The first time we traveled away from home with a baby, I was very new to cloth and too chicken to try it the whole time. Instead, I used disposables until the day before we left to go back home, then I switched back to cloth. That way, the diapers weren’t dirty for too long. Since then, we’ve only traveled away for weekends. It’s no problem at all to leave on Friday, return on Sunday, and do the diaper laundry.
This time however, the trip involved staying in a cabin on the Outer Banks. The cabin had electricity, but no running water. While there were laundry facilities at the camp site, I was determined not to use them. One, it was my vacation and I just wasn’t into doing laundry. Two, I really wasn’t sure what to expect from the washers and water down there, so I felt it was best to leave the diapers longer and deal with a wash routine I know. Three, it’s not always practical or possible to wash on vacation, and I wanted to let others know what they might expect.
Leaving on Sunday and returning Thursday, the diapers didn’t go terribly long between washes. Still, I loaded the diaper bag with prefolds and covers. I figured that if my diapers needed heavy soaking and cleaning, the prefolds would handle it well. Reusing the covers would cut down on bulk. Plus, covers are easy to rinse, dry and reuse. I packed some pockets and AIOs to begin using the day before we left and on the trip home. I didn’t treat the diapers or do anything special. I just threw the prefolds/doublers/inserts/wipes in one bag with some baking soda. In another bag, I threw any covers or empty pocket diapers and AI2 shells. For that length of time, I just felt comfortable keeping them separate.
We filled up one pail bag with prefolds and a large wet bag with the covers and pockets. Upon returning home, I gave all the “wet stuff” a good soaking cycle in the washer. I ran them through another cycle with some detergent. Then, I added in all the covers and went through my regular laundry routine. The diapers seem fine, and I’m pleased with how it all turned out!
Please share your own tips for using cloth on vacation!