41 Best Travel Games for Adults

by 21 Jan, 2019

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We always make sure we carry a couple of our best travel games with us no matter what trip we’re on. Because travel isn’t all about beautiful beaches and exciting adventure.

Sometimes we need a bit of downtime and relaxation. Other times we want to get the party started. And believe it or not there are plenty of situations where we even get pretty bored (think travel delays).

We’ve always loved playing games. So for us they’re the perfect way to pass away a few hours in an airport, entertain ourselves after a long day of exploring and even make new friends.

If you’re wondering which ones should make it into your backpack, we’ve put together a list of the best travel games for adults.

How We Chose the Best Travel Games

The main considerations we have for choosing a game to take on the road are the game’s size, weight and portability. All of these mini travel games tick those boxes.

But most of all, to be considered one of the best travel games, they have to be awesome fun to play!

This list is broken down into helpful categories depending on what you’re looking for. It covers the best travel board games, the best travel card games, the best dice games, and the best car games for adults.

Some are self contained mini travel games. Others require a standard deck of cards. But many just need some willing players with a bit of imagination who are up for a laugh.

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Our Top 5 Best Travel Games

1. Dobble

After being taught Dobble by our young nephew, we absolutely fell in love with it!

Okay, so this one is technically a kids card game. But once you play it you’ll understand why we’re including it at number one in our best travel games for adults.


Basic premise

Everyone has played snap as a child and Dobble takes its basic premise and elevates it to a.whole.nother.level. It’s like “snap” on steroids.

There are five different travel card games within Dobble, all of them as simple as it gets. Every card has 8 pictures on it, each with one symbol in common with every other card.

Players all go at the same time to try and spot the matching symbols and either accumulate or pass cards on to opponents depending on which game you’re playing.

You can have up to 8 players involved at a time, but it’s also one of the best travel games for 2 adults. Dobble is a good one to break down language barriers as well because it’s so simple to get.

What makes it awesome

Dobble gets pretty raucous. Shouting, snatching and even hand slapping are all unavoidable as you get swept up in the excitement. Undoubtedly one of the best mini travel games available.

Players: 2-8

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: 10 minutes

Size & Weight: 2.1 x 2 x 1.2 inches, 7.4 ounces

Rules: Read here

Dobble

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2. Monopoly Deal

The traditional Monopoly isn’t really a practical game to carry with you when you travel. And let’s be honest, no one actually enjoys it do they.

Do they?!

Come on, strip away the nostalgia and you’re left with a pretty ridiculous, never ending snorefest that could be renamed Monotony (I’m prepared for the backlash).

But the clever guys at Hasbro have reimagined one of the most iconic board games ever made as a wicked card game.

Basic premise:

It retains the fun bits of traditional Monopoly so you still play as a real estate tycoon trying to collect sets of properties.

You still have to come up with a kickass strategy, treading the line between boosting your bank balance and building your empire. And you can still go from kingpin to down and out in one swift turn of fate.

But that’s where the similarities end.

Collect property cards to complete sets and money cards to build your fortune while swapping and stealing your way to glory.

What makes it awesome

Monopoly Deal is one of the best travel card games out there. It’s fast paced, exciting and we’ve met people of various nationalities who love playing it all over the world.

Players: 2-5

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 15 minutes

Size & Weight: 0.8 x 3.6 x 5.6 inches, 4 ounces

Rules: Read here

Monopoly Deal

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3. Skull

Alternatively known as Skull and Roses, it’s like a picture version of poker played with beautifully designed components. After one game you’ll be hooked, we guarantee it.

Basic premise:

Each player has three circular cards with a rose on and one with a skull as well as an individual double sided game board.

Players take it in turns to place a card of their choice on the game card face down, this continues until one player decides to make a challenge.

They do that by making a guess at how many roses they can flip before hitting a skull. If you get it correct then you turn your game board over and you have to turn your game board twice to win.

What makes it awesome

You have to kid and calculate your way to victory in this straightforward game of bluff. It involves a mixture of skill, memory and luck.

This is one of the best travel games adults everywhere will enjoy playing on their adventures.

Players: 3-6

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 2.1 x 5.2 x 5.2 inches, 1.01 pounds

Rules: Read here

Skull

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4. Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza

This simple game is bound to get your tongue in a twist and the party started. Anyone can play, but it hurts to win.

Basic premise

Cards are distributed evenly among all of the players, face down without anyone looking at them. There are 5 different cards, taco, cat, goat, cheese, and pizza – hence the game´s name.

The first player takes the first card from the top of their deck, turns it over while saying “taco”. The next player follows suit but says “cat”, the third player does the same but says “goat” and so on.

Play continues like this until the card laid matches what the person playing it says. At which point everyone tries to avoid being the last person to slap their hand down on it.

If you´re too slow your hand will end up on top of the pile of everyone else´s hands. This means you must take all of the cards underneath and put them into your deck.

But there’s a twist – the deck contains three special cards. If you pull a gorilla, you must beat your chest before slapping the pile. If you draw a groundhog card you need to tap the tabletop with both hands before slapping the pile. And if you get a narwhal you need to make a horn above your head with your hands before slapping the pile.

Any mess ups or mistakes result in the player taking the pile, so no flinching or pretending or even pausing. The winner is the first person to get rid of all their cards and then win another round with no cards in their deck.

What makes it awesome

If the name itself doesn´t make you smile then you´re dead inside. This is the simplest of games but will keep you entertained for hours. Or until your knuckles are raw from them being repeatedly slapped. This could get rowdy.

Players: 3-8

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: 10 minutes

Size & Weight: 3.5 x 2.5 x 1 inches, 3.52 ounces

Rules: n/a

Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza

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5. Bananagrams

Calling all wordsmiths – if you’re a fan of Scrabble or any similar word games then you’ll enjoy Bananagrams. It also comes in a cute banana shaped carry pouch perfect for chucking in your luggage. One of the most convenient mini travel games.

