As you all know, we love our road trips. But at times the road can get a little too long and you start looking for Road Trip Boredom Busters. So here you’ll find some of the best travel games for adults. We share our favorites as well as some from our blogging friends who travel all the time!
These are all road-tested and proven winners. And best of all the driver can be part of most of these travel games (traffic allowing), so everyone is in on the fun.
Check out these adult car games for your next trip and the miles will fly by. You’ll be “there” before you know it!
This post contains affiliate links to make it easier for you to find the products I have mentioned. You don’t pay any extra and in some cases, I could earn a small commission.
Challenge Your Mind: 9 Adult Car Games That Make You Think
Are you a little competitive? Maybe more than a little? Then these mind-challenging adult car games are just for you!
Road Trip Trivia: Courtesy of YouTube!
from our adult kids
Talk about getting competitive when playing travel games! Brad and I pulled out the gloves on this one. On our recent road trip to West Texas and New Mexico, our SIL suggested we try Road Trip Trivia for the 10-hour drive across the desert.
We tried several different YouTubers and found Road Tripvia to be the most complete and easiest to use in the car. Our favorite category was the Friday Night Pub Trivia because it covered a wide range of topics ensuring neither one of us had an advantage. The only downside of this travel game is it requires that you have some cellular signal to play, however, we found the short stints without any reception welcome breaks that lead to a conversation about many of the trivia topics.
What You Need to Play Road Trip YouTube Trivia
- Your Cell Phone to Play the YouTube video
- Best when connected to a car stereo so everyone can clearly hear, although Road Tripvia had enough time before the answer that someone could easily read out loud, pausing the video.
- ScorePad because travel games like this will bet super competitive so you better know the score!
Solve a Five Minute Mystery
from InsomnoMom at The House That Never Slumbers
Our family enjoyed the lively conversation created by these mysteries. They are great cooperative travel games rather than competitive ones as everyone works together to solve the mystery. The discussion makes the travel time pass quickly. Bring one of the Five-Minute Mysteries books along on your road trips for a lively game. (There are also Two-Minute Mysteries available.)
These books are a collection of short mystery stories that take about 5 minutes to read. A question is posed at the end of each story, and readers must use the clues from the story to reason through the answer and try to solve the mystery. I would read aloud, and everyone in the vehicle would discuss the potential answer.
What You Need to Play 5 Minute Mysteries
- A copy of at least one of the 5 Minute Mysteries books. There’s a wide variety of choices to challenge your problem-solving skills. The majority are murder mysteries, but if your team is a little on the nerdy side, there are Minecraft and Math mysteries!
- Some of the books are also available on Kindle, so think about a Kindle Unlimited Plan for your vacation. You get your first month free.
Explore Odd Facts in Podcasts
from Philip at Zen Travellers
One of our boredom busters for road trips is to fill up our phones with our favorite Podcasts. Not only do they provide entertainment while you’re listening, we often find ourselves discussing the topic further afterward. Some of our favorites are educational (and hilarious) Podcasts such as Stuff You Should Know and Science Vs.
We did this recently while on a self drive safari in Kruger National Park and listened to fitting Podcasts about the wildlife we were watching and learned some cool facts about them. For instance, did you know that Elephants are left and right tusked just like humans are left/right hand dominant? Neither did we!
What You Need for Podcast Explorer
- Keep a pad handy to log the odd facts you identify during this simple game. You can play this as a team travel game for real competition and see who is really listening!
Can You Guess the Movie
from Priya at Glorious Sunrise
This adult travel game is a cool way to pass time no matter how long the road trip is. First, one person has to name two actors and the rest of the travelers should try and guess the movie those two actors were together in. You can look up movie names and actors by using IMDB website, a great database for all things related to movies.
Of course, the people guessing the team are banned from using their phones while playing. For more ideas without using your phone, check out these cool Time Pass ideas.
