22nd July 2015

Flying with Kids: 14 Apps to Beat Boredom at the Airport

Busy airport + kids = a recipe for tantrums, huffs and meltdowns.  If you’re set to head off on a family trip in the coming weeks, now’s the time to load up your tablet and/or smartphone with a few distractions.  To see you on your way, we’ve put together a round-up of fun android and ios apps for kids of all ages. Check out our selection below.


Ages 2 and Up


Who knew tablet and smartphone apps would prove such a hit with babies and toddlers? The following three suggestions are perfect for the tiniest of techies:



Talking Tom Cat 2 for iPad, iPhone and Android Babies can pet, feed and even have a conversation with this surprisingly chatty feline.

Bubbles for iPhone: A simple but incredibly fun distraction for babies and toddlers that involves them popping moving bubbles on your smartphone’s screen.

Tiny Airport Seek and Find Activity Book for iPad, iPhone and Android: Give your little ones the chance to explore a make-believe airport with this fun activity book that features over 90 interactive stories.


Ages 4 and Up


There’s no shortage of apps on the market for school-aged children. Both fun and educational, these ones are guaranteed to stave off boredom during busy airport waits:



Etch a Sketch HD for iPad: Let their imaginations run riot with this iPad version of the classic 1960’s toy.  No paper or crayons required!

Eli Explorer for iPad and iPhone: Kick off their language-learning skills (and brush up on your own) before landing with this interactive app that teaches 100 words and short phrases in 10 different languages including English, French, German and Spanish.

Lego City My City for iPad, iPhone and Android: This action-packed Lego game invites kids to play the hero by catching criminals, rescuing a shipwreck from sharks and even flying a heliplane to the airport.


Ages 6 and Up


Minions…check. Minecraft…check. With their favourite games on the go, all will be well with the world, 4 am start or no 4am start.



Minecraft Pocket Edition for iPad, iPhone and Android: Take the hugely addictive Minecraft on the road with the Pocket Edition. Whether above the clouds, or in the departures area, kids will forget all about boredom as they get stuck into building their virtual reality world.

Despicable Me: Minion Rush for iPad, iPhone and AndroidGet ready for endless minion-based fun in this game that follows the little yellow critters across a giant laboratory, dodging pesky obstacles and collecting bananas.

Stack the Countries for iPad, iPhone and Android: This game combines a geography quiz with a challenge to stack countries on top of each other without the pile collapsing.  Surprisingly engaging for adults too.



Ages 8 and Up


Action and adventure packed games are ideal for keeping older children occupied.  If they haven’t already got a favourite, here are three awesome apps worth downloading:



Temple Run for iPhone, iPad and Android: Practice those running, twisting jumps. You’ll need to slide your way past cliffs, mines, forests and zip lines to avoid the wrath of the mummy.

Subway Surfers for iPhone, iPad and Android: Join Jake, Tricky and Fresh as they hover board their way around Rio, escaping the clutches of the nasty inspector and his dog.

Angry Birds Star Wars for iPhone, iPad and Android: Darth Vader plus angry birds – what’s not to love? Lightsabers at the ready, an epic space adventure awaits.


Ages 10 and Up


Airport queue, what airport queue? Kids aged 10 and over will seize the opportunity to catch up on their favourite games. The following two offer thrills and spills aplenty:




Monument Valley for iPhone, iPad and AndroidGuide Ida, the silent princess through a surreal and beautiful world of rotating architecture, uncover hidden paths, optical illusions and dodge the mysterious Crow People. This one is strangely compelling.

Beach Buggy Blitz for iPhone, iPad and Android: Let young thrill seekers get behind the wheel of a beach buggy and venture as far as possible into the uncharted depths of a mysterious tropical island. This thrilling driving-based game sees players swerving through a landscape of Tiki statues, grass shacks, giant crabs, lava monsters and even yetis. Explore sun-drenched beaches, secret caves, foggy swamps, crumbling temples and spewing volcanoes in this action-packed adventure of discovery and mayhem.

Have we left any out? Leave a comment below and share your favourite games and apps.


Fiona Hilliard

Fiona Hilliard

A love of new cultures is what drives Dublin travel writer Fiona Hilliard to explore the cities of Europe and beyond.

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