The potty training stage is a big deal, especially for new parents. The little ones need a routine they’re used to, and changing that requires patience. Most parents put off taking trips until their kids are fully potty-trained, but that’s not always necessary or even possible.
Proper planning allows you to make the most out of your road trip. You can simultaneously potty train your toddler and make lasting memories.
This article is your ultimate read if you are wondering how to handle both. I will share helpful tips for taking a road trip with a potty-training toddler, so keep reading!
12 Potty Training Travel Tips
Start Potty Training Early
It takes time for kids to master potty usage, even fast-learning toddlers. Giving your little one enough time to train before setting out for a major family trip is best.
An unfamiliar environment can make a little one wet more often accidentally or even cause them to regress their learned skill.
A few weeks before the family’s summer trip, commit to potty training your child as much as you can. If you notice they don’t pick up the training fast, then delaying your trip and spending more time potty training may be the best option.
Dress Your Child in Easy-to-Wear Outfits
The way you dress a potty-training toddler matters, especially when traveling. They need quick access to the potty when duty calls!
Before leaving the house for the trip, pack plenty of loose, easy-to-remove clothing for your toddler.
This way, they will not mess themselves if the call is urgent as they try to get their clothes down.
Leggings, sweatpants, and dresses are the best for a potty-training toddler.
Bring a Travel Potty
A travel potty comes in handy when traveling with a potty-training toddler, as it’s like a little piece of home.
Most travel potties are lightweight and easy to carry, and many include their own travel bag, making them very portable.
You can use a travel potty as a standalone for your toddler or place it on a regular toilet seat, depending on what’s comfortable for your toddler and convenient in your surroundings.
Additionally, you can use the potty in the car once you pull off the road for a break, which is always handy.
Limit Drinks When Travelling
You might have packed a lot of energy drinks and water so you can stay hydrated on a long drive, but your toddler doesn’t need to drink nearly as much as you do.
Too many drinks translate to a frequent need to ease the bladder.
As we’ll talk about in a moment, you’ll already have to plan for frequent stops when traveling with a potty-training toddler. You don’t want to add even more stops to that list!
Make Frequent Stops During Your Trip
Potty training is basically about training the bladder; in the beginning, your child may pee frequently.
Plan to stop at least every one or two hours to let your little one use the potty.
Always give your toddler the opportunity to use the potty, even if they say they don’t have to go. Otherwise, you’ll drive 10 minutes from the nearest rest stop, and then they’ll have to go.
Carry Lots of Underwear and Pull-ups
Besides bringing a travel potty, you should also pack lots of extra underwear and pull-ups. Accidents happen, and you don’t want to be short any undies and have to call your trip short.
Even if your toddler wears a pull-up, you need to make it clear to them that they should not hesitate to notify you if they want to use the bathroom so you can pull over.
Consider Car Seat Lining
In-the-car accidents can be stinky and hard to clean up, so line your car seat in case the young one forgets to signal to you that they have to go.
Here’s another helpful tip in the same vein. Make sure the baby sits on one side of the car when you are driving, so in case of an accident, all you have to do is simply change them and spread a new lining on their car seat. Then you can be on your merry way again!
Carry a Wet Bag and a Disposable Toilet Seat Cover
Kids attract germs so easily, so a disposable seat cover is essential when traveling with a potty-training toddler if they’ll use any other toilet besides their travel potty.
Disposable toilet seat covers offer protection against germs, and you can flush them when you’re done.
The best disposable toilet seat covers for toddlers are waterproof, nonslip, and comfortable, as kids can wiggle on the toilet when trying to go.
Set a Timer
Distractions are likely to happen when traveling for a trip, and you may forget to have your little one use the potty.
This is why you should set a timer for three minutes to an hour and increase it according to the frequency your toddler uses the bathroom.
A timer will remind you whenever it’s time to visit the restroom. Most babies don’t mind potty timers and won’t resist peeing when it rings.
Pick a Practical Destination
While there is no limit to where you can travel with your baby, choosing a practical destination should be your focus during this unique time in your child’s life. Taking your toddler to places with long entrance lines, especially for the restrooms, may be inconvenient for them and you.
Consider destinations with reasonable bathroom access, such as a national park or a beach. You can easily change your toddler’s pants and continue having fun in these areas.
Also, choose a destination where you can clean and dry the kid’s clothes. Sometimes the little ones may go through all their clothes in two days, which means you will need to wash and dry them.
Alternatively, ensure your destination has laundry cleaning services where you can drop off and pick up the clothes (usually for a fee).
Continue With The Reward System
Potty training requires a lot of motivation, and one way to encourage your little one is through rewards.
You should maintain the rewards system during travel if you have already started rewarding them at home. You might carry a sticker chart or promise a different prize along the way.
Make It As Easy as Possible to Go
Automatic public toilets can be terrifying for both kids and adults (let’s be real). This is especially because the toilets don’t always wait to flush when you stand up but can flush while you’re still sitting down (wiggly toddler?).
If an automatic public toilet is your only option, you must find a way to prevent that loud and irritating flush while your little one is on the potty.
Band-Aids on the sensors can reduce the noise. Once your baby is done going, remember to remove the Band-Aid, so the toilet flushes for the next person.
A small piece of tissue stuck over the sensor can also work, as long as it doesn’t fall off before they’re done.
Traveling with a potty-training toddler requires a combined effort between you and your baby. You need to be prepared and start training early before your trip. You should also dress your toddler in easy-to-wear (and remove) clothes, pack extra underwear, and be ready for accidents. Good luck!