Going on holiday? Believe me, you’re going to find this selection of the best airplane games and car games way too useful! Much as we love our kids, we have to admit that travelling by plane we tend to fantasize about slapping an Unaccompanied Minor sticker on them and sending them off to be entertained by the staff while we lounge about in First Class.

Sadly the huge price tag is out of reach so instead we plan for days in advance to make sure the kids have plenty to do on the plane! Same goes for those unbearably long hours in the car with the kids kicking the back of your seat. Aside from playing endless eye-spy, you’re going to need to have some clever travel games and activities up your sleeve to survive and even (gasp) enjoy the journey.  The airplane games, car games, books and activities below have been tried and tested with two children under two, and then on many a trip with older children – the eldest being 7 going on 17.


Usborne Travel Activity Book
A write-in activity book with puzzles, doodles, airplane games, and over 200 stickers.[/column]

100 Things for Little Children to do on a Journey
A set of sturdy wipe-clean set of activity cards, games like tic-tac-toe (noughts and crosses), puzzles, spot-the-difference and more airplane games for young children.

Threading / Lacing Board
Young children looooove lacing, and this is guaranteed to keep those little fingers busy. There are animal shaped lacing cards available too, but we like this plain old lacing board as coming up with your own designs kills more time. Older children (say 7 or 8) love trying to make everyone guess which TV or book character they’ve laced.

You Choose book by Nick-Sharratt and Pippa Goodhart
We love this book as the prompts and detailed illustrations really spark the children’s imaginations. It’s really simple, with questions like “Which alien would you be?” and the kids take turns talking about all sorts of mad stuff for ages.

Paint My Wings

Such a simple iPad game but our children never seem to tire of it. You child can choose which lines of symmetry they want their butterfly to have and then decorate the butterfly wings by ‘dipping’ their finger in little pots of colour. Brilliant.

Johnny Morris Audio

If your children haven’t yet heard the wonderful, mellow sound of Johnny Morris’ voice please go out and buy some audio CDs immediately. Your lives will be the richer for it. The “bedtime stories” series is him going to say goodnight to all of the zoo animals one by one and is absolutely hilarious – you will happily listen to it a million times over.

Magnetic board games

This set of travel-sized board games (Ludo, Chess, Draughts, Snakes and Ladders) is a perfect airplane game for children about 4 years old and up – and being magnetic the teeny tiny pieces are not as likely to end up under the seat or in the next row.

Sticker Dressing – Greek Myths

Our favourite from the Sticker Dressing series, and just perfect for a European vacation, especially if you’re going to be visiting the ruins in Sicily, Salerno, Turkey, or of course Greece.

Rory’s Story Cubes

A deceptively simple but additive storytelling game – the 9 six-sided dice act as story prompts, and you just go wherever your imagination takes you. Our 6 and 7 year old love it, as do the adults!

Me Books

A superb iPad app with interactive books from the BAFTA award winning team behind Land of Me. You can build up a digital bookshelf of classic fairytales, non-fiction books about volcanoes and dinosaurs, or even comic books. A must have.


Babyzen Travel Stroller

If you need a lightweight buggy for travelling – whether it’s for travelling on a plane, underground or car – this is the best option we’ve come across. It’s not perfect, but it’s pretty darn close.

Best family holiday websites

Our handpicked selection of the best family holiday websites for babymoons, luxury holidays with young children in tow, adventure travel with kids, low cost holidays, child friendly safari vacations and more.

Family Travel Planner

We’ve got some great recommendations for family holiday destinations, as well as advice for airplane travel with a baby. Check it out and bookmark it!

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