My little munchkin is very interested in using the toilet. That means it’s portable potty time.
She says “poo-poo” and does the baby sign for toilet whenever she goes pee or poo in her diaper. She also loves to take her diaper off, which she can do quicker than I can these days. She then proceeds to pee on the floor while doing the toilet sign with a smile on her face. How can I not congratulate her for her efforts as I ponder which towel I will use to soak up her pee? She loves to watch others go to the bathroom, and to flush the toilet, as well, saying “bye-bye” as she flushes. So, at sixteen months old, we’ve decided she’s probably ready for potty training.
I have to say, I haven’t been overly eager to potty train my daughter. Because we travel so frequently, I actually find the idea of my daughter in regular underpants terrifying. I imagine her sitting on my lap during take-off and shouting “poo poo” just as the seat belt signs go on, both of us soaked in pee commencing a whole day of airplane travel. As a regular cloth diaper user, I’m comfortable with my diaper use and washing routine, so it’s no added expense to continue using diapers, and in my mind much more convenient.
But, I suppose it is to my daughter’s benefit to learn how to go pee in a toilet at some point, and she’s indicating that she would like to begin, so I am now in the process of searching for a good portable potty trainer to purchase. I have a feeling like much of my other baby gear I have purchased, I might end up finding it easier just to go without, but nonetheless, I will need something to bring with me to at least use wherever we are in the world so that I don’t have to constantly buy new potties where we are, and switch up potties on her when she might feel comfortable with just one.
So, here I am in the market for a portable potty for my babe. Here is what would make a great portable potty for my purposes of frequent and long international travel. The potty should be: 1) foldable and lightweight so I could pack in a suitcase without taking up too much space; 2) portable enough where I could travel with it through airports, planes or road trips if needed; 3) easy to clean/ dispense of baby poo and pee on the go, but with a reusable and eco-friendly option; and 4) a “hybrid” that I can use at home, during travel, and once I get to my destination. Unfortunately, in my extensive searching, I haven’t found a portable potty that meets all of my requirements, which I explain further below.
Here is what I am coming up with in my searches as three of the best parent-reviewed portable potties. I include the manufacturer’s product description and my own assessment as someone in the market but who has not yet purchased it:
Travel Potty Chair product description: “Great for long car trips or camping, it easily folds to briefcase size. Attach the disposable bag, and this potty goes anywhere. The two large storage compartments provide room for supplies, and it comes with 4 zip lock disposable gallon bags. Uses standard gallon size storage bags. Ages 18 mos. and up 70 lbs. 10″H x 13″W x 4.5″D weighing 3 pounds.”
This has really great reviews by parents, but it seems like it’s used more for going to restaurants/ play dates/ car trips. Parents seem to like that it is used with ziplock bags that can be disposed of, and it folds up into a briefcase size. However, I do not intend on buying this for the following reasons: 1) although light at 3 pounds, it would be too big and clunky to carry with me on a plane and would take up too much space in a suitcase; 2) as a cloth diaper user and someone who travels to countries with poor sanitation and waste disposal, I don’t want to be throwing away poo waste in plastic bags. This might be a great option for those of you who do a lot of camping or road trips, though!
Fisher Price 2 in 1 Portable Potty product description: “The new Out & About Potty from Fisher Price lets mom keep training easy as she goes out & about town or as the family travels. For travel there’s a full potty chair that uses standard small kitchen bags for collection, plus it features folding legs so it can tuck away easily in the car or a bag. For shopping trips or play dates, there’s a potty ring so toddlers can use public restrooms with a ring sized just for them that’s more sanitary. The ring has it’s own carry bag so mom can be discreet about toting it around. A guard is included for boys.”
The dimensions of this bad boy are 15 x 12.6 x 6.9 inches, weighing around two pounds. Although parents like this potty, some complain that it is too large and cannot fit into a diaper bag easily. It does give the option of just using the top seat on regular toilets, which makes for a more portable option, but this might be better for road trips and camping than for flying and long international travel. It uses regular plastic grocery or kitchen trash bags, but again does not have a reusable option that would appeal for me. I won’t be purchasing this one because of the bulkiness.
The winner that fits ALL of my requirements is: Kalencom 2-in-1 Potette Plus product description: “Our new 2-in-1 potette plus is a portable potty and trainer seat all in one. It is great for travel or use at home when potty training. Great to take anywhere that you may not have access to a sanitary bathroom. It’s a clean potty and trainer seat for your child no matter where you go. It is a great potty for the park, beach or to keep in your car, boat, camper, or RV. Disposable liner re-fills are sold separately. -Contoured seat for your child’s comfort. It’s main features: folds flat so it can fit in a purse or diaper bag (weighs 1 pound, dimensions: 11“H x 10″ W x 2.25″ D folded closed), suitable 15 months up to 50 pounds, uses self-absorbing, disposable liners that discard like a diaper and hold up to 5 ounces of liquid, easily converts to a folding trainer seat suitable for children 2 years and up to 50 lbs.”
Parents seem to really love this potty for traveling because it is relatively small and compact enough that most parents say it easily fits in a diaper bag, which is a huge bonus for traveling, especially on an airplane. See this great product review here.
I am going to purchase the Kalencom 2-in-1 Potette Plus because it is more lightweight, portable, and packable. Plus, it has a reusable liner (Potette at Home which is now available at Kalencom’s website and will be at Babies R’ Us within a few weeks) that I can use at my destination and a wet bag that can be used as a reusable packable liner on the go made by their sister company, Hadaki, called the Coated Multitasker Pouch (HDK809) which are eco-friendly and available in a variety of colors and designs that are waterproof inside and out. It also has the option to use just the seat cover over a toilet seat when Veda is a little older.
I will most likely pack the Potette at Home in my suitcase to use at my destination, while bringing two of the Coated Multitasker Pouches along in my carry-on to use for airport and plane travel. Once I start doing this, I’ll post to let you all know how that’s going!
For those little ones who are comfortable using a big potty with a little seat cover to size it for them, there are other options for when you have a toilet available that you can simply attach a kid-sized seat cover to wherever you are during travel or once you arrive at your destination. I feel like we really need a little potty for Veda right now as she begins and since we do a lot of long road travel, but hope to use this option when she is a little older and more confident with the potty. Here’s a couple potty seats that might be good options:
Over the next month or so as we commence potty training for a frequently traveling toddler, I’ll add additional posts on my experiences with potty training on the go, and products I am trying. I have a feeling I might be reverting back to diapers and hoping she’ll stay in them until age 5! Now, onto my search for the perfect pull-up cloth diapers for potty training? To All About Cloth Diapers I go…
- Potty Training….take ummm Two! (sippycupchronicles.com)
- The Potty Is My Alamo (And I Can’t Blame My Child) (blogher.com)
- Flying with Cloth Diapers? (gypsymomma.com)
- How to Get Dad Involved in Potty Training (tidytots.wordpress.com)
- Potty Training Cleverness (mummybigbum.wordpress.com)