What You Need for Guess the Movie
- You can easily play this entire game without any tools, but a phone to access the IMDB website will keep the game moving along faster when you play this game.
from us…our personal all-time road trip winner
It may be hard to imagine doing crossword puzzles on the road, but we do 2-3 on long road trips like our 5 Utah National Parks in 5 Days trip. The passenger reads the clues out loud and then both of us try to figure out the correct word. We’ve easily played travel games like this with 3 and 4 people in the car. Everyone really gets into finding the word to fill in the puzzle.
Discussions about new words and about the meaning of the clues often ensue. Sometimes it gets pretty intense as we argue about the “real” meaning of the clue. (Yes, we can be geeky at times!) The paperback books are cheap and easy to tuck into the car for the road.
What You Need for Fun Crossword Puzzles
- We like to start with an easy crossword puzzle on our road trip and work our way up to the more difficult ones. You’ll find the large print ones are easier to work in the car due to all the road jiggles.
from Claire at Past the Potholes
We spend plenty of hours in vehicles together as we explore new countries so my husband decided to invent his own game! He calls it Reasonable Trivia. Each person takes a turn thinking up a trivia question. If more people get it right than wrong, the questioner wins. The catch is that it has to be reasonable so there has to always be at least one wrong and one right answer.
We tested it out on a road trip with friends and had lots of laughs along the way. Coming from three different countries it was hard to find the right questions!
What You Need to Play Reasonable Trivia
- Just pull out your thinking cap to play this addictive game!
Never Have I Ever
One of our personal choices
Let me warn you upfront, this is one of our travel games that has been played on Ellen. And we all know that Ellen loves to embarrass her guests in the most inappropriate ways. So walk on by if you aren’t up for a lot of TMI in your travel games!
Each card in the deck has a description of embarrassing moments in life. You know, those things you really wish you hadn’t done. If you have actually experienced that dreadful moment, you can win a lot of points. The player who has the most points wins this fun game.
What You Need to Play Never Have I Ever
- Although you can find board versions, this travel sized package of Never Have I Ever is perfect for road trips. It also doubles as a great game to play if you get rained in one evening while on your vacation.
Do a U-Turn for Historical Markers
from Lori from Travel – Moments in Time
My husband and I love to take road trips! To prevent silence from settling in, we stop along the way for photos or even to visit some places. If we know some interesting attractions are on our way, we make sure to include them ahead on our itinerary. Other times, we are mesmerized by the landscape or intrigued by something, so we stop, take pictures or take a closer look at the thing that caught our eye, and then we get back on the road.
Now, we have what to talk about! Always something new, always making connections and, sometimes, having different opinions allows us to char for a long while. Until the next stop;) One thing is clear though: no trip is boring and there is no silence in the car.
What You Need to Enjoy Historical Markers
- Friends just shared a new app with us called ExploreHere that points out historical markers and other interesting historical sites as you drive by. No more need to pull over! While it is a paid app, you can take advantage of the free trial for your next road trip adventure.
from Margie at DQ Family Travel
On our long road trips, we try to squash boredom by playing a travel game called Hesitate. One person comes up with a category, let’s say “cars”. The others take turns naming car brands or models very quickly. If a person takes a second and hesitates, they are out. When the round is over, the next person calls out a category and the game continues again until the family decides we are done with the game and don’t want to play anymore.
This game is a classic road trip game we have been playing since our youngest was 7. Not only is it one of our favorite travel games for adults it will also keep our kids entertained with road trip activities during our long drives around the country.
Getting to Know You: 4 Fun Relationship Games for Couples
Ever find yourself sucked into your phone and not talking to your spouse for hours while on the road? Stop! The best road trip games for adults are the perfect way to connect with your spouse or with your friends. Here are some travel games that help you learn a little bit more about each other while having a blast on the road.
Discover New Things About Your Partner
From Karolina&Patryk at Lazy Travel Blog
One of the interesting ways to spend valuable time during a long journey is to do some personal development exercises. My husband and I bought ‘Louise Hay Heal Your Life Workbook’. Even though we have known each other for years, we were surprised to hear each other’s stories.
