You’ve packed your bags, filled the tank and just about ready to hit the road for your next adventure. The only thing missing is a few road trip games adults among you can enjoy while on the drive.
Because let’s face it – road trip games for adults are necessary, not just to keep your passengers occupied, but for your own sanity.
While road trips evoke a sense of adventure, of getting out of the city into the wide open wilderness, the reality isn’t quite so romantic. You’ve got traffic jams to contend with. There’s nothing to see (initially) except passing cars and endless buildings.
If the weather changes, that can affect the mood. If a friend starts feeling antsy, this can also affect the mood. You’re all travelling in close quarters and stuck together for the duration. There’s only so many naps they can have before the restlessness sets in.
Nowadays, with smartphones, we’ve got of entertainment on hand. But we’ve focused on road trip games adults can play without using gadgets – gadgets require recharging after a while after all. Besides, non-gadget games are just more fun, they rely on your imagination and resourcefulness
Here are our recommendations for your next drive out of town.
Road Trip Games Adults Can Relax Into
Kicking off this list of road trip games for adults is a set of simple games that don’t take a lot of playing effort. These are perfect for chilled out journeys, when the rain is coming down, or when you’re travelling with quiet people.
This is the simplest game on the list. The first person to start looks for an object either inside or outside the car and says “I spy with my little eye something beginning with H.” Then everyone takes it in turns to get what the letter H could be, e.g. Head, Hair, House.
You can change things up by choosing 2 letters; 2 letters is enough otherwise it gets too complicated. When the word has been guessed, someone else in the car takes their turn.
Before you hit the road, each passenger picks an odd or not-so-common colored car (pink, purple, gold, yellow etc.) Anytime someone spots a car of their color, they say “my car” and gets a point.
Passengers can also steal points from each other if they spot someone’s car before they do.
License Plate Game
Pick out a random car license plate, then make up as many words as you can either using the order of the letters in the plate. You should do this without anything down.
Players have 30 seconds to make as many words as they can before time is up. Each correct word gets a point. You can use half of the number plate or the whole thing, your choice. Here’s an example of a full plate: A Californian plate: 6LIK274 – like, lick, link, linking, likely.
Who Are They?
Pick another car on the road and imagine the lives of the passengers inside. Who are they? What is their relationship to each other? What is their job and where might they be headed today? Have everyone come up with a fun story together.
The Next Letter
Start the game by picking a subject, any subject, such as city names. The first player gets 30 seconds to drop as many names as they can, starting with A, then B and so on. When they get stuck, the game is passed to the next person to continue.
So: Ankara, Buenos Aires, Copenhagen, Djibouti, Edinburgh… After you reach Z, change the topic for the next round.
Similar to My Car, players choose a few singers they might hear on the radio. Whenever a song comes on belonging to that singer or bad, the person who chose them will say “My song” and gets a point. The person with the most points once your trip is done is the winner.
Guess Who I Am
Before game play begins, pick a specific theme for players to use, for example, the zoo, farm animals, aeroplane parts, the beach. Try and be ultra-specific to help guessing go faster while also making things harder.
The first player thinks of an item related to the chosen them, and everyone else must deduce what it is, by using simple questions. So if farm animals was the theme, a question could be ‘do you have two legs’, ‘do you have a mane?’, ‘do you fly?’
More Fun Road Trip Games For Adults
Road trip games adults can enjoy don’t just have to be about random fun, you can use the time to get to know your passengers better. Bonding is at the heart of this next group of games.
This game is simply a pack of cards, each one with a question, for example ‘What is your favourite childhood memory?’ The first player picks a card, reads what’s written on it and then gives an answer. Other players can give their answer too or comment on what’s been said, drawing out more of the given answer.
Make sure everyone treats everyone’s answers and thoughts with space and respect, you don’t anyone getting into an argument or feeling defensive. This is really just a lighthearted and fun game for all.
Music-related road trip games adults can bop along to are a surefire way to crank up the fun. Before you start your trip, put together a music playlist of songs your friends/passengers will know and love.
To play the game, the “DJ” (someone else that isn’t you, unless you’re not the diver) plays a few seconds of a song, then pauses it so everyone sings the next part as best they can. Whoever does it best, with all the correct words and the melody, gets a point.
This is a game for film buffs, music lovers and nerds everywhere. Split everyone up into two even teams. The first team picks a really tough category for the other team who has to name everything about the category in 30 seconds. Make sure everyone has their phones locked away – no cheating!
So for example, if the chosen topic was Sigourney Weaver movies, the other team would have to list everything they know, e.g. Alien, The Ice Storm, Copycat, Be Kind Rewind. You can make the categories as broad and narrow as you like – e.g. science fiction films is a broad category, whereas Marvel movies is a narrow category. You could also ask the rival team to give their answers in alphabetical order.