Basic premise

144 tiles with different letters (called the bunch) on are placed face down on the playing surface. Each player selects the same number of tiles, the exact number varies depending on how many player there are. They are placed face down in front of the respective players. There are still some remaining in the bunch.

Once everyone has their tiles, anyone can shout “split” and the game begins. Players must then turn all their tiles face up. The aim is to get rid of all your tiles by creating words, but they must all interlink like a crossword. There are no turns, each player works as quickly as possible on their own grid.

If a player uses up all their letters, they take a new letter from the bunch and shout “peel”. This means that everyone else playing must also take a tile.

If a player wants to swap a bad tile then they can return it to the bunch by shouting “dump”. However, in exchange they have to pick up 3 tiles.

Players can’t win until there are less tiles in the bunch than players. Once this happens, the first player to use up all their tiles and shout “bananagrams” wins. That’s providing all their words are legit. If there are bad spellings then they’re crowned the “rotten banana” instead.

What makes it awesome

This game is easy to learn, quick to play, and highly addictive. You don’t need to know long words, you just have to be able to string words together. It’s fun in small or large groups.

Players: 2+

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 5 minutes

Size & Weight: 9 x 3 x 3 inches, 4.8 ounces

Rules: Read here

Bananagrams

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Top Tip – Want to make your travel board games even more portable? Remove the pieces from their box and put them in a smaller container like this snaplock box. Then separate different components using mini ziplocks to keep everything neat and tidy.

Best Travel Board Games

Pass the Pigs

This is a classic version of the old dice game “pigs” that uses actual miniature model pigs instead of dice. It all packs down into a small plastic case making it one of the best games for travel.

Basic premise

Players take it in turns to throw the pigs like dice. They then gain or lose points depending on how they land. Positions include pig-themed names like “Pig Out”, “Trotter”, and “Snouter”. Each combination means a different thing and can see players making big gains or huge losses.

A turn lasts until a player decides to stop and cash in. That’s unless they completely wipe out their current or total score before doing so. If they stop in time to accumulate a score on their turn then it’s added to their total score. The game then progresses to the next player and the first player to reach 100 points wins.

What makes it awesome

The element of luck keeps it tense as players have to decide when to stick or twist. Yet there’s still enough strategy and skill involved to make a difference. Big highs and massive lows can see you going from hero to zero and back again in quick succession.

Players: 2-4

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 1.8 x 4 x 8.5 inches, 0.32 ounces

Rules: Read here

Pass the Pigs

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Codenames

Quickly becoming a classic, Codenames is an awesome game of teamwork and strategy. You need to get on the same wavelength as your teammate(s) to have any chance of cracking the puzzle. Prepare for laughs, frustration, and jubilation in equal measures.

Basic premise

The idea of codenames is to be the first team to get in contact with all of their secret agents. Players separate into two teams before each selecting a spymaster. The rival spymasters sit on the same side of the table, opposite their respective accomplices/field operatives. 25 codenames are then randomly selected from the deck and laid out in a 5×5 grid.

A “key” card is then chosen which reveals to the spymasters which of the agents in the grid belong to each side. In among the agents are also a number of innocent bystanders. Plus there’s an assassin who you want to avoid at all costs.

Spymasters work to enable their team to identify their own secret agents. They do this by providing them with one word clues and a number. The clues can link numerous agent’s codenames, while the number tells the team how many are linked.

For example, if the spymaster says “bottle, 3”, the team knows there are 3 agents with names in some way related to the word bottle. Operatives then make guesses as to which secret agents the spymaster is trying to direct them to.

Selecting the wrong one can have bad consequences, and if you hit the assassin that’s game over. The wins team to identify all of their secret agents first.

What makes it awesome

While it may sound complicated, when you’re playing it’s really simple and easy to follow. At heart it’s a word association game and the spy aspect just adds to the fun. Seeing the random ways that players’ minds connect words can be hilarious meaning the game is fun even when you’re not doing well.

Players: 2-8 (competitive 4-8)

Expect: tense strategy

Game Time: 15 minutes

Size & Weight: 2.8 x 6.3 x 9 inches, 1.25 pounds

Rules: Read here

Codenames

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Secret Hitler

Best with larger groups (the closer to 10 the funnier), Secret Hitler is a game of deceit, infiltration and conspiracy. Get your poker face on because you’re going to need to lie through your teeth to win.

Basic premise

Players are secretly divided into two teams of fascists and liberals, while one player gets cast as Hitler himself. Liberals have the advantage of a majority, however, they don’t know anyone else’s allegiances. The fascists on the other hand know who the other fascists are as well as who Hitler is. Hitler meanwhile begins without knowing who his allies or enemies are.

Everyone is trying to advance their agenda and gain power whether fascist or liberal. The way to do this is by winning elections and passing legislation.

To do this you have to gain allies and use them to win votes. However, because everyone is trying to gain power it can be hard to figure out who is who. Also everyone is going to lie to make other players believe they’re a liberal.

The game is won by the Liberals if they enact five liberal policies or manage to kill Hitler. The fascists win by enacting six fascist policies, or if Hitler gets elected Chancellor after three fascist policies have been enacted.

What makes it awesome

Secret Hitler is all about skullduggery and convincing people that you’re telling the truth. Never has lying to your friends and family been so much fun, and it will make you see them in a new light. It quickly gets pretty loud and boisterous so be prepared for a lively game.

Players: 5-10

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: 45 minutes

Size & Weight: 14.9 x 5.8 x 2 inches, 1.9 pounds

Rules: Read here

Secret Hitler

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Connect 4 Grab and Go

Connect 4 Grab and Go is exactly the same as the classic Connect 4 game, just smaller. This means it’s the perfect size to take on your travels. One of the best travel games for couples of pairs of travellers.

