Homewood Suites by Hilton has officially climbed aboard the pet-friendly-across-the-brand train and that’s worth noting. As of January 2022, Homewood Suites is pet-friendly across North America. Pet tourism is the trend for the new year.
Maybe dog-travel industry news should be a regular feature on dogtrotting.net, especially if more brands, hotels, and travel destinations announce they’re pet-friendly as policy status. I’d like to think our manifesto created influence, but I doubt it. It’s likely about the numbers.
Travel Trend: Pet Tourism
The Hilton Hotel’s own travel trends report about 2022 travel trends identifies the family pet as an important guest joining any adventure. Leave no fur baby behind. And we can partially thank the pandemic for that. According to the ASPCA, 23 million US homes – and 3.7 million in Canada – welcomed a new pet since 2020. That’s nearly one in five households so that’s not a market to ignore.
According to a survey by Mars Petcare, 65 per cent of those homes intend on taking their pets (including a few cats) on vacation. Even before the pandemic in 2021, ‘pet-friendly’ was the third most popular search term on the Hilton website. Plus, pet people spend money.
Any hotel, Hilton or otherwise, would be wise to take note – and see a upsell opportunity because most outlets charge an extra fee for pushing the vacuum cleaner around the room an extra round after a pet stay. Hilton Homewood Suites, for instance, is adding fees starting at $50 per pet stay.
Not that I advocate a hotel pet fee of course, but if reasonable it beats a ‘no pet’ policy. (Note to hotels: $100 fee per night is NOT a pet-friendly policy. That’s a pet deterrent policy).
Homewood Suites Pet-friendly
Hilton describes the Homewood Suites as its ‘upscale extended-stay brand,’ which is good for pets because the apartment style unit might feel more like a home to the pup – usually it’s complete with a separate sitting area and kitchen. A full-sized fridge for dog food and take out leftovers is always useful.
According to the company, as of January 2022, Homewood Suites by Hilton and Home2Suites are 100 per cent pet-friendly across the U.S. and Canada. A bonus is the Hilton has partnered with Mars Petcare to provide pet health, wellness, and behavioral support through an online service while you’re travelling. As of now, that add-on bonus is only in select U.S. cities.
What exactly it offers isn’t clear – just “online support specifically tailored for on-the-go pet,” according to a Hilton press release. Whatever that means. Maybe when my pup barks at the ice machine in the hallway I can contact Mars online?
What we can expect at Homewood Suites by Hilton is green space around the property, front desk directions to the nearest dog park, emergency vet, pet stores and dog-friendly restaurants in the area. Expect pet treats, pet bowls for guest use, and pet waste bags included in the additional pet fee.
And no, this is not a sponsored post. Just service journalism, even a bit self serving because we are always on the lookout for pet-friendly hotels making it easier to plan a road trip connecting cities, towns, and even a few parks.
Upcoming Dog-friendly Travel Guides
For Ontario readers – or those interested in travelling to Ontario – there’s a Homewood Suites in several cities my dog and I are going to visit very soon … coming up on dogtrotting.net:
- Dog-friendly Hamilton, Ontario
- Dog-friendly Stratford, Ontario
- Dog-friendly London, Ontario
- Dog-friendly St. Jacobs, Ontario
We’ll no doubt stay at a Homewood Suites in one or more of those towns and take advantage of the Ontario’s provincial ‘staycation’ tax credit – Ontario residents spending $1000 at an Ontario hotel this year can claim a $200 tax credit when they file in 2023.
Writer bio: Sherri Telenko has been a professional writer for 30 years and travel writer for the last 20. She’s a member of TMAC (Travel Media Association of Canada) and Dog Writers Association of America, and travels almost weekly with her canine companion.