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17 Simple Ways To Entertain Yourself On A Long Car Ride (Fun Ideas!)

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Dodge boredom with these 17 tried and tested ways to entertain yourself on a long car ride.

During my massive road trip around Europe, I spent hours keeping myself busy whilst we clocked up some serious mileage. That’s why it’s important to have a big list of fun things to do on a long car ride by yourself.

From unique ideas to the best apps, this guide has got you covered. Read on for a long list of things to do on a long car ride.

Let me know in the comments if you have any tried and tested ways to stay entertained on a road trip. Car ride fun can come in many forms, and this article details them all!

Let’s jump into my favorite ways to pass the time on a long car ride.

entertain yourself on a long car ride infographic

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1. Listen To A Podcast

podcast entertainment in the car

My favorite way to burn some time is to listen to a podcast.

Increasingly podcasts are also posted on YouTube.

As a premium subscriber, I like to download them to watch and entertain myself on a long car ride.

Here is a list of the Best Podcasts for Road Trips.

Additionally, another site called PodRanker is excellent for finding new shows to listen to.

Podcast Notes

Should you forget your headphones I would recommend checking out the Podcast Notes website.

I was introduced to it a while back and thoroughly enjoy reading the notes of recent podcasts that are posted on there.

2. Listen To An Audio Book

audio book entertainment on a long car ride

If it’s a really epic car journey then an audiobook is a great way to pass several hours.

Spotify has been expanding its catalog of audiobooks recently and is also worth checking out. We’ve also collated a list of our favorite audiobooks for road trips.

You can get a Free Trial on Audible Plus which is a great platform that allows you to download books to listen to.

It’s possible to sign up with your Amazon account for a free 30-day trial!

3. Listen to Stand Up Comedy

listen to stand up comedy on a long car journey

You can now listen to stand-up comedy on Spotify.

It’s great to have a change from podcasts and music and exchange the dull silence for a bit of laughter.

Lighten the mood with this playlist of comedy clips to keep you busy.

If all else fails become the comedian yourself with these Road Trip Jokes.

4. Ask Eachother Some Road Trip Questions

people conversing on a long car ride

A great way to pass some time in the car is to spark the conversation with our awesome list of Road Trip Questions!

Get to know your companions with these awesome conversation starters about lots of different topics.

It will provide entertainment for hours!

5. Play Road Trip Games With Other Passengers

entertain yourself in a car

If you are lucky enough not to be in the car alone then you may want to engage in some road trip games to keep you busy.

We’ve written several articles on road trip games so click through and stay entertained for the entire car journey!

20 Questions – My Favourite Game

This simple but classic deduction game involves a player being asked 21 questions whilst the others try to guess the person, place, or thing they are thinking of!

How to Play

  1. Think of a person, place or thing
  2. Everyone else gets to ask up to 21 questions which have a yes or no answer
  3. Everyone has to try and guess who or what you are thinking of.
  4. I think this works best by only thinking of a person, rather than a place or thing!

6. Find A New Playlist

listen to music for entertainment on a long car ride

I recently switched from Spotify to YouTube Music and I’m enjoying it a lot. That being said, I still prefer Spotify for making playlists.

The recommended playlists are great and I like to download a few new ones before a long drive to keep me entertained. Check out our list of Road Trip Playlists if you feel like mixing up the tunes for some car ride fun!

7. Learn a Language

learn a language for entertainment on a long car ride

You can practice a new language using an app such as Duolingo or perhaps listen to an audio course.

You could also consider watching a series on Netflix in the foreign language in subtitles.

I like to watch Money Heist in Spanish.

This is one of the top tips listed in our solo road trip article.

8. Read a Book or Blog

read a book for entertainment on a long car journey

If you know you have a long drive ahead then try to remember to take a few good books for the journey.

A Kindle is a great travel item to stay busy on a road trip as you can download many books onto one, portable device.

Alternatively, Pinterest and Medium are both great apps to find new articles and posts to read across the internet, based on your interests.

Finally, nothing beats Reddit or a good Google search for a random topic and see what pops up!

