Friday, April 13, 2012

Hoteling it with kids

We like to travel.  We like to do it cheaply and comfortably.  If you do too, here are some tips for traveling cheaply and comfortably with small children with regards to hotel rooms.

1) Get a room with a refrigerator and microwave.  That way you can pack your own snacks, lunches, whatever you'd like.  This really cuts down on meal costs.

2) Get a hotel that offers a free breakfast.  This also greatly reduces meal costs.  (We recently stayed at Hawthorne Suites, and they had a great hot breakfast buffet.)

3) Make sure the hotel has free parking (usually they do, but sometimes this is not the case in large cities).

4) If you have small children, you can either take your own pack and play, or if space is an issue, many hotels offer cribs/pack and plays.  However, I've ended up with some pretty crappy "cribs" - whether filthy or falling apart (slats missing and leaning) - so I would make SURE you know what you are getting by calling and talking to the staff.

5) Some hotels only have showers, so if you have a little one who takes baths, you may want to ask about this.

6) My husband likes to watch TV at night - sometimes WAY past our daughter's bedtime.  This can make it difficult for her to sleep.  If you can find a hotel with a half wall or some kind of partition, this can alleviate this problem.  (This is often a problem for us.  I'd love to come up with a portable room divider to take with us when we travel.  Suggestions?)

7) If pools are important to your kids, keep that in mind when searching.

8) If air travel is part of your plan, some hotels offer park and fly programs, where you can stay one night and park your car there for free for a pre-determined amount of time.  They also often offer free airport shuttles.  Make sure they have a car seat, or bring your own.

9) I book all hotels through  No matter where you stay, after 10 nights you get a night free.  Can't beat that!


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