Baby-Friendly Hotels and Motels
Many hotel and motel chains offer to let kids under the age of twelve stay free, as long as they are in their parents' room. No matter how nice the accommodations, your first step upon check-in should always be a child-proof inspection.
Get down on all fours, just as your crawling baby would, and look at the room from a baby-eye view. Are there any electrical cords, phone cords, or other items that could lead to danger for baby? If so, move them out of the way, or decide who will take turns watching the baby while in the hotel room. You'd be surprised how easy it is for a baby to pull a heavy hotel phone onto his tiny head, resulting in a serious injury.
Here's a list of family-friendly accommodations:
Days Inn (1-800-325-2525) offers a Kids Stay and Eat Free program for children under twelve.
Four Seasons (1-800-268-6282) offers a Kids for All Seasons program (with special activities, child-proof rooms, and milk and cookies for toddlers and up). You can also get a Single Parents Weekend package.
Hilton (1-800-445-8667) offers a summer-long “vacation station” with welcome gifts and availability of toys and games.
Hyatt (1-800-233-1234) offers special activities for the younger set, as well as babysitting services.
Marriott (1-800-228-9290) offers babysitting services, cribs, and toys; call ahead for information.
Radisson (1-800-333-3333) offers child-proof suites and other programs.
Residence Inns (1-800-331-3131) have a homelike environment, complete with a kitchen.
Westin (1-800-228-3000) has a “Kids Club” program with night-lights, juice, potty seats, and children's movies.