Travel Ideas

Top 10 Best Road Trip Games

Top 10 Travel Games: The Best Road Trip Games for Adults

Traveling is fun, but sometimes being on the road for a long time can be trying for your patience. If you have kids or if you’re travelling with your family, you’re probably already familiar with road trip games—as they become indispensable to avoid the constant “are we there yet?” routine. That being said, even adults get bored, and to avoid turning into your worst nightmare, you’ll want to pack up on travel game ideas.

What are road trip games?

Road trip games are travel games you play to make time go by faster. They can stimulate your memory, jolt your creativity and implicate one, two or more people. Oh—and they usually turn into a giggling fest. 

Why play them?

Well, even if you’re a mature adult now, you can still get bored. Or you don’t get bored thanks to your smartphone! But here’s why fun road trip games make it worth putting your phone down:

  • They’ll help you bond with your travel buddies.
  • They’ll occupy your mind with something else than passive entertainment (such as social media or streaming).
  • They’ll make time pass by so much faster.
  • They’ll most likely make you laugh (which is good for your health!).
  • You’ll pay more attention to the scenery and notice things you would have never seen, what with your head riveted on your smartphone screen.

So, which are the best road trip games?

Here are our top 10 favourite road trip games for adults. The cool thing is they work as bus travel games or car games, and you can even take some ideas with you for a plane or train ride.

#1 Best Classic Travel Game: the I spy Road Trip Game

Although you may have played this game when you were small, we’re pretty sure you’ll still enjoy it! The I spy road trip game. It is one of our favourites because it forces you to look around and search for rarities or detail. Remember how it goes? It’s quite simple.

The Goal

The goal of this classic travel game is to guess what object or thing the spy has in mind!

The Rules

  • Designate one person to be the spy.
  • The spy starts the game by finding something they can see out the window, in the bus or vehicle—and says, “I spy with my little eye, something that…”. 
  • Take note that the spy cannot change objects during the game.
  • The spy gives out a clue to the other participants, such as:
    • “Something that starts with the letter ___.” Giving out the first letter is the most common way to play the game—and the hardest for people to guess.
    • “Something that is the colour ___.” A colour clue is more commonly used if playing with kids, since it makes the guessing easier.
    • Another variant is to give out other clues in relation to shape, composition, texture, material, weight or height. But again, this makes the guessing game easier.
  • Now, the other players have to guess what the first person spied, by asking “yes or no” questions. The spy answers each question with a “yes” or “no” but gives out no further information. For instance, a player could ask:
    • “Is it larger than a bus?”—to which the spy could answer “yes” or “no”.
  • If someone takes a guess, they can ask:
    • “Is it a tree?”
  • The spy can answer “yes” if the guess is accurate—or with “hot” (close) or “cold” (not close) to give indications whereas to how close that guess was to the spied object. 
  • If the guessing game has been going for a while, the spy can encourage the other players to guess again and give more precise feedback, by responding with “warm” (closer but not close) or “freezing” (totally off-topic).
  • Each player takes a turn asking a question or taking a guess and the first person who guesses the correct object wins the game. 
  • For the next round, the winner becomes the spy!

The Equipment

The I Spy Road Trip Game doesn’t require any equipment!

Number of Players

You need at least two players to Play I Spy… No maximum!

#2 Best Travel Board Game: Road Trip Bingo for Adults

Who doesn’t like bingo? The cool thing about travel bingo is that there are at least two ways to play when you’re on the road—so if you don’t have a pen and paper handy or if you haven’t thought ahead and purchased a card game, you can still play. 

Travel Bingo Game with a list

Equipment needed: pen and paper.

Make sure you have a pen and paper handy. First, solicit everyone’s help to make an exhaustive list of car brands. Then, look out the window and shout (or whisper if you’re on a bus!) BINGO every time you spot a brand that is on the list! Keep count of your findings! The first player to find every brand on the list wins the game. 

Travel Bingo Cards

Equipment needed: travel bingo cards & a pen for each player.

