4 Simple yet Fun Card Games to Play to Kill Time when Travelling

A simple 52-card deck absolutely belongs in every backpack. Apart from being a fun solution to kill time, it is easy to carry and space-saving. Here are the best yet easy card games to play while travelling.

At some point in your travels, you will inevitably experience some sort of delay, whether it is during long bus or train trips, delays in airports or you just need to overcome some free time in a hostel without any access to a TV or WiFi. But what do you do in those situations?

Many people would say “read a book”, “do crossword puzzles” or “listen to music”, but what happens if you are sick of your playlists or don’t have a good book or crossword puzzle on hand? The best answer is to play a good old fashioned card game.

To cut out weight, just buy smaller than average cards! Another definite plus for card games is getting in touch with other travellers because, trust me, everyone likes playing cards!

Crazy Eights

What you need

  • Two or more players
  • A standard deck of cards


  • The first player who gets rid of all cards wins

How to play Crazy Eights

  1. Shuffle all cards and deal seven cards to each player. Leftover cards are stacked face down, so no one can see the next card except the top card, which is face up.
  2. The game begins with the face-up top card. The person left of the dealer starts the game.
  3. Looking at the cards you were given, examine if your cards match with the top card. For example, if the top card is a red Five of Hearts, you can play either a red, a Five or another Heart card. If this is not possible, draw a card from the stockpile, and the game continues with the next person.
  4. However, if you are holding an Eight you are lucky as an Eight can be played on any other card and you choose a new suit.
  5. Continue play until someone runs out of cards – that person wins!

Still unclear? Check out the this video to see how to play the Crazy Eights card game.

Bullshit/ I doubt it/ Cheat

What you need

  • Four or more players
  • A standard deck of cards
  • NOTE: Aces are lowest and equal 1


  • The first player who gets rid of all their cards wins

How to play Bullshit

  1. Shuffle the deck and deal out all cards evenly amongst the players. After this, players rearrange their cards in order; Aces represent the lowest rank.
  2. Beginning with Aces, the first player discards face down and declares how many Aces they’ve put down. They may try to sneak in another card while claiming it is an Ace.
  3. After the cards are face down, if one of the other players thinks the first player is bluffing, that person can say “bullshit / I doubt it / cheat”! The first person must then turn over their discarded cards. If the first player told the truth, the other person takes the entire discard pile into their hand. If the first person was bluffing, they must take the discard pile.
  4. Like this, the game continues till one person hasn’t any cards left – they win!

Or watch this video to get a better understanding of the Bullshit card game.


What you need

  • Three or more players
  • A standard deck of cards


  • The first player who gets rid of all cards wins

How to play Sevens

  1. Shuffle the deck and deal all cards (face down) to the players. After this, players rearrange their cards in order; Aces represent the highest rank. (Example: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, J, Q, K, A.)
  2. The player who is in possession of the Seven of Spades starts the game by placing it face up in the middle of the round.
  3. Everyone needs to build upon the Seven of Spades in numerical order in either direction, so the Eight of Spades goes above the Seven and the Six of Spades goes under. If a player cannot connect any of their cards but has a Seven in another suit, that person can open a new Seven row.
  4. Each player only plays one card per turn. If they cannot play a card in order, they must pass.
  5. The game continues until one person has no more cards – they win!

Or check out the following video that shows you how to play the Sevens card game.

Old Maid

What you need

  • Two or more players
  • A standard deck of cards
  • NOTE: Take one Queen out of the deck so there are 51 cards left in play


  • Players who discard all cards are the winners. The person with the last Queen left loses the game.

How to play Old Maid

  1. Shuffle and deal all the cards. Players look at their cards and eliminate all pairs they have. Example: A pair can be two Tens or two Queens. The colour of a card doesn’t matter in this case.
  2. The game starts with the left person of the dealer. The first player offers their cards to the second player turned away so that the second player cannot see what the cards are. The second player pulls out one card and adds it to their hand. If a new pair is created, it will be laid aside.
  3. The second player continues the same way and offers their hand to the third player.
  4. In the end when all pairs were eliminated, the player with the last remaining Queen in their hand loses the game.

Or check out this video that explains how to play the Old Maid card game.

How do you kill time on your travels?

So there you have it, simple yet fun card games to beat boredom and overcome unexpected travel delays. What do you think? Any other card games you can recommend to fellow travellers? Please tell us in the comments below!


Emily is a native creative nerd. This creative crew member's favourite stop is Bay of Islands.

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