Having been to Europe a number of times now, one thing I have learnt is to always have change on me.  


Ha ha ha…  No, seriously, when in Europe and you need to use the lavatory for whatever your business may be, unless you are in a restaurant or pub as a paying customer, you are going to have to fork out some change to use their facilities. 

Above is a great example of what a public WC (watering closet) looks like.  Usually there is a retired older lady who sits in a chair with a side table with a small dish on top who hands out toilet paper (three squares at most!) and she isn’t there just collecting tips, you are expected to pay. 

A funny European sign below which I believe is geared at tourists. 

Usually the cost is minimal, but I have paid a Euro in the past & it was worth it. 

You can also access some super public toilets which are a bit unnerving like the above, and I believe this one is self cleaning, which I am not sure how hygienic “self cleaning” is, but when you need to go, it is a great option. No one can see you, but you can watch the people walk by in full privacy.  How you would enter such a loo is by putting however many coins in a slot & the door would unlock for you (if not in use).  I believe I used one like this in Berlin. 

The above is not as fancy and questionable for cleanliness, but I used one of these in Paris once. Worth it.

Squat toilets are common in Asia hence I believe this type of signage on how to use a Western toilet.

I think it was in La Spezia, Italy or possibly Pisa, when I had to use a toilet and it was a nasty dirty tile floor which looked like it had not been cleaned in awhile, and in the corner there was literally a hole in the concrete portion of the floor and no rails to hold onto. I had no idea how to use this, and I think I gave 50 cents – 1/2 a Euro to utilize this facility. 

The above would have been a welcome delight. What I had was a deplorable hole in the ground with a breeze coming up from it.  Not sure how it worked.  Also, for those who may not know, above is what you call a “Squater Toilet” and is encountered more in Asia than in Europe. 

For a softer touch and if you need more than a couple of squares, I recommend taking a few packs of Kleenex. 

Sometimes the WCs in Europe can have not the nicest conditions. Sometimes there is no soap, or a dirty scary bar of soap, or the taps don’t work, or you have to recontaminate your hands by opening a door or whatnot.  Keep travel size Purell on you at all times. 

Don’t take the toilets too seriously. Have fun with it. We travel for a bit of a culture shock don’t we? Be kind to the lavatory Euro collectors, they are older & they do help keep the facilities clean, and it is probably not the most joyous job – monitoring toilet use & distributing TP squares. 

Have fun and again – keep lots of change on you! 

Happy travels ❤️

Peace & love – Rachel

Published by You Know Jacques!

Living in beautiful Nova Scotia. Blogging about everything under the sun from social injustices, minimalism & the corruption of over consumerism, traveling the world & experiencing different cultures, mental health issues, diet, dating, book/restaurant/product reviews and social issues. I hope to encourage and inspire being authentic as I can be. I hope you enjoy what I have to share and please feel free to drop me a line.

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