Should You Stay in Military Lodging?

In our 31 years as a military family, we have stayed in military lodging many times, and we've saved a lot of money along the way, especially in high-cost areas such as New York and San Diego.

Military lodging (Navy Lodges, Air Force Inns, Army Lodging, Inns of the Corps and Navy Gateway Inns & Suites) is available on many military bases around the world. Room rates are usually, but not always, slightly lower than nearby hotels. Many rooms have kitchenettes, which can help you save money on food. Because you are on or near a military base, you probably have access to other base facilities, such as a Shoppette or Commissary, which can help you save even more. Military lodging facilities often have a laundry room and a computer for guest use. Parking is usually plentiful (and free!), and the front desk staff can tell you where things are on base and in the local community. 

While saving money is good, military lodging isn't always the best option. One good question to ask when booking a room at a military lodging facility is, "Is this a drill weekend?" Reservists stay in military lodging, and they get up very early in order to get to work on time. Another excellent question is, "Does this facility have an elevator?" Some don't. A third question to ask is, "How far is your building from [insert the name of the museum/monument/attraction you most want to see] and how can I get there from your facility?" Military bases usually aren't located right downtown, and not all military bases have shuttles into town. Getting useful information before you book a room can help you make the best lodging decision for your family.