Basic premise

Each player starts with 21 checkers, one player takes red, the other yellow. You then take it in turns to place a checker into the playing grid.

The aim is to get four of your checkers lined up in a row. This can be diagonally, vertically, or horizontally.

But while you’re trying to connect your four checkers, so is your opponent. They’re also going to be blocking your attempts at the same time.

What makes it awesome

It’s simple to learn and quick to play but can also be played with some strategy. It does require a bit of concentration but is a great game to relax and unwind with that anyone can play. It was also (falsely) rumoured to have been invented by David Bowie! As if his legacy isn’t amazing enough.

Players: 2

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 10 minutes

Size & Weight: 1.9 x 6.3 x 9.2 inches, 7.2 ounces

Rules: Read here

Connect 4 Grab and Go

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Catan

Catan is nothing short of a modern day classic board game. It’s loved by everyone from families to Silicon Valley execs and for this reason makes one of the best travel games. Wherever in the world you crack the Catan box out, you’re likely to find a fellow fan.

Basic premise

Each player is a settler looking to establish their own outposts from scratch on the mythical island of Catan. The island is represented by the game board which is made up of 19 individual hexagons. These can be placed in virtually infinite combinations meaning you could play with a new board each time. Each hexagon has a corresponding number places on it.

Players take turns to roll two di on their turn, and the number rolled allows the corresponding hexagon to produce resources. These can be either brick, wool, ore, grain, or lumber.

Collecting these resources in certain combinations allows players to build up their settlements. You can also trade with other players if they have something you need. And watch out for the robber who stops production on the hexagon he’s on.

The aim of Catan is to get 10 victory points and you collect these mainly by building settlements or cities. There are also bonus points awarded for various other achievements like longest road or biggest army.

What makes it awesome

Catan is a game of strategy, cooperation, and skill, but you still need the roll of the dice to go your way. It’s also the original “gamers game” and helped kick off the whole board game phenomenon we have today.

Players: 3-4

Expect: tense strategy

Game Time: 60 minutes

Size & Weight: 11.6 x 9.5 x 3 inches, 2 pounds

Rules: Read here

Catan

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Sequence

Combine the best elements of poker, bingo, add a board and throw in a large dose of strategy. The result is Sequence, a classic game that’s a whole lotta fun. While there is a travel version, we’d recommend the standard version instead. Though it’s far smaller, the travel edition is a limited abridged version that’s nowhere near as good.

Basic premise

Players get dealt a set number of cards each, this changes depending on how many people are playing. The board has an assortment of cards printed on it. As the name suggests, the aim of the game is to create a sequence of 5 connected cards.

You do this by selecting a card from your hand on your turn and placing a marker over the corresponding card on the game board. If you get 5 connected markers then you win the game.

What makes it awesome

There’s a lot of strategy involved because you can’t simply concentrate on your own hand. You need to pay attention to your opponents and try to figure out where they are going in order to stop them. It’s simple to pick up and exciting to play.

Players: 2-12

Expect: tense strategy

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 10 x 8 x 2 inches, 1.79 pounds

Rules: Read here

Sequence

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Qwirkle Travel

Described as a cross between dominoes and scrabble, Qwirkle is a super simple game of pure strategy. Anyone can play, but not everyone can play well.

Basic premise

The game of Qwirkle consists of 108 individual tiles. Each has one of 6 different shapes printed on it in one of 6 different colours. To start each player randomly chooses 6 tiles from the tile bag.

Players must then take it in turns to lay connecting tiles in rows and columns. In order to do so you must make runs of either the same shape or the same colour with the tiles in your hands. If it´s a run of shapes, only one of each colour can appear in each row. If it´s a run of colours, only one of each shape can appear in each row.

You can lay as many tiles as you´re able to on your go, so long as they´re all connected in a straight line. Alternatively you can use your go to swap your tiles with new ones from the bag. At the end of each turn you take enough tiles to make your hand back up to 6.

Scores are awarded after each turn depending on how many tiles have been laid and how many columns they fall into. Bonus points are given for completing full lines of 6 tiles. The game ends when one player has used all their tiles and there aren´t any more in the bag to draw.

What makes it awesome

This game is unbelievably easy to understand and get going. However, as soon as you begin, you start to realise there´s some deceptively deep strategy that can be employed. The satisfaction from building big scores can be addictive

Players: 2-4

Expect: tense strategy

Game Time: 45 minutes

Size & Weight: 10.5 x 10.5 x 2.7 inches, 2.45 pounds

Rules: Read here

Qwirkle

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Splendor

Be transported to the time of the European Renaissance as you become a merchant aiming to amass a huge fortune.

Basic premise

In Splendor players compete to build the biggest and most prestigious jewellery business in Europe. To do this you need to collect raw gems which you can then use to fund the building of mines.

But you then need to create ways to transport the gems, pay jewellers to cut and polish them, and also buy shops where you can sell them. Develop your cards, collect the gem chips, and watch your wealth soar. With wealth you can then attract nobles who provide you with the prestige – and points – to win the game.

What makes it awesome

This game is easy to understand and yet the more you play the more you start to discover the intricacies. While it’s very strategic the game play is still extremely quick with only 4 basic options for each player per turn.

Players: 2-4

Expect: tense strategy

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 8.5 x 2.4 x 10.8 inches, 2.41 pounds

Rules: Read here

Splendor

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Best Card Games for Travel

Top Trumps Wonders of the World

Top Trumps is ancient, simple, and yet resoundingly good fun. There are endless versions of it from Star Wars to Harry Potter. But this Wonders of the World one is on topic when it comes to the best travel games.

