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Travel game keeps passengers engaged

Pennies can add up to on-the-road entertainment. King Features (King Features)
Pennies can add up to on-the-road entertainment. King Features (King Features)

If you are hitting the road during spring break, you might be looking for a new car game to keep everyone happy, occupied and amused. Tired of playing 20 questions, license-plate search and travel bingo?

Try one of my family favorites we call “penny-wise travel game.”

Before the trip, round up several small containers that snap closed or have tight-fitting lids, such as breath-mint tins, small cardboard matchboxes or travel-size jars. Just be sure the opening is larger than a penny.

Fill the containers with pennies, and snap or screw the lids shut. Then, on strips of paper that will fit around the containers, list some things the traveling players can do with the pennies.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

•Let everyone in the car guess how many pennies are in a particular container. When everyone has guessed, count the pennies to find out.

•Take turns and list how many separate items you can buy for that amount of money. For example, if there are 35 pennies in a mint tin, think of what can be purchased nowadays for 35 cents.

•Guess which date appears most frequently on the pennies in the container.

•List the dates on another piece of paper. Then think of events that took place for each, such as Super Bowl and World Series champions. Include your family events, too.

•Wrap the strips of game ideas around the containers and hold them in place with a rubber band or string. Once on the road, just as you feel the “When are we gonna get there?” blues begin, divert your travelers and hand them a container of pennies for their thoughts.

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