One of the most exciting and most difficult things about traveling with a little one is getting them used to being in a hotel room. Here are some tips to help your little one get comfortable in their new surroundings so everyone can get some sleep!
Talk to Your Hotel
Many hotels have special things they can do for your little one when you arrive. Be sure to contact them ahead of time and ask, you never know what they might offer! Some hotels have welcome packages for kids, others offer special treats (like free ice cream with dinner). In this picture, my little guy is holding the pirate sword and eye-patch he got when we checked into the Caribbean Beach resort! Even if it’s just a colouring sheet, it’s still something just for them and it will help them feel welcome and excited.
Let Them Explore
One of the hardest parts about being in a hotel room for a little one is waking up not knowing where they are. Give them some time to explore the room when you arrive. Let them open doors, look in the fridge, even bounce on the bed. Give them an opportunity to to really get to know their surroundings.
Make it Feel Like Home
There are lots of little things you can do to make a hotel room feel more like home. This can be as simple as a stuffed animal or nightlight that your little one is really attached to or you might need to bring something bigger like a pillow. Before you leave, ask your little one if there’s anything they’d like to bring to make them feel more comfortable and go with their lead. Most kids need something comfortable and recognizable to get through the night.
Be Prepared for a Rough First Night
The first night in a hotel is usually rough on everyone, especially a little one. Be prepared that your kiddo might wake up early or often and will probably take a little longer to go to sleep. If you go into the first night with that mind set it will make it easier for everyone and if they have an awesome first night, all the better!
If your Little One Uses a Crib, Ask for One!
If your little one is used to sleeping in a crib (even if they are on the older side) don’t be afraid to ask your hotel for one. Most have playpens or cribs that can be brought to your room. When my little guy was younger we used to do this all the time and it made a huge difference. It gave him the security he needed without us having to worry about traveling with a huge pack-n-play.
Make it Fun!
Staying in a hotel should be a fun experience and the more often your little one stays in a hotel (and has fun) the easier it will be the next time around. Make the arrival, unpacking and time in the room fun so that they see it as a part of the vacation rather than thinking of it as a scary new place they have to sleep.