Where To Shower When Traveling
When traveling, I have found one of the most challenging thing to address at times is one of the most obvious, Where Do I Shower??
Full timers as well as hobby travelers can find this to be one of the most stressful needs when driving around the country, especially during winter months when camp ground can be limited. While a campground might be the most obvious answer to this question, when you think outside of the box there are several other options available with a little creative thinking.
Rec Centers & Gyms
Rec Centers and Gyms can be the most obvious for those traveling. For those that hold a membership to many of the popular gyms which have locations around the country, you basically are paying for usage of these facilities. These typically are located within busy cities and thus if you are trying to be off grid this will require you to travel into town, however warm water, fresh towels and plenty of space allow a perfect stop for those already holding these memberships.
This option is one that is taboo in thought to many based on limited knowledge. While many are afraid to try this option, it is one of the most used forms of public use showering across the nation as truck drivers daily use these facilities. For those fearful of this option, major truck stops including Flyin J, TA, Loves and Petro are noted for their cleanliness and efficiency providing independent showers, toilets and countertops for a person to use. These do come at a cost that ranges from $8 to $15 depending on the stop, however you can find prices online for each if interested.
Check out couchsurfing.org or warmshowers.org websites for those in the area willing to donate their homes and couches. While these became popular with cross county bicyclers they are now some of the most popular sites for those traveling in the van and bus lifestyle. Much like AirBNB these sites offer exactly what they boast a shower and a couch to those traveling. The typical way these work is you meet in advance the host and get a feel for them to make sure you and they feel safe, from there you are allowed in their home for the night. These sites use a rating system for hosts by others staying in their homes.
If you happen to have an America The Beautiful pass many times you can gain access to these parks and even if not staying at their facilities can access their pay showers. While this is not a great option unless you do have this pass, for those who do it can be a lifesaver. I have personally found this option to be helpful on numerous occasions usually costing around $2-$3 for a good hot shower.