking out the apps of Toca Boca, where you can do everything from feeding monsters in the kitchen to running a hairdresser's to building a robot to having a tea party. It's also a good idea to load up on e-books, favourite TV shows or films – when it comes to children, it pays to be prepared.

I went to...

This game is a great way of getting children into the holiday spirit as it gets them thinking about where they're going to end up – which distracts them from the journey. So, one person starts off by saying I went to [destination] and I bought… The next person then repeats this and adds on what they bought and so on and so on. If you want to make it really tricky, try doing it alphabetically!

Number detective

Give all the players sheets with the numbers 1-100 on, then make it a challenge to find all the numbers (not on registration plates, that would be too simple!) and cross them off. First one to mark off all 100 gets a treat!

Who Am I?

This is a bit like Guess Who?, but without the board. So, think of a person, fictional or real, then let the other passengers guess who you're thinking of (no changing your mind halfway through!) by answering 'yes' or 'no' to their questions.

Best of the rest...

  • I-spy – try it with colours instead of objects for younger children
  • A portable DVD player – and headphones so you don't have to hear it
  • Singing
  • Audio books
  • Portable games consoles – and an in-car charger
  • Sticker/colouring books
  • Aquadoodle – a doodle pad that uses water (just make sure you have some in the car to refill the pen)

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