Booking hotel for kids

hotel for kids: 12 things to look out for!

Finding a suitable hotel for kids can be a chore. On our world trip, we predetermined everything, so we had to book 32 accommodations in advance.

Of course, you can also choose to look locally, as you will have more freedom, but keep in mind that you will then have to keep looking for suitable accommodations during your trip and the better accommodations may already be full.

We also liked the fact that this way we could make a good estimate of our budget, since we already knew the cost of accommodation before our trip.

In retrospect, almost all the accommodations were absolutely top-notch and we only regretted 1 accommodation, but we will come back to that later in this blog.

How do we address this? We will describe that in twelve points below so you book the right hotel for kids!

Hotel Negombo Sri Lanka for the family
Family-friendly hotels Sri Lanka

hotel for kids #1 The location

The location of your accommodation is hugely important when traveling with kids. You would prefer to be as close as possible to all the stores, restaurants and attractions, so look carefully at where your accommodation is located.

If you find a very cheap hotel for kids, but you have to take a cab to the center every day, you will end up paying more, than being in the center.

If a destination has an efficient and inexpensive subway system, you can expand your room search. At most websites like
you can see exactly where the location of the hotel is.

As we mentioned, the hotels we pick are generally absolutely top-notch, but when we were in Tonga were, we were completely outside the center on a certain side of the island and depended on the unreliable local bus that came by once every hour.

Some resorts are far from the outside world and then you may be dependent on the hotel’s food, for example. Many hotels also know this and therefore often charge high prices for food.

Hotel with kids Udawalawe Sri Lanka
Family-friendly hotel Sri Lanka Kandy

hotel for kids #2 The price

This is obviously an open door, but of course the price is something to consider (or you must be a millionaire, then you will have less to look at ;))).

We assumed an average price for all accommodations for our trip and knew in advance that we were paying less than average in Sri Lanka and more than average on islands like Hawaii and Fiji.

Therefore, the price is partly location dependent. For 100 euros a night, you are in the top segment in Sri Lanka and somewhere at the bottom in Hawaii.

So check carefully in advance what the average prices of the rooms are and what you want to spend for this.

If you have found a suitable room on a website, also check through a few other websites to see if your found hotel room is not offered cheaper anywhere else.

Also check the hotel’s own website. However, you do need to pay attention to whether all the terms remain the same and whether you have the same room when you look on other websites.

Stopover Sri Lanka with kids
Havana hotel family-friendly

hotel for kids #3 The ability to cancel

If you are going on a long trip of a few months, then certain things may happen, causing you to interrupt your trip.

Of course, these could be various things (death of family member, coronavirus, homesickness). Then, if you have everything already fully committed and cannot cancel it, you may lose a lot of money.

To avoid this, we always make sure we book most accommodations with the option to cancel just before the date we arrive. This does generally cost a little more, but it is often a kind of insurance for yourself.

In addition, you can continue to search for better accommodations in the meantime, and you can regularly check if the price of your accommodation has come down.

If this is the case, book your accommodation right away at the reduced price and then cancel the old booking. This way, the price you have to pay for a kid’s hotel may get a little lower and lower as the check-in date approaches.

Airbnb with kids

hotel for kids #4 Do the kids have their own bed

Yes, this obviously sounds ridiculous, but a lot of hotels indicate that a room is suitable for, say, two adults and a kid, but then assume that you are sleeping three people in one bed.

Some people will find this quite cozy, but if you’re taking a long trip and sleeping in the same bed with your kids every day, that doesn’t help the romance either ;).

Often at hotels there is the option of adding a bed, but you pay an extra fee for this per night. So check carefully in advance to make sure this is the case.

We book almost all hotels through
, because we think they have fantastic customer service. If we have a question about the accommodation, they take it up and call the accommodation to answer our question.

Havana hotel family-friendly old town
Vacation Cuba with kids

hotel for kids #5 The size of the room

Especially if you’re traveling with kids, it’s kind of nice that you don’t have a very small room where you’re on each other’s lips. In certain Asian countries, they often offer very small rooms, which will not make you happy.

In Moscow, we once literally slept in a closet with no windows or any facilities. Obviously, you want to avoid that, so always check the room description carefully to see how many square meters the room is.

