Going away on vacation is an expensive business. Unless you’re lucky enough to be staying in a 2 bed suite or villa, chances are you’re likely to have your kids in the same hotel room as you. Whilst this isn’t the most ideal situation, here are some tips on how to make it manageable (but if you really want to enjoy the hotel high life, leave the kids at home and treat yourself to a few days away!)
- Make sure you request the cot/crib in advance and reconfirm that just before your stay. Nothing worse than arriving at a hotel, only to be told there are no baby beds available.
- Consider putting the travel cot in the hotel bathroom. Check to see if it’s ventilated and if any light might sneak through to wake up baby.
- Move around the furniture to create a partition (even if it’s just a chair) to make sure your kids can’t see you from their rollaway/crib.
- Invest in a cot travel blackout. Two great products are the Snoozeshade for Travel Cots and Content & Calm’s Cot Canopy Breeze (better for older baby/toddler). You can drape the blackout over the cot in a number of different styles from zipped up and fully cocooned to half-open. I also think the cot blackout helps with jet lag as little light can get through to disturb a sleeping baby.
- Be strict with your baby/toddler that it’s not ok for them to fall asleep in bed with you! Otherwise you’ll be doing this every night and they will never get back in that travel cot.
- Lights off doesn’t necessarily mean the night is over for parents. We normally put our two girls to bed, turn the lights off and wait about half an hour or so for them to fall asleep. Then (if we haven’t fallen asleep) we turn the reading lights back on and watch some TV etc.
- Pay extra for a balcony or suite with separate living area. This will give you somewhere to retreat to if you don’t want to be stuck in the same room. We recently lucked out on a trip to Phuket as our hotel, the Pullman Phuket Arcadia, offered a decently priced ‘family room’ which had a separate area with bunkbeds!
- Check out sites like airbnb that offer private house rentals. We’ve had some great experiences with it and recently spent the night in a 2 bed cabin on a beautiful farm and it worked out cheaper than a motel room.
- Embrace the early nights! Use the holiday as a chance to truly switch off and be in bed by 9pm!