Discussion: Can you read in the car?

When I was a kid I constantly had my nose buried in a book. Sometimes I would read even when I was walking down the hall at school. So, of course, any time my dad hauled me off to one of his baseball games or on a road trip, the car was a valuable place for me to get some good reading done. I would stuff my backpack full of however many books would fit. And something I remember hearing all the time was “I’m so jealous, I wish I could read in the car.”

This isn’t something I still hear as an adult, and not because I stopped reading in the car. I wonder if I don’t hear it because I have fewer interactions with people who are just acquaintances, or if this is just not as much a thing anymore? But I certainly understand this sentiment much better now. I do get carsick, and these days I only read in the car if we’re going to be on the highway for an extended period of time.

Which, of course, got me wondering if YOU ALL read in the car. So, can you read in the car? Why or why not? Let me know in the comments!

72 thoughts on “Discussion: Can you read in the car?

    1. I had to do work on my laptop on a road trip once (long story), and it was MISERABLE. Not that it made me sick, it was just hard to balance it, and so the screen kept wobbling, which made everything take a million times longer. ugh. Never again for me.


  1. I sadly can’t .. makes me feel nauseous or I get a headache. I might have been able to when I was younger, but I don’t know that I did it very often. Now, if I’m driving and by myself, I’ll do audiobooks.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Haha, no, just not audiobooks. I can listen to music and talk and such but if I throw on an audiobook I get so absorbed in the story that nothing else in the world exists…and that’s a problem when you’re driving. My husband’s the same, so even if I’m not driving we can’t put on an audiobook.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I’m like you. I could do it when I was a kid, no problem. I even remember reading by the light of streetlights we’d pass, having to wait for the next one so I could catch a few more words ha ha!

    Nowadays, I occasionally get carsick. Also, I have fewer opportunities because I am now usually the one driving!

    When I was a kid, I also enjoyed hanging off the edge of a merry-go-round, watching the ground rush by. I couldn’t understand why adults didn’t think that was fun. Boy, those days are GONE!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I know, what were we thinking as kids? I can’t even swing slowly on a swing set without getting motion sick, but I know when I was a kid I would literally swing for an hour. Stupid growing up and having a higher center of gravity!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m still ripe and young, and every. Single. Ride. I grab the book I’m currently reading and get some good pages in! I don’t get carsick, and if somebody tells me they’re jealous, it tends to be an adult. I think that kids these days just love some good ole technology, and play video games in their car. In my opinion, kids need to get back into the reading habit. I love a good book on a trip, I even immensely enjoy reading on the way to school! I sadly also fall asleep during longer car trips, so that absolutely *stinks*.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. My family used to take long trips in the school holidays and I was always reading in the car. I still read to this day, on the tram or train, in the car on the way to the beach… only time I got motion sickness was on a cruise after 7 days. I don’t know where I’d be if I never got to read when travelling, that’s when I make the most of my downtime.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Similar experience for me! I read in the car all the time as a kid and loved it. As an adult, I do start to feel carsick, though I’ve been working at it long enough that I’ve found ways to manage it for maximum reading still, haha. I hadn’t really noticed that people comment on it less now, but I think you’re right- in my case, I think there are just fewer strangers involved; no more school trips, etc. just travel with family and friends who already know my habits.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think there were also a lot of situations when I was a kid where I would meet a friend or co-worker of my parents’ and they would say “Oh, what a long car ride, you must have been so bored”. Not something we say to adults, lol.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I can read in the car, and always have been able to. Iโ€™ve never felt sick from this (highways is especially good for me as we used to drive 8 hours back home), and Iโ€™ve had a lot of people tell me how lucky I am.
    I always wondered if it was related to me reading books, with the tapes that read along with you, from a very young age.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I can’t read in the car. I can’t even look down at a phone for more than 2 minutes. I’m very sensitive to motion sickness. Amusement parks aren’t amusing to me, boat and ship are things I dread and turbulent landings in airplanes get me too! Audiobooks, Dramamine, Bonine and peppermint or ginger tea are all my friends.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m sorry to hear that, traveling must be miserable for you! I’m going on a cruise this summer, and while I don’t usually get seasick I’ve also never been on such a big boat. I’m a bit nervous I’ll discover that my motion sickness is affected by boats. Interestingly, elevators make me SUPER sick, especially the fast ones.


  8. I used to get so jealous of my sister every time we went on any road trip! Even if it was just a 10 minute drive she would always be reading!
    Me on the other hand, I have suffered from travel sickness my entire life, so reading in any moving vehicle does not go well! But I did discover my love for audio books while on a long road trip on holiday! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh, this post brought back uncomfortable memories of trying to read while being a passenger in a car. I still cannot do it โ€” the dizziness and nausea still occur. Yet, when I would ride a commuter train to work in downtown Chicago, I could read without travel sickness. There was just something about the mode of transportation, specifically, a car.


  10. I ABSOLUTELY still read in the car. My partner usually drives so I’ll ask if he minds if I ignore him for the book for a little while xD My brother used to get sick on every long drive, so it was definitely not an option for him. Weird how siblings differ.


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