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How to Do Laundry On The Road - Travel Laundry - Vacation Laundry

Clean Clothes on the Road


How to Do Laundry On The Road - Travel Laundry - Vacation Laundry

Photo: Norman Smith/Getty Images

Laundry is last thing you want on your mind when traveling for work or vacation. But sometimes, it can become essential especially if you've had a mishap. I've put together some suggestions to help you as you plan for a trip and while you're on the road.

Be Picky When Packing

Unless you travel with an entourage that can handle your every need, start by packing wisely with low-maintenance clothing.

  • Stick with darker colors that can stand up to multiple wearings longer than an all-white wardrobe.
  • Stay with one or two color families so that mix and match is easier. This will also make fewer laundry loads because they can be washed together.
  • Avoid fabrics that take forever to dry. Microfiber pants will dry overnight, jeans will not.

Laundry Travel Tips and Tools

A couple of gadgets and tips will make on the road laundry easier.


  • Learn how to hand-wash clothing before you hit the road alone for the first time.
  • If you have a number of clothes to wash, do it while you're in the shower. Finish washing and rinsing the clothes, turn off the water and open the drain. Use your clean feet to help stomp out most of the water. Wring the clothes well and then hang up to dry.
  • Wash soiled garments each evening if possible.
  • If you're travel for several weeks with children, plan to stay in lodging that offers a laundry room or nearby laundromat.
  • Plan your wardrobe around a mid-trip visit at the home of friends or family. I'm sure they'll be happy to share their laundry room!


  • Carry a flat rubber stopper just in case sinks or tubs are missing theirs.
  • With travel restrictions on liquids, pack some laundry detergent sheets. Detergent sheets that dissolve in water are available from camping stores. Or, you can use detergent sheets designed for the home washer and cut them into smaller pieces.
  • Whether you have a travel clothesline, use some string or need to clip socks to the bottom of the lampshade, clothespins are a must.
  • Inflatable clothes hangers take up no space in a travel bag and are great for hanging clothes to dry. They improve air circulation better than thin hangers to make drying quicker.
  • If you can't take care of soiled clothing before it's time to pack up and move on, use a bag to separate them from clean clothes...a few bad apples can spoil the whole bushel!


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