Basic premise

All the cards in the pack are dealt out to the players face down. Players then pick up their cards, holding them so they can only see the top card. The first player picks a category from their card and reads it out along with the value next to it. All the other players take turns to read out the same value on their card.

The player with the highest value wins, gets to take all of the cards that were read out and places them at the bottom of their pile. Play carries on until one player has all the cards.

What makes it awesome

This version of the classic game Top Trumps is conveniently travel themed. Not only will you have great fun out trumping everyone, you’ll also learn a few facts that might help you win a pub quiz one day.

Players: 2+

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 2 minutes

Size & Weight: 3.5 x 0.8 x 5.5 inches, 4 ounces

Rules: Read here

Top Trumps

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Hanabi

Ever wanted to design your own ginormous fireworks show? No? Me either. Regardless, this game will probably change your mind.

Basic premise

Hanabi is a cooperative game, which if you’re new to board games could be something novel for you. It means you work with the other players instead of competing against them to achieve a common objective. This objective is to rescue a mahoosive fireworks display that’s about to go terribly wrong.

Each player is dealt 4 or 5 cards depending on how many people are taking part. The cards come in 5 colors with a number from 1-5 on them. Players need to order them correctly in their colors from 1-5.

While this sounds simple, there’s an added complication. Players can’t look at their own cards! Instead they must display them in their hand so only the other players can see them.

What makes it awesome

Hanabi is unique and imaginative and more than likely like nothing you’ve ever played before. Plus the fact that it’s a cooperative game means there are no losers or winners as such. So it’s perfect for those who get a little too competitive to play normal games with new friends.

Players: 2-5

Expect: cooperative challenge

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 7 x 4.2 x 2 inches, 5.4 ounces

Rules: Read here

Hanabi

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Exploding Kittens

Players try to avoid being an exploding kitten in this wonderfully bizarre quickfire card game. At the same time you can affect the game depending on what cards you play, putting your fellow gamers in trouble.

Basic premise

Each player starts the game with 4 action cards and a diffuse card. The remainder of the deck is placed face down in the middle of the table and players take turns to draw cards from it.

If someone draws an exploding kitten, they’re out of the game. Unless they’re holding a diffuse card which allows them to diffuse the bomb and carry on. They can also put the exploding kitten card back into the deck anywhere they want.

Action cards are played before players draw from the deck and allow them to do various different things. These range from stealing cards from other players to getting a sneak peek at the top 3 cards in the deck.

What makes it awesome

This game is unbelievably easy to pick up. You explode, you lose, you manage to be the last person unexploded you win. The action cards are self explanatory and the quick gameplay keeps things moving quickly. Difficult not to fall in love with the cool illustrations and whacky cards with names like “hairy potato cat”.

Players: 2-5

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 15 minutes

Size & Weight: 11.2 x 16.2 x 3.8 inches, 6.4 ounces

Rules: Read here

Exploding Kittens

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What do You Meme?

Memes are a normal part of everyday life now and this game makes players into meme generators. Even if you’re not funny IRL, you’ll feel like a comedian playing What do You Meme.

Basic premise

Each player gets dealt 10 meme cards which have humorous captions printed on them. The pile of photographs gets placed in the middle. Each round the picker gets to draw a photo card and place it in the holder. It’s then down to the other players to choose from their captions which one they think matches it to make the best meme.

Once payers have chosen all the cards are put in a pile and read out by the picker. They then get to choose the winner of the round for the funniest meme created. The winner gets to keep the photo card, play continues until one player has a pre decided number of photo cards.

What makes it awesome

This game is strictly X-rated and just the written captions themselves are hilarious. But when paired with the right photo they will have every player in stitches. This game is a laugh a minute so your cheeks are guaranteed to ache by the end.

Players: 3-20

Expect: adult laughs

Game Time: 30-90 minutes

Size & Weight: 6.5 x 4.5 x 3 inches, 1.85 pounds

Rules: Read here

What Do You Meme?

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Unstable Unicorns

Love unicorns? Love strategy? This is the game for you. Funded by a huge $1.8 million kickstarter campaign, Unstable Unicorns has got a cult following of enthusiasts.

Basic premise

Your single aim is to build up a complete army of unicorns in order to win. But to do this you can’t play nice. You’ll need to betray your fellow players, destroy their armies and crush their dreams.

Players start with a single baby unicorn and 5 action cards. Each turn consists of four set phases where you lay cards to build your stable of unicorns, stop other people from playing, upgrade your stable, downgrade other people’s, and create general mayhem.

The winner gets the brilliant title of “Righteous Ruler of All Things Magical” and ultimate bragging rights.

What makes it awesome

Unicorns! Need I say more? Ok, Ok, the gameplay is unpredictable, the cards are hilarious and despite the cute unicorn theme, this game is about pure destruction. It gets better with every play so you’ll never get bored.

Players: 2-8

Expect: tense strategy

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 5.8 x 4 x 2 inches, 12 ounces

Rules: Read here

Unstable Unicorns

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Forbidden Island

If you’ve ever fancied an Indiana Jones style adventure but wold prefer to do it from the confines of your armchair, Forbidden Islands is the one for you.

Basic premise

Each player is an adventurer with a different skill, from a pilot to an engineer. Together they must rescue 4 hidden treasures from Forbidden Island. However, the island itself is rapidly sinking meaning you have to work quickly.

Each character’s card has instructions on the back for what to do on your turn which makes it super simple to follow. Every turn allows a player to do up to three actions, and each go sees the water levels on one part of the island rising.

As the water levels rise, so does the tension and finding the treasure and getting off the island becomes more urgent. Cooperation and problem solving skills need to be employed in abundance.

