Travel with your dog for free: Check out Red Roof Inn dog-friendly deals +Bonus Packing List! (discount code included)

Road tripping with the dog is my favourite form of travel, and whenever I hit the highway in the United States., I usually stay at a Red Roof Inn using a discount code.

‘Upscale economy travel’ is what it calls itself, and that’s kind of clever because yes, Red Roof is usually a good price, and it’s usually good value for the price – usually.

But first the disclaimers: No, I am not being paid to write this – I genuinely am a brand fan. However, I will be honest about my experiences at Red Roof, even though…

Book now and save 15% Off your next stay at Red Roof Inn with VP code 614872.

Red Roof Inn Dog-friendly Give Back Travel

Or use the code: VP628474 when booking and you will still get 15% off your stay at participating hotels, but 5% of revenue from your completed stay through July 31, 2021 goes to Canine Companions, an organization providing service dogs to children, adults, and US veterans.

Clean, Comfy Rooms from $49.99 at Select Locations

Yes, Red Roof is an affiliate on this site, so please if you are planning a trip anywhere in the U.S. soon, use the link below and code below. You’ll save a bit while supporting sites like

Yes, Red Roof is always dog-friendly at no extra charge. That’s important when hitting the road with your puppy in tow, as long as you can find a vacancy at a Red Roof, you’re good for the night. Though, I recommend pre-booking for so many reasons: you can often get further discounts (see code above) and peace of mind and if you’re a RediCard member, you can cancel at no charge up to the day of your visit, so it’s really risk free.

Keep Reading or Go to the Ultimate-dog-travel-packing-list now…

Red Roof Inn Dog-friendly Travel Experiences

Irish Setter at The Michigan Winter Dog Classic dog show

However, because many Red Roof Inns are independently owned, the quality does vary. For instance, while attending the Michigan Winter Dog Classic in Novi, I stayed at Red Roof, along with many dog show competitors, and likely wouldn’t again considering the run-down quality of the property and faint smell of dog pee (not my dog, fortunately).

In my experience this is rare – I regularly stay at Red Roof in Rochester, Michigan and loved the properties in Asheville, North Carolina and outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Look for the Red Roof Plus designation for best results.

Also, ‘pet-friendly’ is a corporate requirement, so reception can range from dog-tolerant to dog enthusiastic, the latter is by far what I encounter most frequently. Staff has gathered to meet my previous dog, who admittedly was very cute, and I anticipate experiencing the same with my current dog Victoria …. Whenever we are able to cross the border again.

Clean, Comfy Rooms from $49.99 at Select Locations

We live in Canada. I never thought I’d live to see the day the U.S. Canadian border was closed to travelers for more than a year. It’s been weird, but everyone – literally everyone – is experiencing this. So, when that border opens and vaccinations are complete, I expect that barn to metaphorically fly open releasing some very cooped-up horses.

Or in this case, dogs. Along with some very cooped-up road-trip travel -loving two-legged companions.

Red Roof Promotional Information – Free Night and Intensified Cleaning:

Red Roof Inn runs promotions and sales throughout the year, and this summer if you register then travel two different times to two different Red Roof locations (which is easy to considering so many are located along major highways), you’ll earn enough points for a free stay!

Plus, you can use the discount code to reduce the cost of the stay for which you’re earning points. Double score! And no extra charge for the dog. (Check out our Ottawa dog-focused trip here – note that The Sandmand Hotel charges $40 extra per night for the pup).

Clean, Comfy Rooms from $49.99 at Select Locations Book now and save 15% Off your next stay at Red Roof Inn with VP code 614872.

And of course, things everywhere are getting cleaner, which might eliminate some of my previous complaints about properties. According the Red Roof corporate website, the company is encouraging cleaning staff to be ‘extra’ diligent cleaning rooms including touchable surfaces such as door knobs, sinks and remote controls.  (The later a forgotten source of germs anytime)

“As the country gradually re-opens for travel as restrictions ease, Red Roof®, the leader in upscale economy lodging, has launched Red Roof RediClean, as it welcomes guests back,” the company states. “Red Roof RediClean includes rigorous enhanced cleaning protocols that address the new normal and give consumers the confidence they need to hit the road again.”

Clean, Comfy Rooms from $49.99 at Select Locations

The Ultimate Pet-friendly travel packing list … what to bring when road tripping with the dog:

List #1: Bare Minimum

  • Leash, collar and harness
  • Bowls – at least two
  • Medications – if necessary
  • Proof of vaccinations – either paper copy or digitally saved
  • Food – dry is easier but a can or two of enticing wet food in case they get picky on the road (remember can opener depending on can)
  • Poop bags – more than you think you’ll need
  • Identification tags on dog – and recent photo but you likely have that on your phone

List #2: Useful additions to the Bare Minimum

  • Dog bed – a bed familiar to your dog that will keep him/her comfortable in the car or in the hotel room (or tent). Use the dog bed on either the floor or people bed (just to keep the hotel bed cleaner), and the familiar scent often helps in unfamiliar situations. Check out this one from Coleman (affiliate link)
  • A car towel – or two. Mess (and rolling) happens and often it’s not something you want dragged into the hotel room or can use hotel towels for. I usually bring two.
  • Toys and chews – a familiar toy will serve a similar purpose as the bed from home, plus give Fido something to do while you’re winding down in front the flat screen. Chews are good for quiet time too.
  • Pee pads – just in case. Some hotel floors have scents that inspire otherwise housebroken pups to respond to.
  • Portable bowls – collapsible bowls for day hiking and water breaks (check out our Bella Roma review here)

List #3: Additional useful additions if you have room:

  • First Aid Kit – keep one on the car just in case. I keep this one from Kurgo handy (affiliate link)
  • Life Jacket – for boat excursions and/or near the water. Even though a lot of dogs are strong swimmers, currents and undertow can be their nemesis, plus neon coloured jackets are easier to spot.
  • new toy – Add a new toy for interest, especially in the hotel rooms with the familiar might become boring.
  • Dry dog shampoo – this one is for spruce ups along the road. I’ve used espree dry dog shampoo (affiliate link)
  • Sheet or blanket for cover the hotel bed
  • Urine eliminator spray in case you need to clean up accidents
  • Portable dog pen or fencing, especially at a campsite or RV park (that doesn’t provide it).
  • Extra collar and leashes, because you know if it can break, it likely will.

One comment

  1. […] I’ve made (and learned from) during the past eight years, so I created a list. I also created a full packing list here, so check that out […]

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