Talking about our childhood strengthens our bond every time we do it. Not only it is a great way to kill the boredom during a long road trip but also it’s also the beginning of a very interesting conversation.
What You Need for Discovering New Things About Your Partner
- Of course, I had to check Louise Hay out after reading this suggestion. I’m so impressed with her program. Here’s where you can check out Louise Hay Heal Your Life Workbook for yourself. Also great for a road trip is the audio version of the original book that the workbook is based on.
Chat the Miles Away with Conversation Starter Cards
from Katie at My Sweet Home Life
Let’s face it – long car rides can be a little boring. Conversation starter cards make fun travel games. These are classic game questions are designed to get you talking about all manner of things. These fun questions for married couples are specifically designed to help you learn more about your partner.
There are questions about your childhood, questions about your teenage years, and questions about the kind of random things that really get you thinking! One of my favorites is “What was your most embarrassing romantic fail?”
What You Need for Conversation Starters
- Grab one of these card packs for great conversation some are fun, some are romantic, and all are guaranteed to keep you and your honey talking for hours.
Would You Rather?
from Diana at The Elusive Family
Long car drives require some form of entertainment for kids, but what about adults? A great family-friendly and fun game that can also be played exclusively by adults is “would you rather.”
It is a game we played over and over again on our recent trip to Croatia. “Would you rather” is a question-based game where each player asks the other what they would rather do. For example, would you rather have x-ray vision or invisibility power? Questions can be made up on the spot making this game extremely fun and hilarious at times. It’s a great game to pass the time when on the road.
What You Need
- Tuck one of these books into your travel pack and you’re ready to play! You can try this rather edgy version of Would You Rather – Outrageous and Bizarre. Or you can check out one of these more family appropriate versions of Would You Rather
- Or if your other passengers are super quick on their feet, you can play this without any prompts
Two Truths and a Lie
from our personal list …. also one of my favorite party ice breakers!
A great way to get to know your travel partners is an adult car game called Two Truths and a Lie. When it’s your turn you make 3 statements about yourself. Two are the truth and One is a Lie. For example, mine might be 1. I’ve seen Elton John in concert twice. 2. I swam with dolphins. 3. We once had bears sniffing around our tent while we were sleeping in it. Your fellow travelers have to guess which one is the lie.
To keep this travel game interesting start pulling out the most outrageous facts about yourself. Conversation automatically starts as everyone is curious to learn more about this new information.
What You Need to Play Two Truths and a Lie
- Just your imagination!
Music Makes Time Fly: 4 Musically Hilarious Road Trip Games
Nothing makes the time go by faster and with a smile than music. Here are some of our favorite musical travel games for adults that will keep you and your friends in stitches.
from Babs at Mums on Flip Flops
Our number one boredom buster is a good old sing-along. To keep things interesting, we always have an external hard drive with us with our favorite songs. We take turns choosing a song. When it’s your turn, pick a song and the whole car has to sing along as loud as possible. Repeating a song is not allowed.
What You Need to for the Road Trip Sing Along Challenge
- Most importantly, you can play this fun road trip game without any extra props or tools. Just dig deep into your memory to find your favorite songs
- However, for a more boisterous sing-along, having music is a big boost. Just pull out your phones and pick when it’s your turn.
Song Writing 101
from Chris at More Life In Your Days
When we are going on a long road trip, a great way to pass the time is by creating a collaborative song, one line at a time. One person sets you off in a certain direction and you then all take it in turns to decide what happens next by singing the next line.
It can be hard to think of a rhyme quickly when coming up with the next line but that is all part of the fun and doing it quickly generally adds to the fun. Songs will often go off on abrupt tangents and become pretty nonsensical, but that is all part of this fun game.
What You Need for Song Writing 101
- If you have a large group, you’ll find it helpful to assign someone the role of keeping track of the lyrics of this amazing travel game. And think how funny it will be to go back and look at your song creations later!
