Going on a long bus trip can be fun if you know how to make the most of it. We live in a fast paced world, where people are often in a rush. If you’re totally focused on reaching your destination, you may not even think about trying to enjoy the ride. Yet, the journey itself can be very pleasurable and part of the adventure too, and it’s worth your while to give it some thought.
There is a lot you can do on a long bus trip to pass the time. You can do things with other people or you may want spend some time alone.
Enjoy the Scenery
One of the great advantages of taking a bus is that buses have large windows, which make it easy to enjoy the scenery. Depending on where you’re going, you could have fantastic views of snow-covered mountains, or see lush green valleys or rolling hillsides with farms. Our nation’s coastlines also provide stunning views of the vast oceans and powerful waves lapping onto the beach. You might be surprised how sitting quietly and watching the scenery can be a calming change from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
Visit with Fellow Travelers
If you’re traveling with a bunch of people to the same destination, you can often find common interests to talk about. It’s fun getting to know new people. You can broaden your horizons by making new acquaintances, sharing insights and gaining fresh perspectives.
Chat with Friends or Family
When friends or family are going on a long trip together, it gives you the time to chat and catch up on what’s been happening in each other’s lives. Whether you never seem to have the time because of heavy work schedules or busy social lives, sometimes a long trip is just the opportunity you need to be able to take a breath and spend some quality time together.
Enjoy Quiet Time by Yourself
A long trip can provide you with alone time and that may be exactly what you need. WikiHow1 covers a variety of ways to self-entertain or keep busy during a bus ride. Here are just a few:
Writing and Drawing. If you enjoy creativity like drawing or writing, you can bring a laptop and write during the trip or use a graphics program to create pictures. You can also enjoy a more traditional approach by pulling out colored pencils or charcoal sticks and drawing. Coloring books are a fun way for kids to pass the time and some elderly adults may enjoy it too.
Video games or game apps. There are no lack game apps for mobile phones, including traditional card games like Solitaire and Hearts or Chess, Sudoku and LEGO games. Many free game apps are available to download for mobile. Often buses provide Wi-Fi and you can play games online, such as sports or racing games.
Reading. You can bring a book or magazine to read or read novels on Kindle. There’s nothing like the suspense of a good mystery story to grab your attention and make the time fly by.
Watch movies or TV shows. Netflix and Amazon Prime Videos let you download movies or TV shows and watch them while you travel. Or you can use the bus’s Wi-Fi to access your account.
Listen to music. Bring headphones and listen to your favorite songs on your mobile phone, laptop or iPad.
Catch Up on Work
Perhaps you’re on route for a getaway but have some work to check up on during your travel. Bring your laptop and use the time on your bus trip to create spreadsheets, write memos, send emails, fill out reports or do other things related to work.
If you’re traveling with family or friends there are also games you can play on the bus. Some may be familiar and some are probably new to you. A few games listed included:
Twenty Questions. One person thinks of a person, place or things and the others have twenty questions to guess what it is.
Alphabet. Each player finds something inside or outside the bus that begins with an “a,” then a “b,” and does this going through the whole alphabet. The first person to reach “z” wins the game.
Name that Tune. Sing a few notes or bring up a song on an iPod or mp3 file on your laptop, hit pause after a few notes and see who can guess the name of the song.
I’ve Got a Secret (Telephone). One person whispers a statement into another person’s ear and each person playing the game does the same to the person next to them. The last person says the statement out loud and you’ll be amazed how it has morphed into something very different from the original statement.
Window Scavenger Hunt. In a scavenger hunt you a list of hidden items and hunt for them and gather them. In this game the list is also made ahead of time, and you’re counting what you see out of the bus window. Road signs, billboards, mile markers, restaurants and other items would be included on the list.
(For more detailed explanations of the games or more games to play, see the Busrental.com blog called Fun Games to Play on a Bus Trip2.)
Plan Ahead for Comfort and Safety
Of course, making the most of your bus trip also should include being comfortable as you ride to your destination. There are things you should pack to ensure you stay in the comfort zone.
What to bring on your trip
Chargers. If your phone, laptop or table runs out of juice, all your wonderful plans of mobile fun can go down the drain. Most buses have plugs between the seats that enable to charge your devices. Be sure to bring chargers. (Her Packing List3)
Earplugs. If you decide to catch a nap, then earplugs can be invaluable to cut out the noise of people chatting or other bus noises.
Blanket or cover. People often have different ideas of what the perfect temperature is. Some people may feel cold from the bus A/C or feel the need for more heating in the winter. It’s a good idea to have a thin blanket or sleeping bag liner you can wrap up in on the bus. (Travel Fashion Girl4)
Travel pillow. A travel pillow provides neck support and helps you get into a comfortable position when resting in a seat. There are many different kinds and some even have memory foam that molds to the shape of your neck and shoulder.
Comfortable clothes. Wear clothes that are comfortable like loose shirts or tops, leggings or sweat pants. Today there are lots of wrinkle-free clothes geared for comfort that you can wear while traveling. You can also layer your clothing so you can add or take off a layer depending on the bus temperature.
Backpack or carry-on bag. It’s wise to keep everything valuable with you at all times. Don’t put your valuables in stored luggage. Keep it in your purse or backpack.
Snacks. Even though you’ll stop for meals, bringing snacks to munch between meals can keep you from getting hungry, especially when the bus isn’t stopping when it is your regular mealtime. Messy snacks can be a hassle. Considering buying packaged snacks, such as popcorn or nuts, dried fruits or jerky.
Water or beverages. Bring a water bottle with you or a bottled beverage so you don’t get dehydrated during your trip. If you’re traveling in a mid or large sized group, your bus will have a restroom.
GPS app. If you have a GPS app on your mobile device, you can check your location as you travel and determine how much longer the ride will last.
Sunglasses. You don’t want to have to bother with the sun glaring in your eyes. Wearing sunglasses will cut the glare and can also help if you’re trying to take a nap.
Kleenex and hand wipes. Other than being useful for allergies or sneezing, Kleenex tissue packages also come in handy when restrooms run out of toilet paper. If you’re eating a snack and your fingers get sticky or greasy, you can wipe them off with hand wipes, which saves a trip to the restroom.
Bus Travel Is Safe, Green and Reliable
There’s no better way to travel than leaving the driving to a professional. When you ride in a US Coachways motorcoach, minibus or other vehicle, our highly trained professional drivers ensure a safe ride from initial pickup to the end of your trip.
Statistics show that private motor coaches are the safest form of ground transportation in the country. They are much safer than individual vehicles and are even safer than trains.
While hybrid cars are becoming increasingly popular, motorcoaches still have them beat when it comes to green travel. Based on mileage and number of passengers, a motor coach leaves a much smaller carbon footprint than energy-friendly cars.
At US Coachways, we look forward to coordinating with you to plan your next trip. Call our toll-free number at 1-888-340-9122.