The “Old Fashioned Family Road Trip” by Missy The Homeschooling Mom.




The “Old Fashioned Family Road Trip” has ingrained itself into our collective culture as the epitome of summer fun.  The ideal family road trip promises us the chance to bond, grow closer together, make lasting memories, and solve all our problems.  If you’re looking for the old fashioned, unplugged, gadget-free family road trip this summer, this list should help you get started.


{Family Games}

When I was growing up, my family took a lot of road trips together.  One set of grandparents lived three-days’ drive away and the other set lived a day’s drive away, so we did a lot of traveling to see them.  We also took “learning” trips to zoos or museums, staying in hotels with pools and exploring during the day.  I have great memories of our family road trips.

As I’ve been doing this road trip series, members of my family have been reminding me of the games and activities that we used to play.  I thought I’d share the games with you below:

Family Car


In the days before built-in DVD players, families entertained themselves by the movies in their heads.  We played a game called “Name that Movie,” where one member of the family would name a quote from a movie and everyone else would guess the title.  This was more challenging when we were older and had developed diversified movie collections.  It would be very hard now that we’re all adults, but was really fun when we were kids.

mystery snack

When it was snack time on the road, my mom would say, “It’s time for a mystery snack.”  We would then play 20 questions to guess the snack.  The questions always had to have a yes or no answer.  So, we might ask, “Is it salty?”  Yes or No.  “Is it chips?”  Yes or No.  “Have we had them before?”  Yes or no.  And so the game would go until we knew what it was.  It was a great time waster, but I remember being bored and frustrated sometimes if the snack was too hard to guess.  Set a time limit or a question limit to it (like actually stick to the 20 question limit) so that the kids don’t become discouraged.

Some of the most memorable snacks were pigs feet (yuck!), bugle chips (so fun!), and chip ahoy cookies (which were new to us then).


When it got too dark to color or read, we would play the “Marathon Movie Quotes Contest.”  One person in the family would take turns naming a movie and everyone in the car would take turns naming quotes from the movie until we couldn’t think of any more.  We had the rule that you couldn’t do a scene- they had to be unrelated quotes.  This game was easy when we were younger and watched movies at the same time.  It was much harder when we got older and had our own movie collections.  This game could go on for hours!

name that tune

When we got tired of playing movie games, we would play “Name that Tune.”  One person would hum a few lines of a song and everyone else would try to guess the TV show theme song or common song.  We’re not a very musical family, so this game didn’t last as long as some of our others.



{Nostalgia Toys}

If an old fashioned family road trip reminds you of the toys you played with in the car, then you’ll enjoy this list.

This blog post is a Amazon Affiliate.

Ring Toss Game

License Plate Game

Woolly Willy

Candy Phones



Travel Spirograph


Magnetic Game




Travel Bingo


Where’s Waldo Books


Kids’ Coloring Books


Handheld Ball Mazes





To see what other wonderful ideas Missy has visit her blog In Our Pond

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