Potty and toilet training at home is going well and you’re ready for the next challenge: weeing and pooing whenever and wherever nature calls!
Being out and about while you’re potty and toilet training means that accidents will happen, but don’t panic. We’ve pulled together all the best tips to get you training on-the-go like a pro!
In a hurry? Jump to what you want to know…
Can I leave the house when potty and toilet training?
Start close to home
Go further afield
Become the toilet detective
Prep for public toilets
Potty and toilet training when travelling long distances
Pack a training travel kit
Potty and toilet training on-the-go: key reminders
It’s GoTime, mums and dads
The short answer is: yes, of course you can!
Learning to go at home is a big step, and an amazing achievement. But at some point you’ll be taking potty and toilet training on tour. The question is, when? Well, if your child is already telling you when they need to go, they might also be ready to go where they never have before.
When it comes to peeing and pooing in new places, start with something quick and easy - like a park near home so any accidents are stress free. Once that’s in the bag, using the potty or toilet at a family member’s home might be the next step on your potty and toilet training tour.
Enjoying your new nappy-free adventures? Then it might be time to try somewhere that has its own toilets like a supermarket or shopping centre. You’ll need to plan, but you can bring the fun approach you’ve created at home with you no matter where you are!
Like MI5. But with toilets. As you walk around, keep a mind-map of where the toilets are. You never know when you might need them. It’s true that ‘holding it in’ is a great skill - but your child might find it stressful at first, so having nearby loos to pop to will be reassuring.
Busy, noisy, new… public toilets can seem scary to kids. They look, sound and smell different to what they’re used to!
Every kid is different and will react in their own way: some like to use their regular potty in the cubicle, and others will hop straight onto the toilet. There’s also useful kit out there like potty training seats and steps that can be a great help.
Summer = fewer clothes = a golden opportunity for potty and toilet training. That’s true, but potty and toilet training can take between three and six months – so it might also mean you’re training on holiday.
That comes with some head-scratchers. Can you even take a potty on a plane?
Yup, you can! Some mums and dads take a folding potty in their hand luggage, and others use a fold-out seat that they place on top of the plane toilet. Either way, the potty and toilet training adventure doesn’t have to stop just because you’re whizzing through the sky.
And don’t fear the nappy. Nappies can be really useful on night flights when you’re getting started. Night-time bladder control develops later than day control. That means that night-time spills are normal, so don’t sweat it.
Remember those toilet opportunities you need to look out for? Well, it’s good to encourage your kid to go before you leave the house, and again before getting into the plane, train or car. After that, you can schedule regular toilet breaks with a timer instead of relying on them telling you they need to go. Just set your alarm to poo time.
A potty and toilet training travel kit can also help you prepare for long journeys. Here’s a list of gear that can make being on-the-go easier for dads, mums and little bums.
- Portable potty or toilet seat
- Car seat protector
- Spare clothes
- Waterproof bag
- Hand sanitiser and toilet roll or flushable wipes
What about long car rides?
You need to go again? Not every potty or toilet training break needs to happen at a service station. As long as it’s safe, your child might not be fussy about weeing or pooing in spur-of-the moment alfresco locations. Ah, the freedom!
Potty and toilet training on the go can feel like stepping into a whole new world. But having good info at your fingertips means there’s no need to feel overwhelmed.
Here are some key reminders of the ways you can help your little one stay confident and clean wherever they are, and supercharge their independence:
1. Take it slow
Potty and toilet training isn’t a race and every kid’s different. Take it one step at a time – from home to the park and beyond. Remember to celebrate these victories: each small step can feel like a giant leap on your adventure!
2. Be sensitive to feelings
What’s that noise? Is it a monster?!? Remember that even the sound of the flush can seem scary to kids at first. They might need reassuring it’s not a monster – or that it’s a friendly one…
3. Stay positive
There will be setbacks, accidents, ups and downs… but it’s important to stay potty-positive. Nothing ever goes exactly to plan, and that’s fine! Be patient and kind so your kid’s confidence never wavers.
4. Be consistent
They say it takes a village to raise a child, so think about the other people in your child’s life. Nursery staff, other family members… Keep them up to speed on your training choices so they can use them too.
5. Avoid nappies
Hmmm, maybe just this once? Holidays and big days out make nappies tempting, but it can be confusing for your kid to go back to wearing one once they’re getting the hang of the potty or toilet. Try to keep nappies a night-time thing.
6. Expect accidents
Potty and toilet training accidents are normal. That’s true anywhere, but especially in new surroundings. You don’t have to see accidents as a negative thing – they can be a fun opportunity for your child to understand what it means to be clean. Always pack spare clothing, just in case.
“I’m sorry I can’t go out, I’m toilet training” is a phrase no one needs to say.
As you can see, potty and toilet training doesn’t mean you’re trapped indoors. Getting out there is part of the fun. There will be setbacks, sure, but you can always switch things up and mix and match training methods if you need to. Remember, everyone’s different. It’s about finding what’s right for you and your kid. And we’ll be here to support you at every step (yes, even with poonamis on the bus).
So, whenever you’re ready, get out there! The next step of your toilet training adventure is waiting for you.