Perhaps you’re passing through on your way to spectacular Banff and Lake Louise. Maybe you plan to spend your time out and about, exploring this no longer (too) wild west city. The solution? A budget Calgary hotel. They might be less plush than the five-star offerings, but these cheap spots provide all the essentials, leaving extra cash for sites and restaurants, maybe a pair of cowboy boots. Order Calgary’s famous ginger beef – it’s cheaper than steak, and a bonafide city classic. Mind you, with the money you’ll save at these hotels , you might as well get both.
In several Calgary locations, these one-, two-, three-bedroom and studio apartments are for short and long stays. At the three-story walk-up in the hip Beltline neighborhood, you’ll have laundry and a kitchen, as well as a compact living space – you won’t be in much with retro boutiques and locavore restos all around; it’s also just half an hour’s walk to the Stampede grounds. There are more options at the downtown tower near the Eau Claire Market and Bow River, ideal for those needing a more central location. Townhouses in upscale Mount Royal are more spacious and you’re close to Calgary’s 17th Ave entertainment district. Take your pick!
This is an elegant all-suite budget choice, with a convenient downtown location, 10 minutes on foot to Eau Claire and the Bow River pathways. You’ll enjoy a free hot and cold buffet breakfast – not just scrambled eggs and bagels, but rotating items including frittatas and pancakes. There’s also a coin-op laundry and a fitness center. There’s a range of suites to choose from and whichever you choose, you can prep and serve a glamorous dinner in the sleek kitchen, all sleek black appliances (including dishwasher), and equipped with everything from a Dutch oven to measuring spoons.
This budget Calgary hotel throws in lots of extras: your pick of pillows, blackout shades and a heated pool with a spiraling red waterslide and a whirlpool. The complimentary continental breakfast features warm cinnamon buns, fresh fruit, bacon, sausage and eggs; there’s also the Holiday Inn’s self-serve pancake machine (pre-packaged selections in a to-go bag are offered in pandemic times). In-room minifridges and microwaves give you a few more options. You’re just off the busy Macleod Trail highway – but note that it’s also only a 20-minute walk to Fish Creek Provincial Park. Stop for picnic essentials at the Avenida Food Hall on the way.
This is in the same hub as the Econo-Lodge Motel Village, albeit on a quieter part of Banff Trail rather than overlooking the busy Highway 1. It’s a contemporary hotel with thoughtful extras – that includes heated underground parking. You’re just a four-minute walk to the CTrain for an eco-ride downtown. The large lobby is welcoming with its fireplace and lounge space. The pool has a twisty waterslide and hot tub. The 96 rooms are larger than you’d expect for check-in at this price point – some have enough space for a couch. Breakfast – included – is a simple affair of grocery-store bagels and hard-boiled eggs.
Want to shop ’til you drop? This two-story hotel is the closest one to the Chinook Centre – just a five-minute drive away, on the other side of McLeod Trail. Here to watch the Calgary Flames play or see a concert? The Saddledome is 15 minutes by car and you’re along the CTrain’s red line to get downtown. In summer, splash in the outdoor saltwater pool. Rooms are done out with contemporary beiges and gold with spick-and-span floors of wood laminate or carpet; they’re equipped with a minifridge and microwave – nicely tucked around the corner from the bed.
Whether you’re flying or driving, Days Inn is convenient for the airport (free shuttle at the ready) and the TransCanada Highway. With the complimentary continental breakfast and in-room minifridge and microwave, you’ll save on meals. The indoor pool has both a waterslide and hot tub. If you want to splurge a bit, some rooms have hot tubs too. Keep a few loonies and toonies (Canadian $1 and $2 coins) handy if you want to use the coin-op laundry. The views are mostly of cars parked at other airport hotels and zipping by on the Barlow Trail, but you won’t be spending much time inside – there’s fast food right next door and it’s a five-minute drive to Sunridge Mall.
Cheery throws on the beds perk up these no-nonsense airport-hotel rooms, which are perfect crash pads for guests wanting to be out and about. You’ll have a mini fridge, and rather than a closet, a hip-height in-room rack (just fine for ski jackets, maybe less so for ball gowns). Investigate the smattering of breakfast items – yours to grab and take aboard the airport shuttle or wherever you’re off exploring. You’re about 20 minutes from the airport and the busy Barlow Trail/32 Ave. And the location means several fast-food and casual dining joints are within easy reach.
For a unique stay, check out our pick of the best arty hotels to book in Calgary, bookable on Culture Trip.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.