We have taken our share of drives over the years, and even before we had our daughter, we would play games to make the drive more interesting. Now that she is here, this is an even more important tactic, as aside from one cross-country move, we have tried not to succumb to the lure of giving her a screen for mind numbing “entertainment.”
I Spy is an old favorite.
The alphabet game: everyone keeps their own score and tries to be the first to call out a word on a sign or vehicle that starts with a particular letter. Once a word has been used it is off limits for the other players, first one to Z (or farthest along) wins. Especially challenging of course for Q and the end of the alphabet - I got crushed when I was not the first to spot an Xpress truck and couldn’t catch up until a Rail Xing sign right at the trip’s end.
License plate spotting - a cooperative effort, see how many states or countries one can spot, as well as making words out of the plate listings. In Germany, we had a running list to see if we could find all of the prefixes, as they are based on location (B for Berlin, WI for Wiesbaden, MTK for Main Taunus Kreis, etc.) Best license plate we ever spotted was in our own neighborhood, a boastful Stuttgart car with S EX 6666 (makes more sense if you pronounce 6 in German, “sechs”).
The hay game, a rather pointless game of our own invention. Try to use subtlety to get someone to look at a hay bale by pointing and commenting something like, “Hey, check that out.” It got a little too intense once when we introduced my dad to it - not one for subtlety, he pounded on the dashboard and cried, “Hey, hey, hey!” - I almost swerved off the highway!