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Sophie

Pay Toilets

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On 12/8/2014 at 3:24 PM, Sophie said:

I’ve talked about this a few times in the shoutbox but I wanted to make a thread and possibly hear peoples opinions. I did some Christmas shopping this weekend and one of the first things I did was have a wee. The toilets I always use are pay toilets that require you to put in 30 pence before you can use them. I don’t really mind paying this because they are some of the cleanest public bathrooms I’ve ever used, there is always toilet roll, and it isn’t that much money I guess. But it got me thinking.

The reason for charging to use these toilets is usually to cover expenses such as cleaning and toilet roll, but I know that I don’t always use public toilets to relieve myself. I’ll sometimes use them to fix my hair or make up, wash my hands and just generally freshen up. Wish this there is no cleaning needed, and no toilet roll used. So what am I paying for? I’ve basically paid 30 pence for the use of a sink and a mirror.

When I went this weekend I of course took my daughter with me, she’s too young to be alone, which cost me 60 pence. However she didn’t need to use the toilet, she was merely with me so I could keep an eye on her. Again I’m paying for nothing. I still don’t mind because as I said, it isn’t that much money. As we was leaving we walked past a couple of women, one who said “30p, 30 bloody p!” clearly annoyed or surprised by having to pay. And the woman in front of us was confused by the turnstile we go through to leave saying “I’ve never had to pay to have a wee before”

So, what are your opinions on pay toilets? Should they be abolished, or are they a reasonable idea with them being clean and well stocked. By pay toilets I don’t mean the ones where you put in some money and you have 15 minutes to do your business before the door opens anyway and exposes you to the world. These are usually indoors and has somebody who can convert change for you.

a pay toilet sounds like a nightmare to me. To be honest, I use the bathroom a lot more than most people. I can't hold it for very long so, usually I try and go wherever I end up. If I go to a restaurant, I will use the restroom, if I go to a store, I a lot of times use the restroom. I use it a lot and having to pay each time would add up a lot, and if i forgot coins or ran out of change, that would no end well. I would be ok being in a less nice bathroom and dealing with it for toilets to stay free.

Actually I did a little bit of math because I was curious and for me that could easily end up being well over $30 a month USD just to not wet myself in public. 

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We don't have any pay toilets in our town, but I know some towns nearby have those self cleaning one person toilets that you pay to use.  

Personally, if I encounter a pay toilet, I normally find somewhere quiet outside to pee as I don't want to pay if I don't have to do so.

Like others have posted, I have noted pay toilets in upmarket bars and clubs although I don't go to those type of establishments that much.  I was so surprised when I saw someone collecting in one such place that I had walked past before I realised that he was after money.  I figure that we have already paid the establishment to rent their beer, so it seems wrong for them to charge us again for disposing of it.   Anyway, when I needed to pee again later, I went outside.

Also in keeping with others, I have experienced charging in Spain and Italy.   In one place in Italy there was a woman sat in the doorway collecting a fee of 1 Euro.  To make it worse, she was sat positioned so that she had a good view of the urinals.  So, she was charging men to go in and then enjoying watching them pee - getting double benefit!

The most expensive place I have seen to pee is a public toilet in Geiranger in Norway.   They charged 17NOK, which at the time equated to roughly £1.70, it is a bit less now as the exchange rate has changed.   These toilets had a contactless card reader on the door of each individual toilet.   I saw this on the toilets right by the cruise ship terminal and thought it might just be those ones, so I walked up the road to the toilets by the bus stands and found that they had exactly the same charge.  I walked round the back and up a path into some trees, where I proceeded to pee into the grass.   I noted that the path was well worn and didn't go anywhere except this small area in the trees.  There were plenty of tissues strewn around as well, so it looks like lots of people, both men and women object to paying.

When I got back down by the cruise terminal, I found that there was a queue for the toilet and each person coming out was holding the door for the next to go in, so nobody (well except the first person) was paying.

I walked around the area and found that there was a cafe that had a number lock on their toilet so you could only use it if you purchased something and requested the code.   However, I then found a shop that had free toilets inside.  I guess they hoped that either only people already browsing the shop would use them or that people found them and then would look round the shop afterwards.

I do remember the old public toilets from my youth where you literally put a penny in the mechanism on the cubicle door to get it to open, which is of course where the term "going to spend a penny" comes from.

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I encountered some pay toilets in Thailand.  There was usually a man sitting at a table by the entrance and collecting the fees from both men and women.  The charge was 5 Baht (About 12p,  or 25 cents Australian)  I think it must have been to pay for cleaning as the facilities were very clean inside.

It's OK by me if that's how they want to arrange things,  but I did find that most restaurants and bars there provided toilets for customers at no charge.

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1 hour ago, likesToLick said:

I encountered some pay toilets in Thailand.  There was usually a man sitting at a table by the entrance and collecting the fees from both men and women.  The charge was 5 Baht (About 12p,  or 25 cents Australian)  I think it must have been to pay for cleaning as the facilities were very clean inside.

Oh yeah I experienced this in a club in Greece last year. Also if you tipped him a bit extra he'd squirt you with some expensive perfumes/after shaves etc. Seemed to be a common theme with their late places.

A lot of Spain's smaller outside toilets have someone stationed there at all times too. In the McDonalds in Alicante they had a 4 digit pin on the door to the toilets as well. So different from here in the UK.

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This is definitely a UK thing. 

I think some of it is also down to the area. There's a lot of public toilets in towns and villages I wouldn't touch with a barge pole. Not just because they aren't cleaned, but mainly because they turn into crack dens and usually full of used needles etc. 

The pay toilets I remember are some of the ones around Birmingham city Centre. It was a singular wet room style toilet. You'd pay, do your business, come out. The door would lock on exit and the whole wet room would be washed before the next person goes in. 

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On 4/9/2020 at 1:01 AM, Metalcrue said:

You'd pay, do your business, come out. The door would lock on exit and the whole wet room would be washed before the next person goes in. 

I'd gladly pay to visit one of those. I wouldn't bother to aim at a designated receptacle of any kind, instead I would thoroughly wet the room myself before stepping out and let the machinery do the same.

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