No Pants Subway Ride 2014: ‘International celebration of silliness’ sees tens of thousands ride underground in their underwear

Organisers Improv Everywhere say rides took place in over 60 cities in more than 25 countries

Tens of thousands of people around the world have taken part in the No Pants Subway Ride 2014, riding subway networks in their underwear in a carefully-orchestrated international prank.

What started with just seven men in New York 12 years ago has ballooned to become an event recognised in over 60 cities in more than 25 countries.

The self-proclaimed “prank collective” group Improv Everywhere first came up with the idea when they performed the inaugural No Pants Subway Ride in 2002.

During the middle of winter, participants wearing winter coats, hats, scarves and gloves – but crucially no trousers, tights or skirts – board the same subway train at different stations, acting as if nothing is out of the ordinary.

That simple prank, which now has its own back story starring an unsuspecting woman caught up in the middle of it all (see video below), has “grown into an international celebration of silliness”, the group said.

According to Improv Everywhere, yesterday’s 13th Annual No Pants Subway Ride included over 4,000 participants in New York alone.

The Facebook organiser of the London event (given the name No Trousers Tube Ride) said over 150 Londoners took part last year, and came up with a detailed plan to ensure the prank mirrored the original as closely as possible.

Rammi Glomp said: “As there aren't as many people taking part like the original New York event, the plan is to divide ourselves up along the route so that passengers in a couple of carriages on one train get a surprise of seeing trouserless people getting on at every stop.”

Improv Everywhere describe themselves as having completed “100 missions involving tens of thousands of undercover agents”, and there was a hint of a secret briefing to Mr Glomp’s instructions, which read: “Do not talk to others once you enter the station. Nobody knows each other.

“If questioned, you do not know any of the other trouserless riders. Tell folks that you 'forgot to wear trousers' and yes, you are 'a little cold.' Insist that it is a coincidence that others also forgot their trousers. Be nice and friendly and normal.”

As well as taking place in London and New York, the prank brought in participants from Mexico City, Buenos Aires, Istanbul, Shanghai and Hong Kong.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Sport
England's women celebrate after their 3rd place play-off win against Germany
Women's World CupFara Williams converts penalty to secure victory and bronze medals
News
newsHillary Clinton comments on viral Humans of New York photo of gay teenager
Arts and Entertainment
The gang rape scene in the Royal Opera’s production of Gioachino Rossini’s Guillaume Tell has caused huge controversy
music
Sport
wimbledonScot will face Ivo Karlovic next
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Spanish Speaking

£17000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - German Speaking

£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Japanese Speaking

£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you are fluent in Japanese a...

Recruitment Genius: Graphic Designer - Immediate Start

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Day In a Page

Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test