The Essential Packing List for Spending Nights at Your Girlfriend’s Place

Happy man arriving with luggage at this girlfriend's place for the weekend

One day, you might move in with your girlfriend. When that happens, I hope you’re filled with a sense of optimism toward the future and pure happiness, because now you get to see the woman you love every single day and truly experience life as her partner.

On the other hand, maybe you’re not really sure moving in together was the right thing to do. Maybe you felt a little pressured into this cohabitation, and any doubts you’ve had regarding long-term compatibility have been enlarged and outlined, like a questionable birthmark on your shoulder that’s seen too much sun.

Either way, the silver lining is you’ll no longer have to schlep your crap back and forth from her apartment like the world’s most boring explorer. The days of forgetting a belt, not having a long sleeve shirt when you need it, or underestimating the amount of clean underwear you’ll need are over.

Rejoice, you’ve just awakened from a logistical nightmare.

Until this glorious day comes to pass, you will need to continue preparing for slumber parties and weekends away from your dude-ish apartment. Whether you admit it or not, this low-level travel anxiety will wear you down. A refined packing list helps avoid psychological breakdowns (and doing too much sink laundry) until you’re able to call your girlfriend both lover and roommate.

Commence packing…

Remember the mantra

Repeat after me: phone, keys, wallet. Phone, keys, wallet.

You can always buy a t-shirt at Old Navy or a three-pack of undies from the clearance section of Marshalls, but good luck navigating this weekend’s social engagements without a credit card. Sure, you can survive by playing the Venmo volley game, but those four grey hairs coming in around your temples are unlikely to convince a grumpy bouncer you’re over 21 (you’re 30, and you’re flattered).

Phone, keys, wallet has saved many men the equal traumas of realizing they’ve locked themselves out of the apartment and slowly pushing the dinner bill toward their girlfriend on double-dates. PKW is also useful to remember when traveling abroad, since forgetting one of these things could mean the difference between a fun vacation and spending a few cold nights under a bridge in Zagreb.

Count the days and add one

Bringing the exact number of pairs of underwear and socks you think you’ll need is kind of like timing your last refuel in a rental car before drop off. What you save via success isn’t worth the potential price of failure.

And I don’t mean to pry, but maybe you’re an ass sweater. You know, someone who’s buttcrack is perfectly stenciled onto their underwear after even easy-moderate physical activity. This may dry just fine, but you’ll probably need to put on a new pair after showering, and this can only go on for so long. Eventually, you’ll be wearing a stinky pair, which will make your girlfriend not want to sex you. Now you’re sexless and a loser. A sexless loser. Let that sink in before realizing you’re wearing dirty underwear, which is just not cool.

This fatal mistake can be avoided by bringing one pair of underwear for each night you’ll be away from your shitty Ikea dresser and adding one to that number. If you’re spending more than three nights away, add two. Really, this rule can be applied for all the clothing items you’re bringing, other than perhaps shoes.

And because it bears repeating:

Swamp crotch is a libido killer, as is farting in bed.

Keep ‘em high, remember your belt

If you’re packing pants that require a belt (“real pants,” because — of course — it’s always preferable to commute in athleisure), you might as well put the belt in the loops before you stuff those things away.

You may be required to do something this weekend that requires a semblance of decency (again, “real pants”). If you don’t have a belt, your bottoms will constantly need to be pulled up, and you’ll look like a messy toddler who’s looking for more playdough to eat.

You think you can just put your hands in your pockets and avoid looking stupid. Wrong. Now you look like you’re trying to hide an involuntary erection. It’s 7th grade all over again, sport.

Don’t let your new 7’’ iPhone bring you(r pants) down when the fix is so easy.


I’m not going to get into all the things that are actually wrong with your body. If you need some kind of medicine to pass as a functional human being, you better not forget it. Have a dopp kit or some other means of making it easy to tote your anxiety meds, anti-inflammatory injections, or penis pills wherever you need them.

But why stop there? Keep an extra weed pen and one or two minis of tequila handy, too. These items are important when you first start spending nights at your girlfriend’s place. They’ll help you act like a cool, reasonable person. Take a shot 5 minutes before getting to her front door and another 20 minutes later (in secret) if necessary. Remember gum to mask your liquor breath, or you’ll legit look insane, and potentially problematic for other reasons.

Miscellanea, packing advice

There are a lot of things you said you’d bring, but sometimes you forget. Food items, books, poop spray. For these, it’s best to determine which bag you’re bringing earlier in the day and put these things in there as you think of them.

On the note of which bag you should bring, always size up. It’s better to carry a loosely packed bag that’s too big than to stuff a smaller one until it looks like you’re wearing a stability ball strapped to your back.

Long term solutions to short term problems

After a few months of dating, essential items should be stored at your girlfriend’s apartment. Things like an extra belt, your essential medications, and emergency underwear can be stored in a shoebox, discreetly hidden under her bed or behind a sofa. (I’m assuming you already have a toothbrush.)

Other things can be put in this box, too, like hats, gloves, socks, dick pills, a sweatshirt, and sunglasses. This way, everything you need to be comfortable is already there, just in case you forget it.

And once you make it through two years of this, you’ll be ready to take the leap and move in together, in which case you might even get two shoeboxes.


1 comment

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