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The Best Travel Games - 2022

Last updated on February 15, 2022

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Our Picks For The Top Travel Games

Show Contents
Our Take
  Top Pick

Coogam Travel Tangram Magnetic Puzzle Book Travel Game

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

Coogam

Travel Tangram Magnetic Puzzle Book Travel Game

Overall Take

Great Car OptionA magnetic board makes this tangram game great for kids to play in the car anytime.

  Runner Up

Briarpatch Scavenger Hunt For Kids Road Trip Search & Find Cards Travel Game

Briarpatch

Scavenger Hunt For Kids Road Trip Search & Find Cards Travel Game

Overall Take

Keeps Little Ones BusyChildren will have a blast using all their senses to complete this road-based scavenger hunt.

  We Also Like

Regal Games Reusable Shutter Slide Travel Bingo Cards Travel Games, 4-Count

Regal Games

Reusable Shutter Slide Travel Bingo Cards Travel Games, 4-Count

Overall Take

Fun for GroupsGet the whole family in on the fun with this set of Auto Bingo cards designed for portable play.

  Strong Contender

Mattel Games UNO Family Card Game & Storage Case Tin Travel Game

Mattel Games

UNO Family Card Game & Storage Case Tin Travel Game

Overall Take

Destination FunThis set of UNO cards comes in a storage-friendly tin for hours of fun while traveling.

Guide written by Stephanie Faris
Last updated on February 15, 2022

Although the travel industry took a hit during the COVID-19 pandemic, Americans have been eager to get back on the road ever since. In December 2021, 9 out of 10 U.S. travelers said they had a trip planned in the next six months.

Many of these will be taken by car. If you’re a parent of one or more younger children, you may gravitate toward a car trip for a variety of reasons. Traveling with your own vehicle makes it easier to manage temper tantrums, since you don’t have to worry about disrupting other travelers. You also have the flexibility to take bathroom breaks and enjoy a roadside picnic or a meal in a restaurant whenever you want.

But travel by car isn’t without its challenges. The line, “Are we there yet?” has become synonymous with family road trips for a reason. Bored and impatient backseat travelers will likely turn to parents for entertainment, and when that happens, you may find yourself scrambling for something to do. That’s where a good backseat travel game can come in.

The criteria for a good travel game differs from what you play at home. If you’re just looking for something to pass the time when you arrive at your destination, like a card game for the whole family, portability is the main requirement You’ll need one that can fit easily into a suitcase, unless you have extra room in your truck for larger board games.

For the car, there are some travel games that the whole family can enjoy. A scavenger hunt-style game can work well, allowing everyone in the vehicle to participate. Keep in mind that your backseat passengers probably won’t have a table between them, so a board game that is magnetic or has no separate pieces is ideal.

The Best Travel Games

1
  Top Pick

Coogam Travel Tangram Magnetic Puzzle Book Travel Game

This tangram puzzle game with various difficulty levels provides up to 360 different patterns you can make with seven polygonic shapes. The magnetic design and 7.4-ounce weight make it great for playing while traveling anywhere.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Coogam
Model
2
  Runner Up

Briarpatch Scavenger Hunt For Kids Road Trip Search & Find Cards Travel Game

This fun scavenger hunt involves simply monitoring the world outside your vehicle as you travel. You’ll get 54 cards, each displaying a sound, sight, smell, or feeling card. The game is designed for two or more players aged 7 and up.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Briarpatch
Model
3
  We Also Like

Regal Games Reusable Shutter Slide Travel Bingo Cards Travel Games, 4-Count

In this set, you’ll get four reusable Bingo cards in a handy travel format. Each card has a shutter slide that you move to mark off an item once you’ve found it. Slots depict items commonly found on road trips like traffic lights, billboards and farm animals.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Regal Games
Model
4
  Strong Contender

Mattel Games UNO Family Card Game & Storage Case Tin Travel Game

This is the classic Uno game in a storage-friendly format. You’ll get a sturdy tin box filled with 112 cards and gameplay instruction, so it can take many bumps in the car. Uno is easy to learn and play, and is suited for ages 7 and older.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Mattel Games
Model
5
  Also Great

Knock Knock On-The-Go Game Pad Paper Games & Activity Sheets Travel Games

You’ll get hours of fun with this 6 by 9-inch activity pad with five fun games: Hangman, Tic Tac Toe, Dots & Boxes, Categories and Fortune Teller. Each page is perforated to allow children 7 and up to share the fun with other family members.

