Tracing a Metro map in Paris

Smarter family travel: Using MiniTime to plan

This post was sponsored by MiniTime, and I was compensated for writing it. You can always count on me to share both when I’ve been paid and my honest opinions.

I don’t know about you, but I find that weekends make a great time for travel dreaming and planning. I love to pour myself a glass of wine and cozy on up to my computer looking for deals and destinations for the months to come. I’m happy to report that there’s a new family travel tool out there that will make browsing for hotels and things to do that much easier. Called MiniTime, it’s meant to offer competition of the family travel variety to the TripAdvisor behemoth.

MiniTime search

Please click on photos for a larger view

There are a couple of things that set MiniTime apart and make it a valuable tool for traveling families. For one thing, you can search for destinations, hotels, and attractions based on the age of your kids. Every listing you see will offer a rating that’s based on the ages you entered in the search (ratings are based on the amenities a hotel offers, the neighborhood it is located in, as well as rating reviewers with similarly-aged children gave it).

Hotel listing Minitime

Better yet, every hotel listing uses cute icons to show what kinds of family-friendly amenities the property offers – everything from cribs to kids clubs to pools to in-room refrigerators. A full list of kid- and parent-friendly features is also listed under the Family Amenities tab for each hotel. You can also easily access nearby attractions that your family might want to visit by clicking on the Nearby Attractions tab.

MiniTime users who sign up for the service can create a profile, write their own reviews, and share photographs, which are visible to everyone who uses the site. You can also save dream destinations to a map in your profile simply by clicking on the Want to go link next to each attraction listing – it’s a fun way to create a scrapbook of all your travel dreams. I like the interface, which is clean and stylish, and also the chance to peek at the travel photos other users have shared.

My Minitime profile

Obviously this site is going to get better over time, as more and more people add their reviews and as more properties and attractions are added. Which is where you come in! I know that many readers of my blog like to travel with their kids and that you probably have your own opinions and maybe a few photos. Between now and January 31, 2013 sign up on MiniTime and start posting reviews and you will be entered to win everything from a Starbucks gift card to a trip do Disneyland. Learn more about this family travel giveaway and I hope to see your reviews the next time I spend a little time browsing the MiniTime site.

And if you’re interested to see a few of my recent reviews on MiniTime, be sure to check out what I had to say about the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, DC; the Residence Inn in Williamsburg, VA; and the B & O Railroad Museum in Baltimore, MD.

 

Reader Responses

1 fellow traveler had this to say

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this! Though I don’t have a family yet, I know that I’ll be able to use this when I travel with my friends to Rome this year. I also keep a travel blog, so I’ll give it a review once I test it out. I always try to give my readers as much useful information as I can, like accommodations in the form of apartments in Rome Italy (such as those listed in http://www.romeaddress.com/rome-apartment-rental/) instead of expensive hotel rooms, where to eat, and travel tips, so I’ll add this app to my blog postings.

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