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Doing Laundry on Vacation

Going on a trip should mean getting away from the daily routines of life, but depending on how long you’re away and where you go, there’s one chore that may follow you on vacation: laundry.

If you’re not staying at a place with laundry facilities, then before you leave, locate nearby laundromats. But if you’re roughing it in the great outdoors, or doing a family road trip, get ready for “wash anywhere” situations (like when you’re on the open road, not a town in sight, and a fudgesicle mishap occurs).

Be Prepared: Your Wash-it-Anywhere Laundry Kit

Before vacation, put together a kit of on-the-go laundry supplies. This will make life easier, and that’s what vacation is all about.

Plastic bin/storage tub. Pack all of your supplies in a plastic bin that also doubles as a washing basin.

Travel-size stain remover. Great for treating stains on the go, but don’t forget to wash as soon as possible. Some stain removers can bleach a product if left on too long.

Small, mesh laundry bag. These are used in washing machines to keep delicate fabrics together, but they also come in handy when hand washing a few items at a time (like when  you’re washing in a stream with a current). They’re also useful for washing and storing dishes on a camping trip.

Portable, pre-measured laundry detergent pacs. While the packaging dissolves in a washing machine, they can also be torn open for use in hand washing – mini pacs, with less detergent, are especially useful for smaller loads.

Collapsible drying rack. This is ideal for for drying after washing clothes while camping or in a motel room sink, but not especially useful in the back of a minivan after cleaning Johnny’s fudgesicle stained white t-shirt.

Clothesline and clothespins. Campers prefer line drying, because it allows more space for larger items, like sleeping bags and towels.

Small, collapsible laundry basket. It’s helpful to have a place to store dirty laundry on your trip until you can wash it. And, if you’re folding laundry, say, outside on a picnic bench, a basket is handy for clean storage and easier transporting. If you’re just going to wait until you get home, then a plastic grocery bag or trash bag would work well.