Do Pokémon Go and travel go together? You bet they do; especially when traveling with kids. Shortly after Pokémon Go was launched in Canada we were on a road trip exploring Saskatchewan, Canada. Traveling by car with a teen and a tween can be difficult. There were many hours driving from one small prairie town to the next, which could’ve lead to complete boredom. Keeping them interested in the sites was a challenge until I decided to let them play Pokémon Go.
4 reasons might convince you to bring Pokémon Go along on your next family trip
See the sites (even the hidden ones): Learning some history and associated events was one of my goals for our road trip. Being able to stop and look at historical landmarks while learning about the events was even better, because the kids got free, virtual Pokémon items which heightened their interest in the whole process. It was a win-win situation. The kids learned history while getting to play their game. Everyone was happy. Sometimes I was thinking of an upcoming historical spot, then realized the kids already found it in their game and they were asking me to stop there. Laughing to myself, I promptly agreed to make the stop. Once there, they would jump out of the car, run to the spot with their phones trying to catch a Pokémon character. Tracking down Pokémon gave us chances to make more stops, drive through quaint little towns and even discover little treasures.
Meet new people: One of the benefits of playing this virtual game is that through it they met new people. Almost every day, Noah met another person on the hunt to “catch ‘em all”. There is no age restriction. Pokémon Go allows you to meet people of all ages and backgrounds. Starting up a conversation is always easier with common ground and it can lead to making new friends. One of the greatest compliments a teen can receive is when someone asks them how to do something. Standing on streets, in parks, or near landmarks, Noah was asked numerous times how to play or how to catch a Pokémon. He always came back with a huge smile and a little more confidence in himself.
Exercise: Pokémon Go is all about the get up and GO. It makes you physically move around. Aspects of the game include hatching eggs and collecting Pokéballs, which require you to walk, run or go to various spots in a town or city. After sitting in the car for a long time, it got the kids out walking and physically active.
It’s fun: What more can be said. Kids have short attention spans and are impatient. Playing Pokémon Go gives them something to do and look forward to. They love watching for the next stop, which 9 times of out 10 is a place of significance.
Now I know bringing electronics along on a vacation is often frowned upon. We do see the benefit of their use and playing Pokémon Go was fun to bring along on our trip.
We would like to hear your thoughts. Do you, or would you, allow your kids play Pokémon Go on your family vacation?