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17 Engrossing Things to Do When Stuck in a Traffic Jam

Things to Do When Stuck in a Traffic Jam
Nobody likes being stuck in a traffic jam, and it can be extremely frustrating at times, especially if you've had a long, bad day at work, or if you need to get somewhere quickly. However, there's no point cribbing right in the middle of all the other cars, right?
Tanaya Navalkar
Last Updated: Mar 10, 2018
Believe it or not!?
The world's longest traffic jam occurred in 2010 in Beijing, China, which lasted for about 11 days, and went on for about 60 miles. The locals sold food and water to the drivers for more than 10 times the actual price!
How much time do you spend in traffic every day? A LOT of time, we bet! Of course, you aren't alone in this most dreaded part of daily routine. Do you also end up thinking of ways and routes that will help you avoid the nightmare-like traffic? We totally get you! The situation gets even worse when it is pouring heavily, and other people are trying to overtake your vehicle without even realizing that others too are struggling to make their way through the traffic. Some even go to the point of honking again and again, even if they know that there are vehicles in front, and they also cannot move unless the vehicles in front of them move. If only cars could fly like airplanes! You wish! Well, what you can do about it is nothing but find ways to keep yourself amused and entertained, without losing your cool. In the following sections, we tell you different ways of converting this unproductive time into a productive one. Here's what all you can do!
What to Do When Stuck in a Traffic Jam
Traffic jams are an inevitable part of our lives. While some prefer to keep struggling and budging in from here and there every now and then, others find it interesting enough to observe the behavior of other people on the road. Of course, this is another way to pass your time while you are stuck in bad traffic. So, to help you out with getting through the maddening traffic, we have come up with a list of some fun things that you can do. Take a look!
Catch Up on Phone Calls
Woman Talking on Phone in Car
Utilize this time to catch up with your friends with whom you haven't spoken with for a long time. Thanks to the busy day at work, we miss answering some calls. This is a good time to call them back. If you stay away from your family, what can be a better time to catch up with your pals back home. Talk to your mother or your partner. But make sure that you use your hands-free to make those calls, so that you can keep your eyes on the road and your hands on wheel at all times. Do not text! You don't want the cops catching you, do you?
Listen to Music
listening Music in Car
Turn on that radio and keep yourself entertained by listening to music. If you have a good playlist, plug your phone in, sit back, relax, and enjoy your time while you wait for the traffic to clear. Break the silence and commotion by singing the lyrics out loud. Yes, karaoke is what we're talking about here! You can do this alone or with other people in the car too. It'll make for a good practice for your karaoke nights! And if you're lucky enough to get good people in the cars around you, they can join in too!
Read a Book or Newspaper
Man and Woman Reading Newspaper in Car
Looking at our erratic schedule these days, we hardly find time for catch up on the world news, or even read a book. If you are a voracious reader and always carry a book along, then a traffic jam is the best time to read a few pages, especially when you know that you are not going to move ahead for the next 10 - 15 minutes. Or if you prefer reading on your smartphone or Kindle, you can do that too. But make sure you stay focused on the traffic too!
Play Games and Solve Puzzles
Fun in Car
With so much advancements in technology, you can now play 'n' number of games on your cell phone. They really come in handy when you are getting bored stuck in traffic. You can keep your mind off the traffic by indulging in some games or solving puzzles. You can try playing Sudoku and crosswords. Aren't traffic situations the best time to put your brains to use, rather than getting frustrated? Or if you have another person with you in the car, both of you can play 'Name the Tune' game. One person hums a tune and the other has to guess it. This is when you try and remember all those fun games that you used to play when you were a kid. You can play even I Spy, Road Trivia, Charades, etc.
Woman Eating in Car
Being stuck in traffic for long time can give you hunger pangs, especially when it is stagnant. It can leave you exhausted for the remaining part of the day, adding to your frustration. Although studies say that eating while driving can be more dangerous than texting, many people think of it as an ideal time to satisfy their hunger. So, make sure that you carry a snack with you always, so that you can grab a bite or two when the traffic stands still.
Take Selfies
Selfie in Car
It's selfie time, baby! Clicking pictures, especially selfies, seem to be the most popular way of killing time when the traffic is literally crawling. Click and upload! Flaunt your new hairstyle or tattoo, and let the whole world know about your new obsession. If you don't have any of these, then click a simple selfie with a frustrated and funny face, and upload it, complaining about the traffic. You never know, it might just help other people avoid that particular route and save them the pain.
Make a To-do List or Plan a Trip
Making to do in Car
This is a good time to make a note of all the things that you have to finish of by the end of the day, or may be the week, or focus on the things that you forgot to do. This will make your task easier, and ensure that you don't forget anything. If you have been longing to go on a vacation or even a short road trip. Make use of this time and get in touch with all the people who would want to go with you. Browse online and get know to about the places that you would want to visit.
Pamper Yourself
Woman Making up in Car
If you know that the traffic is not moving ahead anytime soon, then file your nails or give yourself a little manicure. If you are a girl, then you might want to make touch-up your makeup. Women usually like to take this opportunity for touch-up before starting their day at work. It may also happen that you were not completely ready, and left your place in a hurry because you were getting late; this traffic gives you the opportunity to correct that.
Tidy Your Car Up
Cleaning Car
You haven't found the time to clean up the mess in your car? Well, being stuck in a traffic jam with nothing to do can be the best time to solve this problem. Gather all the wrappers and other waste, and put it aside so that you can throw it out later. Rearrange the dashboard. And if you get the opportunity, get out of the car and clean it from outside too; of course, only when the traffic is not moving at all! We're sure you wouldn't want to be the cause of a bigger jam or accident, and experience curses flying towards you!
Browse Online
Internet Surfing in Car
This is one thing that everyone will end up doing anyway. In this Internet era, and with your social media accounts synced to your mobiles, you can check Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., from anywhere. You can even watch videos online. Catch up on your favorite TV show or the latest viral video going around on social media. However, ensure that you don't distract the driver of your car, as it can be really dangerous.
Be Patient
Frustrated Man in Traffic
The most important thing and the key to survive a traffic jam ― be patient! Long lines, build-up of vehicles, and honking can lead to frustration and road rage. However, control your anger and try to keep a cool mind. Think of some ways to amuse yourself, and if you can't think of anything, you have the above list to yourself!
Some other things that you can do are:
  • Learn a new language by listening to an all-course audio CD of any language.
  • Indulge in interesting conversations if you have other people in your car.
  • Prepare yourself for the day at work, and think about the goals that you have to accomplish on that day.
  • Get out and do some stretches if you want to prevent yourself from getting cramps and a sleeping foot.
  • Strike up a conversation with the person in the car next to you. You never know, you might just stumble upon your soulmate, or get a friend for lifetime!
  • Observe the amusing behavior of other people around you. Observe, not stare! Staring is rude!
So now you see, traffic jams are not that bad after all! All you need to know is how you can make the most of that time, and spend time with yourself. But make sure that you do all this when the traffic is really bad and not moving. Be safe!