5 Great Travel-Sized Games to Take on Holiday

Yahtzee travel games

Wondering what you can take to entertain yourself and the family while you’re on holiday? Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered.

For a summer-time camping trip, a romantic weekend for two, a week away with friends or a winter’s visit to the in-laws, whether card, dice or otherwise, it’s always a good idea to have a travel game or two to hand, just in case.

This isn’t specifically a list of “The Best…”, it’s more a guide to a handful of games for travelling, considering how compact and self-contained they are, as well as how much space you need to play them and just how much fun they are to play!

Advertisement
Want to support GameSpew? If you decide to buy any of the games on this list, please consider using our Amazon affiliate links, included below each entry. It won’t cost you anything extra, but we’ll get a small slice of the purchase. Thank you.

Waterproof Dobble

Dobble

Ideal for almost anywhere thanks to its new waterproofness and handy travel bag, Dobble is similar to the premise of the classic game “Snap!”, but with six pictures on each card, only one image will match any other card in the deck, so it’s a race to find it first.

It sounds so simple (because it is), but don’t be fooled: simple and easy are not the same thing! Even as a seasoned player, you’ll likely lose a few rounds to your kids or other newbies, making this an ideal game to enjoy with your family.

With five different ways to play, from basic snap to amassing the largest card-collection or to sabotaging your neighbour’s hand, there’s plenty of variety to keep things interesting.

Dobble is small, quick to set up and pack away, easy to transport without being damaged and only requires a small space to stack the cards (ideally a table, but a picnic blanket, car seat or armrest work just as well).

If you drop the obvious benefits of the waterproof cards, you’ll find all kinds of variations of Dobble, including Harry Potter, Marvel, Dobble Classic, XXL, a 10th Anniversary edition and even Dobble 360 which rotates the cards for an extra challenge; so whatever you’re into, there’s a Dobble for you.


Yahtzee

Yahtzee

The classic and inimitable Yahtzee has been around for generations in one shape or another, but after countless revisions of form and cosmetics, including several travel versions, it appears to have reached its final form.

Originally called “Yacht game” due to its ease of play on, well, yachts, Yahtzee is essentially Poker (don’t tell the kids!) but with dice. The objective here is to use three rolls of five dice to score a flush, a straight a full house, or three, four or even five of a kind for a Yahtzee.

In truth, all you need to play is five dice and everything else is supplementary. But ideally, you’ll have some score sheets and at least one pencil. The aim of the game is to score as highly as possible across your three dice throws, until you’ve filled all of the boxes on the score sheet. Which box you choose to fill on each turn is entirely up to you, making this a game of both luck and strategy.

Yahtzee is an easy game to pick up for all ages and can even be used as an education tool for some basic maths and reasoning (again, don’t tell the kids!) making it an ideal option for playing as a family; but speaking from experience, it’s just as well suited for a group of grown-ups to become fiercely competitive over.

Boggle

Boggle

Similarly to Yahtzee, Boggle seems to have had dozens of iterations over the years, with the latest one demonstrating exactly why it’s such a good travel game. This edition keeps everything together in a small and hard-wearing box and all you need to supply are the pens and scraps of paper to write on (or a mobile phone/tablet, if you prefer).

Shake up the box and level out the 16 lettered dice inside, remove the lid and spell as many words as you can, with three letters or more (or fewer if you like, we’re not the Boggle Police) you can also choose to only allow connected letters, so words have to snake around, rather than just choosing from anywhere.

It’s also worth noting that the folks at Boggle HQ (Hasbro) have designed it to avoid less savoury words from popping up, making this good, clean fun for the whole family. Of course there are many words which lend themselves to other, more risque meanings, so there’s plenty of fun for friends and older players to enjoy, too and whiling away the time in your tent/campervan/train carriage/marriage by playing Boggle has always been a favourite for couples, as well.


5 Second Rule

5 Second Rule

5 Second Rule is easily the most cumbersome game on our list, thanks to its large timer, but its Mini Game version is also compact enough for travelling. It’s also one of the best for children, while remaining fun for older kids and adults, which is always handy on a family holiday.

The rules are simple, draw a card and take no more than 5 seconds to name three things the card asks for: “Three Genres of Music”, “Three Wet Things” or “Three Sports Where Jumping is Involved”. It sounds easier than it usually is and there are 90 cards included in this travel version, so plenty of variety and longevity for even the wettest half-term week away.

The answers are likely to be personal to your family, as well, which makes it all the more entertaining. “Three wet things” could easily be the sea, rain and… I don’t know… soup, or they could (and will more likely) be “my socks”, “the dog” and “your hair”, which is bound to cheer up anyone facing another chilly October half-term evening in a damp caravan.

Once again, this is a good game for kids and it will help them develop some critical and lateral thinking, but it’s also genuinely good fun for grown-ups, especially when playing with the little ones.

Pass the Pigs

Pass the Pigs

A simple dice game, but not your typical dice game, when you consider your dice are pigs…

The aim of Pass the Pigs is to simply roll your dice pigs and score based on how they land. Has your sow gone upside-down? That’s 5 points, or 20 if both of your saddle-backs are on their saddles. Both of your swines gone snouts-down? That’s 40 points! Seeing some cuddling cutters? Back to zero for you!

If none of that made sense, don’t worry: helpfully, a full rule book comes packed inside the case, as well as score sheets and pencils, so you can pack your piggies and be safe in the knowledge that should boredom strike, it’s all there ready to save your bacon.

We didn’t have much else to say about Pass the Pigs, but we did have lots of other pig sty-le puns. Trough be told, it’s probably for the best, we wouldn’t want you getting boared…