The team at Smarter Travel recently reviewed the Scrubba wash bag. Here is an excerpt from their review:
"How It Rates:
- Usefulness: 10/10. Wash clothes while traveling without having to use a dirty sink. Tests have shown that the wash bag is twice as effective as hand-washing, and gets your clothes just as clean as a washing machine—all in just three minutes.
- Portability: 10/10. The Scrubba folds for easy storage and takes up less space than a t-shirt. It also dries extremely fast (just turn it inside out and hang), so you can pack it fairly soon after using.
- Value: 7/10. Will save you money over time if you use it instead of laundry services or laundromats, but is still an expensive initial outlay.
- Durability: 9/10. Seems durable, but comes with a warning that zips, buckles, or other sharp/hard items could puncture the Scrubba, so wash with care.
- Cool Factor: 10/10. Definitely cooler (and more sanitary) than hand-washing your clothes in a shared hostel bathroom sink.
Final Verdict: As someone who likes to pack light on trips and has no washing machine at home, I'm well experienced in the art of hand-washing. My current method: clean a sink and stop it, then swirl clothes around in a detergent-filled bath for a bit. Rinse. Needless to say, hand-washed items don't feel as clean as ones that have taken a spin in a machine. Then I tested the Scrubba. It eliminates the sink-cleaning step, and is really easy to use. Just fill the bag with detergent, water, and dirty clothes. Then roll the bag down and deflate any extra air (using the attached valve). Rub the clothes from the outside against the interior flexible washboard for between 30 seconds to 3 minutes, empty out the dirty water, and rinse with clean water. Hang to dry, and you're done!
I loved the Scrubba's clear window that lets you see exactly how much dirt and grime you're getting off the clothes. Also, the bag is so portable (even when in use) that you could fill it up, and then leave the full Scrubba anywhere to soak, which is perfect for shared bathroom situations. The clothes really do seem clean after washing them in the Scrubba.
I'm sold—and will use this to hand-wash delicate items at home, and entire outfits while on the road. It's worth the money if you backpack, camp, travel light, or hand-wash a lot!"
To check out their full review, head to the Smarter Travel site.
How light can you pack? We managed 3kg for 3 weeks of travel and here is out list.
In 2012, the team at the Scrubba wash bag were challenged to prove that the Scrubba wash bag can allow you to pack and travel lighter and cleaner. After booking a 3 week trip to South East Asia, we managed to pack under 3kg of luggage each, including the clothes on our back and our bag. To see a video summary of our trip, click here.
The contents of our very light day bags (available to purchase as part of the Scrubba traveler's kit) are shown the image below. While we sought to pack as light as possible (1 pair of shoes and flip flops, 2 T-shirts, shorts, socks and jocks), we didn't forego on some travel comforts/modern necessities (we still managed to pack an iPhone/iPod, eBook reader and camera without tipping the scales).
The trip had it all. From the crazy streets of Saigon/Ho Chi Minh, to the confronting sights of Phenom Penh, to the temples of Siem Reap (intermingled with a drink spiking and tut tut accident resulting in multiple visits to emergency departments), to the relaxing 4000 Islands of Laos, to the epic waterfalls around Pakse, and the beauty and beaches of Hoi An. In 3 weeks, we traveled through 3 countries by bus, boat, rail and motorbike, loving the freedom that only traveling with a simple and light day bag can offer.
We also met with locals in Cambodia and Laos to see how they washed clothes as we initially thought the Scrubba wash bag would be a great item to donate to communities in developing nations. While the locals loved the Scrubba wash bag and found it much easier and more effective than their method of soaking clothing and brushing the dirt out with a course brush, we realised that donating Scrubba wash bags may be the most useful way for us, as a company, to help. While the Scrubba wash bag is durable and can be easily repaired using patches or glues that you can buy in most hardware, cycling or camping stores, such items are not readily available in developing nations and therefore the Scrubba wash bag would be less likely to be repaired and end up in landfill. Instead, we have chosen to donate money to charities in developing nations (click here for more details).
Traveling to South East Asia, we had some reservations whether our clothes would dry in time as we would be on the move most of the time. In the end, this wasn't a problem at all. Most of the rooms we stayed in had fans or airconditioners. By par drying our clothes in our travel towel and hanging them on coat hangers or our travel clothesline directly in front of the fan or airconditioner, our clothes were dry within a few hours.
Traveling with less than 3kg of luggage gave us great freedom. We never had to lug around excess luggage, hire a locker or pay for storage. Plus we could take transport not suited for larger bags.
We also managed to wash our change of clothes while on the go: on a street corner in Saigon; on a night bus; on a boat; and even on the return flight back to Australia. Videos of these are here.
In retrospect, we really could have got by without the tripod and the camera (the iPhone camera would have been fine and saved further weight) and with only 1 pair of shorts and 1-2 T-shirts as we found that by packing quickdry gear, our clothes would be dry by morning after a nightly wash. Nevertheless, the Scrubba wash bag enabled us to travel this free and I doubt I will ever pack more than a few changes of clothing or pay for check-in luggage again.
To see a full blog of our trip, head to our page at travelblog.org.
The Scrubba wash bag received a great review from examiner.com and made the Examiner's 2013 Spring Camping Gear Review Roundup. Here is the excerpt:
"Scrubba Wash Bag:
One of the biggest problems of traveling for any considerable amount of time is being able to pack light. Of course, the problem with packing less clothing than the amount of days you will be traveling is that you will have to deal with washing them every few days. Yes, you can wash your clothes in a laundry mat, hotel sink, camp bucket, creek, or lake. Sinks and buckets use lots of water and make a big mess no matter how careful you are. Natural bodies of water are fine if you are lucky enough to be near one. The problem is access to many of them involves trudging through mud and using soap in said body of water is not great for the environment.
The Scrubba Wash Bag solves this by allowing you wash a few clothing items without using a lot of water or making a mess. Plus, nobody enjoys paying to sit in a laundry mat while on vacation. The Scrubba Wash Bag looks deceptively like a waterproof dry bag. However, it has two features that make it very effective as a wash bag for your dirty clothing. First is the built-in internal raised washboard that helps agitate your clothing. The second feature is the air release nozzle that allows you to get the remaining air out of the bag after you have sealed it up.
While testing, I brought the Scrubba Wash Bag along on several trips, and I found it highly effective and easy to use. It’s a great way to limit how many clothes you need to pack for your next adventure as well as reducing how much water is necessary to get your clothes clean. I definitely recommend it for those who pack light and enjoy camping, backpacking, road-trips, or world travel."
Review by James Hannibal, Tech Review Photojournalist, examiner.com
For the full story, head to http://www.examiner.com/review/2013-spring-camping-gear-review-roundup