How Much Underwear You Pack for a Trip Says a Lot About You

Are you a bare minimum packer or an over-the-top preparer?

Vacation is a time when anything can happen. You can fall in love, go on an adventure, get lost, go skydiving for the first time, or you can even shit your pants. That's why I always pack three to five pairs of underwear per day, depending on the destination. Three pairs of underwear if I'm going to a beach-y location where I can also wear bikini bottoms for most of the day. Four pairs if I'm going to a city destination, where I'll be eating and walking a lot (sweaty butt). And I'll bust out five pairs per day if I plan on really pushing the culinary envelope.

For instance, I once went on a trip and decided to try some of the raw seafood, which was a very delicious delicacy. Only, I have an American gut used to only consuming triple-processed foods, and my body simply could not handle all of that natural bacteria. I did not have an accident in my pants, but I did have pretty violent food poisoning, and if I were only a few seconds slower, who knows what would have happened.

It turns out that I'm not alone when it comes to packing on the prepared side. As this viral TikTok shows, everyone has a panty-packing style. Everyone here seems way more chill than I do, which is fair because most people are. The "overpackers" brought 17-18 pairs for a 13-day trip, while one person brought exactly 13 pairs, and two others brought nine or 10 pairs. Here's what I'll say to the people who pack fewer pairs of underwear than days of a trip: Has nothing bad ever happened to you? Do you never spill food on yourself? Laugh too hard? Sit on grass? Sweat? What in your life is giving you so much confidence?

I think the underwear question, while a bit personal, really can say a lot about a person. For instance, most people in the comment section of the above TikTok agreed that the "correct" number of pairs of underwear for a trip is two per day. Others say two per day plus two extra pairs.

Meanwhile, there are those confused that anyone would ever pack more than one pair of underwear per day. I bet all of you one-pair-per-day people also don't pack three backup outfits and "just-in-case" shoes, either.

Here's my personal (and correct) read on how many pairs of underwear you pack for a trip:

  • Two per day plus two extra: Prepared, sensible, probably a little bit of an overplanner and definitely an overpacker.
  • Two per day: Prepared, probably has an itinerary but won't panic if there's some spontaneity. Packed sunscreen for the group.
  • One per day plus one extra: You venomed everyone for the exact amount you owed for the trip plans, but did not participate in the planning yourself. You're generally a light packer.
  • Fewer than one per day: You are really confident, the only prep you did for the trip was requesting days off, and you plan on borrowing someone else's sunscreen. Will be the life of the party.

If you are inside or outside of this range, that's a wildcard. Just make sure you pack some soap, so at the very least you can hand wash your intimates if needed.

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Opheli Garcia Lawler is a Staff Writer on the News team at Thrillist. Follow her on Twitter @opheligarcia and Instagram @opheligarcia.