What makes it awesome

Forbidden Island looks great with beautifully made components. The cooperative aspect means you play with your fellow gamers instead of against them which is refreshing. The pace of the game picks up as you play making the fun build and build and the consequences of your plays more significant. Thanks to the changing board, the game is different every time.

Players: 2-4

Expect: tense strategy

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 6.5 x 8.8 x 2.8 inches, 1.4 pounds

Rules: Read here

Forbidden Island

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Sushi Go

Like a conveyor belt sushi restaurant, the idea of Sushi Go is to build yourself a delicious plate of sushi. Don’t forget the wasabi, and definitely don’t skip pudding!

Basic premise

The cards get dealt out at the start of the game, the amount depending on the number of players. The round starts with each player looking at their hand and choosing one card they want to play. Once everyone has chosen, all players reveal the card they picked by placing it ace up in front of them.

Players then pass the remainder of their hand to the player on their left. They then choose one card to keep from their new hand. Play continues like this until no one has any cards left in their hand which signals the end of the round.

At this stage the played cards are added up with each one worth different points. You can also do combinations and boost scores by adding additional extras to your sushi like wasabi.  There are three rounds per game and the player with the highest score wins.

What makes it awesome

This game is as addictive as great sushi and will definitely leave you hungry for more. It’s fast paced, engaging, and fun to play. Beware though, if you’re a sushi lover you’ll definitely be craving your favourite sushi roll after playing.

Players: 2-5

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 15 minutes

Size & Weight: 4.2 x 5.8 x 1.5 inches, 8.5 ounces

Rules: Read here

Sushi Go

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Mille Bornes

A classic racing card game that sees players compete against each other to win a long distance race. You need to avoid accidents, top up your gas, and try to trip your opponents up to secure victory.

Basic premise

Players are racing to be the first driver to reach 1000 miles. Along the way there are obstacles that will slow you down and maybe even bring you to a complete standstill.

Each player begins with 6 cards being dealt to them. The remainder of the pack going into the middle to form the draw pile. When it’s your turn you take a card from the draw pile before playing a card into your, or someone else’s, driving zone.

These will act to speed you up or slow your opponents down. Actions range from things like flat tyres to running out of gas. Evade the hazards and keep on track while tripping up your rivals to win.

What makes it awesome

Games go at breakneck speed in this rapid fire card game. It’s easy to learn, simple and quick to play, and can be played individually or in competing teams.

Players: 2-8

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 10 minutes

Size & Weight: 4.7 x 1.5 x 4.7 inches, 8 ounces

Rules: Read here

Mille Bornes

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Jaipur

A game that requires strategy, skill, and a touch of luck, Jaipur is all about buying low and selling high.

Basic premise

You and your fellow player are the two most powerful traders in Jaipur. But to secure an invite to the Maharajah’s court as his official trader you need to become undisputed top dog. To do this you must out trade your opponent.

Each player begins the game with 5 cards in their hand, between them are three camels and two merchandise cards. On their turn players can perform one action – either take take cards or sell cards.

To get what you really want you generally have to sacrifice something that your opponent really wants. This means you have to weigh up what’s going to provide you with most value in the long run.

What makes it awesome

Jaipur is quick, exciting, and is constantly throwing up little twists and turns. You can often see a player’s personality in how they play – greedily gathering commodities, slowly but steadily accumulating their rupees, or simply throwing caution to the wind.

Players: 2

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 3.8 x 1.5 x 7.8 inches, 7 ounces

Rules: Read here

Jaipur

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These Cards Will Get You Drunk

If you enjoy a tipple and like laughing then These Cards Will Get You Drunk is for you.


Basic premise

Players take it in turns to draw a card from the pile and read out the instructions written on it. These will almost always result in one or more person being required to drink.

The longer it goes on and the more cut everyone gets the dinner the game becomes. Prepare for a messy night.

What makes it awesome

Zero strategy involved, zero skill required, this is a straight up party game where everyone’s a loser. It can help to break down inhibitions and get a group going making it a brilliant travel card games.

Players: 3+

Expect: adult laughs

Game Time: n/a

Size & Weight: 3.6 x 2.6 x 1.2 inches, 5.6 ounces

Rules: n/a

These Cards Will Get You Drunk

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Grandpa Beck’s Cover Your Assets

Cover Your Assets is a race to be the first player to become a millionaire. But forget about playing fair, you’re going to do it by any means possible.

Basic premise

Each player is trying to be the first to accumulate a million dollar fortune. Sure you can save and collect and invest. But it’s much more fun to steal and cheat and screw your competitors over on your way to the top.

But watch out because your assets are also liable to be nabbed at any time. Fortunately you can also steal from other players to climb that greasy pole.

Build your fortune by stacking pairs of asset cards crisscrossed on top of each other. These can be anything from family jewels to fancy cars. And watch your back as your fellow players will have their eyes on your stacks too.

What makes it awesome

You can go from winning to losing in just a few hands and vice versa. This means that it really ain’t over til it’s over and keeps all players on their toes for the whole game. Cover Your Assets can be an emotional rollercoaster of extreme highs and rapid lows.

Players: 4-6

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 2.2 x 1.6 x 0.4 inches, 9.6 ounces

Rules: Read here

Cover Your Assets

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Cards Against Humanity

This game definitely puts the “adult” in the best travel games for adults. Trust us, it’s strictly top shelf.

Basic premise

It’s a card game where the dealer reads aloud a phrase card they’ve picked at random. It has one or two words missing from the sentence written on it and the other players have to complete the sentence by choosing the best from a selection of options in their ten card hand.

The winner is chosen by the dealer so it’s wise to consider their sense of humour and just how easily offended they are. Some of the cards are best described as depraved.

What makes it awesome

Probably the least politically correct card game ever invented. You’re either gonna love it or be horrendously offended by Cards Against Humanity. Many of the jokes are pretty close to the bone and will get even the most hardened deviants wincing.

