For people in the armed forces, finding hotels that cater to military families remains a challenge. The good news is that there are gems hidden among the lumps of coal; you just have to know where to find them.
It's an Honor
Most merchants welcome the chance to take care of America's esteemed military personnel. Everywhere you look across this country, business owners extend a helping hand in the financial sense to members of the armed forces, and are more than happy to do so. While it is easy to find military discounts for gasoline, housing, food and other products, locating good hotels for families in the military may require a little more work.
Top Hotels That Cater to Military Families
Not only do families serving in the armed forces long for an enjoyable hotel experience, but they deserve it as well. In addition to the stresses of war and conflict, military families usually have a significantly-reduced amount of time to spend together as a family, which means that virtually every moment together should be memorable and pleasant. The sections below offer lodging choices that provide America's finest with hot deals they can afford, along with a chance to feel a little pampered.
If Disney is out of the question, consider one of the many chain hotels that cater to military families. The great thing about chains is their convenient locations across America and their consistent amenities. No matter the size of your family, choosing temporary lodging in America's most respected hotel chains will meet everyone's needs.
- Residence Inn by Marriott: The space alone makes this a top selection for military families on the move. Suites come with one and two bedrooms, a fully-furnished kitchen and a spacious living area. Kids will enjoy Internet access, a pool and sporting areas. Adults can visit the market or hang out in the spa area. Most Marriott hotels offer a military discount for long or short stays.
- Staybridge Suites: A visit to Staybridge means your family will enjoy a complimentary breakfast buffet, 24-hour fitness facilities, a convenient in-house market, free wireless Internet access and the comfort of full kitchens and separate bedrooms. Some suites offer two bathrooms as well. All this and a hefty military discount sweeten the pot.
- Intercontinental Resorts: This chain lets you treat your family to a touch of elegance all over the world at a pauper's price. Your discounted rate will include child-centered services like arts and crafts, nature expeditions, professionally-supervised swimming and a diverse array of education, culture, recreation and sporting activities. For adults, the chain offers spa and fitness centers, nightlife resources and clean family living.
Armed Forces Vacation Club
If you're having trouble locating an appropriate hotel, the Armed Forces Vacation Club can likely help you out. AFVC offers military families and Department of Defense personnel access to over 3500 accommodations in over 80 countries for less than 400 dollars per week. This price reflects off-season dates and is subject to availability. For additional hotel deals and more information, visit the AFVC homepage.
Disney Dotes on the Military
Uncle Walt had plans for a military career himself, but they never came to fruition. You can see his ongoing support for the armed forces in many of Disney World's attractions and exhibits, but you can feel it for yourself by booking a stay at several Disney resorts located in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.
- Shades of Green: The military made a deal with Disney in 1994 and took over this resort, turning it into America's first armed forces recreation center. Outstanding amenities include a spa, golf course, fitness center, transportation services, free kids' meals (at certain times of the year), attraction discounts and family photography services. The icing on the cake is that the setting is exquisitely lovely, and the rates are more than affordable.
- Wilderness Lodge: The stress will literally melt away at Disney's Wilderness Lodge. Along with the resort's peaceful, rustic surroundings, guests will enjoy a health club, babysitting and educational children's services, park transportation, purchase delivery services, recreation options and accessibility for a range of disabilities.
- Animal Kingdom Lodge: Treat your family to a taste of the exotic in this Africa-inspired lodge. The kids will love the resort's pools, game room and the 24-hour play area while parents appreciate some time alone to have dinner or watch a movie under the stars. The whole family will enjoy amazing animal encounters with Wilderness Lodge's wildlife or on the Wanyama Safari.
Use Your Resources
If you are still on the hunt for hotels that cater to military families, let your support network be your guide. Chances are that your current set of friends in the armed forces have traveled both around America and abroad. Don't be afraid to ask for advice about securing accommodations wherever you may travel.