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Tips for Staying in Hotels with Kids

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When staying in a hotel with kids, there are some simple things you can do to make your family vacation as fun and stress-free as possible. That starts, of course, with finding the right hotel for your family. Once you check in, set up your room for vacation success.

Nickelodeon Suites Hotel

Above is an en-suite kitchen at the Residence Inn by Marriott Beverly Hills, one of over 135,000 hotels listed on (Photo from

What to look for in a family-friendly hotel:

Try to book a suite whenever possible to have more space to spread out and to allow for better sleep for all members of the family. A well-rested family is a happy family.

Look for a hotel with included breakfast. This saves precious vacation money and time, and it’s a tasty way to start your day.

An en-suite kitchen or at least an in-room refrigerator is another hotel bonus. If breakfast isn’t included, you can stock up on yogurts and juice for a morning meal. It’s also handy for keeping snacks and sodas cool for an afternoon treat. A fridge can be a lifesaver for parents traveling with a baby for keeping formula or breast milk chilled.

A fabulous pool makes a hotel stay all that more special, especially for children. Fountains and waterslides for the kids and swim-up bar for mom and dad? Yes, please!

With profiles of over 135,000 hotels in more than 60 countries, makes finding a hotel easy. Choose your location and travel dates, then play around with a bunch of options to find the best hotel for your family. You can specify amenities (like free breakfast, a pool, or a gym) as well as type of hotel (family-friendly: check!). Then narrow down your search by price, star ratings, and guest ratings. You can even view photos and read past guests’ reviews before making your decision.

Nickelodeon Suites Hotel

Tips for setting up your hotel room for vacation success:

After my family arrives at a hotel, my husband and I unpack and set up the room right away. Before I had kids I was a drop-my-bags-and-go kind of a gal. Nowadays, I know that an organized room makes for a more enjoyable vacation.

Set up the room into four areas: dressing, playing, dining, and diapering (if you still have a non-potty-trained tyke).

Rather than digging through suitcases every day, set up a dressing area. Put all clothing into drawers or hang items in the closet for easy retrieval and to keep outfits looking fresh. Keep dirty clothes off the floor by tucking them into a plastic bag for washing later.

For a playing space, put all toys and children’s books in one area. Your kids will know where to find them, and more importantly, where to return them when playtime is over. Toys strewn all about can cause accidental falls and create a chaotic environment to return to after a long day of site-seeing.

If you don’t have a kitchen, create a dining space, preferably on a table near a sink. Stack up all bottles, sippy cups, and snacks here.

For families in the diapering phase, choose a spot to take care of this task. Lay down a hotel towel and place a changing pad over that. Place a stack of diapers and a box of wipes within arm’s reach. logo


Now it’s your turn! What are your tips for staying in hotels with kids?

Go to the Facebook page and share your tips there!

A Note from The Travel Mama: I received compensation to write this post. All opinions are mine, as always.

About Colleen Lanin

Colleen Lanin is the founder/editor-in-chief of As the author of her book, "The Travel Mamas' Guide," she teaches parents not only how to survive a trip with children, but also how to love exploring the world with their offspring. Her stories have appeared online and in print for such outlets as the "Today" show,, Parenting Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, Chicago Tribune, Expedia, San Diego Family Magazine, and more. Colleen gives tips on television, radio, and as a public speaker. She has a master’s degree in business administration with a background in marketing. She lives in Arizona with her husband and two kids.

  1. scott carney says

    That is such a good point about unpacking cloths and creating a dressing area.I find myself living out of the suit case. Doing that you end up ironing cloths or just have wrinkled cloths which is not good.

  2. Colleen Lanin, The Travel Mama says

    Thanks for the comment, Scott! I find emptying the suitcase makes finding everything you need so much easier, especially when traveling with kids.

  3. Leslie Skurka says

    I hate to put things in hotel drawers without a must, packing cubes!! You can keep clothes separated by family member, & then just set the entire cube in the drawer. These also work great for packing compactly & of course, organized. Baggage inspectors at airports seem to like them also since things are so easily moved and replaced.

  4. Colleen Lanin, The Travel Mama says

    Leslie – I had never heard of packing cubes. Thank you for the tip!

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