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  1. #1
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    Traveling with my family - Water Bottle Questions

    Hello all -

    Have a 20 day trip through Slovenia and Italy coming up in June. Will by my wife and I - along with our 4 kids ages 12, 9, 6, 3.

    My main question is - how should I plan to carry water for the family?

    While out exploring during the day, my kids won't have their backpacks with them - I'll be using my Synik 22 as a daypack. Since we don't want to buy water all day long, I'll want to have refillable water bottle(s) for the whole family with me. Carrying 6 full size water bottles seems like too much - but I can't figure out the best method, here are some of my thoughts:

    Option 1 - Get a "Platypus" style, collapsible water bottle for each person and carry all 6 in my bag
    Option 2 - Get 1-2 larger water bottles (either to fit in middle, or side pockets of Synik22), and also get some cups like this. Collapsible, and each kid can have their own color. When they need water, I get out the large bottle and give them some in a cup. Then collapse it and throw it back in the bag.

    Are there other recommendations? It's going to be June, in Rome/Florence/Tuscany, so it's going to be hot. I know we'll need plenty of water - just don't know how best to carry it for the family.

    Sidenote question - what's the largest/best water bottle that anyone has found for the side pockets of the Synik22? Or, maybe the largest bottle for the middle water bottle pocket?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Lots of public water fountains around Rome. Don't even need a cup, just hold your finger on the spout as the locals do. Enjoy the trip!

  3. #3
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    What about getting water bottle slings for the kids (at least the 3 big kids) to carry? That way each kid can drink when they feel like, and you don't have to stop, take off your pack, pour glasses, wait for them to drink, load it all back up again. And you don't have to carry all the weight. We have the chicobag slings, but there are others out there. https://chicobag.com/products/bottle-sling-repete

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lizpdx View Post
    What about getting water bottle slings for the kids (at least the 3 big kids) to carry? That way each kid can drink when they feel like, and you don't have to stop, take off your pack, pour glasses, wait for them to drink, load it all back up again. And you don't have to carry all the weight. We have the chicobag slings, but there are others out there. https://chicobag.com/products/bottle-sling-repete
    I hadnít really ever heard of these before - but this is actually a great idea! Especially for the older couple kids - then I could carry for my youngest 2 and myself.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  5. #5
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    Very early on, when my kids were little (say, 4 and 8), I realized it was untenable - HEAVY - for me to carry multiple stainless water bottles for each of us. For short outings, where we were going to one place and staying there, I got them (very) small backpacks (8L) so that they could each carry their own water bottle. They never had to take them off if they didn't want to (usually I just reached in & pulled out their water for them, and put it back in after they finished drinking), so they weren't likely to leave them behind. This was also a good lead-in to training them to carry their own packs when traveling - now, at 11 and 15, they are in charge of their own personal items and carry-ons when we fly.

    But, since they were still not good with keeping track of their stuff initially, I needed a different solution for when we were on the move constantly. Which is the same as your Option 2. Embarrassment I think that works well in a group situation, and you can keep refilling your main bottle whenever you are somewhere with potable water. Bonus points for an insulated bottle that keeps stuff cold all day.

    I also like the sling idea Lizpdx suggested. Not cumbersome and easy for the kids to keep track.

    Collapsible bottle: I bought a Platypus-style bottle and hated it. No good way to hold it, and I found it was hard to keep clean plus I don't like the taste of water in plastic, especially when heated up from a day of walking around.

    just hold your finger on the spout as the locals do
    They put their fingers on the spout? Why? Doesn't that contaminate the spout? With the coronavirus issue that would definitely make me NOT want to use the water fountains.
    Last edited by haraya; 02-26-2020 at 06:57 AM.

  6. #6
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    When we do trips where we'll be exploring all day, I have some of these clipped to some TB 5/6 shoulder straps. Kids carry their own water with the straps. When the drink's done, the bottle gets recycled and the strap and clip fits compactly in either one of my pockets or in the wife's bag. I know you don't want to do purchased water, so maybe something like this, but paired with a collapsible water bottle? When the bottle's out of water and collapsed, you can put it in your bag, but it it's full, then the kid carries their own with the shoulder strap?

    Edit: Forgot to include the link to the bottle holders:

    https://www.amazon.ca/Portable-Silic...s%2C164&sr=8-8

  7. #7
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    In Rome

    If you don't have a water bottle to fill from the spout, put your finger inside the spout to stop the water coming out.
    You'll find it then comes out of a small hole in the top, in an arc, so you can drink without the need to put your mouth near the metal

  8. #8
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    I third not bringing any water bottles with you. There's free water everywhere. Why carry it? It's heavy.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by BWeaves View Post
    I third not bringing any water bottles with you. There's free water everywhere. Why carry it? It's heavy.
    For those that have said that - we aren't ONLY going to be in Rome. Rome is 3 out of 20 days. My understanding is that Slovenia, Venice, Florence, Tuscany will NOT be the same as Rome.

