No doubt, at some time in the last 18 months, you went to purchase something and found out that it was out of stock or there was going to be a long wait time. (We’re looking at you, toilet paper!)

At first, it was pandemic panic buying, then supply chain disruptions. Now we’re witnessing something else. You’ve probably heard that there is a porta-potty shortage but is there? And if so, why?

Portable Restroom Demand

As the nation emerges from the pandemic, the demand for portable toilets has skyrocketed. Outdoor concerts, road races, and festivals that were canceled in 2020 are back on for 2021. Weddings and other outdoor events that were postponed from last summer are now back on the books. Portable restrooms are needed for mass vaccination sites. And for safety reasons, more companies and organizations are opting to host events outdoors instead of inside. Across the country, demand for hand sanitizing stations and portable sinks has never been higher. The focus on cleanliness has brought portable restrooms to the forefront of many event planning conversations.

image of Covid Vaccination Site | portable toilet rental washington oregon

Portable toilet manufacturers and providers like us were considered essential businesses during the pandemic. So production and distribution never stopped. However, there was an increase in demand driven by the cultural shift towards increasing sanitation and hygienic services. Worker shortages and supply chain disruptions have slowed the manufacturing and distribution of portable toilets to providers making this a perfect storm. All of these changes have created a surge in demand for portable restroom rentals nationwide.

Navigating the Portable Toilet Shortage

If you are still in need of a portable toilet for your event or occasion, this doesn’t mean you are out of luck. In fact, we are readily supplying portable toilets across southwest Washington and northwest Oregon. If you’re in Vancouver, Washington, Portland, Oregon, or other nearby cities and need to rent a portable restroom, just give us a call.

But if you are outside of our region and looking to find a portable restroom, we recommend planning ahead. With demand at all-time highs, lead times may be longer, so if your event dates have some flexibility, consider adjusting to accommodate any potential lack of availability.

Another option could be considering upgrading or downgrading your portable restroom selection to what is available. Maybe you didn’t initially consider having an ADA-accessible portable restroom on-site, but availability may be greater for some of these less frequently rented units.

image of people at a festival | portable toilet seattle washington

We’ve talked before about how add-ons like holding tanks can get you more mileage out of your portable toilet. Consider adding one to your rental to help maximize how long you can use the unit without servicing.

Portable toilets and public restrooms are still the most hygienic ways to relieve yourself when in public. The use of the great outdoors as a readily accessible toilet can lead to a different public health crisis. So don’t forego renting a portable restroom just because you’ve heard rumors of a possible shortage.

We’re still renting portable toilets throughout Washington and Oregon, and chances are there is a supplier near you that will be able to accommodate your needs. Just be prepared to be flexible with the number and types of units that you rent, and don’t forget to plan ahead!