Tablets becoming new in-car babysitters

JonathanMay 29, 2014

All parents know that entertaining children during a lengthy car ride can be tedious, but it seems that more and more people are turning to technology to keep their young passengers occupied.

A survey from car maker Vauxhall has found that the vast majority of children use a smartphone or tablet on long journeys, with a whopping 93 per cent admitting to doing so.

However, the ‘Are we nearly there yet?' study found that traditional car games, such as I-spy or car snooker, are not a thing of the past just yet. Technology has not yet become the be-all-and-end-all to all young passengers as 87 per cent of parents say they encourage their children to play more traditional pastimes.

With the half-term holiday drawing to a close, it is likely that many drivers will be packing their family back into the car to return home. All parents know that this can be a prime opportunity for squabbles from the back of the vehicle, with 52 per cent saying that fights between siblings ruined their journey.

Nearly half (45 per cent) disliked the constant requests of, ‘are we nearly yet?', with other niggles including constant requests to stop for the toilet (39 per cent). A third of respondents worried about car sickness and over a fifth of respondents (22 per cent), found constant demands for music insufferable.

To help suffering drivers, Vauxhall has listed its top ten games to play in the car:

1. I-spy
2. ‘Next one to see'
3. How many car brands spotted in one minute
4. Waving at other drivers
5. Registration plate alphabet
6. Car snooker
7. Times-table tests
8. Playing cards
9. Number plate cricket
10. Eddie Stobart truck bingo

However, if all else fails, there is always technology to give you a little bit of respite, and you're not alone either. Some 27 per cent of respondents would give their children portable DVD players, followed by snacks (22 per cent), music (19 per cent), games (15 per cent), talking books (eight per cent) and toys (seven per cent).

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