34

A friend and I would love to visit Seattle next year. By then, we'll both be 18 years old. Is it possible for us to get a hotel room for about a week, even though we aren't 21 years old? If not, is there any other possibility where we can sleep?

  • 3
    Definitely recommend calling ahead. Many hotels do require you to be 21. – Kevin Aug 10 '16 at 18:56
  • 1
    Regardless of age, make sure you have a credit card (Visa or MasterCard). – rmaddy Aug 12 '16 at 3:22
  • @rmaddy AmEx is also relatively universal at hotels in the U.S. – reirab Aug 12 '16 at 5:26
  • BTW, I removed the "minors" tag. Getting hotel rooms for under-18 year olds is a different problem altogether – Berwyn Aug 12 '16 at 13:17
  • You should also be aware that most places in the U.S. outside of major cities will require a car to visit, and renting a car will be much more difficult than getting a hotel room. – Jeffiekins Aug 12 '16 at 15:14
41

Legally, you can book a hotel room if you are 18 in the state of Washington. I believe this is true in most parts of the U.S., but there may be exceptions for particular states.

Some hotels have policies with a higher minimum age, such as 21. However, this is far from universal.

You might have to do a little bit of extra research, including checking hotel websites, emailing, or calling for confirmation. However, I don't think you'll have a big problem finding a room.

  • 3
    I've noticed that hotels at casinos I've stayed at (such as Mystic Lake in MN, I believe) typically require a minimum check-in age of 21. For what it's worth. – Broots Waymb Aug 10 '16 at 14:35
  • 18
    @DangerZone That's probably more related to the fact that they're at casinos. I've booked my own hotel rooms at 18 before in various states with no difficulty. – Tristan Aug 10 '16 at 14:46
  • 2
    I've had non casino hotels who were legally allowed to accept 18 year olds reject me because of age. This was in Northeast if it matters. Law might say one thing, but hotels can accept or reject based on age if they wish. – Goose Aug 10 '16 at 18:48
  • 1
    @DangerZone what Tristan said and that casinos normally either sells alcohol/have open bars. – Braiam Aug 10 '16 at 21:39
  • 1
    Definitely call ahead. Some hotels/rental car companies aren't aware of their own policies. – sudo rm -rf slash Aug 11 '16 at 12:21
35

I came across a website that did a survey of hotels that allow 18 year olds. These include chains such as Marriott and Best Western, and chains that have restrictions that require you to be older such as 19 at Fairmont hotels and Choice hotels (19 or 21). Well worth a read with a list of links to hotel policies.

It also provides general advice on searching:

It can be state, county or even city law that determines the minimum check in age, rather than the hotel chain. This is why hotels don’t tend to exclusively commit to a minimum age. This means you should use this list to find hotels that let you check in at 18 – but then you must also call the exact location where you’re hoping to stay. This is to check if the locality will forbid you staying even though the hotel chain would let you stay otherwise.

  • Great info! I did a bit of searching but wasn't able to come up with anything. – user35890 Aug 10 '16 at 14:53
  • 4
    FWIW my daughter had trouble getting a room in a Marriott. She was 19 at the time, traveling by herself, and had a credit card. She was told she had to be 25 to rent a room. They only made an exception because she had a military id (contractor). – Pete B. Aug 10 '16 at 15:21
  • 2
    Most (all?) of the big hotel chains are franchised. So variance in what is done across a chain would not be surprising. – Shannon Severance Aug 10 '16 at 19:54
8

As an alternative, Seattle's got a nice hostel that I have stayed at https://www.hihostels.com/hostels/hi-seattle-at-the-american-hotel, age is not an issue, and cheaper than a hotel anyway.

7

You could always use Airbnb if you're older than 18 and the hotels deny you.

  • 1
    I am not really sure about what airbnb exactly is, but I'll look in to it! – Awusuwah Aug 12 '16 at 8:53
  • Airbnb is an online marketplace that enables people to list, find, then rent vacation homes for a processing fee. – Kemal Ahmed Aug 18 '16 at 4:45
3

The age of majority in most US states and territories is 18: the exceptions are Alabama (19), Mississippi (21), Nebraska (19) and Puerto Rico (21) (source: Wikipedia). That is, most US states class an 18-year-old as an adult. Not being able to drink until you're 21 is a different issue.

  • 17
    "Age of majority" isn't really directly relevant to the question. You can buy lots of products and services when you are under 18. What matter here are specific laws about renting hotel rooms, and hotel policies. The latter may be set based on age of majority, but this isn't certain (Googling suggests you can rent a hotel room in MS when under 21). – user35890 Aug 10 '16 at 9:58
  • 4
    It may be relevant in the indirect sense that it influences hotel policies. But your answer implies this is the minimum age to book any hotel, which is demonstrably not true. – user35890 Aug 10 '16 at 10:22
  • 7
    @DavidRicherby your statement that " adults of all ages are treated the same" is demonstrably false. I don't know much about age limits on hotel rooms, but everyone knows that renting a car under age 25 is difficult and expensive. There is no law that sets that age, just the policies of car rental agencies. – stannius Aug 10 '16 at 19:19
  • 7
    Even if this is true in almost all cases, you haven't demonstrated in any way that hotels fall into that bucket. It's entirely possible that booking a hotel is not dependent on the age of majority. That's what makes this a poor answer; it doesn't actually answer whether you can book a hotel room or not. – Chris Hayes Aug 10 '16 at 22:21
  • 2
    @ChrisHayes: And indeed, the other answers have offered examples that demonstrate that a non-negligible number of hotels do not treat adults of all ages the same, but impose a minimum age limit different from the age of majority. – Nate Eldredge Aug 12 '16 at 1:14
3

I've noticed that for most of the higher end ones it tends to be 21. However some hotels tend not to care and will check you in even if you give them an ID that says you're 18. Keep in mind that while state law might dictate that the check-in age is 18, the hotel itself might specify that you must be 21. I would call the hotel and ask to be sure.

3

According to Hilton Hotel's "site usage and Information Agreement", you can book a room via their website if you're 18 or older.

You must be eighteen (18) years of age or older to reserve a room on this website. If you are under the age of eighteen, you may contact the hotel directly for assistance.

You can use Google to search for hotels which accept reservations from 18+.

  • 1
    +1 and welcome to Travel SE. I have edited your post to include the relevant quote from the site you linked to as we frown upon link-only answers. Feel free to roll back my edit if you disagree or wish to add more information. – mts Aug 11 '16 at 7:48
2

I live in Seattle, so I can safely say that you will have no problems booking a room. In the United States, you are legally an adult at 18 years of age. The only things you can't do are drinking and gambling (you have to be 21 for those).

Some hotels might have a minimum age requirement, but that would be a rare exception. They may ask for a damage deposit, but you will get that deposit back when you check out. Many will also require you to book the room on a credit card before you arrive, but you can pay with any form of payment when you check-out. The credit card just holds the room and secures the damage deposit.

If you will be renting a car while you're here, that's a different story. Most car rental companies require you to be at least 25 years old. You need to make sure you have transportation when you get here, because you will likely not be able to get a car rental. Public transportation is reliable but slow and sparse outside the main downtown areas.

Also be prepared for heavy taxes. Seattle has a particularly high tourism tax, so expect to pay about 20% more than the room's advertised rate.

  • 2
    While it's true that there are almost certainly available hotels in Seattle to an 18-year-old, as other answers have demonstrated, not allowing it is definitely not a 'rare exception.' – reirab Aug 12 '16 at 5:47

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.