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Hello... how do you manage, while touring, to get your recommended amount of water in you?
Do you bring a water bottle? Buy water on the go? Is it available often?
Plus another question... can we leave stuff on the bus if necessary? thanks!

Posted by
2524 posts

Not an issue at all.
The bus drivers usually have chilled water available for a small cost, and there are numerous places along the way to get a drink. I carry a reusable water bottle with me.
Yes, you can leave stuff on the bus during the day. The driver generally stays with the bus and/or it's locked.

BTW, I assume this is about Rick Steves tours. Best to ask tour related questions in the Rick Steves tours section so people understand the context.

Posted by
14269 posts

Honestly I slack off on water when I’m on a tour as you never know when the next bathroom is.

On a RS tour on a bus day you can expect there to be a stop every 1.5-2 hours.

You can leave stuff on a RS tour bus during the day. They usually recommend you take anything valuable with you at night. There is also usually a section in the bus bay set aside for “deep storage” of things you don’t need to come in to the hotel.

Posted by
7463 posts

Water is available on the bus while you’re going between locations. Otherwise, we didn’t carry a water bottle with us just like we don’t carry one when we’re spending the day in a city at home. We just stop and have something to drink at an outdoor cafe and enjoy the ambience & rest our feet. I don’t see locals carrying water in the cities in Europe, but if you’re out hiking, be sure to have something with you.

Posted by
5153 posts

I always bring my own water bottle, empty , of course , going through security. In Europe, there always seem to be public water fountains with clean, refreshing water from which to refill your water bottle. I bring a water bottle that has no emotional significance in the event that I lose it.
Safe travels!

Posted by
2856 posts

Honestly I slack off on water when I’m on a tour as you never know
when the next bathroom is.

I’m with Pam—I don’t like to drink a lot of water when traveling. 😊

One of my sister’s doctors’ recommended these liquid IV powders that you add to water. I drink these at night when I’m back at the hotel, with a bathroom. 😊 I add half a packet to a water bottle.

Posted by
1625 posts

We always bring our Hydroflask Water bottles with us. Not only for the plane, but so we have room water at night and for walking around. I also use an electrolyte powder in my water so I don't get leg cramps at night, which can happen when I walk too much. I buy single use packets at Sprouts or Ultima packets on Amazon.

Posted by
3821 posts

"Honestly I slack off on water when I’m on a tour as you never know
when the next bathroom is."

Words of wisdom from Pam there.
The buses have bathrooms, but you're encouraged not to use them except in case of an emergency.
On our RS Best of England tour, the bathrooms on our bus were tiny, as the bus was built/designed to be used part of the year by the bus company to transport grammar school age children on field trips.
The bathroom was about right for a 6, 7 or 8 year old child to squeeze into.

So you must wait until the next stop to dash into a restroom.

We didn't drink much water while on the bus, but drank once we had stopped for the day and were at the hotel.

Our bus driver had bottles of water we could purchase for one pound each.

Posted by
2917 posts

Living in Arizona, I feel naked if I don't carry water everywhere I go. Last year I bought bottles of water and lost them daily when I only carried my extra small purse and not my day pack. For Christmas my friend gave me this water bottle to hang onto my purse. I'll see how that works in a month.

Posted by
14269 posts

@Carrie, that is interesting! I’ve seen a similar product mentioned on a non-travel FB group I’m in.

@Letizia - OK, this is going to sound nuts but try taking a small bar of soap with you next time you travel. Slip it unwrapped between your sheets. It will stop foot and leg cramps! There is a scientific explanation of how this works on the People’s Pharmacy website. I have a bar of soap that lives between my sheets at home!!

@Rebecca-yes!! To hydrating once at or near the hotel!

Posted by
11511 posts

OK, this is going to sound nuts but try taking a small bar of soap with you next time you travel. Slip it unwrapped between your sheets. It will stop foot and leg cramps!

A particular brand of soap or just any bar of soap? Does it have to be a soft wrapper or do bars in boxes work? Bath size or hotel freebie size?

To address OP question, ease of getting water depends on the tour. Italy has free fountains seemingly everywhere. Greece took a bit more planning to refill bottles.

When I dipped into the bus cooler, it was for beer, not water.!

Leaving stuff on the bus... when at a stop for visiting a site, yes. Overnight, depends.

Posted by
8650 posts

Depending on which tour you are on, you may not see the coach everyday. The coach will not take your from sight to sight when you are in a city for a couple of days for example. The coach doesn't necessarily stay in town or near your hotel if you're there for more than one day. We had them switch buses and drivers on us once, so leaving stuff overnight in the storage bin under the coach needs to be discussed with the tour leader.

We will buy a typical plastic bottle of water and refill or replace as necessary. We've had drivers stock their (personally-provided) cooler with water, for contributions. Water is just as available there as here in the US.

Posted by
14269 posts


A particular brand of soap or just any bar of soap?
—> Any kind. I’m sensitive to scent so I use Ivory or Dove or something mild. You could use Irish Spring but that would drive me mad!!

Does it have to be a soft wrapper or do bars in boxes work?
—> You’re going to unwrap it so doesn’t matter what the overwrap is.

