Washing Clothes While Traveling, Scrubba Wash Bag

Staying Fresh: Washing Clothes While Traveling

Washing clothes while traveling can be a frustrating feat. Long term travelers will (hopefully) have to wash their clothes at some point while traveling, and even if you take shorter trips, there will likely be a time when you will want to wash your clothes, especially if you pack light.

While we typically don’t travel for more than a few weeks at a time, there have been plenty of instances where we needed to wash some items while we were traveling. We like to pack light, and we don’t like to smell, so when Febreeze isn’t going to cut it, we find a way to wash our clothes while on the road.

Of course there are the typical ways to wash your clothes, such as a laundromat or a hotel washing machine, but neither of these options are very convenient or pleasant. Another convenient way to clean your clothes is to use a laundry service. A laundry service can be a great choice when you are in a country that offers it for an affordable price, but it’s not always cheap and you run the risk of items getting lost.

While there are many ways to stay fresh and clean while traveling and still pack light, we wanted to share our favorites with you. Here are our two favorite ways to wash our clothes on the road.

Rent an Apartment

One of our favorite types of accommodations is to rent an apartment from a place such as Airbnb. It is so nice to feel like you have a home when you are traveling, and we love all the conveniences that often come with renting an apartment. When we book a place to stay, I always try to find one with WIFI first and foremost, and second, a washing machine. Other than the location and price, these are the two factors that are our main considerations.

Washing Clothes While Traveling, Airbnb

It’s nice to have an apartment to yourself where you can throw a load of laundry in while relaxing or getting some work done. If we are moving around from place to place on a trip, I always try to book an Airbnb with a washing machine in the middle of our trip. That way, we can wash all of our clothes halfway through our trip and it essentially doubles the use of our clothes. It’s great that we don’t have to wear dirty clothes, and even better that we don’t have to pack quite as much as we otherwise might.

Washing Clothes While Traveling, Airbnb

Washing Clothes While Traveling, Airbnb

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Scrubba Wash Bag

Another option for keeping your clothes clean is to bring along the Scrubba Wash Bag. This is seriously one awesome invention! I’ve been wanting a Scrubba for quite some time, so when I got a few Amazon gift cards for Christmas last year, I immediately knew what I was going to purchase.

Washing Clothes While Traveling, Scrubba Wash Bag

So, what is the Scrubba Wash Bag you might be wondering? Well, it’s basically a dry bag with little knobs inside of it—when you fill the bag with your clothes, water and soap, you can get a machine quality hand wash in just a few minutes. Yes, you could wash your clothes in the sink, but the scrubbing board inside the bag works way better than a simple hand wash. Also, sinks aren’t always available, especially if you are camping.

Washing Clothes While Traveling, Scrubba Wash Bag

Using the bag is simple; you fill the bag up to the line printed on the outside and then add your clothes and some soap. Note: if you are using the bag and dumping the water outside, please use eco friendly soap such as Trek and Travel Laundry Wash to help keep the environment safe!


Next, you close the bag and let out the excess air. After the excess air is out of the Scrubba, you rub and swoosh your clothes around inside the bag. When you are scrubbing the clothes like this, the knobs inside of the bag act as a washboard, and this is what allows for a great wash. You can scrub for 30 seconds which gives your clothes a quick wash, or for three minutes which provides a machine quality wash. The scrubbing motion gives you a great, quick workout, as well!

Washing Clothes While Traveling, Scrubba Wash Bag

Once you are done washing your clothes, you take them out and rinse out the soap. After ringing out your clothes and hanging them to dry, you will have a fresh wardrobe at your disposal!

The only downside of this bag is that you have to wash smaller loads at a time and you can’ throw everything in all at once. On the plus side, you never have to worry if you will be able to find a washing machine again.

Do you ever do wash clothes while traveling? If so, how do you typically do your laundry when traveling?


