Traveling with a Child? Find the Closest Public Restroom

Summer is often a great time to start potty training your child. It is also the time to venture with your baby a bit farther from home. But are you worried that your newborn or potty-training child will have a potty related “accident” on the go? You will be less stressed if you are prepared and know where the closest clean public restroom is when you are traveling.

Places that routinely have public restrooms include bookstores, shopping malls, sit-down restaurants and many coffee shops. My tip is to avoid those that are frequently used (e.g. fast food restaurants in tourist spots) and go for the less frequented, which are usually cleaner. These include doctors’ offices (avoid the infectious disease specialties) and department stores. Many high-rise residential buildings, hotels and office buildings also have a clean restroom in the lobby.

When you are farther from home, your best bet is to be prepared and know the restrooms along your travel route. There are several ways to locate bathrooms in New York City. If you have an iPhone or smartphone, download NYC Way, an award-winning free application that lets users search (amongst 50 plus other things), the closest restroom based on their location. Besides the address, it also says if the restroom is free. is probably the most comprehensive global list of bathrooms available on the Internet. Their New York entries are extensive and rated by their cleanliness. Another website also maps restrooms and has a mobile app. If you are worried about accessing the Internet on the go, take a printout of restrooms along your planned travel route.

And don’t forget the wipes! Baby wipes double as family face wipes. Antibacterial (Wet Ones) wipes are useful too.