Players: 4-20

Expect: adult laughs

Game Time: 45 minutes

Size & Weight: 7 x 4.1 x 2.7 inches, 2.25 pounds

Rules: Read here

Cards Against Humanity

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UNO

UNO has been around for almost 50 years but it never gets tired.

Basic premise

There are 108 cards in an UNO deck and while most have a number and a colour on them, some are wildcards or “pick up” cards.

The basic idea is to get rid of your cards before anyone else, as players take it in turn to put down or pick up cards that correspond with the colour or number that’s on top of the game pile.

There are missed goes, penalties and a whole lot of strategy that can affect your ability to win, and don’t forget to shout “UNO” when you’re one card away from the win or you’ll be blocked from finishing.

What makes it awesome

Frenetic, colourful and full of unexpected laughs, you can easily lose hours to its thrills. It’s  simple to pick up but hard to put down, easily making it another of the best travel games for adults.

Players: 2-10

Expect: tense strategy

Game Time: 45 minutes

Size & Weight: 6.2 x 1.3 x 5.2 inches, 6.61 pounds

Rules: Read here

Uno

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Five Crowns

If you´re a fan of Rummy then you´ll love Five Crowns. It´s based on the same premise but takes it to another level by adding an extra suit and a roving wild card.

Basic premise

The object of Five Crowns is to have the lowest score after all 11 rounds are played. To do this you´re going to need to create books and runs of cards. There are also wild cards which change each hand depending on how many cards are dealt i.e 3 cards dealt means 3 is the wildcard.

Play starts with one player picking up from either the deck or the discard pile. After assessing their hand they then discarding one card they don´t want. Players take it in turns to do this until one or more players forms a full hand of runs or books.

Any cards in a player´s hand that aren´t part of a run or book are then added up to produce a score at the end of each round. Remember, you need the lowest score to win, so high scores are bad!

What makes it awesome

This game is really easy to pick up and play, rounds go quickly, but there is still a good amount of strategy you can employ. The further down the rounds you are the higher the stakes meaning even if you lose a few at the beginning you can easily be right back in it with just a couple towards the end.

Players: 1-7

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 45 minutes

Size & Weight: 6.6 x 4.2 x 1 inches, 6.4 ounces

Rules: Read here

Five Crowns

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Best Card Games for Travel With a Standard Deck

We never go anywhere without a deck of standard cards in our bag but we found out the hard way that normal ones don’t tend to stand up to the rigours of travel.

Avoid that mistake by getting a deck that comes with a protective case instead of a flimsy card box. And go one better by opting for some that won’t get ruined if they get wet around the pool or on a sticky bar table.

This set of Hoyle Waterproof Clear Playing Cards are ideal and designed to withstand anything you throw at them.

Inbetween, Outbetween

This can be played for money or chips but we´ve only ever really played it as a drinking game. It´s lightning fast and while there can be a little bit of skill involved, it´s largely down to chance.

Basic premise

The game is played in turns with each player being dealt a pair of cards face up with a gap in between them. That player then has to guess whether the next card drawn will be numerically within those two cards.

To do this a player says either “inbetween” or “outbetween” and then the third card is drawn. If they guess correct then their turn is over and play moves to the next player. If they guess incorrectly they have to drink. If the card drawn matches either of the cards already on the table they must drink twice.

What makes it awesome

Most people aren´t advanced enough at probability to turn the game in their favour. This means that if you´re playing it as a drinking game there tends to be quite a lot of drinking going on by everyone. This sees it get pretty raucous pretty quickly.

Players: 4+

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: n/a

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

Chase the Ace

What’s more fun than watching everyone else around the table drop out on your way to glory? Royally royally screwing your play mates over as you do it.

Basic premise

The aim of Chase the Ace is to avoid having the lowest card at the end of each round. Play starts with the dealer dealing out a single card face down to each player including themselves.

The first player to the dealer´s left starts and can look at their card before deciding whether to swap or stick. If they choose to swap, they do so with the card of the player to the left of them.

If any player has a king they can turn this over and it prevents the player to their right from swapping with them. Once play returns to the dealer, everyone turns their cards face up.

The dealer is not allowed to swap. However, if they choose not to stick they can pick any card from the deck to try and get a higher card.

The person with the lowest card loses a life, Kings are high and Aces are low. If multiple people have the same low card they all lose. For the next round, the role of the dealer rotates to the player on the left of the previous dealer.

Generally players start off with three chips and lose one for each round they lose. The winner is the last remaining person to have any chips.

What makes it awesome

This is a great game for large groups of people. It can be played as a drinking game instead of with chips with the loser(s) drinking after every round. This is a fantastic party starter and because there are only two options per play, rounds go extremely quickly.

Players: 3+

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: n/a

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

Bullshit

Calling blaggers everywhere. Convince people the hands you´re throwing down are what you say they are to literally bullshit your way to the win.

Basic premise

The dealer deals out the entire deck to the players, and don’t worry if they’re not evenly distributed. Some players may end up with more cards than others but it doesn’t matter for Bullshit.

The object of the game is to get rid of all your cards. Players take it in turns to discard 1 or more cards face down into a central pile. This happens in a descending sequence changing each turn. So player 1 must put down aces, moving to kings for the next player, then queens and so on.

At the same time as laying them down, players must declare the number of cards they are discarding. And this is where the fun starts. Players can lie about what they´re putting down. In fact players have to lie about what they´re putting down.

Because the cards have to go in sequence, often you have to claim to have cards you don’t in order to play. If anyone suspects foul play they can call you out by saying “bullshit”.

At this point the player being challenged must reveal their cards. If they’re telling the truth, the challenger picks up the entire deck. If they’re lying then it’s them who gets the big hand.

