How Many Toilets Does Your Wedding Need?

 
by Jennifer Cram (20/11/2019)  |  Categories:  |  Wedding Planning |
Roll of white toilet
                        paper on white holder against a pinkish wallWhen organising your wedding or other milestone event, the ratio of toilets to guests is incredibly important, so you need to do the maths early in your planning to make sure that the venue you choose has sufficient toilets. This might mean hiring an additional porta-loo or two.

Larger, formal venues provide sufficient toilets for the maximum number of guests they can accommodate because they are required to do so by licensing conditions.

It is when it comes to organising a celebration in your own backyard, or somewhere else that the situation can get a bit - er - icky.

How many loos you will require depends on several factors, so it is not a completely straightforward calculation. Though get it wrong and everyone will know on the day! I'll never forget officiating a ceremony at a wedding gardens where there was ONE portaloo, on a trailer, and the only hand washing facility was a jug of water on a table outside. With over 100 guests. Not a peak experience.

What you need to know before you start doing the maths

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  1. How many people will be at your wedding
    NB Don't forget to include everyone - guests, bridal party, plus anyone who will be working your wedding during the actual event which could include photographer, videographer, their assistants, catering and serving staff, and anyone providing entertainment
  2. How long your celebration will last
  3. Will there be alcohol
    You will need more toilets than you might think you do as people will use the facilities more often when consuming alcohol

How to calculate many loos you will need

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There are lots of toilet calculators out there. Virtually every porta-loo company has one on their website. Problem is that some are more simplistic that others but they all come up with a different answer when you plug in the same figures.

There are also lots of different suggested rules-of thum. I've seen figures everywhere from 1 toilet per 1-35 people to 1 toilet per 1-60 people to a rule of thumb that said 3 toilets for up to 240 people as long as the event lasted under 6 hours. But that is based on a 50/50 ratio of men and women with no food or drinks being served.


And we are told we will need more loos
  • When food and drinks are served (commonly suggested to increase number of loos by 30%
  • When alcohol is being served (commonly suggested to increase number of loos by 13%)
  • If the percentage of female users exceeds 50%
  • If your guests include children, lots of elderly people, and/or a significant number of pregnant women
All, of course, based on the number of loos you first came up with!

As a guide,  the requirements for restaurants in Australia are:
  • 1 toilet for every 1-100 men plus 1 urinal for every 1-50 men
  • 1 toilet for every 1-25 women
For my money, 1 loo for every 35 people seems about right after all.  If you're hosting your wedding at home just make sure that they are in good working order with no possibility of blocked sewer lines on the day and that any porta-loo you hire comes with hand-washing facilities.

Oh, if you do need to hire porta-loos, make them part of the wedding by adding some funky decoration, and some great signage.

Jenny xxx Let's talk soon about how you can
                    have the best ceremony ever