You guys know how much we love to travel with the boys and so often we’re asked, “How do you do it?!” Well, we’re super grateful to travel for free or paid most of the time BUT, when we’re not traveling for my blog and being hosted to create content for you guys, we’re counting pennies and saving wherever we can to give our family the best trip possible! With that, comes experiencing those extra perks that most people don’t realize can be completely FREE and will totally upgrade your entire trip!
There are a lot of things we do to save and travel on a budget BUT, these 5 things are MUST do’s when it comes to our accommodations and almost every single time, we walk away with one if not all of these quick and easy requests!
- Ask for a complimentary room upgrade: You never know if you don’t ask! That’s our motto! ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS ask if there are any complimentary room upgrades available! Most of the time if there’s a cancellation for an ocean or garden view or if it hasn’t been booked out yet, they’ll happily gift it to you!
- Ask for early check-in prior to arriving: A day before your arrival, call to see if you’re able to have a complimentary early check-in! Most of the time, they’ll ask you to call back the day-of as well but, there have been plenty of times we’ve received early check-in for free!
- Request late check-out: The same goes for late check-out as it does early check-in! A day before your departure, call to see if you’re able to have a complimentary extension on your check-out time! Even if you can’t get a late check-out, you can always request to have your luggage stored while you continue playing on the grounds of the hotel you’re staying at or lounge in the restaurant!
- Kids Eat Free vouchers: Many hotels and resorts have Kids Eat Free options! Sometimes you receive a voucher at check-in for each day of your stay, and other times you may see “Kids Eat Free” on the menu at restaurants on location! Call ahead and see what the options are for savings on kid’s meals! Our boys LOVE to be spoiled with room service but, it gets expensive fast so, instead, we’ll do a call down for an order to the restaurant and one of us will just pick it up and bring it back to the room for “room service”! Another thing we love: Breakfast/brunch by the pool! Most of the time our boys eat free and to them, it tastes the same whether it’s free or $14! So, we’ll “splurge” on breakfast by the pool without them knowing that we’re saving a TON on this fun dining option!
- Excursions & Other Savings: Inquire at your hotel about exclusive savings for hotel guests on local excursions and adventures as well as events for kids at the resort/hotel you’re staying at! We’ve had so many experiences during our travels that we never imagined doing because of the cost but, with the savings hotels often offer, we were able to do so!
- Club Access & Snack Periods: Many chain hotels offer Club Access as a paid upgrade with certain rooms. There are times though, that the cost of a Club Access room is nearly the same as a room without Club Access. We always check for the difference in price when booking a hotel! Sometimes, it’s less than a $12 difference which to me, is basically free when you’re talking breakfast, snacks, sometimes alcohol, water bottles, juices, Starbucks Coffee, light bites before dinner, and desserts all included in a place that we can lounge with the kids outside of our hotel room! If you’re staying at a hotel without Club Access, inquire with the front desk about possible snack periods! We’ve stayed at hotels that deliver fresh baked cookies to the Ice Machine area every hour on the hour between lunch and dinner times, free snack bars and fruit in the lobby, donuts on each floor, and even free mocktail hours!
- Kids’ Activities: Always call your hotel or resort in advance and ask where you can find a list of the pool/kid activities during the dates of your stay! You don’t always have to venture away from your hotel during a trip to have a killer time! Our boys always love free snow cones, ice cream sundaes, crafts, s’mores, and movies under the stars! Many times we’ve heard from them that taking advantage of the free activities was the highlight of our entire trip!
- Celebrations: This doesn’t just apply to Disney World, friends! If you’re celebrating a special occasion, ask the front desk prior to your stay if they do anything special to embrace their guests staying at their hotel for a celebration! We’ve had chocolate covered strawberries, beautifully decorated cookies, and more delivered to our rooms during special occasions for FREE! (Not during a hosted stay either! Just regular people who aren’t there to document our stay while possibly getting extra perks haha!)