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Paying for Toilets

Frankfurt, Germany
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5,141 posts
36 reviews
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Paying for Toilets

As there seem to be some misunderstandings:

Restaurants:

Restaurants, cafés, bistros, beer gardens etc. are required by law to provide toilets for free for their guests. There might be a saucer standing around where you can leave a tip of 20 or 50 Cent, you are not oblieged to do so.

Shopping Malls, Museums and other public places:

It is very likely that there will be a "Klofrau", a lady cleaning the toilets. If the toilets are clean and up to your standards its nice to leave a few Cents for her, again you are not obliged to do so. She's got her fixed wages.

If she's only standing around, chatting with her friends or knitting socks while the toilets are a mess: don't pay!

Motorway Service Areas, Train Stations etc:

It's likely there will be a gate in front of the restrooms, you pay 50 Cent and the gate opens (children are free). Most of these toilets are operated by Sanifair, they are very clean and very modern. If you eat at the Motorway Restaurant your 50 Cent will be refunded.

Boston...
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2,660 posts
11 reviews
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11. Re: Paying for Toilets

We were new to this system but began to appreciate it as all the public toilets used with an attendant there were much cleaner than those in the US.

Question is: how much to pay? A few times I only had euros and a euro seems a bit much to use the loo.

Edited: 01 October 2013, 00:39
Munich, Germany
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3,689 posts
6 reviews
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12. Re: Paying for Toilets

To find free toilets, try expensive hotels if you are smartly dressed. They always have toilets in the lobby, and if you look like a potential customer, they are not very likely to ask what you are doing. (Other hotels have these, too, but they will probably notice you more easily.)

Department stores are good, too, but of course they close on weekends and in the evening.

McDonald's is always available, but sometimes, you'll have to pay.

At some train stations, the trains that are ready to depart will wait for several minutes. So if you're fast enough, there's no reason not to use the toilet in the train. No-one bothering you and asking for money there.

Never pay unless you absolutely have to.

Frankfurt, Germany
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5,141 posts
36 reviews
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13. Re: Paying for Toilets

I fully agree, Aviatrix!

If they want me to leave a tip in their saucer, they will have to keep the toilet clean.

When the toilets are messy I don't care if it's the "Pächters" only income.

Edited: 01 October 2013, 07:21
Frankfurt, Germany
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5,141 posts
36 reviews
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14. Re: Paying for Toilets

@ flannan, I pay between 20 and 50 cent.

Hamburg, Germany
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1,338 posts
16 reviews
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15. Re: Paying for Toilets

"Here in the UK toilets are free"

Usually, not always. I suppose the free ones not in malls etc. (e.g. the ones in Covent Garden and Leicester Square in London) are financed by the taxpayer?? So you would actually pay for them with your taxes.

I have no objection to pay if it is privately operated and not linked to a restaurant etc. - after all it provides service as other places.

Some charges are though getting ridiculous these days - I have recently seen 70 cent and even 1 EUR in some train stations.

Boston...
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2,660 posts
11 reviews
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16. Re: Paying for Toilets

Good. I typically paid 20-50 also. One place I didn't pay at all because it was a man who just stood there clinking his coins in the dish and its wasn't too clean. I got a nasty look on the way out.

They did have someone collecting in McDonalds which I was surprised at as it seems that should be the restaurants responsibility.

I only ran in to use the loo and didn't order anything so I guess fairs fair ;-)

Frankfurt, Germany
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5,141 posts
36 reviews
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17. Re: Paying for Toilets

As I said before, I don't see why I should leave a tip when the toilet is a mess.

In Cafés or fast food places in touristy places you often see signs "Toilettenbenutzung nur für unsere Gäste" (Toilets only for guests) or "Toilettenbenutzung 50 Cent" (Toilet fee 50 Cent). That's to avoid hords of people running in and out of the toilets without consuming anything.

Some months ago I was in Trier with my son, we were walking through a park when he suddenly needed a toilet. The only place around was a cafe, there was the above mentioned sign and I wanted to pay and the lady told me "It's okay, it's only to keep groups away"

Edited: 01 October 2013, 09:49
18. Re: Paying for Toilets

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