First player to get rid of all their cards wins.

What makes it awesome

You have free licence to lie your face off. The more audacious you are with your untruths the more funny t gets. Until you have to pick up a massive stack that is.

Players: 2-10

Expect: adult laughs

Game Time: n/a

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

Crazy Eights

Eights are good and help you get rid of the rest of your hand. Which is what you need to do to be crowned winner.

Basic premise

Players are each dealt 5 cards unless there are only 2 players in which case they each get 7. The rest of the cards are laced face down as the draw deck. The aim is to be the first player to get rid of all your cards.

To start the dealer turns over one card from the remaining deck. Each turn consists of a player discarding one of their cards. However, it must match the preceding card in either suit or number.

For example if someone plays a 6 of clubs then the next player must play another 6 or a different club. If that’s not possible then they have to pick up from the draw pile.

The exception to this is if you’re holding an 8 which can be played on anything. Hence the name Crazy Eights. Anyone playing an 8 also gets to name what suit the next player must play.

What makes it awesome

Easy to pick up and simple to explain, Crazy Eights can also be modified to add more strategy and difficulty. For example, some variants include “special cards” that produce different actions. For example, in some versions a Queen skips a go and an ace reverses the direction of play.

Players: 2-5

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: 10 minutes

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

Old Maid

Back in the day an “old maid” was a woman who had been left unmarried for so long it was unlikely to ever happen. Despite the somewhat sexist connotations, this game relies on everyone aiming to avoid the fate of being left holding the last card.

Basic premise

The dealer adds a single joker to the deck before dealing out the entire pack. Players then sort through their hands to identify any pairs they’re holding. These are placed face up on the table.

The player to the left of the dealer must then select a card from the dealer’s hand to put into their oen. This carries on with the player to their left and so on.

As soon as any player has a pair that must be put face up on the table with the rest of the pairs.

The game ends when one player is left holding the joker or “Old Maid”. Naturally they’re the loser.

What makes it awesome

That sinking feeling when you pick the old maid out of your neighbour’s hand is devastating. But it’s quickly eclipsed by the elation when the next player along plucks it from your fingers.

Players: 2-8

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: 15 minutes

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

Best Dice Games

LCR Left Center Right

There´s no strategy in LCR and it´s impossible to forget the rules – the dice dictate what you do each turn. It´s fast, great fun, and sees your excitement build and fall rapidly. Brilliant entertainment for largegroups.

Basic premise

LCR is a game made up of just chips and dice. Unlike normal dice, in LCR they have different symbols or letters on each side that require players to do various things with their chips. A dot means you keep a chip. L means you pass one to your left. R means you pass one to your right. C means you put one in the centre pot.

Each player starts the game with 3 chips and the first player rolls the three dice. They then distribute their chips according to what the dice say. Players only roll the number of dice that corresponds to the number of chips they have, up to a maximum of 3.

So as the game continues you may be rolling 1, 2, or 3 dice depending on how you fare. Each round sees you accumulate and lose chips in rapid succession. Play continues until all of the chips but one are in the centre pot, and the person with the remaining chip is the winner.

What makes it awesome

This game is one of pure chance meaning anyone can play and it´s a great party starter, particularly with lots of people. Even when you think you´re down and out your neighbour can be forced into giving you a lifeline getting you right back in it. Play for money instead of chips and you´ll have even more invested, even if it’s just a few bucks.

Players: 3+

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: 20 minutes

Size & Weight: 4.5 x 3.5 x 1.5 inches, 3.2 ounces

Rules: Read here

LCR Left Center Right

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Farkle

This entertaining dice game is one of pure chance and can be great for large groups of people. While it can be played with standard dice, this handy travel pack comes with scoring sheets and a portable carry box.

Basic premise

Farkle is a supremely simple game made up of just a cup and 6 dice. Players take it in turns to roll the dice on their go. On the first roll of a turn you must roll all 6 and there´s a minimum number of points you must score to be allowed to keep them, usually 350.

Only certain dice and combinations will score you points, and if you don´t manage to bag any points that´s called a Farkle. Hitting a Farkle also ends your turn immediately and loses you any points you have already banked for that go.

Each turn can consist of one or more rolls of the dice. Players can bank scores before each further roll by leaving those dice on the table and only rolling the remainder.

The idea is to get the highest score overall, but first one player must get to a predetermined number of points. This forces sudden death and gives everyone just one more go and a final shot at winning.

There are numerous different variations of the rules so it´s important to nail down which one you´re playing before the game begins.

What makes it awesome

While it´s largely a game of chance, Farkle also pushes you to try your luck by continuing to roll in order to secure higher scores. Sometimes you´ll play safe, others you´ll be forced to gamble to score big. The higher the stakes the more exciting it gets.

Players: 2+

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: 30 minutes

Size & Weight: 4.2 x 3.6 x 3.1 inches, 5.6 ounces

Rules: n/a

Farkle

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Boggle

This classic word game is quick, simple, and uniquely can be played on its own. It comes in a ready made plastic travel case making it one of the most suitable mini travel games.

Basic premise

Shake the dice up in the box and make sure they’re all settled in their grid. Next lift the lid off and turn the sand timer over to start. Players must then write down as many words of 3 or more letters as they can spot. Letters can be “chained” in virtually any direction so long as they’re touching.

Words that more than one player have don’t count, you only score for unique ones. Points are allocated depending on how long they are with longer words gaining exponentially bigger scores. The player with the highest score wins.

What makes it awesome

Because you can chain letters in weird orders it’s easy to spot different ones to other players. The game is frantic with each round lasting just a few minutes. There’s no limit on how many players can play, but it can also be played solo by trying to beat your own high score.

