Coach tours are a lot of fun, but long trips between destinations are unavoidable and can sometimes feel tedious. At Kiwi Travel NZ, we want you to be as happy and as comfortable as possible on our coach tours. We’ve created this helpful guide to prevent you from getting bored and to keep you feeling well during longer stints on the road.
Boredom busters for all ages
Not many people enjoy sitting for hours at a time. While our coaches make frequent rest stops, we think it’s important to keep the mind and body occupied. Try these boredom busters between destinations on your coach tour and you’ll find yourself arriving in no time at all.
Look out of the window and marvel at the spectacular scenery New Zealand has to offer. From dramatic mountain ranges, rolling hills, native bush and forest to sprawling cities, sandy beaches and extensive coastline; there’s always something new and different to see. Often you’ll come across things on the road that you may not have seen anywhere else – tractors, hitch hikers, roadside stalls and flocks of sheep or herds of cows crossing rural roads.
Often music makes a trip more interesting. Use your mp3 or other music device and create a special playlist for your travels. If you haven’t yet embarked, make sure to download some great New Zealand made music from artists such as Brooke Fraser, Crowded House, Dave Dobbyn, Elemeno P, The Exponents, Fat Freddy’s Drop, Flight of the Conchords, Gin Wigmore, Kimbra and more. Ask your tour guides and driver to recommend their favourites.
Get to know your fellow passengers
If you don’t know many of the people travelling with you, what better time to get to know them than on the road? Take advantage of our last blog post on getting to know people on your group tour and encourage others to participate in games or strike up a conversation between seats. Amusing or interesting conversation will make time fly by. Get moving and have fun while on a rest stop and play a name game or teambuilding exercise.
Once you’ve gotten to know a few people after the name games and ice-breakers, find a deck of cards or a board game and challenge a few people or start a tournament. Otherwise, test your minds and observation skills with the following games. Have a prizes available to keep things interesting, such as being able to go first to the toilet or being first in line for an activity, being bought lunch or a snack, getting a good seat in the bus or getting to choose music.
- Travel Bingo: Print out this original New Zealand bingo board we created. To play, ask people to mark off items as they see them pass by. When you have one line (horizontal, vertical or diagonal) shout LINE! And the winner is the first person to shout BINGO! When they have crossed everything off.
- Word games: Choose a subject such as animals, supermarket items or sports and go round the group with answers in alphabetical order, for example one person says apple, the next says banana, then carrot, dates, eggs and so on.
- Car cricket: This one is best played on a two lane road. One person starts by being the “batter” and counts each car that passes by. If a car is towing a trailer, add 4 points, and if a car is towing a caravan, add 6 points. When their “run” is interrupted by a motorbike, truck, campervan, bus or tractor, their turn is over and it’s the next player’s turn. If there are two or more “out” vehicles in a row, the next person’s turn is also skipped. Add up scores at the end and the highest scorer is the winner.
Sleep or read
Of course if all else fails, close your eyes and have a nap or bring out a good book. A word of caution: if you’re prone to motion sickness, reading is probably not advisable unless done in short intervals.
If you enjoy having a snack on the road, don’t forget to bring your favourite nibbles along. There are many dairies (convenience stores) dotted around nearly every town and city in New Zealand, many of which sell a variety of sweets, snacks, fruit and drinks for a reasonable price. Remember to keep hydrated – water is the best option.
If you know you suffer from motion sickness, remember to come prepared with your own medication or relief. If you start to feel ill, there are a number of ways to reduce or eliminate motion sickness:
- An over-the-counter medication from a pharmacy – staff will help you choose the best one for you
- Pressure bands – these go on your wrists and use pressure points to combat illness
- Look out a window or open a vent for some fresh air
- A green apple (try a New Zealand “Granny Smith” type) or a dry cracker can help calm a stomach
- A ginger drink or snack can have the same effect
- Sit at the front of the bus or car
- Avoid alcohol or spicy foods
Let your guide/driver know if you are feeling unwell – you will be looked after in case of an emergency.
We hope this guide helps you on your tour of New Zealand. Do you have other ways of keeping yourself entertained and well on long trips? Tell us about them in a comment below.