Advanced search

To book airport hotel for 0720 flight

(92 Posts)
Twistertea Tue 26-Mar-19 19:31:13

First world problems I know

2 DDs (4yo and 6mo) .. holiday booked but flight is at 0720--- be at airport for 0520---

Airport an hour's drive from us... Then will need to factor in parking/transfer time.... So assuming would have to leave at 4am. Means getting DDs up at 3.45ish and straight into car...

Alternative is to book airport hotel which would save about an hour in bed so not getting them up until 430/445 but being in hotel could mean bedtime becomes later due to unfamiliar environment therefore losing sleep anyway.....


Bigonesmallone3 Tue 26-Mar-19 19:32:27

100% book the hotel

twilightcafe Tue 26-Mar-19 19:33:33

Airport hotel. Sounds less stressful. You might find that DC sleep better in hotel room as they're closer to you.

Leeds2 Tue 26-Mar-19 19:33:59

I don't think YABU as such, but just bear in mind that at some airport hotels, it can take an age to get from the hotel to the terminal (particularly early in the morning), so you may not save as much time as you think.

ShitAtScarbble Tue 26-Mar-19 19:34:03

Agreed. Absolutely book the hotel. Save yourself a stressful and potentially shit start to your holiday!

Aragog Tue 26-Mar-19 19:34:13

We do - older dd (teen) but I'd still rather have the extra hour or so in bed. Infact its normally more as I daren't leave it too late for leaving incase of traffic issues. Have been delayed once too often to risk it, even in the early hours.

When smaller dd travelled to the hotel in PJs and went straight to bed, and went to the airport in PJs/onsie too. Changed her there or on the plane, depending on her age.

FullOfJellyBeans Tue 26-Mar-19 19:34:18

Definitely go for the hotel or you'll all be exhausted and grumpy for your first day.

Aragog Tue 26-Mar-19 19:35:36

We always book as close as we can get but a budget hotel - usually premier inn. Book well enough in advance and you can get cheap rooms still - and only be 2-3 miles away. Never had an issue with it taking too long, or delays fortunately.

HaventGotAllDay Tue 26-Mar-19 19:38:12

Absolutely. Premier Inns are well worth it. I often have 6.30 flights from Gatwick and you tumble out of bed and stroll across to check-in. Can't beat it.

TitilatedOcelot Tue 26-Mar-19 19:40:39

Hotel. Best bit is being able to leave home whenever you're ready the day before, rather than being up against a check in deadline.

anniehm Tue 26-Mar-19 19:40:59

I always opt for the hotel even for 11am flights. I use a park and stay hotel usually and often it's no more than normal long stay parking.

CleverKnot Tue 26-Mar-19 19:41:40

I think I might sleep in the airport instead,I wouldn't sleep anyway, with that early a departure & child to get to airport with me, etc.


areyoureallysaying Tue 26-Mar-19 19:44:20

Def a hotel, mine are both teens but still would and do. It also means you have a chilled drive to the airport and don't have the worry of any traffic problems holding you up.

AFPH123 Tue 26-Mar-19 19:51:32

100% yes!

We did it last year. Meant us waking at 5 rather than 3. Why do flights have to be at such ridiculous times? I often book places based on flight times alone due to this.

Destinesia Tue 26-Mar-19 20:04:56

I'd book either valet parking or an airport taxi instead.

Wallsbangers Tue 26-Mar-19 20:10:27

Yes. You could get 1.5 hours extra sleep in the hotel.

oblada Tue 26-Mar-19 20:13:56

I wouldn't book a hotel for that personally. You'll have very little sleep as it is what's the point of wasting money? I booked a airport hotel when the airport was 3hours drive from us and flight around 7am (so no hotel would have meant a 2am start) but otherwise I wouldn't bother. After that it depends how your kids are at being woken up in the middle of the night...

Notaclue30 Tue 26-Mar-19 20:16:19

You can often book in the night before and drop off your suitcase so even less stress the next day

Still18atheart Tue 26-Mar-19 20:17:40

YADNBU to book a hotel. Don't have the worry of the early start, the what ifs are reduced ( car breaking down etc) can park the car the day before so don't have to rush from car park to terminal. + an extra 1.5 hours in bed.