Would You Rather
This is a classic game most everyone will know: would you rather do this or that? For example: “Would you rather be a cat or a be a dog?” Or “would you rather ride the train for 10 hours to a single destination or ride the bus for 24 hours but see lots of unique sights as you do?”
Everyone gets to crank up the suspense in this story-making game. Kick things off by by saying the words, “While walking on…” The next person might add “the road I…” and then “saw a gigantic…” and so on.
Keep the story going once it comes back to you. As the story builds, so will the anticipation among your friends.
License Plate Decoder
Back to the number plates, only in this game, each player tries to decipher a hidden message. A California plate:
- 7BFM178 – 7 Best Friends Meet 1 Day A Week For 7 Drinks and 8 Dinners
- 7 Babies Found Milk In 17 Size 8 Shoes
Speak In Song
Start a conversation with each other using only song titles and lyrics, whether from the same song or different songs, doesn’t matter. Singing is forbidden.
The Personal Backpack Game
The starting player begins the game by saying, “I’m a backpack and I’m going to need an anorak.” Each person takes it turn reciting the previous items before adding a new one, which must start with the next letter. Players must think of a personal or favorite item they would include in the backpack.
You can change up the backpack part to other types of containers such as a magician’s hat, suitcase or a casserole pot.
Energetic Road Trip Games For Adults
In this next group of road trip games, adults can change up the energy of the drive. Perhaps you’ve all got back to the car after a pitstop and feeling the love. Perhaps you all want some crazy fun together. Let’s get started.
Lose The Plot
In this game, players take it turns to think of a well-known movie and explain the plot in the most terrible way possible, while everyone tries to guess what it could be.
For example: someone built a park all the way out in the ocean, then decided they didn’t want real animals living on there. Some people turn up at the park wanting to have a look round, and suddenly are scared for their lives yet can’t get out of the park. One of the animals in there is known for eating meat including potentially people. (AKA Jurassic Park (1993)
This game is all about song titles from A-Z and singing the choruses. Choose someone to go first, and ask them to find a song title beginning with A. They need to sing the chorus and afterwards has to guess the name of the song. You can add points to whoever guests first if you like.
After the song title is guessed, the next person has to sing a song with B and onwards. You can add bonus points, e.g year the song was released, any facts about the song and the singer.
Each person begins the game with the word “fortunately.” You can pick any theme you like; since you’re in a road trip, you’d say something about the trip, such as “Fortunately, I packed my swimming trunks.”
The next person now has to come with a statement related to the first that starts with “unfortunately,” for example “Unfortunately there are no lakes this year due to sudden drought.”
Kiss, Marry, Avoid
Everyone takes turns list 3 celebrities the other passengers have to choose if which person they would kiss, which one they would marry, and which one they’d avoid. This game can get a bit saucy after a while, so be warned.
The Name Game
Here is another game that builds up the energy. One person says any famous person’s name, and the next person says another name using the last letter of the surname.
For example, if you’d said Daniel Craig, then Cate Blanchett could be next. Names can be from any category or you can set a theme such as movie stars only. No one-worded names like Drake are allowed.
Split everyone into 2 teams. The first team picks a category for the other team who has to name everything in the category in 30 seconds. Make sure everyone has their phones locked away – no cheating.
For example, if the chosen topic was Sigourney Weaver movies, the other team would have to list everything she’s been in e.g. Alien, The Ice Storm, Copycat, Be Kind Rewind. You can make the categories as broad and narrow as you like – e.g. science fiction films is a broad category, whereas Marvel is a narrow category.
Are You Being Truthful?
The person who starts begins a story from their past, where 2 parts of it are true and one part of it is a lie. Everyone has to try and figure out the lie.
You can tell dating stories, work stories, fun stories, anything you like. You can define the past as childhood, a decade ago, or last week; anyone can choose whatever past they want or you can set a specific theme. Once the lie has been nixed, you can ask that friend 2 follow-up questions so they share more of their story.
The Banana Game
This game is all about the color yellow and it goes like this – points are given whenever someone spots something yellow. This could be a yellow door, a yellow car, a yellow truck, etc.
You can come with a scoring system for different items, e.g. One point for a car, 2 for a truck, 3 for a door, or by category such as vehicle, building, clothing.
Time To Hit The Road
The next time you’re making plans for a road trip, games adults can enjoy are as crucial to add to your packing list alongside snacks and maps. Keeping your passengers occupied will only make the drive more enjoyable and memorable. Here’s to a stress-free trip!