Players: 1+

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 3 minutes

Size & Weight: 2 x 4.3 x 4.3 inches, 7 ounces

Rules: Read here

Boggle

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QWIXX

Every roll counts for every player in this unique and engaging fast paced dice game.

Basic premise

Play is based around the coloured scoring cards in Qwixx. They have 4 rows in each colour numbered from either 2-12 or 12-2.

A turn consists of a player rolling all of the dice, 4 colored and 2 white. On each turn players are able to make two scores, one by adding the two white dice, the other by adding one white dice with one colour of their choice.

This number then gets crossed off in the corresponding box on the score-sheet with the white one counting as any colour you like. But once you’ve crossed a number off you’re not allowed to cross anything else in that line off that lies to the left of it.

The game continues until players can physically no longer go or they lock 2 lines. this is done by crossing off 6 numbers in the same line as well as the number furthest to the right.

Scores are then added up according to the score-sheet and the player with the highest score wins.

What makes it awesome

No one gets bored waiting around for other players to go. There’s zero downtime so everyone stays fully immersed in the game at all times. It’s also exciting and fun to play with lots of twists and turns along the way.

Players: 2-5

Expect: rapid gameplay

Game Time: 15 minutes

Size & Weight: 5.2 x 3.8 x 1.2 inches, 5.9 ounces

Rules: Read here

QWIZZ

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Best Car Games for Adults on a Road Trip

The Famous Name Game

Into your celebrities? Get ready to name drop like never before in this fast paced word association game.

Basic premise

The first player starts by saying a famous name that everyone would know. The next player has to think of another famous person whose name begins with the first letter of the last name.

If the first name has the same starting letter as the surname for example Marilyn Monroe, play switches direction.

If a player can´t think of a name, takes too long, or drops a name no one knows, they lose and have to do a forfeit.

What makes it awesome

Play has to go quickly so there are inevitably a lot of forfeits, the worse the better. The random names that people say can also be hilarious. Expect plenty of blasts from the past and Z-list celebs to crop up.

Players: 2+

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: n/a

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

Just a Minute

If you´re the chatty type then this game could be right up your street. But can you keep on topic for a full minute?

Basic premise

Someone (not the driver) sets a timer on their phone for a minute and becomes the chair. The first player then has those 60 seconds to speak on a subject chosen randomly by the chair.

They have to do this without “hesitation, repetition or deviation” and the rest of the passengers are judges. If they think the speaker is taking too long, going off topic, or has repeated a word, they are able to challenge. The timer stops as soon as this happens.

If a challenge is deemed correct by the chair, they receive a point and also take over the subject for the remainder of the time. If it´s not correct then the original speaker continues.

Being the person to be speaking at the end of a minute is rewarded with a point. If a player manages to speak for the entire minute they´re rewarded with a bonus point.

What makes it awesome

This game sounds super easy but it´s unbelievably hard! Speaking for a full minute without breaking the rules is virtually impossible. But the ways that people attempt to win are hilarious and the arguments over challenges can get pretty involved.

Players: 4+

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: n/a

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

Three Stories

Are you a great liar or do you possess a terrible poker face? Well it doesn´t matter too much in this game, it´s all about coming up with fake stories that are less believable than the truth. The more you can fool your fellow players the better chance of winning you have.

Basic premise

Players take in in turns to say three stories or “facts” about themselves that the other players don´t know. However, only one of them should be true.

The other players have to try and figure out which one is the true story and which two are lies. To get this they each get to ask two follow up questions.

Each player to guess right gets a point and the first to a predetermined number of points is the winner.

What makes it awesome

This is a great way to get to know your fellow road trippers a whole lot better. And regardless of how well you know them, you´ll learn some pretty surprising stuff. This game gets funny quickly and will have the whole car in stitches.

Players: 2+

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: n/a

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

I Know Them

Fancy yourself as a bit of a story teller? This is a great game that involves some serious imagination as you build a story about someone you´ve never met or seen before in your life.

Basic premise

One player selects a passenger in a car that you pass and makes sure everyone gets a good look. Then they begin by “I know them…” and starting to tell a story about them.

Each player takes it in turns to make up something funny or interesting to add. Start with the basics like name, age, and occupation, then work up to the good stuff.

The more outrageous the backstory you construct the better. And if you pass them again on the road you won´t be able to resist laughing.

What makes it awesome

There are no losers or winners, just a journey into the bizarre and twisted minds of your fellow road trippers. This can go on for as long as you´re all entertained, and when you get bored simply switch target.

Players: 2+

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: n/a

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

The Wave Game

This game takes nerves of steel, a bit of luck, and plenty of persistence. It´s time to get social on your road trip!

Basic premise

Players take it in turns to wave at the the occupants of each car they pass. If someone in the car waves back then they carry on, each wave back receives a point.

Bonus points are received for extra reactions. A smile is a bonus point. If someone flips you the bird you get 5 points. And if every passenger in the car waves back you get 10 bonus points.

A player´s turn is over when no one waves back. It then moves onto the next player´s turn. The winner is the person with the most points after everyone has gone. Play as many rounds as you dare.

What makes it awesome

Other people´s reactions can range from happy to play along to thoroughly pissed off. You´ll have great fun playing and may even brighten up someone else´s drive along the way.

Players: 2+

Expect: rip roaring fun

Game Time: n/a

Size & Weight: n/a

Rules: n/a

Those are our picks for the best travel games for adults, but have you got an alternative game that you think would be perfect for stuffing in the backpack? What travel board games do you always carry with you on the road? Drop us a comment below and let us know!

Looking for more awesome gear to take on your travels? Check out these posts to find out what we recommend:

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***This post was originally published in February 2017 but has been completely revamped and extended to provide you with the most up to date and accurate information.***

Games with text overlay THE 5 BEST TRAVEL GAMES FOR ADULTS