Doje Tue 26-Mar-19 20:17:51

I think it depends on how much it is.

We've looked at it before, but decided it wasn't worth it for an hour extra sleep.

TakeMe2Insanity Tue 26-Mar-19 20:18:04

We’ve done this a few times now and it really takes the stress out of the situation. We’ve done: had dinner at home then literally arrive at hotel to sleep (have a cloth bag with any clothes you need for the morning and agree which suitcase you’ll squeeze pyjams etc into), we’ve also done arrive at hotel earlier to have dinner. Both work but the best bit you have a nice nights sleep and you don’t have worry.

OutwithMyRemit Tue 26-Mar-19 20:18:23

We had similarly timed flights a few years ago and didn't book hotels. Partly due to being cheap, but also it didn't seem worth the money for a few extra hours in bed, esp when the 2yo would have likely been over-excited anyway.

FastandLoose Tue 26-Mar-19 20:18:58

Personally I probably wouldn’t go for the hotel as, like you say, you’ll probably get to sleep later and will still have some kind of journey to the airport - I’d prefer bundling the into the car, hoping they go back to sleep and then getting the most convenient parking you can. I normally absolutely refuse to do early flights, but we did this this weekend with 6 and 4 year old, and it was bearable. I think at that age they should probably nap to be able to adapt to the earlier start, and you save a night in a probably not particularly great hotel.

soulrider Tue 26-Mar-19 20:22:35

I think it depends on the airport hotel. If you can park up the night before and walk to departures it might be worth it. If you have to mess about moving a car to long term parking or whatever I wouldn't bother if you're only an hour from the airport

Brummiegirl15 Tue 26-Mar-19 20:40:52

Ironically I’m getting a 7.20 flight next week for work and live 1.5 hr drive from airport so will be leaving at 4am to get there for check in

Reason being is I have 2 small children and my youngest is still breastfed so if I stay the night before then it’s yet another night away from them.

My view was i will have to get up early anyway I might as well drive a bit further but still be with my husband and kids the night before

It’ll be painful though!

frenchknitting Tue 26-Mar-19 20:50:56

With a similar (actually, a good hour earlier) flight and same age children, I talked DH out of the airport hotel. I figured it was going to be an early start regardless, better not add in a bad nights sleep in a strange bed.

We loaded the car up the night before and stuck them straight in the car in pjs, so they slept on the drive in. We got them dressed after check in.

We did pay for the closest parking, in a small airport, so 2 min walk from the door.

GimmeBread Tue 26-Mar-19 20:52:33

Book the hotel - definitely! Much less stress to contend with. No panicking on the drive through that you'll come across a traffic jam etc etc.

stopitandtidyupp Tue 26-Mar-19 20:54:39

The airport hotel is the start of the holiday for me. All of that pre excitement ready for the trip.

SouthernComforts Tue 26-Mar-19 20:57:08

Do it, if you think it will save stress then do it.

I decided a few years ago to never use airport transfers again, after a toddler wee'd and then vomited down the aisle of the shuttle bus we were on.. (not blaming the poor kid). I factor in the cost of hiring a car or private transfer into the holiday and it's much nicer.

villagesecret Tue 26-Mar-19 20:58:33

I'd get a taxi from home. Probably cheaper, you'll need to get up roughly at same time and will have a better nights sleep as well as not having to eat the shit over priced food.

MissWimpyDimple Tue 26-Mar-19 21:51:55

I wouldn't with a 6mo. Babies sleep badly in strange cots, odd smells, change in routine etc.

I'd get them to bed a little early and then whip them out of bed at the last minute and into the car still in sleeping bag/onesie and then change at airport. You'll have a couple of hours of waiting after check in.

Hotel sounds a nightmare. Plus packing and unpacking all the baby paraphernalia for a few hours in the hotel is painful!

jackstini Tue 26-Mar-19 21:56:55

Which airport? Some you can check and bag drop the night before so aim for 6am room leave...

