Whether it's a quick trip to the grocery store or a road trip to the in-laws, it is possible to travel without having to dish out money for paper diapers. There are just three things you need to keep in mind as you do so:
- Luggage space
- Easy changes
- Washing facilities
Space is a big thing to keep in mind, especially if you're limited by the amount of luggage you can fit in your car or take onto an airplane. You should definitely try to take your trimmest diapers along. Flat diapers, or certain pockets and AIOs such as Grovia's One Size AIOs are perfect for this. If you're fond of a specific pocket diaper, you can always switch out chubbier pocket inserts for trimmer ones if you're really keen on bringing a specific brand along. Lots of hemp inserts are unbelievably trim while maintaining super absorbency and make pocket diapers trimmer. Basically, though, the trimmer your diapers are, the less space they'll take up in your diaper bag and/or luggage and the more of them you can take along with you.
Secondly, you need to keep in mind that while traveling, you may not be in control of where you end up changing your baby, so you'll want to pick something that's quick and easy. Pockets and AIO diapers are the seemingly obvious choice for quick and easy changes, but that doesn't mean that they're your only option. Flat diapers or prefolds pre-stuffed into a Thirsties or Flip cover go on just as quickly. Honestly, a quick and easy diaper change is less about the type of diaper you use and more about grabbing what is most comfortable for you. Diaper systems such as Flip or G-diapers are specifically designed for these types of situations, as both of them come with either cloth or disposable inserts so if you have some of them in your stash, you might want to take them along.
Finally, try to check out the washing facilities of your destination before you leave. If you're staying with friends or family, make sure that they're okay with allowing you to wash cloth diapers in their machines. If you're in a hotel, check ahead to see if they have laundry facilities. You might find yourself in a situation where you'll be hand-washing, in which case flat diapers might be the way to go. Or, there may be no place to wash at all, which means that you’ll have to take enough diapers to last throughout the duration of your stay, if that's possible. In any case, knowing how you'll be able to clean your diapers while away is key to successful planning.
Of course, in addition to bringing your diapers, you'll need to remember your accessories as well. Make sure you have pins and snappis on hand if necessary, and that you've grabbed a travel case of your favorite cloth wipes as well. In addition grab your cloth diaper safe rash cream as well as a couple of wet bags (large and small) and a small container of your favorite cloth diaper laundry detergent. I have also found that disposable diaper liners are a great idea for trips because they make poop disposal much easier than trying scrape or dump poop into toilets not previously armed with a diaper sprayer.
Granted, just because you use cloth diapers doesn't mean that you have to stick with them when traveling. It is a nice convenience to be able to buy disposables in a pinch. But if the idea of wasting your money on paper goods is just too much to bear, then know that traveling with cloth is possible.