9. Sleep

sleep on a long car ride

If it’s warm in the car and you are feeling sleepy then go ahead and take a power nap.

Research has shown that naps reboot the brain and have numerous health benefits.

If you only intend to take a nap then keep it to 10-20 minutes to avoid entering a deeper stage of sleep.

If you have time then why not sleep for longer!

10. Play A Game On Your Phone

mobile games entertainment long car ride

I’ve written an entire in-depth article on the best mobile games to play to entertain yourself in the car.

It includes solo games and others you can play with fellow passengers.

11. Watch Netflix

netflix entertainment long car ride

I love the download feature on Netflix.

If I know I have a long journey ahead of me either in the car or public transport I’ll download something to watch.

The subtitles function is great if you don’t have headphones.

You can get a free trial of Netflix and start watching today.

12. Eat Healthy Snacks

healthy snacks entertainment long car journey

When you stop at a service station try to resist the temptation to get sugary and salty snacks.

Buy some fruit or nuts to keep you busy on the long journey.

When boredom sets in a few tasty snacks can be one of the best ways to entertain yourself on a long car ride.

13. Edit Photos

edit photos on a long car ride

A great way to entertain yourself on a long car ride is to go through your smartphone and organize all your photos.

I like to delete photos I don’t want and re-organize the ones I have into albums.

You can also edit them with an app like Snapseed or upload some recent holiday snaps to Instagram.

14. Organise Emails

organise emails on a big car journey

A long drive can be a great time to get some tedious tasks done.

Another way to entertain yourself on a long car ride is to sort through all your emails.

I like to unsubscribe to any unwanted mailing lists and delete all of the mail I’ve dealt with.

It feels great to have everything nice and organized when you arrive!

15. Plan a workout

I find that sitting still for a long period of time gets me motivated to do a workout.

I like to plan my next workout whilst I am on a long car ride to keep myself busy.

It’s possible to either do it on notes or a workout app.

16. Meditate

This isn’t something I personally do seeing as you aren’t going anywhere you might as well try to relax.

I would recommend the 10% happier app if you are looking to give meditation a try whilst on the road.

Not to be used if you are the driver as it involves shutting your eyes!

17. Play The License Plate Game

The license plate game is an excellent way to pass the time on a long car ride. You can play the game together or against each other. The game involves trying to spot license plates from as many different states as possible.

In our guide linked above, we have a printable PDF which you can use as long as a list of all the different states!

Quick List of Ways to Entertain Yourself on a Long Car Ride

Here is a quick list of how to entertain yourself in the car.

  1. Listen to a podcast (Or read podcast notes)
  2. Eat healthy snacks
  3. Sleep (Or take a power nap)
  4. Play one of many great mobile games on your phone
  5. Read a book or a blog (Try Pinterest or Medium)
  6. Listen to an audiobook
  7. Learn a language (Duolingo or watch a foreign series on Netflix)
  8. Find a new music playlist
  9. Watch Netflix
  10. Organize emails
  11. Organize/Edit photos on Snapseed
  12. Play road trip games with friends
  13. Listen to stand up comedy on Spotify
  14. Plan a workout
  15. Meditate (I recommend 10% happier app)
  16. Play the license plate game

Do you have any other ways to keep busy on a long journey?

Let me know in the comments below and I’ll add your ideas to the article!

Disclosure: Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links. This means I earn a commission if you make a qualifying purchase, but this is at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting The Road Trip Expert.

Image of Iain The Founder Of The Road Trip Expert

Iain Salter

Founder & Editor of The Road Trip Expert

Iain founded The Road Trip Expert in 2019 and continues to manage the website to this day. The inspiration to start the blog came during an extensive road trip around Europe with two friends that spanned several months and involved over 25,000km of driving. He first developed a passion for backpacking in 2014 and has had the pleasure of exploring over 60 countries.



Friday 2nd of April 2021

omg thank you so much! i have a 7 hour car ride tomorrow and these ideas will hopefully make it seem shorter


Sunday 29th of November 2020

That helped so much, my 11 hour car ride was so much better! Thx