Purpleartichoke Tue 26-Mar-19 21:57:15

You won’t sleep as well as at home and it will take longer to get ready and out the door in an unfamiliar place. I would skip the hotel.

tillytrotter1 Tue 26-Mar-19 22:01:11

Hotel, definitely. You're not worrying about the traffic for the drive, accidents can happen at all times to delay you, you will also be able to leisurely check the windows, cooker etc and avoid the 'Did you turn off the whatever' scene. You can usually get a Premier Inn for £30-40, we do it if we're on the early flight from our local airport.

Soontobe60 Tue 26-Mar-19 22:04:27

Airport hotel any day! Which airport are you flying from? Manchester has hotels that are not technically in the airport site, but have free shuttle buses all times of the day and night. The will also let you park onsite for less than airport parking. We've done this a couple of times.

Rafabella8 Tue 26-Mar-19 22:11:28

Airport hotel! Every. Single. Time. Without fail. We often have to drive 3 hours depending on the departure airport. Once thought we could take a chance - got the kids up at 2am. Piled them into the car and off we set. Drove through an absolute pea souper the entire way. Never again! Airport hotel over an early and unpredictable start every time! Make it part of your holiday. smile

bridgetreilly Tue 26-Mar-19 22:13:30

I wouldn't book the hotel. Get them into the car in their pyjamas while they're still asleep. The big disruption is being at the airport at 5.20, so even if you're at an airport hotel you'll be getting up at 4.30am. I just don't think you gain anything much at all by going the day before.

Amanduh Tue 26-Mar-19 22:15:09

I think hotels are pointless unless you’re travelling from ages aaway from the airport. I hate having to get things out of cases or have seperate things, I always get up early anyway to make sure we don’t oversleep/haven’t left anything etc etc, everyone sleeps less anyway due to the excitement of a hotel room and for the sake of an hour I wouldn’t bother. With a 6mo they will prob do what they like re sleep anyway and with my 2yo if we get him up early for the airport he doesnt sleep in the car but crashes on the flight which is even better!

SmallPinkBear Tue 26-Mar-19 22:26:00

I book hotels for flights later than that! It is so much more relaxing. We usually fly from Heathrow so stay at T5 and have dinner in carluccios the night before and dd (who loves the airport) can have a run about

100% book it

SmallPinkBear Tue 26-Mar-19 22:27:47

Also just check what time you actually need to be at the airport, it is often not as long as you think

GoldenHour Tue 26-Mar-19 22:29:19

Absolutely, I book hotels for morning flights even if 11am. Only paid £30 for our last travelodge, I don't travel well in the morning and you never know what traffic will be like. Plus it starts the holiday early!

SummerInSun Tue 26-Mar-19 22:40:53

Do it. At least if it's somewhere like Stanstead where the hotel is a short walk from the terminal.

francienolan Tue 26-Mar-19 22:42:51

Definitely book the hotel. We do this all the time. It starts the holiday early, and makes the morning less stressful. In fact we're doing this in July when our flight isn't even until lunchtime--it will make jet lag better to sleep to a normal time rather than get up very early (we are not close to the airport).

MinesaPinot Tue 26-Mar-19 22:43:57

We live a similar distance from the airport as you OP, and have the same flight time when we go away in the summer (me and DH, no children). We've booked the Premier Inn opposite the North Terminal at Gatwick. I get very jittery at the possibility of delays on the way to the airport, even at Silly O'clock in the morning, so it made much more sense to us. We do the same thing when we cruise, and drive down to Southampton the day before. To us it makes for a much more relaxing start to the holiday.

donajimena Tue 26-Mar-19 22:56:32

I would definitely do the hotel. I do tend to catastrophise though and imagine a road closure or a car breakdown if I leave early so prefer to go the day before. I don't sleep well in hotels but then again I don't sleep well awaiting an early morning drive so I'd rather get near the airport.

Spartak Tue 26-Mar-19 23:02:40

Depends on the airport. If I fly out of Bristol, I pay for the on site parking which is a three minute walk from the terminal. It's an extra £20 but much less stressful than shuttle buses etc.