If you like to plan ahead, you’ll love this version of road trip bingo. To play, print out several cards in advance (several websites offer downloadable bingo cards for free!) and simply set up in the bus to play with your friends, just like a normal bingo game! The goal? Checking off items as you see them in your surroundings (hence, the pen) until all the items are checked in one same row of your card… at which point you can discreetly scream, “BINGO!”

#3 Best Long Drive Game: The Licence Plate Travel Game

With the licence plate travel game, you can step up the game and increase the difficulty level as you get better at it! And, if you’re on the road for a long time, this road trip game will definitely provide entertainment for a while. 

The Easy Licence Plate Game 

The easy version of the licence plate travel game is to interpret the letters for each licence plate you see from your window. Depending on which state or province you travel through, this could be more or less challenging. For instance:

  • BN2 Y679 could stand for Barry Never Yells
  • 2848 EB could stand for Early Bird

The Licence Plate Travel Game: Expert Version

If you want to step it up a notch, you could incorporate numbers, too and interpret the full licence plate. The interpretation could go something like this:

  • C84 0UV could stand for Catherine Ate (8) Four Ugly Vermicelli  

Licence Plate Search

If you get bored with the first two versions of this road trip game, you can change it up and turn your licence plate game into a competition! The goal? To find the most licence plates from different states. To play this last version of the game, you’ll need a pen and paper to jot down your states!

#4 Most Poetic Road Trip Game—The Rhymes Travel Game

You’re a poet and you know it? This game is for you! Rhyme away as the road rolls by, playing this fun rhymes road trip game.

The Goal

Find the most words that rhyme.

The Rules

  • The first player comes up with a one-syllable word and says it out loud.
  • Then, the second player has three seconds to come up with a one-syllable word that rhymes with the first word. 
  • Watch out, you can’t repeat the same word twice!
  • And so on.

For example:

  • The first person says “sea”.
  • The second person says, “pee”.
  • The third person says “she”.
  • And so on.

If a person hesitates for more than four seconds, they are eliminated. The last person standing wins. If the game is too easy for you, you can also play with two-syllable, three-syllable and more words!

The Equipment

No equipment required.

Number of Players

Although it’s often more fun when you’re playing with four or more people, you can still play if you’re travelling as a duo!

#5 Best Verbal Games to Play—the Many Versions of the Alphabet Travel Game

There are several ways to play the alphabet game! If the road you are travelling is full of signs (cityscape) or is really stimulating visually, you might want to play the version where the goal is to find objects, words or buildings in your surroundings. If not, you’ll want to pick themes. 

The Goal

The goal of the alphabet game is to find words for every letter in the alphabet, from A to Z.

The Rules

Version A: Picking out stuff around you

  • Start with the letter A and work your way down to Z.
  • Every player calls out something they see along the way, that begins with that letter. For instance:
    • A, for Animal
    • B, for Bus
    • C, for City
    • And so on.
  • One word cannot be repeated twice.
  • The first player to call out a word that begins with Z wins the game!

Version B: Picking out a theme

This version of the Alphabet Travel Game works if you’re travelling with friends and some of you can see too well out of the window.

Decide on a theme with your travel buddies. To make it fun, think of unconventional themes, such as “partying”, “body parts” or “travel destinations”.

  • Now, for each letter of the alphabet, every player has to find a word that begins with that letter, working their way down to Z. With the theme “travel destinations”, this could go something like:
    • A for Arizona
    • B for Buffalo
    • C for California
    • And so on.
  • Words cannot be repeated and players who can’t come up with a word are disqualified. 
  • First one to make it to Z wins!

The Equipment

You don’t need anything to play the Alphabet Travel Game!

Number of Players

This game works starting with two people, but can be played in a larger group, too. The more, the merrier!

#6 Best Fortune Telling Game: The Superlatives Game

The superlatives game is really cool to play if you’re travelling with a group of old friends. What with your history and the diversity of profiles, you’re sure to laugh a lot!

The Goal

The goal is to find a person to fit every superlative category.

The Rules

  • Start by making a list of various superlatives, such as:
    • Most likely to invest in a Ponzi Scheme
    • Most likely to get food poisoning
    • And so on.
  • Then, for each item in the list, vote for which friend fits the bill most.

The Equipment

You’ll need a pen and paper to make a list of superlatives.