Swimming Udawalawe Sri Lanka with kids
Family-friendly hotels Sri Lanka

hotel for kids #6 The number of reviews and the height of the rating

One of the most important things to look for when booking a hotel for kids is the number of reviews given to an accommodation and what the rating is.

If more than 100 people have already given a review and the grade is a 9.1, for example, then you have a lot more assurance that you have made a good choice.

If there are only a few reviews for an accommodation, it is more difficult to estimate how to judge the grade given.

Also, always read the most recent substantive responses. Maybe 5 years ago people complained about the accommodation having an outdated pool, but it was completely renovated last year.

These people’s ratings can then depress the average of the accommodation.

In general, you can get a pretty good idea of what a kid’s hotel is like in terms of service, noise, hygiene, meals and other facilities if you read a dozen reviews from people who spent their vacations in this accommodation last year.

Airbnb with kids
Family-friendly accommodation hawaii

hotel for kids #7 What meals are included

It is important to check what meals are included in the price.

With many accommodations, breakfast is included in the price, which in turn saves in your predetermined budget what you have to spend during the day.

Then you can also determine for yourself that the price of the overnight stay may be slightly higher, than you predetermined. Also, check customer reviews often to see what they say about the meals included.

Over the years, we’ve had breakfasts from a loaf of bread with a jar of peanut butter, to elaborate buffet menus, where you could eat so much you were full all day.

Bahamas vacation food and drink
Eating New Zealand with kids

hotel for kids #8 Do you as a parent have an opportunity to chill when your kids are asleep

When we had booked a hotel stay in Liechtenstein on our transit to Italy, we slept in the same room as our daughter, and when she went to sleep at 7:30, we couldn’t actually have a nice drink and talk to each other.

Therefore, especially with small children, check if there is an opportunity for the two of you to chill out at the end of the day when the kids are asleep.

If you sleep in the same room, then a balcony is already fine, and if the kids have a separate bedroom then it is not a problem at all.

Tonga hotel center with kids
Honolulu apartment with family and kids

hotel for kids #9 Is there any possibility that you can swim with your kids

In most distant countries there is a tropical climate and it is still really nice to be able to swim somewhere during the day with your kids.

If you are on a tropical beach or close to the sea, a pool at your hotel will be unnecessary. In many countries it is additionally possible to swim at another hotel.

On our trip in Sri Lanka, we regularly swam in the pool of a luxury hotel for a small fee and were ourselves in accommodation that cost 5x less per night than that hotel.

If you are traveling to a country where the temperature during your vacation is around 10 degrees, it is obviously a waste of money if you book a hotel with an outdoor pool.

Havana cuba pool
Miami vacation with kid

hotel for kids #10 Can you park for free at the accommodation

In many places around the world, to explore the area, you will need to rent a car. Especially if you rent this car for a few days, you will also have to park it at night.

If there is no free parking at the accommodation, it means parking your car somewhere for tens of euros. Therefore, always check in advance if this is possible.

hotel for kids #11 Presence of a washing machine

On a long trip, you want to wash your clothes from time to time. Therefore, it may be convenient for you to occasionally choose an accommodation where a washing machine is available.

You can then wash everything right away for several weeks. Hotel rooms will not have washing machines, but Airbnb accommodations often do. For our experience with Airbnb, click here.

By the way, in some countries it is also very cheap to take your laundry away. For a few euros, they wash and dry everything, and with a little luck, they will also iron your clothes.

Pool Hawaii with kids and family
Family-friendly accommodation Rotorua with family

hotel for kids #12 Presence of a kitchen

Eating out is fun, of course, but sometimes on a long trip it’s nice to cook for yourself.

Also, it often saves a lot of money (especially in countries that are relatively expensive such as Japan, New Zealand or Iceland).

As with the washing machine, you are often more likely to find a kitchen in an Airbnb accommodation than in a hotel room. Even with kids, it’s nice from time to time to be able to put something familiar on the table.

Looking at all the accommodations of our world trip, we were only really dissatisfied with 1 room out of 32. This was our room in Tonga. The resort was too far from civilization and the room was filthy. In addition, there were cockroaches running everywhere, so we left after three days here. The other 31 accommodations were generally fantastic. Surely that’s a good score of over 95%!

As we mentioned above, we book most of our accommodations here through

Family-friendly accommodation hot water beach
Family-friendly accommodations Taupo New Zealand

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