Howard Johnson Inn KingstonHoward Johnson Inn KingstonHoward Johnson Inn Kingston

Great value, helpful staff and comfy beds, about a 20-min walk from downtown

  • Free Wi-Fi, free breakfast, free parking
  • Numerous guests were pleased with the hotel's inexpensive rates and good value
  • The hotel's staff were praised for their helpful and courteous service
  • Several reviewers enjoyed their comfortable beds and spacious rooms
  • Several guests had difficulty with the in-room Wi-Fi signals and also reported some cleaning issues
  • Noise transfer was reported by a few lodgers
jump to full editor's analysis (below)
Free Wi-fi
Free Breakfast
Free Parking
Rates & Availability
Editor's Analysis
Updated May 13, 2013
Located about a 4-minute drive from Queen's University and about a 20-minute walk from Kingston's downtown, the Howard Johnson Inn Kingston is geared towards travellers who require an economical hotel with easy downtown access.

This non-smoking hotel has 68 air-conditioned guest rooms, each offering free Wi-Fi, a mini-fridge, a microwave, an iPod docking station, an iron and ironing board and a hair dryer. Standard rooms offer one or two queen beds, while rooms with two king beds and a sitting area with a sofabed are also available. Wheelchair-accessible rooms are not offered by the hotel.

Hotel amenities include an outdoor pool, a business centre, vending machines, a free continental breakfast and free parking. Pets are not permitted.

Sushi Ya! and Tim Hortons are both under a 5-minute walk northwest of the hotel. Access to public transportation is less than 1 minute away on foot. The Cataraqui Centre shopping mall is an 8-minute drive northwestward. Fort Henry is 11 minutes east by car. The International Hockey Hall of Fame can be found 2 minutes away by car, and Kingston Airport (YGK) is roughly a 13-minute drive west. (All distances and travel time estimates: Google Maps)

Verified with a front desk agent: Free Wi-Fi, free parking, pets not permitted, not wheelchair accessible. (Call date: May 13, 2013)
The Good
The majority of the reviews sourced for this analysis were positive, with praise going to the hotel's value, staff and rooms.

Many reviewers praised the hotel's value, and described the rates as cheap, inexpensive, reasonable and excellent. One lodger remarked that it was a great place to stay considering the price as compared to downtown Kingston hotels.

Numerous guests were pleased with the level of customer service they received. They characterized the staff as friendly, accommodating and helpful in suggesting restaurants and providing a quick check-in service.

The hotel's accommodations were complimented by several lodgers. They were described as spacious and well equipped with very comfortable beds. It should be noted, however, that a few reviewers had complaints about their rooms (see below).
The Bad
While the majority of reviews consulted for this analysis were positive, there were some common complaints about the rooms and noise transfer.

While the majority of lodgers enjoyed their well equipped rooms and comfortable beds, some guests did have complaints. They reported very poor Wi-Fi signals or no connectivity at all. Some also mentioned outdated bathrooms and described cleanliness issues. Some reviewers reported being able to hear guests in adjacent rooms and rooms overhead, as well as traffic from Princess Street.

Show Sources
Sources guest reviews rated the hotel 7.8 out of 10 from 343 reviews. guest reviews rated the hotel 3.6 out of 5 with an 84% recommendation rate from 147 reviews. guest reviews ranked the hotel #15 out of 37 Kingston hotels with an average rating of 3.5 out of 5 from 138 reviews.

The author called the hotel on May 13, 2013 to verify some information.
Editor's Analysis by Erin H.
Analyzed by Erin H.
Erin loves to travel, and considers it her personal mission to help fellow travellers get the inside scoop, both good and bad, on Canadian Hotels.
Guest Reviews

Rated 7.2/10 based on 489 reviews

Ranked #15 out of 23 hotels in Kingston

7 out of 10 | Verified Guest stayed December 10, 2013

"Good and clean room. Location is also good near to downtown walking."


9 out of 10 | Charles stayed September 14, 2013

"Good value for the money."

"Excellent location, clean and free parking. Continental breakfast can do with some upgrades."


9 out of 10 | Nader stayed August 06, 2013

"Great value for the money"

"It was perfect for our needs, clean, quiet, front desk helpful. Breakfast was simple but fresh and good to get us going for the morning... We were in Kingston to move my son for University - and this hotel was walking distance from downtown.. We are planning to stay there again this week."


9 out of 10 | Verified Guest stayed June 07, 2013


"Very friendly and accommodating service. We were travelling with a trailer and were directed to appropriate parking and provided an excellent room in the vicinity to be close to the trailer. Room was recently renovated and very clean. We were highly satisfied with our choice."


7 out of 10 | Kelly stayed May 04, 2013

"Hotel clean and well stocked. MATTRESS WAS HOEEIBLE AND RUTTED."


10 out of 10 | Verified Guest stayed January 10, 2013

"Good value"

"The term "inn" is deceptive since this is really a motel. However, it is good value, provides a free breakfast, and the location is quite convenient. I was able to walk to my conference downtown and there are many restaurants within walking distance. The outside staircases to the second floor are a bit perilous in winter but I survived. Otherwise everything was fine."


