Going on holiday with your family is always fun and exciting. Unless you don’t like the travel part. I have to admit, sometimes I wish we could just click our fingers and miraculously arrive at our holiday destination.

Travelling with kids is not always fun, especially if the journey is long. We’ve been trying to find ways to make travel with children easier and one of the things we’ve tested out in order to do this, is staying in an airport hotel the night before a flight.  

Do you live close to a major airport?

I definitely don’t. The tip end of Cornwall is a good car or train journey away from any major airport. This week we had a long haul flight to Cape Town. Our flight was at 3pm and getting to the airport from Cornwall (with a toddler in tow) would be cutting it fine.

Our travel plans consisted of one 8 hour journey just to get to the airport. Followed by a 6 hour flight and a 9 hour flight.

To take some of the stress out of getting to the airport on time and to prevent one very tired and grumpy toddler we tested out breaking up the journey, by staying in a Travelodge the night before our flight.

Heathrow Central Travelodge

Heathrow Central Travelodge is the perfect location for flights from all terminals at Heathrow Airport. We were flying from Terminal 4 and the Travelodge was only a short car or taxi drive to our flight.

The Heathrow Central Travelodge is still fairly new and has been styled in the company’s new contemporary brand design. All of the rooms are bright and inviting and feature a new luxurious king size bed, which is super comfy and is suitably named the ‘Travelodge Dreamer Bed’.

Travelodge are so confident about the comfort of their beds, they are even selling them. I have to admit, it was the best night sleep I’ve had in a long, long time. Just what we needed before a super long journey.

Family Rooms

We stayed in one of the designated family rooms. It was the perfect size for myself, my partner, my toddler plus more.

There was a king size bed for us and two individual beds that Evie could take her pick from. If you do have a baby, you can also request a cot which saves you sharing a bed or bringing your own.

All rooms also include an en-suite bathroom with power shower, a flat screen TV with free digital channels and free tea and coffee-making facilities.

You also have access to WIFI for 30 minutes, then after that its £3 for 24 hours. It’s all the amenities you need for a nights stay before flying.


We had both dinner and breakfast in the Travelodge. If you’re expecting fresh food or fine dining then you’re in the wrong place. But the menu does have a lot of options, from burgers to jacket potatoes and much more.

We weren’t overly keen on dinner, but we were so hungry that anything satisfied our bellies. The dining space is really large and comfortable and there is even a little section in one corner that has been designed especially for children. 

Breakfast was a lot better than dinner and I highly recommend the continental breakfast so you can help yourself to a delicious cooked or cold breakfast before you fly.

It prepared us for our day and kept our toddlers hunger at bay for a long time.

Did It Make Our Journey Easier?

I am normally one for getting journey’s over and done with. If I was flying solo, I would have kept my journey shorter and tried to do it all in one go. But, with a two year old travelling with us, breaking up the journey with a Travelodge stay was the best thing we could have done.

We had a refreshing sleep and Evie didn’t have to stay sitting down on different methods of transport all in one go. If you are travelling with children and you’re flying long haul, or don’t want to risk missing your plane by travelling up on the same day, then I highly recommend a stay with Travelodge.

The staff in the Heathrow Central Travelodge were all really friendly. They helped us to arrange a taxi to our terminal and also helped us to print some documents that we needed before we flew.

Flying With Children?

We have lots of travel tip on Life Unexpected. Check out our tips for flying long haul with a baby and our ‘5 Carry-On Essentials For When Travelling With Kids.

Have you ever thought about staying overnight before a flight? Would you find it easier? Let me know in the comments below.


  • I love the design of the bedroom, it looked fresh and vibrant. It’s a shame about the dinner as I’m not a breakfast person. I’m glad the staff were so helpful and the break helped out with your travel stress 🙂

  • I love hotels near airports. Makes the next day so much less stressful

  • JanetT says:

    I have had a family room in a Travelodge recently. I agree the staff are very nice.

  • I absolutely love staying in airport hotels, especially when you have earlier flights as it makes travelling so much easier, even more so with a toddler x

  • Mummy Gummie says:

    This is a really good idea. We live in Bristol and luckily we are only half an hr drive or so to the airport, which is mostly why we chose to fly from there when we go to turkey in June. But if we were flying from London or another airport then I would definitely consider staying somewhere nearer the night before.

  • Kerry norris says:

    It looks great. We used at travelodge at Birmingham airport before. I actually need to find somewhere before our holiday from Manchester airport in 3 weeks x

  • I love how kids jump on the bed as soon as they go into a hotel room. I think Travelodge is a great option for families, and it does make sense when flying with kids
    Zena’s Suitcase recently posted…Reykjavik Classic Whale (& Dolphin) Watching Tour With EldingMy Profile

  • We’ve found that staying the night before makes us more relaxed as we haven’t had the stress of last minute packing, traffic and a car journey. Travelodge rooms are perfect for families.
    Sarah | Boo Roo and Tigger Too recently posted…Fisher-Price Fun Feelings Monster {Review}My Profile

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