Name That Tune
one of ours
Name That Tune is one of the best road trip games for music lovers. You listen to a short snippet of a song and see who can guess the name first. To play this travel game there are two ways to select your songs. First, you can use your phone and each passenger takes turns pulling up songs. Or there are several YouTube channels that will play snippets of songs for you. You’ll find a long list of YouTube choices here.
What You Need to Play Name That Tune
- You’ll either need your phone with cell service or a table that you have preloaded with your favorite tunes.
yup… ours again
OMG, this was the most fun travel game as we drove across the Arizona desert last year. We brainstormed a list of songs that made us think of the desert and Arizona, calling it our Vacation PlayList. After a song was submitted as a candidate for the list by one of us, we pulled it up on our phones for a listen.
Who would know there were so many desert songs. We had over 40 on our list a few hours later. (Yes, the Eagles came through with the largest contribution.) Just give your stretch of the road a theme name and start your list for road trip fun. You can play this as a competition or as a team effort.
What You Need to Create your Vacation PlayList
- Hearing the songs adds to the fun, but it’s not critical if your phones are not working for this to be a fun car game.
- A pad of paper to track the songs is also helpful. If you are a little competitive you’ll want to know how many songs you’ve identified.
Just for Giggles: 5 Laugh Out Loud with these Fun Car Games for Adults
Some of the best travel games for adults are those that make you laugh. It’s so easy to get stressed out about delays, construction and finding a place to eat that you momentarily forget that the purpose of your vacation is to have fun. Ever been there?
Pull Out a Game of Bingo
from Ingrid at Fabulous and Fun Life
This is the classic game for road trips no adventure should be without! Prior to the trip, I make up bingo cards for all the cars occupants listing 20 items to search for along the journey. I try to list a mix of items with varying degrees of difficulty to be found along the road and in towns that we pass through such as a car towing a caravan, a camper van, a red Porsche, a sign containing the word ‘population’ on it, an adult pushing a pram and a boy on a skateboard etc.
It is the front seat passenger’s job to remind the driver of items they still need to find.
What You Need for a Wild Game of Travel Bingo
- As kids, my grandma would make car bingo games for every trip. As an adult, I find we still have so much fun playing this game. It’s just the right amount of competitiveness and silliness! Only now I don’t really have time to make them so here’s a set of Bingo cards you can pick up and have delivered before your road trip starts.
The Game of 5 Things
from Bret Love & Mary Gabbett of Blue Ridge Mountains Travel Guide
One of our family’s favorite adult car games came from a background in performing improv comedy. It’s a popular warm-up game called 5 Things, and it’s fun for all ages and simple enough for anyone to play. The way this travel game works is the first person will call out a category of their choosing, which can range from simple things like “5 types of breakfast cereals” or “5 brands of cars” to more creative ideas, such as “5 superpowers you wish you had” or “5 things you’d never want to take a bath in.”
The person whose turn it is then has to name 5 things in that category as quickly as possible, preferably without stopping to think about it. As they name off each one, the rest of the group counts them in unison– “1… 2… 3…” After they name the fifth and final thing, everyone says, “5… 5 THINGS!” And then that person is the next to suggest a category. It’s a great fun game for engagement, not to mention creative stimulation during long drives.
Find A Rainbow
from Suzi at Survey Suzi
Our favorite way to break the silence on a road trip is to play the Rainbow Game. Basically, you pick an item, we usually start with cars, and you have to find one in each color of the rainbow in order. So a red car, then an orange car, yellow car etc. The first person who sees a car in the color they are up to gets to count it and the first person to find cars in all the colors in order wins!
We then start over with a new item like trucks, building colors or people wearing the colors. It’s easy to adapt this game to any situation.