Number of Players

It’s most fun to play this game if you’re at least four people travelling together—and ideally 6 to 8!

#7 Best Game to Test your Limits: the “Would you Rather” Game

The Would you rather Game can be funny, super gross—or both! And if you really want to get the most out of this travel game, ask players to justify their choices. Interesting debates will take place—and you’ll surely have a good laugh.

The Goal

The goal is to stump other players by giving them an impossible choice.

The Rules

  • Each player takes a turn asking a “Would you rather” question.
  • Think of incredibly funny and try to make the choice so difficult that the other players won’t be able to decide. 
  • Read a few tough questions to inspire you.
  • Every other player has to answer the question.
  • If a player can’t answer, they are disqualified. 

The Equipment

You don’t need any specific equipment to play the game per se, but you can purchase Would you rather cards.

Number of Players

The more people play, the most fun you’ll have! At least two players needed.

#8 Best Game to Play Devil’s Advocate: The Fortunately/Unfortunately Trip Game

This travel game will encourage you to think outside the box and awaken your optimistic or pessimistic side. Quite simple to play, it can lead to some interesting dialogues! And, if you’re feeling a little frisky, you can launch the first “fortunately” in an absurd or daring direction.

The Goal

The Goal of the Fortunately/Unfortunately Game is to build a story from beginning to end, by alternating optimistic and pessimistic statements.

The Rules

  • The first player starts with making a “fortunately” statement.
  • The next player has to reply with an “unfortunately” statement.
  • And so on, until the story reaches a conclusion.

For example:

  • The first player says: “Fortunately, the bus was on time.”
  • The second player says: “Unfortunately, we took the wrong one.”
  • And so on, alternating with “fortunately” and “unfortunately”.

The Equipment

Nothing needed, except for your imagination!

Number of Players

This game can involve two or more people. If there are only two of you though, we recommend imposing the “fortunately” statements to the most pessimistic person!

#9 Best Word Game: the “Related Words” Travel Game

This word game encourages your brain to make links between things and words. If you play with a couple of friends, you’ll quickly notice that some are really good at looping back to their initial idea, while others get distracted easily. If you’re one of the latter, you can secretly practise playing the related words game on your own time to become better at finding links and looping back!

The Goal

The Goal of the Related Words Travel Game is to make the quickest link between words to loop back to your initial word.

The Rules

  • To launch the game, a starting word is chosen.
  • All participants then think of words that relate to this first word.
  • The player with the shortest list of words looping back to the initial word wins the game.
  • For instance:
    • The starting word could be: “bus”.
    • Player #1 could make the following list: “bus, travel, walk, hostel, restaurant, sleep, bus”.
    • Player #2 could do: “bus, bus driver, bus station, passenger, bus tickets, bus”
    • In this case, Player #2 would be the winner, since he only used 4 words (vs. 5 for Player #1) to loop back to the word “bus”.

The Equipment

You can play this game by using only your memory, but sometimes it’s easier to make a list and count the number of words using a pen and paper.

Number of Players

Although the game becomes more interesting when three or four people chip in, you can manage with only two players.

#10 Most Shocking Travel Game: the Never Have I Ever Game

The Goal

The goal of the Never Have I Ever game is to guess if the statements are true or false. And of course, to try and surprise your friends with the most shocking true statements!

The Rules

  • Each participant starts off with their 10 fingers up.
  • One by one, each player makes a statement that starts with “Never Have I Ever”. For instance, this could go something like: “Never Have I Ever eaten a frog” or “Never Have I Ever jumped from a plane”.
  • All the other players who have done this thing take one finger down. So obviously, the point is to come up with crazy or funny things your friends may have done—but you haven’t.
  • If you wish, you can ask the players who have put a finger down to tell their back story—you might hear some pretty interesting things!
  • The last person to have any fingers up wins the game.

The Equipment

You don’t need anything specific to play Never Have I Ever!

Number of Players

The game requires at least two people, but there is no maximum number of players. It’s more fun if there are at least five or six people playing, to get a good rhythm going.


Now that you know how to entertain yourself and your friends on your next road trip, visit Busbud and book your bus tickets!