Orlando, Florida is one of the prime tourist destinations in the world. Not only is Florida a mecca of beaches stretching down the Atlantic side, through the Keys, and then up the Gulf side, Orlando is also home to the best amusement parks in the world, including Disney World and Universal Studios. Traveling with furry companions means you’ll want to know what the best pet friendly Orlando hotels are.
We’ve put together a list of several pet friendly Orlando hotels, along with some crucial information that will make your (planning and) trip more enjoyable.
First, be clear on the expectations the hotel has before you arrive.
There are absolutely few things more frustrating when you want to enjoy your vacation than dealing with unexpected problems with your hotel booking. Unfortunately, though, thousands of people traveling to Orlando go through this for one reason or another.
Even though you may find a ‘pet friendly’ Orlando hotel and book your stay online, that doesn’t mean your pet will be welcome. There may be size limitations, types of animals, specific dog breeds, and more that the hotel may not allow in their rooms.
Just because you book online and the service advertises this Orlando hotel is ‘pet friendly’ doesn’t mean they accept any and every pet, size, or breed. Always call the hotel directly (preferably before you make the reservation, especially if it’s a non-refundable one) to be certain of what pets they accept.
Second, realize there’s usually an extra expense for pets.
When you book a hotel these days, especially in a prime tourist destination like Orlando, a growing number advertise amazingly low rates, but there are ‘resort’ fees attached daily. Sometimes, these fees can almost equal the daily rate, so while you’re assuming it’ll cost you less than $800 for a week’s stay, you might end up shocked by the final invoice.
Resort fees aren’t the only fees hotels charge for these days. They also charge for pet fees, sometimes in the amount of $25 or more per day. Some may charge a per stay fee and some don’t charge anything extra.
However, often hotels will charge a deposit, which will be returned if the hotel cleaning staff deems the room to be left in good condition.
Third, consult the hotel to find out if they’ll waive fees for registered ESAs.
Emotional support animals (ESAs) are gaining popularity, especially as more medical professionals and researchers understand the inherent value they offer people for physical, emotional, and mental support and assistance, but even though they’re becoming more widely accepted, this doesn’t automatically mean hotels will waive their fees or even relent with their requirements.
If you find a hotel you like, but your breed isn’t accepted, call and explain the situation, but remember, they may not be required by law to accept that ESA (at this time) still.
Some hotels may be willing to accommodate or even waive partial or full fees for legitimately registered ESAs.
Note: Registering an ESA is a valuable asset if you rely on your support animal, not just for peace of mind while traveling, but also to assuage concerns certain hotels or other accommodations may have about the legitimacy of your support animal.
Finally, avoid the temptation to ‘sneak’ your pet in.
It’s incredibly important to not take advantage of the hospitality of hotels or other lodging options. That means if a hotel doesn’t accept pets, don’t try and sneak yours in. Even if the hotel does allow pets, don’t attempt to sneak yours in to save money.
Not only is this illegal, it also does a great disservice to all other pet owners who wish to travel to Orlando. Your ESA may be exceptionally well-behaved, clean, and doesn’t leave a mess behind, but taking advantage of a hotel (repeatedly by numerous guests) could lead to a change in policy later on.
Most pet friendly Orlando hotels are reasonable with their fees (or have no extra pet fees), and there are certainly numerous options available.
Some Pet Friendly Orlando Hotels to Try
As mentioned, it’s not going to be tough finding a pet friendly Orlando hotel for your next stay, whether you’re attending a convention, plan to visit Sea World, Universal Studios, or even Disney. Location certainly matters as far as getting around in this bustling metropolis, so pay attention to where the hotel is and whether it’s in an area conducive to your plans.
Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista, a Rosen Hotel
Lake Buena Vista is right where much of the amusement action is. That’s because it’s home to Disney World, including Magic Kingdom, Epcot, and Disney Springs (where all the shops and restaurants are located).
Clarion Inn only accepts dogs (not cats or other pets) and there is no size restriction. They do charge (as of 2019 prices) $15 per pet per night and they have a two pet maximum.
Days Inn and Suites -Orlando/UCF Research Park
Another option that charges $15 per pet per night is the Days Inn by the University of Central Florida Orlando campus. You’ll be driving a bit more to get to the amusement parks, but that could be a small price to pay if you’re not as concerned about proximity to them.
Econolodge at the Florida Mall
If you love shopping experiences, you’ll love the Florida Mall. Only a couple miles east of Universal Drive and International Drive, home to Universal Studios, the ‘Eye’ (an amazing ferris wheel experience that gives you a wonderful view of the city), and Ripley’s Believe It or Not.
Their pet fee is $20 per pet per night and they do have a deposit of $80 as well.
Extended Stay America – Orlando – Convention Center
While this hotel charges $25 per day (for the first month of your stay) per pet, they cap the charge at $150 per pet per month, which is a good deal if you plan to stay in Orlando for a while. They do have height and weight restrictions for pets, but manager approval is available for larger breeds or other situations.
Extended Stay America – Orlando – Lake Buena Vista
Another decent option for longer term stays with the same fee structure and policy. Also, if you plan to stay for more than one month, the per day/per pet fee drops to $10. When you stay here, though, you’ll be a decent walk from Disney Springs with plenty of nice, wide sidewalks, grassy areas, and a friendly, carefree atmosphere. Oh, and lots of kids who may very well take an interest in your pet as you head out for a nice evening stroll.
Universal’s Loews Portofino Bay Hotel
Another great pet friendly hotel if you plan on visiting Universal Studios Orlando is Universal’s Loews Portofino Bay Hotel. There is a significant additional fee, but it’s per stay, not per day. They do allow cats and dogs and while you can leave the pet in the room unattended, there will be no housekeeping service if that’s the case. Universal’s Loews Portofino does have a pet walking area on the premises.
La Quinta Inn Orlando International Drive North
When you stay at La Quinta Inn Orlando International Drive North, you can enjoy spending your vacation with up to two pets of any size. There is a $20 per night per pet fee, which obviously would not exceed $40 per stay, as of 2019 prices. They do allow pets and dogs and if you plan to leave your pet in the room unattended, you can do so, so long as it is crated. They do have a grassy area for pets outside, but make sure you clean up after them, when they relieve themselves.
Benefits You’ll Gain with an ESA Registration
Registering your emotional support animal is going to offer numerous benefits when you travel, whether you’re looking for pet friendly Orlando hotels or heading anywhere else in the country.
While many of these hotels that accept pets for stays don’t require it, there may be some looking for proof of vaccinations, registrations, and other details in order to protect themselves against liability. With a legitimate ESA registration, such as the simple and straightforward process we provide, you’ll have no trouble showing staff, including management of most hotels, that your pet is more than just a travel companion or ‘part of the family.’
You’ll be able to travel with confidence knowing you have gone through the process of legitimizing your emotional support animal, which allows you to relax and enjoy this upcoming trip to Orlando.
Enjoying many of the wonderful sights and amusement parks as well as other attractions throughout Orlando will be time consuming, thrilling, and a great way to spend quality time with the people you love, but when you have an ESA and it’s important to you that he or she travels with you, that ESA registration is like having an extra level of protection and peace of mind.
With numerous pet friendly Orlando hotels to choose from, you’ll have no trouble finding good lodging. Enjoy your next trip to Orlando in comfort and peace.