Try a Round of Car Cricket
from Lauren at Luxury Travel Hacks
Car cricket is by far my favorite travel game for adults to beat boredom, while road tripping around Chile, Iceland the USA and every other country on the planet. Simply you use the traffic as ‘balls’ bowled and keep tabs of your ‘runs’ or simply your score. We often play between places and the person with the highest amount of runs wins.
So, how do you play? Well, they are super simple instructions:
– White Cars – Out
– Other Color Cars – 1 run
– Motorbike – 2 runs
– Trailers – 3 runs
– 4 Wheel Drive – 4 runs
– Truck, Bus or Emergency Vehicle – 6 runs
The first person who is ‘batting’ will keep score of their runs until a white car goes past and then the next person who is playing is in and repeats the process. You then continue to cycle through who is playing. My final piece of advice for car cricket is don’t play if the roads are super busy.
If it is too busy it can be too hard to keep track of your runs. So, next time you are driving in a rural location definitely consider car cricket.
What You Need to Play Car Cricket
- Just a pad of paper for scorekeeping! Don’t you just love travel games that take zero advance preparation?
a childhood throwback!
I’m sure you played the fun travel game I Spy as a kid. Well, let’s put it on steroids to turn it into the perfect game for an adult road trip! As kids, we played that the item had to be visible during the whole game, usually something inside the car.
Here’s how to change it up for adults. To play, the person who is IT, calls for a moment in time. Everyone needs to quickly look outside and take a “mental snapshot” of a scene outside the car. IT then says “I spy something [color of item]” Then the questions begin. That scene might be far behind you by the time the item is guessed. Playing games like I Spy is a fun way to improve your power of observation.
What You Need to Play I Spy
- Only a keen sense of observation and patience are required to win the adult travel game version
Moving Pieces? 2 Travel Board Games that Work in a Moving Car
Our family loves board games when we are on vacation. They are great fun in your VRBO or RV, but what about in a moving car? Here are a couple of board games that adapt well for playing on the road adding them to our list of amazing travel games.
from Mary Beth of a Reluctant Mom
Versions of the board game Trivial Pursuit is one of our go-to fun road trip travel games for adults! It’s easy to take this classic game and adapt it for play while driving. Not with the board and pieces, obviously, but we bring the cards along and quiz each other as we take turns driving. Once we finish a stack, we open a new one from a different edition (we have Classic, Sports, and Disney).
By the time we’ve rotated through them all, we’ve already forgotten most of the earlier answers, so can start again on the next road trip and still not be any better than we were the first time around. It’s a great way to pass the time, and offers endless entertainment!
What You Need to Play Car Trivial Pursuit
- If you have this classic board game at home, then just grab the cards out of the box and you are ready to go.
- No games sitting around? Then grab a couple of Trivia Books. For a true Adult Road Trip Game, check out the Bar Trivia Book! Or here’s a selection of another dozen Trivia Books that would be great for in the car.
Magnetic Chess, Checkers and Backgammon
While the best travel board games include the driver, there are times on a road trip when the driver and navigator need to focus on the road. You know, when your driver needs to move across 5 lanes in rush hour traffic in a city you’ve never seen before! That’s the perfect time to pull out a quiet travel board game for the back seat passengers.
Travel Sets of Chess, Checkers and Backgammon fit the bill. Your backseat passengers can play this game while the front seat focuses on the road!
What You Need to Play Chess, Checkers or Backgammon
- You can grab a set on Amazon that has all 3 games in one easy storage box. Check out this combined magnetic chess, checkers and backgammon set that has prime shipping!
Best Adult Activity Books for Quiet Time in the Car
There are times Brad just likes to crank up the radio and chill while driving on a long trip like our Colorado National Park Road Trip. That’s a good time for me to pull out an activity book to keep busy in the passenger seat.
I hope you love these car travel games for adults as much as we do. Road trips should be about connecting with your partner, your family and your friends. The only way to really connect is to talk to each other. What better place than in the car! So enjoy the best travel games for adults as you travel the highways.
Originally published May 20, 2019. Updated May 6, 2020.