If you've ever wondered if you can truly use cloth diapers when traveling, let me assure you - YOU CAN! Traveling with cloth diapers isn't any more difficult than traveling with disposable diapers. Whether it is for a day out, shopping, visiting friends/family or running errands, or maybe for a weekend vacation…a bit of planning goes a long way. My tip? Just be prepared.
A Day OutIf you're just going to be out for a day, the planning is simple. Will you be gone for 2 hours? Three hours? All day? Pack one (1) cloth diaper for every 2-3 hours you expect to be away - more for younger babies, and of course, fewer for older babies. Then, just for grins, pack one more. I call this the "peace" cloth diaper. There is nothing better than knowing that you can take an extra hour to get home because you have that ONE EXTRA DIAPER to cover the ride. Am I right?!Also, make sure to take a waterproof bag - we used a Bummis tote to carry our wet and soiled diapers, but there are several more that have hit the cloth diaper scene since we cloth diapered. I'm rather partial to the practical, draw-string style cloth diaper wet bag, but there are also new-fangled zipper wet bags like the Planet Wise Wet Bag. No matter which you select - just bring one. And no, Wal*mart bags do not do the trick (except in a pinch) - they don't secure close well enough and you'll carry that stench with you all day. Seriously, just invest in a wet bag - or sew one - just get one! One wise reader suggested a big zip-lock bag is a perfect substitute; I'm going to disagree. While it will isolate smelly diapers, it cannot be reused. I mean, it can…but not indefinitely, and you certainly can't pop it in the washer and dryer. Let's not add waste to the landfills - wet bags are where its at!Finally, be sure to pack whatever cloth baby wipes and diaper solutions you prefer. I like the spray-on wipe solutions for their ease of use. If your baby is prone to diaper rash, you might want to include sample sizes of diaper cream or lotion.
Taking Cloth Diapers on VacationYou're shaking your head - I can see you. Stop it. No, really…this isn't as difficult as you might think. Now, before I go any further I will say that you need to be respectful - don't extend your convictions to cloth diaper to your friends and family. If they are truly opposed to you washing your cloth diapers in their washer/dryer, consider whether you want to visit a laundry-mat. If not, choose a non-reusable option like the GroVia One Size Cloth Diaper System with their GroVia Disposable Diaper Soaker Pads. Another option is the Flip One Size Diaper Cover with the Flip Disposable Diaper Inserts. Sure you have to throw the inserts away, but really…it is still environmentally more sound than a disposable diaper. In a pinch, and when it can serve a relationship well, it is a wise choice.There is no need to be extreme.If you're in a place where you can use cloth diapers without issue, the only thing you need to do is plan ahead carefully. Ask yourself a few questions: "Where will you be staying?", "When will you be able to wash diapers?", "How will you store them between washings?" (we used a laundry basket with a beach towel laid atop the diapers and covers to keep them free of dirt, dust, pet hair, etc…). You need the exact same supplies you need for a day trip, just more of it. Oh, and toss in some detergent if your baby is sensitive and you aren't sure you'll have access to a dye free, fragrance free, phosphate free, and fabric softener free detergent where you'll stay. Of course, you've got to consider there are more hours/days to cover, but even if you'll be gone a week, you only need enough diapers to cover a typical 3 day wash cycle. Beyond that your diapers are going to get terribly grungy. Trust me, wash at 3 days! I found that if I carried 2 dozen cloth diapers when I was traveling for one week, I never ran out and had plenty while I was doing the diaper wash.So see, it really isn't terribly difficult to keep baby dry and happy when traveling.
Make the Decision and Do It!When it comes down to it the hardest decision we typically make in any commitment (be it cloth diapering or underwater basket weaving) is the decision to MAKE A DECISION. Once we decide, we are one step closer to action. Decision + Action = A Done Deal. Decide you'll use cloth diapers beyond the front door and beyond and you will.That's a fact.