  10. #10
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    I have the Chico water bottle slings that @Lizpdx recommended and have used them a lot at Disney. I like that they are super light weight and fold into their pouch for storage (as shown). However, I found that the Neosling holders are far more comfortable for me to carry water. They donít tire my shoulder while carrying a 33.8 oz. Smartwater bottle, which is my water of choice when I am at Disneyland or Disney World, but I have also used Nalgene bottles too. I would think your two older children would be able to carry their own water during your vacation.

    Hereís a picture of the Chico bags, one open and the other folded up its pouch. The black Neosling bag has an outer pocket.

    Traveling with my family - Water Bottle Questions-water-bottle-slings-jpg
    Seeking Solar shop bags and Solar packing cube shoulder bag Spring Also coveting an Iberian Synapse or Copilot

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by bijoux View Post
    In Rome

    If you don't have a water bottle to fill from the spout, put your finger inside the spout to stop the water coming out.
    You'll find it then comes out of a small hole in the top, in an arc, so you can drink without the need to put your mouth near the metal
    Well that definitely guarantees that I will never drink any water from a Roman water spout. Why on earth would a city now in the 21st century have a setup that encourages people sticking their finger into a vessel for supposedly potable water?!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by autolycus View Post
    Well that definitely guarantees that I will never drink any water from a Roman water spout. Why on earth would a city now in the 21st century have a setup that encourages people sticking their finger into a vessel for supposedly potable water?!
    They were installed in the late 1800's Smilie
    The way I looked at it, I was touching fresh running water. As for other places in Italy we did see some water fountains but not many.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by ontheuptick View Post
    Sidenote question - what's the largest/best water bottle that anyone has found for the side pockets of the Synik22? Or, maybe the largest bottle for the middle water bottle pocket?
    I don't have a SN22, but I do have an S19 and I believe the pockets are almost the same size.

    For the middle water bottle pocket, it comfortably fits a Takeya Actives 18oz bottle. This bottle is 9.25" in height, so any bottle that's about that height will fit well.

    For the side pockets, they're about 7.5" in height, and that's how tall a Takeya Actives 14oz bottle is. So, again, any bottle around 7.5" tall should fit.

    I put my own 18oz bottle into the middle water bottle pocket of my S19 as a test, and I can say that there's definitely enough give/slack around the 2 side pockets to put another water bottle in each of them. So I'm fairly certain you can comfortably carry 3 bottles, 1 in each pocket.

    Hope this helps!

  14. #14
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    Bring one of the TB Stuff Sack size 1 or 2 for each child, held with a 5/8 Shoulder Strap, to carry a water bottle. It is very light, very easy to clean, if there is a European food snafu or, dry if the water bottle is not securely closed.

    There is enough space to place a small neoprene bottle chiller that hugs the bottle.

    One side of the strap is clipped to the side snaphook of the Stuff Sack and the other snaphook under the plastic holder of the Stuff Sack drawstring.

    The 5/8 Shoulder Strap is very handy, (Shoulder Strap: 5/8" nylon webbing with plastic snaphooks) is standard with the Travel Cubelet.

    It can also be used with the Cubelet, 3D OC to turn them into mini purses.

    I have also used it to make an extra long Key Strap, clipped to a Cafe Bag o-ring, to secure a Mini Organizer Pouch that held a public transportation card, which was kept in the pocket of my jacket or coat.



    https://www.tombihn.com/collections/...14970143080511

    https://www.tombihn.com/collections/...nt=16645241991


    Fill reusable bottles from the hotel sink, at the beginning of the day.

    In June, it will be hot, your best bet during the day is to take breaks by sitting at cafes or bakeries with indoors/outdoors seating to sample the local food and beverages.
    The ones used by locals, not the overexpensive fancy ones, that guide books recommend.

    Your wife and daughter(s) will appreciate the bathroom break, everyone, the rest from walking.


    Check if it is possible for you to rent a stroller for the 2 youngest.

    Many city centers, in Europe, do not permit cars, so you will have to take public transport and walk, unless you have the budget for a taxi.


    Are you renting a car or using a guided bus tour? if the later, find out about the excursions length and the topography. If you ask the tour bus guide, she or he might not give you the correct perspective. People walk a lot more in Europe.

    I grew up in Europe. As a child, I remember being tired sightseeing in my area, having to follow other's walking pace, it also happened in bigger/university towns, because there, the family walked and didn't use public transports.


    When I moved to my university town, I used public transports all the time.
    Last edited by backpack; 02-28-2020 at 09:50 AM.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by bijoux View Post
    They were installed in the late 1800's Smilie
    The way I looked at it, I was touching fresh running water. As for other places in Italy we did see some water fountains but not many.
    Oh, I know they're really old. And the water is generally of good quality. I just don't want my water coming out of a spout some stranger's finger has been in! I don't know where everybody's finger has been or what virus they may be carrying--not even worried about the major ones, just the common cold, flu, etc. type stuff.

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