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  • anna
    Posted at 23:10h, 23 April Reply

    Scrubba wash bags awesome! One of our friends has reviewed it and loves its usability.
    anna recently posted…Incredibly Useful Tips when Renting a Motorbike in ThailandMy Profile

  • Les Petits Pas de Juls
    Posted at 10:12h, 24 April Reply

    how fun and convenient! I had never heard of the scrubba wash bag before! 😉 Might need to test it too!
    thanks for showing it to us!
    Les Petits Pas de Juls recently posted…Our Friends’ Real Life Adventure Book is Released! Get it now!My Profile

  • Brenda Tolentino
    Posted at 11:38h, 24 April Reply

    I’ve never seen this Scrubba Wash, it’s a great tool for traveling! It’s also fantastic that you included a video to show how easy to use it is. I may just have to buy on 🙂 Thanks for the tip!
    Brenda Tolentino recently posted…Food Travel is a funny thingMy Profile

  • Meg Jerrard
    Posted at 19:12h, 24 April Reply

    Scrubba is my favroite – I recently came across them, and it’s changed my traveling life ever since!! It’s so nice being able to have access to clean clothes and being able to wash them whenever you want 🙂

  • John Morris
    Posted at 20:07h, 24 April Reply

    I’ll definitely have to check this out. I stay at mostly Western hotel brands, and it can often be 10 to 20 dollars to wash a pair of pants.

  • Mar Pages
    Posted at 22:44h, 24 April Reply

    The Scrubba sounds great! I feel paranoid sometimes that my hand washed clothes aren’t clean enough, and I end up using more water than I need. This is such a great solution! Good for some exercise too 😉

  • Arzo Travels
    Posted at 07:57h, 25 April Reply

    Oh, I had to wash my own stuff but using laundry services can be really expensive. I have never heard of that bag – might be a good idea, need to find out more about it 🙂

  • Trisha Velarmino - P.S. I'm On My Way
    Posted at 11:01h, 25 April Reply

    WOW THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR INTRODUCING SCRUBBA TO ME. I can’t even begin to expound on the amount of times I have struggled with washing clothes and rotating the limited selection that I do have. Thank you so much for this practical and cost efficient tip, Jenna! Looking forward to seeing more of your travels!
    Trisha Velarmino – P.S. I’m On My Way recently posted…Manila, I’m breaking up with you. It’s not me, it’s you.My Profile

  • anto
    Posted at 00:38h, 26 April Reply

    That sounds interesting, I never heard of it before! We usually try to do laundry at a campsite or in a hotel we are staying at, depending on the amount of time we are away… generally I can throw it away after the trip anyway, because these mutual laundry machines aren’t the best quality, so I’ll definitely keep this in mind!

    • Jenna Kvidt
      Posted at 04:10h, 09 May Reply

      Hope you like it if you do decide to give it a try! It’s nice to use regular washing machines sometimes, especially if you have a lot to wash, but we do love the convenience of the bag and the fact that you can use it pretty much anywhere!
      Jenna Kvidt recently posted…Kayaking the San Juan Islands in Search of Orca WhalesMy Profile

  • Vanessa Chiasson
    Posted at 08:37h, 26 April Reply

    I am absolutely obsessed with the concept of the scrubba bag. Doing laundry on the road is a constant requirement for us as we pack really light and, while I don’t mind regular hand washing, it always feels like I’m just getting things ‘clean enough’ before I can get to a ‘real’ washing machine. The idea of having my clothing feel washing-machine clean on a more consistent basis has a lot of appeal!

    How did you find the bag did when it came to filling it in the sink. It looks like it’s so big you’d have to scrunch it down into the sink to fill it and then the water might spill out?

    • Jenna Kvidt
      Posted at 04:09h, 09 May Reply

      Definitely know what you mean–I love that this gives your clothes a bit more of a scrub than a regular hand wash! Clothes feel much cleaner than just washing in the sink. We didn’t notice any problems with filling the bag–there are fill lines on the outside so you really only end up filling it halfway or maybe even a bit less.
      Jenna Kvidt recently posted…Kayaking the San Juan Islands in Search of Orca WhalesMy Profile

  • Anna
    Posted at 16:25h, 26 April Reply

    Now that is a fun and super convenient way to get the washing done when on the road. I had never heard of the scrubba wash bag before, but haven’t really had a need for anything like it either. When I travel, there is always access to a laundry or a bath tub to get my scrub on ol school. Would be keen to have a crack at this tho.

  • Ayda
    Posted at 21:51h, 07 August Reply

    This is a helpful blog, But if the water is dumped into the fabric, do not spray yet rub. Flushing liquid and soda club is usually okay.

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