Bath size or hotel freebie size?
—>Freebie works fine. In fact I was eyeing the small bar of soap at my Paris hotel but decided I didn’t need it. The only problem with the small size is you might not be able to find it with your foot during the night. Some people don’t actually have to touch the soap but if I feel a cramp starting I like to rest my foot or calf on it and get near instant relief.

Posted by
11511 posts


Had not had my necessary coffee intake and missed the "unwrapped" in the original comment.

Posted by
7021 posts

Pam, you had suggested that a few weeks ago, so I got one of my Trader Joe's bars of soaps and put it in bed with me. The other night my foot started to cramp so I reached for the soap. I could feel the tip of it with my other foot and was trying pull it over and started to fall out of bed! I managed to grab the comforter before I landed on the floor and pulled myself up. But by the time I was back in bed and situated, the cramp was gone! So it does work! 😂

Seriously, now I'm waiting for another cramp so I can really try it, but this time will keep the soap in a more accessible place.

Carrie, my daughter uses those packets when she's training for marathons - I might have to steal a couple from her and see how they work. :)

Posted by
32268 posts


I normally buy a bottle of water at my home airport on departure, and just refill it during the trip. I always have water when I'm out day touring as I never know whether water fountains will be readily available. When I get home, I throw the bottle in the recycling.

I'm not concerned with "recommended amount".... I drink when I'm thirsty.

If you're referring to the RS tour buses, yes, you can leave stuff on the bus. The driver locks it when the group is sightseeing.

Posted by
14269 posts

@Mardee…😂😂🤭. I’m glad you didn’t hurt yourself!

And Joe…oof…totally understand!

Posted by
15702 posts

I just got myself a Brita Sports Bottle. It removes any bad taste the water has.

For me, I find that some bottled mineral water has a higher concentration of minerals than I'm used to and it has an effect on my digestive tract. No problem with tap water.

I get leg cramps as well. I wanted to try the soap thing but hotels no longer give bars of soap. So I took some of the liquid soap and put it on sheets. Only problem.......when I jumped into bed I slid all the way across and wound up on the floor.

Posted by
8650 posts

High sulfates is often the culprit in mineral water causing GI upset. Read the label before purchase.

Posted by
3246 posts

Is there RS insurance for forum members who get injured trying out tips from the forum!??!🤣
LOL at you all sliding about trying the soap method…. 🧼

Posted by
14269 posts

😂😂😂. OMG, you guys are going to get me booted off the forum by the Webmaster for endangering valued forum members or public safety or some such! Next suggestion is velcro on your jammie bottoms to prevent sliding out of bed but will make it impossible to roll over. Stomach sleepers are on their own!

BTW Frank, the 2 hotels I just stayed in in Paris both had small individual bars of soap at the sinks with liquid body wash in the shower.

Posted by
8650 posts

Velcro would be silly. Everyone knows you use bungee cords to strap yourself in.😏

Posted by
7463 posts

At the risk of Pam being kicked out of the forum (does that mean you would need a disguise to still attend our monthly meet up?), magnesium shortage which causes leg cramps can be quickly fixed by chewing 1-2 Rolaids. Two of them have 400 mg of magnesium.

That method will keep the housekeepers from wondering why the crazy Americans are sleeping with soap - LOL!

Posted by
15702 posts

Yes, I know there are bars of soap. I didn't really put soap in the bed and slide off. It was a joke and I thought people would have a laugh. Not take it seriously.

Posted by
35 posts

Thank for all the helpful info. so much to respond to. I bought the hydroflask bottle Letrzia recommended and actually have Shaklee electrolyte drink that i now will bring along! Yes, i sure get it with not drinking alot of water due to unknown bathroom locations! (i have kidney stones/ just came off a three day kidney cleanse/should be in good shape now tho) Someone mentioned carrying water bottle attached to purse. This is funny bc already i'll be dangling multiple things - around my neck and backpack. :)))
Regarding the soap under blankets... interesting... for me, ever since i started taking Calcium/mag. before bedtime the cramping is gone.
I do have a question for Mister E. If you have a 'imp.doc.s' folder' in Icloud doesn't that also mean you have a folder in Finder on your Mac? That would seem vulnerable to me. Periscope... i will look into getting face ID and Mardee, will look at pw protected file in Notes. This is a job within a job.
Re: Bus... Understand we can use the bus for temporary holding things but not over-nite.
Thanks soo much!

Posted by
4174 posts

Too much water? Too little water? Powdered electrolytes (similar to the liquid Pedialyte I bought yesterday for my husband) to add to water? Potassium, calcium and/or magnesium from foods or pills?

Here is a link to a Mayo Clinic article related to this topic:

I'm another person who has a tendency to cut back on the liquids due to the lack of easily accessible toilets on tours. I've learned over time that sometimes the inevitably much younger RS tour guides, whether local or general, aren't the best at thinking about this issue. As a result, I've had to make it my own priority, which sometimes means that I have to miss the beginning of something and/or be one of the last people to get on the bus. Thank goodness for the buddy system!

Not so oddly, I've never experienced those kinds of challenges on the parts of my trips that are solo and totally planned and controlled by me. In either case, I have liter bottles of water in my room, one still and one sparkling. On tours I take those on the bus and replace them as needed.

Whether on my own or on tour, I never carry water with me out on the street. I prefer to stop, have a snack and a drink, rest and watch the world go by. Even on tours, this is often possible, although it might happen in a museum or other facility instead of a café.