Best family hotels in Europe

Map: Best Hotels for Families of 4 in Europe

While it is standard in the United States to find hotel rooms with occupancy of 4, it is a lot less common in Europe. This makes planning a family trip using points to Europe more challenging.

This map was inspired when we started searching in 2019 for hotels our family could book with points. The process was very frustrating! It’s not even as simple as searching for a room for 2 adults and 2 kids. Sometimes the fine print allows children under a certain age to stay for free but the room will still show as “unavailable” if you enter more than 2 adults on the website.

Best family hotels in Europe
London, March 2020

What surprised me most as I researched these properties is that two chains in particular rose to the top. Both IHG Hotels & Resorts and Choice Hotels had lots of properties families could choose from — many more than any other chain. A lot of their hotels offer free breakfast, too! Also surprising was the value I found from these chains. For the same price I could book a Choice Hotel in the middle of nowhere USA — I could book one in the heart of Venice.

Just starting out with credit card points? Check out my post on picking your first travel points card.

Table of Contents

    Best Credit Cards for Hotels in Europe

    For the most options, get a card that will give you IHG One Rewards points or Choice Hotels points. Here are my favorites.

    Best Cards for Choice Hotels

    Best family hotels in Europe
    This hotel in Venice has free breakfast and costs 16,000-25,000 points per night to book via Choice Hotels.
    Best family hotels in Europe
    A suite sleeps 3. The hotel confirmed via phone that some will allow 2 children 12 and under in some of the suites. This costs 16,000-25,000 points per night depending on the season.

    Citi Premier is my favorite option because the points DOUBLE when you transfer to Choice. That means if you get the 80,000 point limited time bonus — that’s 160,000 Choice points!

    You can also get a Citi Custom cash and combine the points from both cards!

    Choice Hotels has its own card as well — but due to the way Citi Thank You points double, I think these two are the best option.

    Citi Premier – Limited time 80,000 point offer!
    • $95 annual fee
    • Thank You Points can be transferred to a variety of partners like Jet Blue, Avianca, Turkish Airways, Choice and more. Points double when transferred to Choice!
    • You can also redeem points through the Citi Travel Portal. 50,000 points = $625 of travel BUT prices seem a bit inflated vs. directly booking with hotels
    • See my full guide to the card here
    Citi Custom Cash – See Current Offers
    • No annual fee
    • Earn 5% cash back on your top spending category each month (up to $500)
    • Cash back is given as Thank You Points and if you have a Citi Premier card, you can combine points from the cards and these points will have all the transfer partners of the Premier as well.

    Best cards for IHG One Rewards Stays

    Best family hotels in Europe
    Rooms here sleep 4 and your 4th night would be free when booking with points!

    My favorite feature of the IHG One Rewards cards is that when you have one your 4th night is free on award stays. Prices are variable on award stays so if you can get your 4th night to be the most expensive one, you’ll really save.

    IHG One Rewards Premier Credit Card – see current offers
    • $99 annual fee
    • Reward Night after each account anniversary year at eligible IHG hotels worldwide (worth 40,000 points)
    • 4th night free when you redeem points for any stay of 4 or more nights
    • Earn 25 points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel
    • Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants. Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
    • Platinum Elite status as long as you remain a Premier card member
    • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck Fee Credit of up to $100 every 4 years as reimbursement for the application fee charged to your card
    IHG® One Rewards Premier Business Credit Card – see current offers
    • $99 annual fee
    • Reward Night after each account anniversary year at eligible IHG hotels worldwide (worth 40,000 points)
    • 4th night free when you redeem points for any stay of 4 or more nights
    • Earn 10 points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel
    • Earn 5 points per $1 spent on purchases on travel, hotels (non-IHG), gas stations, dining, social media and search engine advertising, and office supply stores.
    • Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
    • Platinum Elite status as long as you remain a Premier card member
    • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck Fee Credit of up to $100 every 4 years as reimbursement for the application fee charged to your card

    Best cards for Marriott stays

    Though it has relatively few options, the current Marriott credit card offer of 5 free nights (up to 50k per night) is an offer that can get you 5 nights in a city center in Europe. We stayed at the Residence Inn London Kensington and Marriott’s Village d’ile-de-France and had a great experience at both.

    Best family hotels in Europe
    We love the free breakfast and easy access to buses at the Residence Inn Kensington
    Best family hotels in Europe
    Rooms also have kitchens!
    Chase Marriott Bonvoy Boundless – 5 free night offer!
    • $95 annual fee
    • 1 Free Night Award annually after your Card account anniversary (up to 35k)
    • Earns 6 points per $1 at Bonvoy (Starwood / Marriott) properties and 2 points per $1 on everything else.
    • After holding this card for 1 year, you can upgrade to the Ritz Carlton card, which is one option for families to get airport lounge access.

    Searching & Booking Tips

    • For Choice and IHG: search for 2 adults. Some rooms actually allow 2 kids in addition to the adults. Check the fine print and call or email the hotel to confirm.
    • Choice Hotels only allow you to book 100 days in advance with points. Book as close as possible to 100 days in advance to have the most room options.
    • Most of the Hyatt hotels only allow a family of 4 to book if you are booking a standard or premium suite. When you search a destination, it will show points as if a standard room is available. When you actually click the hotel, it might say it is unavailable with points if you enter 4 people.
    • When in doubt – you can also reach out to hotels via email or Instagram to see if they allow kids to stay in rooms for free. Fire codes are strict but sometimes a few rooms at the hotel have a larger occupancy.

    Searchable Map

    Click the [ ] in the top right corner to expand the map. You’ll have a better experience searching it that way. If you find a hotel that I’m missing or is out of date — send me an email or leave a comment so I can update it!

    Red icons show IHG Hotels – shows pricing before switch to dynamic pricing

    Blue icons show Marriott Hotels – shows pricing before switch to dynamic pricing

    Yellow icons show Hyatt Hotels

    Green icons show Choice Hotels

    Have a favorite hotel I missed? Let me know in the comments so I can add it!

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