Features


Specifications

Brand
Knock Knock
Model

Our Travel Game Buying Guide

Although the travel industry took a hit during the COVID-19 pandemic, Americans have been eager to get back on the road ever since. In December 2021, 9 out of 10 U.S. travelers said they had a trip planned in the next six months.

Many of these will be taken by car. If you’re a parent of one or more younger children, you may gravitate toward a car trip for a variety of reasons. Traveling with your own vehicle makes it easier to manage temper tantrums, since you don’t have to worry about disrupting other travelers. You also have the flexibility to take bathroom breaks and enjoy a roadside picnic or a meal in a restaurant whenever you want.

But travel by car isn’t without its challenges. The line, “Are we there yet?” has become synonymous with family road trips for a reason. Bored and impatient backseat travelers will likely turn to parents for entertainment, and when that happens, you may find yourself scrambling for something to do. That’s where a good backseat travel game can come in.

The criteria for a good travel game differs from what you play at home. If you’re just looking for something to pass the time when you arrive at your destination, like a card game for the whole family, portability is the main requirement You’ll need one that can fit easily into a suitcase, unless you have extra room in your truck for larger board games.

For the car, there are some travel games that the whole family can enjoy. A scavenger hunt-style game can work well, allowing everyone in the vehicle to participate. Keep in mind that your backseat passengers probably won’t have a table between them, so a board game that is magnetic or has no separate pieces is ideal.

DWYM Fun Fact

Vacations have been a part of American life throughout its history, although at one time this pastime was a luxury reserved for the wealthy. In 1791, Thomas Jefferson took a trip for pleasure when this was still an uncommon thing to do, retreating to Vermont for a getaway with James Madison and slave James Hemmings. He also had a vacation home, Poplar Forest, in Virginia. Early U.S. vacations are thought to have been inspired by the European vacations that were popular during the Renaissance. These trips were regional or country-wide tours that were taken both for leisure and for educational purposes.

The widespread availability of the railroad brought vacations to the mainstream in the mid-1800s. Florida and California were both popular destinations in those days, as they remain today. Travel came to a stop during the Civil War, only to pick back up again as employers began offering to pay for vacations for their workers. By the 1890s, paid vacation time started becoming a part of U.S. workplace policy, only further spreading the popularity of traveling.

The Travel Game Tips and Advice

  • While it’s nice to have activities to occupy your children while you’re in transit, don’t forget that you’ll need something to do once you arrive at your destination, too. A game for your hotel room or vacation rental can be invaluable if you find yourself stuck inside on a rainy day, or you’re looking for something low-cost to do after dinner.
  • If your travel game has removable pieces, make sure you have a plan for keeping them together. Otherwise, you could be finding small pieces under and between seats later. A game with magnetic pieces is a good option for avoiding this. Also, be sure to have a way to store it all while you’re traveling.
  • Scavenger hunt games can be fun, but some aren’t geared toward interstate travel. If the game has you trying to locate stop signs and pedestrians, you might have a tough time making it work during long stretches in the car. Keep that in mind and go with something a bit more highway-friendly.
  • Check the age recommendations of the travel game you’re considering. Some can be too advanced for younger children.
  • Most travel games are designed for two or more players. This can be tough if you have a solo backseat traveler. If that’s the case, look for games that will engage everyone in the car without being too distracting.
  • If you’re opting for a travel-size version of a game, make sure it comes with instructions. More portable formats can leave this important detail out. Most popular games will likely have instructions online, but this won’t necessarily be the case with a newer game.
  • Kids can also get restless while waiting in restaurants, amusement park lines, and other vacation-related spaces. A good game can be a great way to power throughout those waits and make the time pass.
  • Travel games also work just as well for other modes of transportation, such as riding on a train or bus and flying in an airplane. They’re great during airport layovers. Just know that game cards and some game pieces may show up as unidentifiable shadows in x-rays, which means you may be flagged going through airport security. You might wish to take games out of your luggage and place them in trays with your shoes and laptop as you pass through security checkpoints.
  • Before leaving home, make sure you have everything you need for your games. You might need writing utensils to keep score or to fill in the blanks on your activity pad.

About The Author

Stephanie Faris 

Stephanie Faris is a novelist and business writer whose work has appeared on numerous blogs. She worked for the State of Tennessee for 19 years, the latter six of which were spent as a supervisor. She has written content for entrepreneurs and marketing firms since 2011. In addition to her online content, she is also the author of eight novels for Simon & Schuster, including the Piper Morgan chapter book series.