A Hygiene Travel Hack

Listen up, people! I have a travel hack that will help you maximize every minute of your vacation and preserve your good hygiene. But first, just a little context…

On our last day in Hawaii, Sidney and I had an 11 a.m. checkout time from our Airbnb. The issue? Our flight didn’t take off until 10 p.m. You see, when we booked our lodging, the owner of the Airbnb assured us that he would most likely be able to extend our reservation into the later afternoon. However, he had changed his tune (aka booked someone for that day) the morning before we were to depart.

So what were we supposed to do? Take a shower in our condo right before we checked out and head to the airport? Play hard all the day in the Kauai sun and board the plane smelling like the Hawaiian outdoors and dried sweat? We ended up opting for Option C…

Sid and I contacted the local Kauai YMCA. We were up front about our dilemma, explaining that we wanted to take full advantage of our last day in Hawaii but needed a place to shower prior to boarding our plane. The woman on the other end of the line told me that travelers use the Y’s locker room facilities all the time prior to heading to the airport and that access was $10 per person. We were sold!

I took this photo of the Kauai YMCA. It came in very handy for us.

To be honest, this wasn’t the first time we used this tactic. Several years ago, we found ourselves using the locker room facilities at a Seattle YMCA prior to a wedding. We had gone sightseeing all day and when the doors to the house we planned to stay at were locked, we had to go elsewhere to freshen up prior to the nuptials. Although we scrambled to make it work, the YMCA ended up saving our bottoms so we could attend the wedding in an appropriate (and clean) manner.

Sidney and I all cleaned up in the Shoreline YMCA in the Seattle area in 2015.

The Kauai YMCA was conveniently minutes away from the airport. Although we stuck out like sore thumbs as tourists needing to use the showers when we walked inside, the staff members were kind and graciously walked us through the pool area to the locker rooms so we could shower. The humble facilities served their purpose and we arrived at the airport feeling refreshed and smelling good.

The only time during our vacation when it rained for more than a minute was at the very end when we were at the Kauai YMCA. You can see the rain drops penetrating the pool’s surface. The locker room facilities were right where I took this photo at.

If not for the YMCA option, our last day in Hawaii would have looked dramatically different. I doubt we would have visited a couple different beaches and embarked on a humid hike through a Kauai forest if we didn’t have shower arrangements lined up. Sid and I were so glad we got to enjoy every last minute of our vacation.

The front desk and weight room area of the Kauai YMCA.

In the future, if you have an early checkout and late flight, look up the local YMCA. It can provide you with an opportunity to clean up before hitting the airport. Trust us, the $10 you pay is well worth the comfort and the extension of your vacation. Don’t Blink.

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