These Cities Have the Best (and Worst) Public Toilet Access

published Jan 21, 2023
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
Credit: JulieStar/Shutterstock

Finding a public restroom when you’re traveling can feel like a low-key harrowing experience, especially if you’re in an unfamiliar area or aren’t sure whether nearby businesses offer bathrooms for guests. In case you’re curious about the best (and worst) locales to be in when nature calls, the bathroom pros at QS Supplies have done the legwork to determine where you’re likely to find a loo when you’re in need.

Credit: QS Supplies

Turns out, the city with the top number of restrooms available to the public is Paris, France, which has nearly seven toilets per roughly two and a half square miles. Overall, it seems bathroom availability is easiest to find in Europe, Asia, and Australia — rounding out the rest of the top 10, in order: Sydney, Zurich, Taipei, Copenhagen, Brussels, Tel Aviv, Barcelona, Lisbon, and Vienna.

In fact, zero U.S. cities even make the top 10 list, with New York appearing at number 36, offering just .028 public toilets per square kilometer (roughly .38 square miles). According to City and State New York, there’s roughly one public toilet available for every 6,000 individuals, and that’s only accounting for the city’s eight million residents — not the millions of tourists who visit each year. In October 2022, the New York City Council passed a “bathroom bill,” legislation which will identify locations in every ZIP code across the city’s five boroughs where a public restroom should be located. Public health advocates hope the bill is a step in the right direction towards increasing the amount of public restrooms available to residents and visitors alike. 

Credit: QS Supplies

As for the rest of the U.S.-based cities on the list, San Francisco follows at number 39, while Los Angeles rolls in at 49, and Orlando trails behind at 51.

Of course, it goes without saying a lack of access to public restrooms is both a complete nuisance and a health accessibility issue, as every single person should be able to access a bathroom whenever they need one. Bathrooms should be safe, accessible, and usable to all who need them, including people with mobility needs and other disabilities. Here’s hoping more U.S. cities will acknowledge the absolute necessity for safe, clean, and functioning public toilets ASAP.

You can compare cities further at QS Supplies.