How to Use a Coin Operated Shower

When traveling or camping, often the only showers available will be coin operated. Here's how to get clean without forking out $5 or more.


  1. 1
    Gather all your showering supplies and clothing.
  2. 2
    Double check your coin supply. Have some extra on hand "just in case" you decide to take a longer shower.
  3. 3
    Step into the shower and lock the door behind you.
  4. 4
    Place your dry clothing out of range of the shower head. (good idea to put them in a plastic bag)
  5. 5
    Place your shampoo and washcloth in the shower area.
  6. 6
    Place your coins on or near to the coin acceptor.
  7. 7
  8. 8
    Shampoo your dry hair.
  9. 9
    Use your soapy (or shampooed) hands to soap up other hairy areas of your body.
  10. 10
    Wipe your hands on the washcloth.
  11. 11
    Place your coins into the coin acceptor to begin the water flow.
  12. 12
    Rinse your hair and scrub your face and body with the excess shampoo and washcloth.
  13. 13
    Condition your hair quickly.
  14. 14
    Rinse off.
  15. 15
    You should now be left with several minutes of warm water in which to relax before the water flow shuts off. (Generally 3 minutes, but sometimes more.)


  • Always do your hair first. You can finish off the rest of your body by hand at a sink ("Spit Bath") if necessary, but your hair is much more difficult to do in a sink.
  • Using a Shower Gel can double as Shampoo OR soap. This eliminates a separate soaping step, saving valuable time.
  • Ask around. Other travelers or campers will often be able to give you tips about which shower timers are longest and how many minutes you can reasonably expect for your money.
  • Sometimes you need to hold down the water button for water to come out. This can become a hassle so you might want to bring some duct tape to tape it down.
  • Wear "flip flops" in the shower to prevent getting fungal infections (athlete's foot) from previous occupants.


  • In some cases, you pay only for hot water... so pay attention to the timer and finish your shower before the hot gets cut off leaving you yelping in the flow of cold water.

Things You'll Need

  • Towel, Washcloth, Shampoo/body wash
  • Change of clothing
  • Flip-flops (optional)
  • Coins to operate the shower.

Article Info

Categories: Bathing | Camping Hygiene