When You’ve Gotta Go, You’ve Gotta Go!

Andrea Rempel

Nature calls. It’s inevitable. You can’t just go by day after day refusing to drink any fluids until you arrive at your accommodation and can relieve yourself in the comfort of your own home away from home. Whether you’re touring in Havana or backpacking around Europe, the toilet (or water closet, baño, toilette, salerni, etc.) is a necessity.

 

Here is a top 5, non-exhaustive list of toilet tips for travellers:

  1. Hand sanitizer is your friend. Some places just require hand sanitizer, even if there is a sink, there may not be soap. And hand sanitizer is just nice to have on hand anyway, even if you’re not using the washroom;
  2. Have travel TP or a half-used roll that you bring from home, or even a package of tissues on you at all times. You never know when you’ll be somewhere that either a) ran out of TP, b) doesn’t even have TP, or c) it’s one-ply – everyone knows one-ply is like flimsy sand paper;
  3. Keep your spare change handy. Sometimes places will require you to pay to use the toilet. So keep those coins in a handy location so that when it’s an emergency situation, you have that ready in case you need it. In Europe it is quite common to have to pay to use the loo – but they have to pay someone to clean it, so in theory you’re paying for the ability to use a clean facility;
  4. Practice your squats. Get those thigh muscles ready for your travels. Not only will this tone your posterior, it will also prepare you for any sudden squatting situations while travelling;
  5. If you are already squeamish in public washrooms, mentally prepare yourself before you depart the comforts of your own toilet. Some are gross, some are sparkly clean, some have automatic flushing, some use a chain you have to pull to flush, some use a button on the floor, some are just a trough.

In the end, it really is just part of your travel adventure. You will come home with stories to tell and maybe a little more appreciation for the porcelain horse in the privacy of your own abode.

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