Periods have no respect for your travel plans so chances are you’ll be facing many trips while already on, or expecting, your period. If you’re traveling on your period a menstrual cup is the ideal solution- it takes up minimal space in your luggage and will make your period more comfortable. As a frequent flier I can attest to how amazing it is to grab my cup and pack it for a trip, no matter the length, without having to fill my luggage with a box of tampons!
What To Pack- YOUR CUP!
If you’re not already on your period on the day of your trip you’ll want to PACK YOUR CUP! Even if you think your period won’t begin while you’re away it’s better to pack your cup just in case. Traveling can wreak havoc on your body, your digestion, and your period may also be off track and show up earlier than expected. Most menstrual cups come with a travel pouch or case when you purchase them brand new; you’ll want to pack your cup in something to protect it from getting dirty but that is breathable, like a cotton pouch. If you’re already on your period then congrats! Your vagina is packing your cup. You will however want to bring your storage pouch in case your period ends and you need a place to put the cup when it’s over that protects it.
Hotels, Air BnB’s, and family or friends can have varying styles of soaps available (most hotels only provide french milled bar soaps) so you may want to pack your own soap of choice for cup cleansing in a TSA approved travel bottle for when you’re emptying and washing in the comfort of your home away from home.
Don’t forget to pack your cup! If you do forget and need period supplies opt for an organic tampon. If you truly can’t live without a cup for your period many chain pharmacies, Whole Foods, and Target sell cups in the store (typically just the Diva Cup brand) and CVS even sells period underwear!
Emptying A Menstrual Cup In Airplane Bathroom
If you’re traveling while on your period and that includes a flight emptying your cup in the airplane bathroom can be a terrifying thought. Luckily for most of us a menstrual cup is ideal for flying because they can be worn 10-12 hours at a time. If you’re a person who needs to empty more frequently or perhaps you are taking a longhaul flight that neccesitates emptying in air it can be done- carefully. Airplane bathrooms are cramped so depending on your size it might be easiest to stand sideways when removing your cup, being extra careful not to drop it. When dumping the blood you should aim for right over the “trap door” and avoid dumping the blood on the walls of the toilet. Airplane toilets differ from regular toilets and any blood on the walls of the bowl may not “flush” away.
The water from the faucet in an airplane bathroom is not drinkable. Bacteria have been found in airplane tap water so it’s better to be safe than sorry. Hopefully you remembered your cup wipes but if not just empty the cup and replace it without washing until you reach a bathroom on the ground. You can also wipe the cup with toilet paper the same way you would in a public restroom that isn’t 30,000 feet in the air.
You can insert your cup before your period starts- if you anticipate you may start the same day as a scheduled flight definitely put that cup in before you take off! You may start mid-flight and not even know it.
It’s amazing to think of how much space you can save in your luggage by using a menstrual cup instead of disposable pads or tampons. We have heard of many vacations saved by having a cup in versus uncomfortable tampons or pads. If you’re traveling to a warm climate you’ll even get the peace of mind of not having a tampon string hanging from your bathing suit. So don’t forget your cup next time you pack your suitcase and if you’re flying check the airport restrooms, I may have placed a “Put A Cup In It” sticker in the stall.