TurquoiseDress Tue 26-Mar-19 23:16:21

Book the airport hotel- let the holiday start the night before, have a nice meal & some drinks

I am a big fan of airport hotel stays for early morning flights- we have 2 young children (5 yrs & 6 months) and it takes the pain of leaving for the holiday in the early hours. Find it less stressful to leave the night before, kind of doing it in 2 stages!

Once we've left home in the car, it feels like we have started the holiday already

Charley50 Tue 26-Mar-19 23:50:15

The hotel!

Gth1234 Wed 27-Mar-19 00:02:59

I wouldn't bother for an hour, but if its worth £150 or os to you then fine. your money, your choice.

ErrolTheDragon Wed 27-Mar-19 00:05:29

Hotel, ideally one which includes parking.

If you decide against this, do check the Traffic England website for overnight roadworks en route, it's not safe to assume early morning drive will be low traffic and easy.

Mistigri Wed 27-Mar-19 07:07:15

I'd only do a hotel if it's at the terminal itself. Park the car in the airport long term parking the night before, get the transit to the terminal, walk to the hotel. There are reasonably priced hotels at the airport itself at Gatwick, stansted and Heathrow Terminal 4.

If it's an off-site hotel - don't bother. You'll lose most of the time you have gained getting the bus to the terminal.

Depending on where and which airline you are flying with you may not need to get to the airport at 5.20. We flew out of stansted last Sunday at 7.15: stayed in one of the two on-site hotels, got up at 5.15, had breakfast, got to the terminal just before 6 and despite queues at security we still had a 15 minute wait before our gate was shown.

HappyDinosaur Wed 27-Mar-19 07:12:51

I agree with @Destinesia book valet parking instead if you can. We travelled recently at a similar time with a 9 month old and it was so handy. I think staying at a hotel would be more faff overall; lugging the bags to and from cars, transfers, packing everything then unpacking bits for the night, finding something to eat etc.

spritesandunicorns Wed 27-Mar-19 07:17:13

With 2 young dc we always book valet parking. Cheaper than a hotel and saves waiting for a transfer. Also at the end of holiday when you just want your car. We also book taxis sometimes if it’s long haul and cba to drive. I’d persobally go for one of those. Did a hotel once and we didn’t save as much time as we thought, wasn’t worth it for us.

sailorsdelight Wed 27-Mar-19 07:20:16

Hotel! Unless your the type of family who can get up early with suitcases in the car the night before and out the door. We aren’t! Grumpy kids, last minute grabbing of tooth brushed, bits and bobs, did we turn the heat off? Did we lock the doors properly? Did we empty the bin?? The good thing about the hotel is all of that is done and it’s a LOT less stressful.

reluctantbrit Wed 27-Mar-19 07:22:15

We did it several times, esp when DD was young. In some cases premier inn actually do a deal, 2 weeks parking plus night in the hotel for the same price as cab or just parking.

Make sure you also book valet parking, I found that such a relief of not dragging child. Buggy, car seat and suitcases from some remote car park to the terminal and back after arriving late in the evening.

DD is now 12 and we are booked to fly a similar early time later the year, I am still thinking to do this again I stead of getting out at ungodly o’clock.

shiveringtimber Wed 27-Mar-19 07:22:26

Book a hotel near/at the airport. So worth it!

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 27-Mar-19 07:23:19

I say no hotel. With the unpacking for a night, unfamiliar room/beds and general faff, it's not worth it.

shiveringtimber Wed 27-Mar-19 07:23:34

Also, check in the night before.

Princessmushroom Wed 27-Mar-19 07:25:22

Even if I fly in the afternoon I get the hotel. It’s so stressful

Crockof Wed 27-Mar-19 07:31:01

Depends how your kids sleep in strange rooms.

shiveringtimber Wed 27-Mar-19 07:33:11

As for "unpacking" in the hotel, it's totally unnecessary. All you need is a change of knickers, a toothbrush (and a teddy!)

Yogagirl123 Wed 27-Mar-19 07:37:44

We take an similar time flight once a year, and have tried both options.

Personally, for us we prefer to say at home and leave early, as we sleep better, one airport hotel we booked before was noisy all night long, none of us got any sleep. Then it’s packing up again, toiletries, over night things etc.

Have a lovely holiday, whatever option you choose.

