i-phone spy – keeping kids happy with Foursquare

Here’s how to turn a car journey with kids into a fun and memorable happening.

You will need

At least one spoilt savvy kid with a smartphone – not hard to find these days

The phone to be loaded with the Foursquare app.

An adult refereeing.

Ideally you will have a number of spoilt brats in the back of the car who all have access to an i-phone with the full camera kit, decent 3G connection and capacity to use the thing.

The rules, all contestants are tasked with increasing their foursquare score over the course of the journey. The referee takes scores at outset and at the destination and is the sole judge whose word is final.

All check-ins need to have a photo accompanying. If the photo does not give clear evidence that the object in question has been spied, it is invalid and is deducted from the final score.

For those who don’t know Foursquare, it works like this. Your phone is linked by GPS to your location and some smart software from the Foursquare people means that local points of interest, typically petrol stations, KFC, Stonehenge, a traffic jam are identified as points you can check in. Some of these check-ins earn you lots of points , some are duds. You get all kind of extra points if you become mayor of a place (because you’ve been there often) or because you are the first of your friends to go somewhere.

I’ve played this game in the car a number of times. It is not advisable to do so when you ar driving as you will almost certainly crash while taking a photo as you drive. Otherwise it is a harmless way of passing the time and leaves at the end a photographic trail of what you’ve seen on the way.

There are many other ways to use Foursquare such as to check in at a football match along with half of the people in your stand (all of whom are Foursquare fans because we all support Yeovil and we are all social media nutters).

You compete in Foursquare leagues against your friends, there is much cheating in these leagues as unlike “i-hone spy” there is no referee and you can be on a Thorpe park rollercoaster one minute and walking through a Forest 30 seconds later. If there are no photos you can make it up as you go along and become a complete Walter Mitty.

But i-phone spy is deffo the business if you want to turn a car journey into a memorable event.

Foursquare -yeah!



About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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