No more ‘are we there yet?’

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Top Ten - Stu­art Martin

THE back-seat si­lence that comes with in-car DVD play­ers and hand­held games goes against the grain for many who take the fam­ily on a road trip. The elec­tronic si­lencers work well but Cars­guide likes the idea of ye olde-fash­ioned games and songs to help the kays roll by.

1. I Spy The long-time cham­pion road trip

game, ‘‘ I Spy With My Lit­tle Eye’’ and vari­a­tions have filled many hours of a fam­ily hol­i­day drive per­haps since Karl Benz took his kids for a ride.

2. Bee­tle Spot­ting It is one of the best-sell­ing ve­hi­cles of all time so there are plenty of Volk­swa­gen Bee­tles of all ages still on the road al­though those of lov­able Her­bie vin­tages are be­com­ing less com­mon.

3. 20 Ques­tions Sim­ply think of some­thing and as­sign it a cat­e­gory such as an­i­mal, plant or min­eral. Ev­ery­one else takes turns ask­ing yes/no ques­tions un­til some­one gets it right or 20 ques­tions have been asked.

4. Car Spot­ting My favourite as I’mtough to beat. Make and model of on­com­ing cars – it’s up to the car oc­cu­pants to stop pas­sen­gers with binoc­u­lars from cheat­ing. Wait un­til you’re on a coun­try road be­fore you start. 5. Quiet Game Ev­ery­one must keep quiet. The first per­son to speak or make a sound (sneeze, cough or some­thing less fra­grant) loses, which— un­til the kids wise up— works won­ders for giv­ing Mum and Dad a lit­tle peace.

6. Scav­enger Hunt The aim is to come up with a list of items to find on a road trip, prefer­ably things that won’t stink out the car. This is a worth­while one for trips with a lot of stops, with things like cheesy sou­venirs, road­side flow­ers, ho­tel shower caps and post­cards.

7. Ais for Ar­madillo The game runs the al­pha­bet with each player bring­ing a word for each of the 26 let­ters; the fol­low­ing per­son has to re­peat the pre­vi­ous let­ters and words then add an­other. Don’t be sur­prised if you don’t get as far as Z, un­less you’re trav­el­ling with a bus full of cross­word or Scrab­ble cham­pi­ons.

8. Road Trip Bingo This ver­sion of the re­tire­ment home favourite uses scenery (cows, churches and stop signs) on cards – when you see an ob­ject out the win­dow that was on your card, mark it.

9. Colour Car

Sim­i­lar to the car-spot­ting game. Oc­cu­pants pick a car colour and score based on how many they see. You could also opt for cars with bull­bars, car­a­vans, roof racks or spot­lights.

10. Signs and Sights Pick a sign and a sight, al­lo­cate a ges­ture or a code word for each one. The last per­son to make the ges­ture or call out the word loses points.

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