StarlightLady Wed 27-Mar-19 07:38:08

Anything can go rong en route to the airport. Delays, holdups, l once had trouble locking the front door due to a lock jam as I was about to leave.

In my book it’s a no brainer. Hotel. Nice meal, a couple of glasses of wine and bed. Wake up and you are there.

Another time it might be worth weighing up to see whether there is a better timed flight which does not leave at silly o’clock in the morning so hotel is not in the equation. In real terms the cost difference (when factoring in the hotel) could be minimal.

Have a lovely holiday!

reluctantbrit Wed 27-Mar-19 07:40:28

Not sure what people unpack? We take a small separate bag with pj, fresh underwear and top for the next day. Separate set of mini toiletteries, normally taken from the last hotel we stayed. All done. Luggage for the holiday stays intact.

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 27-Mar-19 07:43:59

As for "unpacking" in the hotel, it's totally unnecessary. All you need is a change of knickers, a toothbrush (and a teddy!)

Chargers, new clothes, toiletries, PJs, hairbrush, make up, flip flops (I'm a slob but hotel floors, yuk), all the stuff for the flight (that I put in my bag for the flight but not all the time), book, anything else...

Baxdream Wed 27-Mar-19 07:44:39

We do this plus you can bag drop the night before so you only have carry on in the morning. Premier inn at Gatwick is ridiculously close too

CurlyWurlyTwirly Wed 27-Mar-19 07:53:04

God definitely book a hotel.
You can check in online. Get yourself up and dressed. Wake the kids at about 5.30am and just drop off your bags.
No brainer

Acis Wed 27-Mar-19 07:57:35

Gawd, who puts on make-up to get on a holiday flight at 7 a.m.?

maggienolia Wed 27-Mar-19 07:57:42

Hotel every time.
One point - if you are bag dropping the night before may be worth checking that it is actually working before trekking to the terminal
(Bitter emoticon )

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 27-Mar-19 08:00:12

@Acis you haven't seen my face without.

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 27-Mar-19 08:01:02

At the very least moisturizer, which is a big tub therefore needing to be repacked.

ssd Wed 27-Mar-19 08:01:54

We stayed in a hotel last year it was a nightmare, the room was too hot and the window hardly opened, no one slept well

Glittertwins Wed 27-Mar-19 08:05:07

Hotel all the way, especially if also had long term parking as part of the deal.
The cost of the hotel room was not hugely different to the cost of long term parking. That, coupled with a Monday morning flight from Gatwick sealed it!

m0therofdragons Wed 27-Mar-19 08:05:24

We've stopped doing this and instead book an airport transfer (posh taxi) to take us there and back at whatever time. So much easier imo. It's a 3hour drive for us so not cheap but comparable to a hotel and lovely being driven home after a flight.

Mummadeeze Wed 27-Mar-19 08:06:22

I have done the hotel thing a couple of times for an early flight but I actually have decided I prefer to order a taxi on the morning and take a taxi home from the airport instead as it is still a bit cheaper than a hotel and it takes the stress out of each journey. I didn’t sleep too well either in the hotels so also felt like a bit of a waste of money.

postiepostie Wed 27-Mar-19 08:06:33

Completely shocked at the amount of people who would book a hotel for this.

You'll be excited for holiday, the kids will be fine and an airport hotel is such a faff.

My kids absolutely love getting up and going to the airport in the night

GETTINGLIKEMYMOTHER Wed 27-Mar-19 08:07:24

Having a dh who enjoys cutting things fine, I insisted on this once, after we'd very nearly missed a flight previously, down to a main road being closed because of a bad accident.
Hotel near Gatwick, parking chucked in with the price, lift to the terminal, nice relaxed evening, no-stress morning - beats frazzled early start and will-we-make-it? anxiety every time.

CosyAsAToasty Wed 27-Mar-19 08:08:06

Done it plenty of times from about when DD was 6 weeks, up at 4am, sleep in car and get to airport. You'll find you'll probably sleep worse in a hotel than in your own bed.

whitehalleve Wed 27-Mar-19 08:12:50

Of course! I used to do this even when I was single. Makes life easier. That's why they are there.

