When you’re potty training a toddler, you end up buying a bunch of stuff to help motivate your child to use the toilet, to make it comfortable for them, and to make it as convenient as possible for you. But it’s one thing to keep your home bathroom stocked with all the essentials (from stickers to tiny toilets), and another thing entirely when you’re navigating bathroom trips away from home. When my our eldest hit the potty training stage, my husband and I knew we wanted a travel potty to keep in the car. Sure, bringing the small, high-back potty in our bathroom was an option whenever leaving the house, but those can take up a lot of space and isn’t the kind of thing you want to show up with to a friend’s house or restaurant. Enter the OXO Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty, which is the best toilet training product, IMO.
A former colleague, whose eldest is a year older than mine, enthusiastically raved about the OXO Tot foldable travel potty when I mentioned we were going to start toilet training. And because we were living parallel parenting lives (we both lived in Brooklyn, had kids similar in age, and owned cars which got a lot of weekend action), I didn’t bat an eye when she told me I needed this potty and ordered it immediately. And after using it for five years and counting (we are in the throes of potty training our second), I genuinely feel like this travel potty is one of the smartest purchases I’ve made as a parent.
- Price: $20.99
- Sizes: One size, 10.75” by 10”, weighing 1.5 pounds
- Colors: White with teal or grey trim
- Who it’s for: Tots who are potty training
- When to use: At home or on the go
- Maximum weight limit: 50 pounds
- Pro-tip: Keep one in each car your child rides in. If there’s a car seat in the vehicle, tuck a potty on the backseat floor in front of your kid’s car seat or in the trunk so you can whip it out in a pinch.
What is the OXO Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty?
The OXO Tot travel potty is a foldable potty you can use pretty much anywhere. It comes with a plastic drawstring bag for carrying, plus leakproof disposable bags to catch and contain whatever comes out of your child’s body.
These bags are important because they are 100% leakproof and embedded with an absorbent material for you-know-what. I mean, you could theoretically reuse a plastic grocery bag and toss in a few paper towel sheets but, those things always end up with tiny holes punched in them, so they’re not reliable for containing anything liquid.
How to use the OXO Tot travel potty
First, you’ll need to understand how to fold the legs in and out. Press down on a button by the hinge where the seat and legs meet to move the legs, which lock in three different positions: folded in to tuck them under and against the underside of the seat, perpendicular so the seat is freestanding, and splayed outward so that the entire unit sits flat and the legs point outwards away from the seat.
You can use this potty two ways (hence the 2-in-1 label in its name). To use it as a potty seat, twist the legs outward and set the seat atop the toilet. Full disclosure, because of its rounded shape, it does fit better on a standard toilet bowl, but it still works on an elongated one as well.
To set it up as a standalone potty your child can sit on, click the legs into standing position and line the seat with one of OXO’s disposable potty refill bags. Once your child has done their business, tie the bag securely and dispose of it responsibly. No, it’s not fun knowing you’re driving around with a bag of human waste in the trunk of your car, but by now you’ve probably got at least a full year of diaper-changes under your belt, so traveling with bagged-up poop until you can find a trash can is probably not a foreign experience to you. In all honesty, we only use the bags when the kids need to go number two. If it’s just pee, we will typically forego the bags. Since we live in the country, we just think of it as letting the kids water the grass.
When the seat is not in use, you can fold the legs under the seat so that it takes up minimal space and fits in the drawstring travel bag.
Depending one what you prefer, you could set this seat up in your own bathroom at home and use it as your child’s go-to toilet. But it doesn’t have a high back (which some parents prefer) or any bells and whistles, like a flush feature, that some other potties do. Also, there isn’t a vessel you can empty, wash, and reuse. You end up going through a lot of disposable bags, which can add up cost-wise and isn’t great for the environment.
Wash it as you would any toilet: frequently and thoroughly. We keep a pack of surface disinfecting wipes in the car to use when needed and give the seat a thorough clean with the hose or in the shower when we can — it really depends on how often we use it. We’ve had two of these for years and they work just as well as they did the first day we got them, so they’re durable too.
When to throw it out
I want to stress that this is something you can use well after the actual “training” phase has ended as long as your child still fits on it and falls within the 50-pound weight limit. We’ll gladly pull over on a side street and bust this thing out, because when your 3- or 4- or 5-year old is screaming that they need to go to the bathroom and absolutely cannot hold it, you do what you gotta do. That might mean you prop this bad boy up on the side of the road, in the trunk of the car (if there’s space), or on the floorboard of the passenger seat. The alternative (incinerating their clothes, or even worse, stripping down the car seat to run the washable parts through the washing machine) is 100 times worse. So, you can hang on to this travel potty as long as your child is under 50 pounds, and barring any cracks in the seat, broken legs, et cetera.
Where to use the OXO travel potty, from the obvious to the surprising
This folding potty really can do its job anywhere, including:
- On the side of the road
- In the trunk of your SUV or the floorboard of the passenger seat (yes, really)
- Restaurants, friend’s houses, AirBnBs, and hotels
- Your own home
- Behind dumpsters at gas stations
- In semi-empty parking lots
- At the end of your driveway because your child absolutely cannot hold it one second longer
Pros & cons
- Smaller than most training potties
- Comes with a drawstring carrying bag and disposable waste bags to start
- The disposable bags are not cheap and this is maybe not where you want to MacGyver a budget-friendly alternative.
- If you’re using this as your child’s main potty, it isn’t as comfortable and fun as some units out there. It doesn’t have a high back or bells and whistles, which some parents find helpful to motivate their child.
- It doesn’t fit super snugly on elongated toilet bowls.
The final verdict
As an all-in-one travel potty, this thing is amazing. It can do all the things you need it to do — maybe not as well as you would prefer, but it gets the job done on all fronts as a standalone at-home option, travel option, and a seat for standard toilets.
As long as our children can fit on this thing, we are keeping one in every single car.
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