When it comes to vacations, hotel accommodation is always a big ticket item if not staying with family. When you have 2 or more kids to consider, things become extra tricky.
My objective has always been to find a comfortable sleeping arrangement for our family of 4 without breaking the bank. I've tried a few options in the past and during our recent vacation, I experimented with a few additional sleeping arrangements.
Here's a list of the pros and cons for each arrangement based on my experience of 2 adults and twins.
Bed Sharing. We've tried this a couple of times with mixed results
Best for: Non-mobile infants or kids who are used to sleeping in big beds without tumbling all over the place
Pro: Even the standard hotel room with 2 full beds can work for this. Much more comfortable in rooms with king-sized beds though
Con: Talk about passion-killer!
Peapods or similar travel beds. Did this while relocating and on a couple of vacations
Best for: Crawling to toddler stage. (8 months to 2 years). We stopped using these when the girls were able to flip themselves upside-down while in the peapod for the sheer fun of it.
Pro: Very small footprint so if floor space is tight, this works very well. Plus the pods are mobile and can be setup anywhere meaning any location - beach, porch, living room - can become a nap area
Con: The flipping upside down mentioned earlier means kids outgrow this fast
Pack and plays. Did this while relocating and on our San Antonio vacation
Best for: all ages up to the height and weight limit of the pack and play
Pro: Most hotels will provide these if you call ahead so it's one less item to pack
Con: Older, vocal kids will not appreciate this. I haven't tried this with my kids once they were over 2 years old. Hotel room needs to be very big, preferably a suite with 2 separate living areas. Depending on hotel, the pack and play you actually get may look a little dingy. I suggest traveling with your own sheets
Sleeping Bags on the floor. Tried this for the first time last week
Best for: Older kids who are used to sleeping in big beds without tumbling all over the place. When we used these, I spent half the nights fishing the girls from random corners of the room to tuck them back into their sleeping bags. It was harrowing for me but they slept right through it
Pro: It easy to fit 2 sleeping bags on the floor of most hotel rooms
Con: Watch your step!
Sofa beds. Tried this for the first time last week
Best for: Older kids who are used to sleeping in big beds without tumbling all over the place. The sofa arm rests act as mini-bed rails for the peaceful sleepers. Acrobatic sleepers will probably need their positions adjusted several times during the nights
Pro: No additional equipment required from your end
Con: Not all hotels have rooms with sofa beds available. When available, they're usually part of a more expensive room package