7 out of 10 | Lars eivind stayed November 13, 2012

"Good value"

"The location of the hotel is slightly outside the main center of Kingston, but it is no problem walking there. The rooms were clean and big. The waffles at breakfast were good, but I did not like that they only had plastic cutlery and disposable cups and plates (makes a lot of trash per meal). Overall good value."


8 out of 10 | Susan stayed October 10, 2012

"Great for a quick overnight stop"

"This hotel was just perfect for our overnight stop in Kingston. The price was right, room was clean and staff very friendly"


8 out of 10 | Carole stayed August 26, 2012

"It is good value for your money."


8 out of 10 | Ted stayed August 19, 2012

"Birthday and anniversary visits combine"

"The hotel entrance is a bit difficult to identify as it is an internal courtyard with parking lot - you have to enter through a cavity in the building. Everything was very good."


2 out of 10 | Verified Guest stayed August 07, 2012

"Very disappointing experience for the money paid"

"Our stay at Howard Johnson Inn in Kingston was very disappointing. The place was less than one star rating. Very old and not well maintained. I have allergy to dust and my allergies flared up and I within an hour I was congested with itchy throat and watery eyes. The shower was taped to the shower stall and the airconditioning was placed under the curtain, and we couldn't open the curtain because it was open to the parking lot... the shower wall had mould we could even smell the mould inside the room."


9 out of 10 | Patrick stayed August 04, 2012

"clean/simple/worth the money"

"I read other reviews before I booked and, as a result of my experience, I am not sure what other people expected. If you want the Taj Mahal then book it. If you want a clean room with all the simple functions of your own home then you will not have a problem here. The staff was couteous and helpful. The light breakfast was great for a day of travel."


5 out of 10 | Wilbert stayed July 22, 2012

"Compared to other place's that we stayed this one is Fair"

"The good thing about this place was the price. The bad thing was the bed, way too soft. Carpet in the room REALLY need to be CLEAN or CHANGED COMPLETELY."


7 out of 10 | Ann stayed July 02, 2012

"Reasonably priced, comfortable hotel"

"The exterior of the Howard Johnson is deceiving. One would expect a run-down facility. It is not. Our room was comfortable and clean, the staff were pleasant and the breakfast was fine - not a lot of choice but served our needs. Our only complaint was the very noisy window air conditioner. We would definitely stay again as the hotel is relatively close to downtown and reasonably priced."


8 out of 10 | Verified Guest stayed September 09, 2011

"the room was great, the staff were very accomodating and helpful, continental breakfast was exceptional, and there is wifi available"


4 out of 10 | Verified Guest stayed August 06, 2011

"Overall okay, but would not return to this hotel."

"Very poor first impression. Very friendly staff though. Room undergoing renovations, but not yet complete as there were lots of loose ends to be finished. Room was hot as A/C was not located in a good spot - off near the bathroom and not the beds. Did not feel 100% safe as there was no latch on the door. I felt it was priced way too high for the location."


7 out of 10 | Verified Guest stayed June 12, 2011

"Suitable for an overnight stay in Kingston. Close to downtown"

"The room was very clean and the bed was comfortable. It seemed very quiet - no people talking loudly, no kids running up and down the walkways in front of the rooms. The reception people were very friendly and helpful. The only complaints were the air conditioner was very noisy and the shower head would not stay where it was supposed to. Something was loose in the connections. Location was good."


2 out of 10 | Annamarie stayed June 10, 2011

"Okay price but not great"

"The room was possibly under construction, not sure, but beds were okay. Air conditioner too small and out of reach for the room, never cooled the room, room was damp and musty smell. Appeared clean but bathroom needed total renovation, tub stained and very cramped. When you sat on toilet your leg brushed the wall. YUK"


8 out of 10 | Wilda stayed February 13, 2011

"The only reason why we couldn't give this hotel a near perfect was that the room heat is not controllable in the individual rooms. we phoned the desk but there nothing they could do as other rooms had already phoned to say they were cold!! so all we could do was open the window. this is not good environmentally nor cost efficient. when next we go to kingston we will definitely make our reservation at this howard Johnson's, if possible."


6 out of 10 | Chantal stayed October 09, 2010

"Rooms were clean and comfortable. The only thing I notices was that there was no temperature controls for the rooms I had to call the front desk to ask to have the heat turned up."


6 out of 10 | Sarah stayed July 18, 2010

"bare-bones and dated, but clean"

"The hotel is more a motel. Pretty bare-bones and dated but clean and relatively convenient. It's located a short cab ride from downtown. Beds were very comfy. If you just need a place to sleep it's fine and the price is right. No food available, though room has a fridge."


5 out of 10 | Verified Guest stayed May 23, 2010

"There was much noise from a soccer team and broken windows and police involvement....not my idea of a place to stay in the future. Sorry."

Map Marker Howard Johnson Inn Kingston
686 Princess Street, Kingston, ON