16 Travel Toys and Games Kids Love

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I can never have enough new ideas for games and toys that travel. Some activities work on trip after trip. Others get old quickly.

Here are 16 games, toys and crafts for a variety of ages. Some will last for vacations to come. Others will get you through your next flight. Sometimes that’s enough.

Use them to shake up your travel routine and let us know which ones you like best. 

16 Travel Games, Toys & Crafts For All Ages

Games on the Go

• Try these two variations on Go Fish:

Twisted Fish (age: 10+) from McNeil Designs adds “zinger” cards to the deck that help you get more matches or trip up the other players.

We took the zingers out and made the deck a little smaller to make the game simpler for 6YOs. Tiny Traveler and a friend got a big kick out of the silly fish cards when we tried it on a vacation.

When she got older we added the cards back in and at 11YO she still plays it!

In Wuzzits (age: 6+) from Blue Orange players have to create monsters by matching up head and body cards.

• Also from Blue Orange, Niya is a card-based strategy game set in Imperial Japan. We didn’t get to try it, but it looks interesting and very portable. (age: 8+)


Tegu’s blocks aren’t inexpensive, but the magnets inside these wooden pieces make them very travel friendly.

tegu blocks in a travel size pouch.

The 8-pieces with travel case ($22) is ideal for preschoolers and slightly larger sets can travel with school-age kids.

Ideal for visiting grandma. But thanks to the magnets you can bring them on a plane or to dinner.

Beach, Sand & Pool Play

• For kids who like to play in the sand these Kid O stack and nest cups are versatile, easy-to-pack castle-building tools. Toddler will be happy taking them apart and reassembling them (age 1+).

 The very clever Quut Cuppi is two scoops, one with a sieve and an open tip for dribbling water. Build, write in the sand or design tracks for the ball that’s also included. It’s surprisingly versatile and highly packable. (age: 4+)


• Crafty music lovers will love decorating these Alex Bling headphones and then listening to their favorite pop songs on them. (age: 8+)

• Once you’ve invested in portable electronics for your kids you want to protect them Try one of these two Pusheen cases, the larger cat for tablets or the smaller chopper plush case for phones and mp3 players. (age: 6+)

Travel Crafts

Glitter and travel don’t typically go together. But Melissa & Doug’s Mess-Free Glitter stickers can go anywhere to neatly entertain kids on planes and trains, in cars or restaurants.

The video shows how they work. (ages: 4+)

• Two takes on sticker play: Reusable Sticker Totes from Peaceable Kingdom are a classic go-to toy for travel. Gender-neutral packs include Zoo and grown-up “jobs” themes. (age: 3+). 

reusable stickers by Peaceable Kingdom

Tiny Traveler opened up the Melissa & Doug’ reusable Puffy Stickers Play Set and played with it for easily four hours. If only we’d been on a plane at the time! Choose from fairy, pirate, chipmunk house and dress-up themes (age: 4+).

• I remember making Cootie Catchers from scratch when I was a kid; their prognostic abilities keeping us engaged for hours.

The ready-to-fold forms and stickers in the Klutz Cootie Catcher Book will give kids something to put together and then entertain themselves with in a cramped backseat or airplane. (age: 7+)

• It’s hard to find craft kits that travel for older kids and tweens. So we look forward to this spring’s launch of Alex’s Friends Forever Bracelet kid (age: 8+), which has everything you need for 30 bracelets and doesn’t need scissors.

An alternative is Creativity for Kids’ Lots of Knots, a more versatile but also more challenging kit. (It includes scissors the TSA might or might not like.) (age: 8+)

Alex also has a knitting kits that just might get your kids to put down their electronics. It includes plastic knitting needles, yarn and ideas and instructions for several projects.. (The TSA says some knitting needles are OK in your carry-on.) (age 9+)

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