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You've got the snack packs, the Wet Wipes, the books and the Lego. The boot's loaded up, the kids are strapped in, and you're ready to spend the next few hours on the road to the beach house/farm cottage/in-laws' place where you'll spend your holiday.

But you also know that there are two things every parent overestimates: the amount of time it takes for a child to munch their way through their allotted treats, and their capacity to keep themselves occupied while restrained in a moving vehicle.

But if you've got these apps downloaded on your phone or your tablet, you'll hardly hear a peep from the backseat once you've handed your device over. 

It's story time!

FarFaria is an innovative reading app that presents beautifully illustrated, delightful stories in two modes: Read to Me and Read by Myself. So even your pre-schooler will love it! There are books for all ages, and if you choose free mode, you'll get a book every day. Subscribe to get more reading material. 

Cost: Free, with optional subscription.

Download FarFaria for your iPhone or iPad here or Android device here

Old-school fun

Forget I Spy. Family Car Games is an app that teaches you 100 different games to play on your road-trip, with no equipment required. Select a game, read the instructions, put your phone away and start to play! The games are suitable for the whole family, and kids of all ages. They're a great way to bond ahead of your holiday and will help to get you into relaxation mode. The games are fun and creative, like none you've ever played before. A common favourite? Grandma Is SO Weird!

Cost: R37.99

Download Family Car Games for your iPhone or iPad here.

We all scream for ice cream

When kids enter Dr Panda's Ice Cream Truck, they are tasked with a very important mission: to make loads of yummy ice cream and sell it to the customers in the neighbourhood. They can mix flavours and colours however they like, scoop it into cones and customise their toppings. This may sound like a very basic concept, but it's pretty much every child's dream to be given free rein over a tonne of ice cream - even if it's only on a phone screen. It's best suited to toddlers and pre-schoolers, and is a sweet bundle of fun.

Cost: R37.99

Download Dr Panda's Ice Cream Truck for Android here, and for iOS  here.

Minds in motion

The award-winning Thinkrolls 1 and Thinkrolls 2 apps provide hours of stimulation for kids between the ages of three and nine, presenting them with challenges that they have to use their visual logic to solve. The Thinkrolls characters are cute and round, and can only roll on their sides. Kids are tasked with getting the characters through a maze to the bottom of the screen, using various zany (including cookies and jelly trampolines) and real-world (such as gravity, buoyancy and heat) tools to help them. It's like a more addictive, colourful, whacky version of Tetris, and we wouldn't be surprised if you enjoyed it as much as your kids do.

Cost: R38.99

Download Thinkrolls 1 for Android here and for iOS here.

Note that while some of these apps may be free to download, the data required to do so is not. To top up with a data bundle quickly and affordably, log into My Vodacom »

Time to get your kids their own tablet?

Check out the affordable tablet deals on Vodacom Online - if you purchase online, you get FREE SIM, FREE connection and FREE delivery

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