It is no secret that potty training is tough. But potty training while traveling is an adventure in its own right. With a little planning, a lot of patience, and a package of your toddler’s favorite Disney Pull-Ups, it’s totally doable with these potty training tips!
As if traveling with a toddler isn’t a handful as it is … throw in potty training a toddler while you’re traveling and it adds a whole new dimension to your trip. The truth is though, the rules for potty training are pretty much universal. Potty training depends on routines and predictability. If you’re traveling during this time, just know: It CAN be done! These potty training tips will help.
Bring a Potty Chair
This is especially important if you’ll be taking a road trip.
Having a potty chair with you means your toddler will have no excuses for not doing his of her doody (pun totally intended) in the potty. Buy one well ahead of the trip and allow your toddler to use it at home. That way, he’ll be familiar and more comfortable with it during the trip.
Both problems are easily solved. Outsmart the toilet sensor by putting a wipe, Post-It note or Band-Aid over the sensor while your toddler is doing his thing. Then take it away after you and your child are finished. In an airplane lavatory, let your child finish, wash and walk out of the tiny room before you push the flush button.
Watch Your Language
Parents love to give their kids silly names–for the kids, for their body parts and for their bodily functions. Just remember, there may come a day when you’ll need to use those words in public–at a crowded airport gate, on an airplane or in a restaurant. Before deciding on the words you’ll use in the privacy of your own home, ask yourself: Do you really want your child to yell, “But Mommy, I have to _________ RIGHT NOW,” when you’re out in public?
Continue with the Rewards
Perhaps the best potty training tip for traveling is to keep up with your reward system. Bring the snacks, stickers, hugs, bubbles, or whatever you’re using as a reward. Children respond to positive reinforcement and the little extra motivation can go a long way! Keeping with the rewards system assures your child that being away from home doesn’t mean the routine is different. If the rewards are working at home … they should still work on the road.
Pick Your Battles
Be forgiving to your toddler and to yourself. If you know you’re going to be on a flight where it is going to be virtually impossible to get your little one to the restroom every time he/she needs to go, consider using a Pull-up instead of big boy/girl underwear. And be forgiving. If your toddler needs to go, but the seat sign is on, sometimes you just gott (sing it with me now) Let it Go.
Know that Accidents Happen!
Sometimes we just can’t get a toddler to the restroom fast enough. When an accident happens, give yourself a break and move on. Naturally, the familiarity is taken away if your little one is on the road while potty training, so just recognize the challenge and keep going.
Potty Training Tips for Public Bathrooms
If you’re a traveling mom, your little one is going to have to get used to airport bathrooms, rest areas and gas station restrooms. It’s all part of the gig.
Public restrooms are never as clean as you would want them to be, but everyone–including picky potty-training toddlers who touch everything–have to use them anyway. Use these potty training tips for public bathrooms.
1. Accept that toddlers touch everything, even the gross spots in public bathrooms. The key is to get to their hands before their hands.get to their mouths. When they grab the bowl to climb on the seat, calmly break out the sanitary wipes and wipe their hands while they’re sitting on the fold-up potty seat you brought along.
2. Beware the Automatic Toilet. Whether it’s the surprising flush kids get from an automatic sensor that never seems to realize when a child is actually done or the bellowing flush of an airplane toilet that makes a child think they will get sucked into oblivion, public toilets can scare little kids.