Travel Boredom Busters

Are you headed out of town for Thanksgiving? We are! And our car DVD player is jammed with two DVDs (thank you Locke…grrr…) so watching a movie is not an option on our 6 hour drive to Boise.  I am going to have to oil my rusty travel brain and bring out some travel boredom busters (that don’t involve a DVD):


On one of our trips this summer, I gave my kids pipe cleaners and they created fun shapes.  These were entertaining and mess free.

You could just let your kids create freely or you could play a few structured games.  Like have them make something that starts with an A, then a B, etc.  Or have them create a shape they see outside the car.


My husband hates window markers, but my kids love them.  They get to draw on the windows as we drive.  My son tried to outline the landscape out his window and my daughter just wanted to scribble.

Again you can allow for free draw or play games like hangman or tic tac toe or pictionary. This idea is way messier than pipe cleaners so make sure the kids help clean out the car when you get home.


My girls love their workbooks and I can get Crew to like them too if he has a goal and a reward.  Maybe I will have him work towards a snack instead of a movie. Read this post to find out a great way to use workbooks to earn movie time (assuming your DVD player is working.)


I read about Nim in Family Fun but we haven’t tried it out yet.  I plan to bust it our for this trip.  For this game you need 21 small objects.  I am going to use buttons.

Photo courtesy of Kelsie Rae Photography

The game is for two players and you line all the buttons up in a horizontal row.  Taking turns each player removes one, two or three buttons at a time.  The goal of the game is to keep from being the person who picks up the last button.

To make this game travel friendly I am going to add those sticky magnets to the back of each button and bring along a magnetic cookie sheet.  The kids can use the cookie sheet as the game board and hopefully buttons won’t get lost as easily if they are magnetic.

In case you need more travel boredom busters, here are some other posts I have done on travel ideas:

DJ Got Us Singing Together

Wrapped on the Road

Earn Movie Time

It’s The Journey, Not the Destination

Hope you enjoy your travel this Thanksgiving time.


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