How to Find and Book a Kid-Friendly Airbnb

^^^ Airbnb in Matakana that provided children's toys and books.

^^^ Airbnb in Matakana that provided children's toys and books.

Traveling with kids requires special planning and I have found that one of the things that makes traveling with kids easier is booking an Airbnb. Staying at an Airbnb enables us to make each city that we visit feel like home. It means we have a liveable space, often a backyard that  so that we have a liavable space that i smore comfortable for families traveling with kids. It means we can make our own meals, have a separate room that we can go in after the kids are in bed or down for naps without worrying about waking them up,

After traveling for over 6 months with three children aged 5 and under and staying in over 20 Airbnb’s during that time, I have narrowed down the top tips for families traveling with young children when booking an Airbnb and what you should look for in an Airbnb property.

^^^ Expansive yard at our Hot Water Beach Airbnb

^^^ Expansive yard at our Hot Water Beach Airbnb

^^^ Baby goat and sheep feeding at Airbnb in Kaikoura

^^^ Baby goat and sheep feeding at Airbnb in Kaikoura

^^^ Playground and treehouse at a Wellington Airbnb

^^^ Playground and treehouse at a Wellington Airbnb

^^^ Large yard right on the beach at our Whangaparaoa Airbnb

^^^ Large yard right on the beach at our Whangaparaoa Airbnb

^^^ Animal feeding at our Turangi airbnb

^^^ Animal feeding at our Turangi airbnb

^^^ Venice Beach Airbnb with kid-friendly board games, boogie boards, and children's beach toys. 

^^^ Venice Beach Airbnb with kid-friendly board games, boogie boards, and children's beach toys. 

6 Tips for Booking a Kid-Friendly Airbnb

Outdoor Space.

Being confined in a small space with little kids is not ideal for anyone. Kids need space to run around. If there isn’t, keep in mind that you will need to take the kids out or for a walk to get energy out and activities or toys to keep them entertained while indoors. Sitting inside in a confined space is unrealistic for children.

Breakability.

Check pictures to get an idea of the design and decor of the space and how kid-friendly it is in terms of "breakability". It won't be a relaxing trip if you are worried about your children knocking something down or running into something. You don't want your children to feel (or be) like elephants in a china shop because that would be stressful for everyone. Of course, all places will have a few things that you probably won't want the kids touching. We recommend when you arrive at your airbnb to do a quick sweep and remove anything that might break and put it away until you leave. We take photos of the space when we arrive so that we know where everything goes and can put it back in the correct place upon check out.

Check for A washer and dryer.

Kids go through clothes twice as fast as adults and even if you are staying for only one or two nights, the possibility that you will need to use laundry facilities is high. We put this into the filters when we are selecting an Airbnb. There were a few times that the Airbnb didn’t have a dryer and we were unable to dry our clothing thoroughly before we left.

Location/Walkability.

Make sure you research the area for things to do and places to go. You don’t want to book an Airbnb that requires you to drive long distances just to explore the city you are visiting.

Kitchen or kitchenette with fridge.

One of the big reasons we choose to book an Airbnb over a hotel is so that we don’t have to dine out for every single meal. Not only is eating in with three young kids easier, but it also saves a lot of money, so having a refrigerator in the space is crucial. Keep in mind that kids need snacks between every meal and we found that not having a full size fridge (some airbnbs we stayed in only had a "mini fridge") in the space and made it difficult to stock all of the food our family needed, requiring us to purchase a cooler in order to store everything. 

Internet.

The tie-breaker for us if an airbnb has all of the above, is the availability of internet. Not only for work purposes, but for the need to unwind at night after the kids go to bed, we liked the option of being able to use Netflix or surf the internet.

BONUS TIP.

Check the host’s other listings to see if there are multiple listings on the property. We stayed at one spot that had another house on the property that shared the pool with us and the other property happened to be rented out during our stay by a large group to celebrate a graduation party. Needless to say, it wasn’t a conducive environment for small children.

The Ultimate Guide to Booking a Kid-Friendly Airbnb - Isobel Benesch