Hotel Trend: No Kids Allowed

(NECN) - There is a growing list of places where kids are no longer welcome - including hotels and resorts.

In the U.S. - and many other countries - it is illegal for public establishments to deny service based upon a person's race, color, religion or national origin.

But it's perfectly legal for hotels, resorts and even restaurants to ban children.

A growing number of childless vacationers are seeking out hotels that exclude kids.

Harvard Sociologist Hilary Levey Friedman stopped by "The Morning Show" to discuss this growing trend.

Is it really right to ban children from hotels and other establishments?

o While it's not precisely legal in the US (it is in other parts of the world-so during international travel in hotels and on certain sections of airlines, do check), some establishments advertise themselves as "adults only" (but not in that sense). Restaurants led the way on this, but now many hotels are joining in.

What is driving this change?

o The biggest source is changing demographics. We have many more DINKs than ever before (Double Income No Kids) who have the resources to want to travel in the lap of luxury.

o Additionally almost 20 percent of women today won't have kids-a number that has basically doubled since the 1970s. This means that some may be less tolerant of children than before, and that this new/growing market segment wants tailored services.

Is not allowing children in hotels and other establishments really the best strategy?

o Probably not. How else will children ever learn to behave properly unless they are exposed to these situations?

o In the past year several very popular books have come out lauding the "French style" of parenting, which emphasizes taking children out to eat and traveling with them, among other things. We can't simultaneously praise this style but not allow children to develop these skills.

o It's good to go to kid-friendly places, but also to get adult-only time. Remember that most parents won't want to pay for a child to sleep at The Charles, or for a child's meal at L'Espalier, so price is often a natural exclusionary barrier. But if you happen to sit next to a child at a fancy meal, think about praising the parents for teaching children manners and how to enjoy foods other than chicken nuggets and pizza, raising than criticizing them.

o Who knows, you as a parent (remember the viral story from earlier this month about a waitress giving some parents a "well-behaved child" discount on their check), or as an understanding patron, might get a discount in the end!

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