Di11y Wed 27-Mar-19 08:13:00

it's definitely worth it if you can drop your bags in advance too.

thegreylady Wed 27-Mar-19 08:14:12

We always book hotel for flights before 08.30. We live about 90 minutes from airport and the roads into the city can be so busy in the morning. We usually choose a hotel with a shuttle bus to the terminal and take cereal bars and fruit to eat in the room before we leave.

burnoutbabe Wed 27-Mar-19 08:15:25

If I did an airport hotel again I'd make sure I had all the hotel nights stuff in separate bag to avoid opening suitcase the night before and re sorting what can go in carry on and what not.
We're 1hr from Gatwick and Heathrow's so cheaper to get a stupid o'clock taxi for £40 than a hotel (which often need more driving or hotel shuttles anyway rather than walk across)

Hellywelly10 Wed 27-Mar-19 08:18:00

How long would it take in a cab at that time in the morining?

my2bundles Wed 27-Mar-19 08:22:17

I honestly wouldn't. You might safe time in tbe morning but you will add on time tne day before with finding hotel, checking in and out, settling kids in a strange setting and still gave to be up early I would much rather let them sleep in their own beds and wake them an hour early than do that.

Baxdream Wed 27-Mar-19 08:54:40


This!! I actually forgot that this is my main reason! We have very different leaving times so hotel fixes my anxiety!!

Cheby Wed 27-Mar-19 09:33:13

We don’t book airport hotels for this. We bath the kids in the evening then dress them in clean, comfortable day clothes at bedtime (leggings and a long sleeved t shirt), load the car fully before we go to bed and have a shower ourselves, then go to bed not long after the kids. We get up and dressed, one of us starts the car so it heats up, then carry the kids out of bed and straight into the car asleep, lock up and leave.

Kids get an extra 45 mins sleeping on the way to the airport and wake up when they get there. We don’t miss the extra hour of sleep and our pets are fed in the morning before we leave meaning pet sitters aren’t needed for another day.

The D.C. are 6 and 2, this has worked ok for the last few years. We find the hassle of unloading cases and checking in and out of a hotel a lot more faff than just getting up a bit earlier. But I suspect if we lived much further away from the airport we would look at getting a hotel.

TurquoiseDress Wed 27-Mar-19 10:19:58

I was going to add- if you can do luggage drop off the night before, bed better!

We also combine the hotel with car parking too so it's often just a v short early morning taxi ride

To add as well, DH likes to leave things to the last minute, even catching flights

He travels extensively for work so I guess this makes him (too) laid back
He has missed a number of flights previously
This happened to us when DC1 was small and I was furious

Even being in my own bed the night before, I would most definitely not get a good nights sleep!

I'd be wondering if we'll wake up on time? are we going to be delayed en route to the airport? Where do we leave the car? Trying to kick DHs arse into action

So, for me, arriving the night before, staying in airport hotel, often bags checked in toot

Then a glass or two of Prosecco to start our holiday

That's the way I like to travel!

Hersetta427 Wed 27-Mar-19 16:13:08

We have same scenario this summer. Slight at 7am and we live 75 mins drive at that time of day so realistically we would be leaving home at 3.30am to arrive before 5am. We have booked the hotel attached to the airport terminal - was only £65 with parking on top of that.

StarlightLady Wed 27-Mar-19 18:28:04

Travelling to airports l have been

1. Stuck on a broken down train. = stress.
2. Stuck at a station with no train. = stress
3. Stuck on a motorway due to total closure because of a bad crash. = stress.

This way , you know you will be on time. The children wiil see it as pRt of the holiday. = Feelin free!

ForalltheSaints Wed 27-Mar-19 18:30:10

I would even if was just me.

SauvingnonBlanketyBlanc Wed 27-Mar-19 18:33:18

We did this,stayed at Radisson Blu at Manchester airport.Very comfy bed and outside reception there is the walkway to check ins so very seamless.

RMogs Wed 27-Mar-19 18:54:13

I would go with hotel...but purely because that will mean that we have everything sorted and DH not leaving it to the last last minute to remember to pack something when I asked him to the night before

Join the discussion

Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Get started »