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You may have been following along on social media, but just before Christmas Caz and the kids flew from Sydney to the Gold Coast for a week long getaway to catch up with friends.
I decided to stay behind in NSW and work on our website re-design, amongst other things, and let the girls have some girl time.
We grew up on the Central Coast of NSW and are currently staying there with our parents whilst we await for our USA business visas to be approved.
The drive to Sydney airport from the Central Coast takes about two hours (depending on time of day and traffic) but I much prefer to drive than deal with the hassle and cost of the train, especially when we have luggage.
Caz and the kids flew back into Sydney late afternoon and to avoid the 2-3 hour drive back to the Central Coast in peak hour traffic we decided to stay overnight and partnered with Holiday Inn Sydney Airport to experience what they have to offer families.
We are all about taking the stress out of travel and spending quality time together, and from previous stays at other Holiday Inn properties, we appreciate that they are really big on families.
After dropping my car off at Holiday Inn, I jumped on the shuttle bus to meet Caz and the kids at the domestic terminal.
I don’t know about you, but I get excited just visiting airports and this time was especially exciting as an 8-day separation is more than long enough and I couldn’t wait to hear all about their trip.
Benefits of staying at Holiday Inn Sydney Airport
The minute we entered the lobby we encountered the family friendly feel and the Christmas spirit. Holiday Inn have a kids check-in counter and the lobby was decorated with a ginger bread house and festive decorations.
Upon entering our room, besides getting excited about a long-awaited cuddle with their dad, the kids couldn’t wait to get stuck into their activities pack!
These packs keep them amused for hours, come in handy in the room or at dinner and provide a welcome distraction from electronic gadgets, which we appreciate as parents too!
If you’re looking for convenient accommodation near Sydney airport on a short stay layover, Holiday Inn is located just 1km from Sydney Domestic Airport and 5km from the International Terminal.
Instead of sitting in traffic in a taxi or an Uber on the 20-30 minute drive to and from the city centre or riding the Sydney airport train into the city, why not consider sleeping just around the corner – less stress and more sleep time!
Park, Stay & Go Package
We put to test their Park, Stay & Go package, which we discovered to be a great option for travelers who are flying out of or into Sydney, but who also want to enjoy the convenience of driving to the airport.
For us to take the train to Sydney airport is a hassle, especially dragging luggage with us, and not that cheap. It involves a 75-minute train ride to Central Station, then changing trains and jumping on the expensive airport link which takes another 15-20 minutes.
I’d much rather drive, but parking at Sydney airport can be costly. Thankfully, this package takes care of that.
- Overnight accommodation for up to two adults
- Buffet breakfast for two adults
- Return airport transfers for two
- Secure underground car parking for up to 7 nights
Kids Stay & Eat Free
If you travel with kids like us, you know that the extra costs of meals and accommodation can really add up. We are always on the lookout for family deals like “kids eat free” or “kids stay free” and the Holiday Inn has got you covered.
For up to two children, kids ages 12 and under stay free when sharing existing bedding in their parents’ room.
We are a family of four and are happy to go with two queen beds, but depending upon the number in your family, the Holiday Inn Sydney Airport has connecting rooms available and family room configurations.
Another cool feature of Holiday Inn is the choice of pillows on offer. You can choose between firm or soft pillows. Personally, I like a firm pillow whilst the kids went for the soft option.
Oh, and let’s not forget about the cool animal towel creations that are always a hit with the kids, like our swan!
As for meals, kids aged 12 and under eat free anytime of the day at any of the on-site restaurants from the kids menu when accompanied by a family member dining from the regular menu.
After getting settled in our room, we took the kids downstairs to the dedicated movie room which had a big screen, comfy bean bags and complimentary snacks.
Whilst they happily watched Aladdin, mummy and daddy slipped next door for some time out and a light snack in the Biggles Bar. During the week at Biggles Bar they put on $10 food specials.
For a lovely family dinner we booked into their signature restaurant, Sirocco, and as health conscious parents we were impressed with the healthy options available on the kids menu.
Caz enjoyed her black angus scotch fillet, I had the lemon & organo chicken breast, and Kalyra the 100% lean beef kids burger.
It’s not often we eat dessert, but because we’d been separated for 8 days and the options sounded too good we suck back upstairs into our room where the kids enjoyed a cheeky banana split in bed, and us the berry pannacotta.
Return Airport Transfers
On another recent flight out of Sydney airport, we had to get ourselves from the international terminal to the domestic terminal for a connecting flight which cost the four of us a cool $26 in a taxi.
Can you believe that? The cost of parking at Sydney airport and what we have to pay for transportation between domestic and international terminals annoys me to no end!
So I put a lot of value on the fact that when you stay at Holiday Inn Sydney Airport using the Park, Stay & Go Package this includes FREE airport transfers to and from the hotel via Sydney Super Shuttle.
Plus, if you drive to Sydney airport like I did, you get free secure underground car parking at Holiday Inn for up to 7 nights.
Talk about convenience. No need to struggle with your kids and luggage and hailing down a taxi, or walking to the impractical designated Uber pick up point. Win – win!
The airport shuttle operates every 30-45 minutes from 5:30am to 10:55pm, seven days a week. And the pick up area at the Domestic Airport is located a short walk halfway between T2 and T3.
Other hotel features
Front Desk Services:
- ATM On Site
- Baggage Storage
- Tour Desk
- Currency Exchange
- 24-Hour Front Desk
No matter what time you fly in or out of Sydney, you can relax knowing that Holiday Inn Sydney Airport features a 24-hour reception with flight arrival and departure information.
And if you don’t feel like relaxing in your room or sleeping, take advantage of the 24-hour gym and sauna.
Free IHG Rewards Club
Whilst staying at the hotel, we learnt about the IHG rewards club.
Holiday Inn is a member of the InterContinental Hotels Group and by joining their FREE membership you get benefits such as:
- Free wifi
- Exclusive rates
- Late check-out of 2pm for Elite status only and subject to availability (standard check-out is 11am)
- Collect points or miles for every stay
- No blackout dates for Reward Nights
To learn more and join the rewards program click here.
Seeing the sites of Sydney
If this is your first time visiting Sydney and you want to see the highlights or are looking for things to do in Sydney with kids, Holiday Inn Sydney Airport is only 5 minutes’ walk from Mascot Train Station that takes you to the heart of Sydney.
Before you know it you could be walking across the Harbour Bridge and taking family photos in front of the Sydney Opera House.
Keep in mind
There is nothing touristy to see or buy near the Holiday Inn or Sydney airport.
If you have kids and want to get out of the hotel for a bit, Sky Zone in Alexandria is located minutes from the hotel on O’Riordan Street and is an indoor trampoline park with a toddlers only area.
Also, if you’re traveling in a group and don’t book the Park, Stay & Go package and you’re in a hurry to get from the hotel to the airport, it could be quicker and cheaper to take a taxi. The hotel’s shuttle follows an indirect route so its journey obviously takes longer.
If you find yourself seeking Sydney airport accommodation, whether you’re traveling with kids or are a business traveler, Holiday Inn Sydney Airport makes for an ideal airport stopover for hassle free landings and take offs.
Next time we have challenging flight times we’ll definitely spend another night at the Holiday Inn.
Those little things like a pillow menu, kids eating free, activity packs as well as a practical location help us to alleviate the stress so we can do more of what we love – travel.
To get current rates click here.