Festival toilets are never a pleasant experience – Take 10’s of 1000’s of people using the same toilets and by the end of day one, toilet paper becomes a rarity, they smell so bad that no matter how many ciders you have drunk you can still smell them, and they become a place you do ANYTHING to avoid. With my easy alternatives, you too can see how to avoid festival toilets!
In saying that, I have to admit that some festivals get their toilet situations spot on! Tomorrowland for example had plenty of toilet roll for the whole festival, sinks that had actual hand soap dispensers, hand sanitizing stations, and even deodorant and body spray at the exit – Just like the toilets of clubs in London where there is an attendant trying to sell you a very over priced Chupa Chup Lolly or a spray of Paco Rabanne with their ever so catchy ‘no spray no lay’, ‘no splash no gash’ catchphrases.
For the most part, festival toilets are something we all look to avoid for as long as possible, and many would rather pee on their own foot trying to go in a bush, than attempt to use a festival portaloo. Don’t worry, I’ve got your back – Equipped with my handy alternatives, you can avoid festival toilets altogether if needs be!
Festival Toilet Alternative #1: The Peebol
Before heading to Glastonbury 2019 I had never used these, and now I would never do any festival and camp without them! They are fantastic, cheap, easy to use and eco-friendly. I got mine from Amazon in a multi pack but they come in singles or multipack options. The Peebol is the ‘pocket sized toilet that allows men, women and children to go for a pee anytime and anywhere’. Their compact design allows for it to be folded up to fit in your bum bag, pocket or wallet, so they are perfect for at a festival! Simply open the top of the bag, have a wee, wait 60 seconds and the rapidly absorbing crystals turn it from liquid to gel. What’s even better is that the bag itself is recyclable and the gel inside is biodegradable. I found them ideal for a ‘middle of the night wee’ at Glastonbury when I didn’t want to walk miles in the dark, or stand in the queue for the toilet in the morning!
Festival Toilet Alternative #2: The SheWee
A festival staple and the OG festival toilet alternative – The SheWee. Essentially a little funnel which us girls can use to pee into a toilet, onto the ground (where appropriate) or into a container without it going all over us or having to squat and hope!
How to Use a SheWee
- Place the pointy end of the funnel section towards your bum so that it is lightly touching the body and hold the front rounded end in your hand. Don’t push the SheWee too tightly against the body, the front should be a few millimeters away from the body.
- I suggest that you practice in the shower to find the best position before you use it at a festival.
- Remember that gravity will take over and ensure the outlet pipe is lower than the funnel part!
- Have a wet wipe and water handy to catch any drips after use and give it a rinse. Then put into the storage bag until your next wee.
Festival Toilet Alternative #3: Composting Toilets
Most festivals will have porterloos, however some festivals go the extra mile and have composting toilets available to festi goers. They usually have a shorter queue as there is some admin involved in going to the toilet. Rather than just opening the door, doing your business then leaving, the composting toilets require you to take a cup of composting mulch, normally sawdust or woodchips, to throw on top.
Not only that, because they use no chemicals and people tend to cover up their waste each time they go, they tend not to smell as bad as the standard festival porterloos. A definite plus in my eyes ( or nose)!
Festival Toilet Alternative #4: Opt for Glamping / Campervan / Caravan
So staying in a caravan or campervan seems a little extreme to avoid festival toilets, however sometimes it is well worth the extra cost. You have the privacy and comfort of your own toilet whenever you want it.
Alternatively, choose a glamping option when picking your campsite or ticket type for the festival. I did Glamping at Bournemouth Sevens Festival and the toilets were a whole lot nicer and less busy than those in the general camping area.
I also camped in Tangerine Fields, a 3rd party Glamping site, when I went to Glastonbury and the toilets were SO much nicer than the standard ones in the main Glastonbury campsites. Not only were the queues far shorter, they were cleaned regularly, had toilet roll provided, hand sanitizer in each stall, and a door that locked… sounds simple but it’s a step up from many festival toilets.
Festival Toilet Alternative #5: Head into the local pub/supermarket
Perhaps even more extreme than staying in a nicer campsite or camping in a caravan/campervan during the festival is finding a local pub or supermarket to ‘go’ in. At Reading Festival 2010 the toilets were so bad that my friends and I walked to Sainsbury’s to go to the toilet. Others in the group went to restaurants and pubs and gave a charity donation to use their toilets – I still would rather pay £1/£2, to do a poo in comfort than brave the literal ‘shit pits’ that were the Reading Festival toilets.
The Best & Worst Festival Toilets I’ve Experienced!
Not all festival toilets area created equal. Some are really not that bad and others are dirty, smelly and frankly DISGUSTING.
2nd: Wilderness Festival
1st: Reading Festival
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