Hotels can be expensive, especially if you’re traveling with kids. From steaming clothes to making mac and cheese through the coffee machine, you’d be surprised what you can do in a hotel room to feel more at home. Here is a list of 17 ways to help with costs and efficiency for your next getaway.
Borrow items you may have forgotten.
Don’t we always forget something when traveling? Well, rather than buying a new item, you might be able to borrow it. There are certain hotel chains that lend out anything from yoga mats to curling irons for their guests.
Do a little research and you might be able to pack lighter by borrowing certain items and save some money as well. You can even cook dinner if you’d like by borrowing crock pots! Here are a few examples that KrazyCouponLady has shared:
“Candlewood Suites offer guests a chance to borrow desk fans, blenders and Crock-Pots, small hand tools, and games to give the comforts of home to your hotel room.
Voted one of the 10 Best Hotel Chains for Families by Parents magazine, Hyatt House allows guest to access their extensive list of items to borrow–from humidifiers, curling irons, yoga mats, and more.
If you don’t own a Fire Stick or Chromecast, select Marriott locations are allowing guests to log-in to their membership accounts to watch movies and shows on the room’s TV instead of your mobile devices or tablets.”
Use pillows as a bed divider.
Sometimes you get to a room and they only have a king bed; you’re with a buddy on a road trip and you don’t want to get separate rooms. Easy solution: Ask for a couple pillows and make a divider down the middle.
It’ll bring back memories of your youth when you used to make forts, plus it will give you a little privacy so you don’t want up spooning your buddy or cuddling face-to-face, because even in Vegas that might be too much.
This trick also works great if you are traveling with kids; take one bed and easily turn it into two so the youngsters don’t fight over space.
Don’t order room service.
In this day and age, room service is most likely going to be overpriced, medium-quality food at best. What you’re better off doing is ordering from a local restaurant and getting it delivered.
And if you want to save some money, try looking up Uber Eats, GrubHub, Postmates, or even Amazon Fresh, who might have some local deals going on. They also offer great discounts for first-time users.
Looking to save even more cash? Try using your hotel room appliances to make a full meal for yourself:
Create a table out of an ironing board.
If you need a table for your kids in the hotel room, use the ironing board. You can turn it into a buffet-style table where there is enough room for three.
Boil water in the coffee pot.
This is a great trick for anyone who is on a budget or pressed for time: You can use the coffee maker in the room to get boiling water.
Just run water through the machine without coffee in it, and you’ve got yourself hot water for a variety of items like ramen, instant oatmeal, mac and cheese, packets of soup, and more. This will be a big time and money saver for little kids when all they need is one cup of Easy Mac.
Tether for free internet.
If you’re not sure about tethering, it’s best to look up your data plan to see if your phone will allow it and if there is a charge.
But if not, then instead of paying for subpar wifi, you can tether your phone to your computer and use it as a source of internet. PCMag has a write-up on how to tether for almost every smartphone out there—check it out!
Amplify your music.
If you don’t have any speakers in the room, take an empty water bottle, ice bucket, or coffee mug, and place your phone in it with the speakers down.
The sound will instantly be louder, and ta-dah, you have your own makeshift speaker.
Block out hallway noise.
For some reason, it always seems like the hallways in hotels are bright enough to see from space.
If you’re trying to sleep and don’t want the light or the noise creeping in (great for Vegas), then wedge a towel at the foot of your door to block out the unwanted light and sound.
Block light peeking in from the curtains.
Need another trick to help make your room a blackout zone? Take a pants hanger and use those clips to hold your curtains together.
That way you won’t have that 3-inch gap of space where all the light shines through and somehow always miraculously lands directly in your eyes.
Do laundry in your room.
If you’re on a big road trip and absolutely need to do some laundry, a quick way to save some money is fill up the hotel room bathtub, mix in some soap, and handwash your clothes. Let them air dry in the sunlight or hang them from the shower pole.
Don’t forget your movies.
Always bring your digital devices to stream movies for free versus paying large hotel fees.
Chromecast, Fire, and Apple TV can all be used as long as there is a USB in the TV. You can also stream from your computer if the wifi allows you to.
Get an extra charging port.
If there are a bunch of you crammed into a room and you need an outlet to charge something, remember that most TVs these days have a USB port in them so you can use it to charge your phone, speaker, GoPro, or whatever else you need.
Organize with an ice bucket bag or laundry bag.
If you’re on the road for a while, use these bags to help compartmentalize your dirty clothes so the rest of your stuff doesn’t smell.
You can also use it to organize things like snacks for on-the-go. If you have babies, use it to throw dirty diapers in and contain the smell.
Get rid of the suitcase smell.
For some reason, there is always that weird suitcase smell if you let your clothes sit in there for too long.
Always keep a few dryer sheets in your luggage and it’ll make your clothes smell fresh for the duration of your travel.
Create your own humidifier.
Hotel rooms always seem to be extra dry, especially if you crank the air conditioning. A great way to help solve that problem is by wetting a towel with warm water, wringing out the excess, then placing it by the air conditioner to make your own humidifier.
Just be sure to place a plastic bag or something under the towel so it doesn’t get the floor moldy.
Put shower caps on your dirty shoes.
If your trip has you going through some rough terrain or perhaps you just get caught in the rain, take the free shower cap and place it around your shoes to contain the dirt and mud.
Go back and get another ice bucket bag if you need more than one.
Steam the wrinkles out of clothes.
If you don’t have an iron or don’t know how to use one, hang your clothes up in the shower and the steam will help flatten out all the wrinkles.