Our family recently wrapped up a month-long Route 66 road trip vacation. Along with all the various lodging, dining and travel details we had to contend with, there was also the problem of dealing with piles of dirty laundry. Families taking a long road trip have to travel light which means that we can’t bring along gobs of clothes. And without lots of clothes, laundry is one of those necessary chores we have to contend with while out on the road. Here are a few tips that will make this job easier.
Be selective with your hotel choices
For our road trip, my family packed enough clothes to last for 5-6 days which is why every 5th day, we stayed at a hotel that had coin-op machines for guests to use. Finding a hotel with on-site washers and dryers is not only convenient, it means that your family can continue watching TV or swimming while you duck down the hall to check on the laundry. Be aware that not all hotels offer a laundromat nor list it along with their amenities. Be sure to call ahead before booking the room.
Bring supplies from home
You can’t count on hotel laundromats having a supply of laundry soap and fabric softener on hand why it’s easier (and cheaper) just to bring your own from home. Other supplies to bring from home should include a nylon bag for dirty clothes and some kind of a collapsible laundry basket to carry clean and newly folded clothes back to the room.
Carry plenty of quarters
Hotel desk clerks do not keep a lot of change in their registers which is why it’s a good ideal to bring along your own roll of quarters on laundry day. Be forewarned that hotel laundromats are expensive. The average price for a single washing machine load is $2.50 with a dryer running around $2.
One final tip….
One habit I got into was doing laundry whenever we happened to be in a place with a washing machine, even if I wasn’t due to wash for another couple of days. This help “reset” the laundry clock and meant that we could go another 5 days again before having to focus on finding a hotel with an on-site laundromat.
The trade off for packing light on a road trip is that you will have to factor in a little time for laundry. Finding a hotel with an on-site laundromat along with bringing your own supplies from home is the best way to simplify this important chore.
More by this contributor:
How to pack your car for a month long road trip
5 reasons we rented a car for our family road trip
8 ways to cut vacation costs