Why Gen Z has long stopped playing April Fool’s pranks

Surprisingly, most of us stopped pranking our friends on Apr 1 after primary or secondary school.

Shannon Kuan

Weird talents include playing the violin, but with a ukulele and a clothes hanger.

Published: 29 March 2021, 2:02 PM

As the month of April rolls around, it may be surprising to some to find out that youths have largely forgotten about the occasion that falls on the first day of said month — April Fool’s.

While children may still celebrate it by hiding their friends’ stationery or toys, the pranking culture is fading away among older youths.

But why is that so? Have we really matured and grown too old for mindless pranks?

We asked a few youths about their thoughts on April Fool’s.

Growing up and having little to no pranking opportunities

For 20-year-old student Kimberly Yeo, there was a tradition in her secondary school to celebrate April Fool’s day, where all the classes and even teachers would partake in pulling at least one prank.

Kimberly reminisced: “There was once my class cling-wrapped the whole whiteboard and caused the teachers to not be able to write on it! Some seniors even brought all their tables to the field next to their class. Of course, we all cleaned up right after.”

Sadly after graduating from secondary school, most of the people around her don’t celebrate April Fool’s so it was no longer fun. Without the pranking tradition, Kimberly doesn’t participate in any more pranks.


Most of the 50 youths I polled do not see the point in celebrating April Fool’s and even find it disinteresting. PHOTO CREDIT: YOUTHOPIA/SHANNON KUAN


Similarly, Dawn How, 19, student, adds: “I honestly forgot April Fool’s even existed! I remember pulling pranks in primary school but not anymore now because we are too old for it.”

Moving to online pranks

On the other hand, 20-year-old student Faustina Christine refuses to let the April Fool’s tradition die and ideates ways to prank her friends via whatsapp.

“It’s so fun, I love doing April Fool’s stuff! I used to prank my friends that I got attached, or was dating someone in our friend group. It’s like a game and it’s always funny seeing how different people react,” Faustina shared.

While pulling pranks on others is fun, having friends that match your energy level make it even better. Faustina has fallen victim to a number of her friend’s pranks despite knowing that it was pranking season.


With enough ‘proof’, Faustina’s friend managed to convince her that she was moving to Malaysia and would not be returning to Singapore. PHOTO CREDIT: FAUSTINA CHRISTINE


As Faustina has friends who indulge her and take part in April Fool’s pranks too, it’s no wonder she still enjoys the celebration and tries to play at least one prank every year.

Finding pranks troublesome to execute

However, this is opposite for 19-year-old Denise Choo. 

“I don’t celebrate April Fool’s because it’s kind of lame and I have better things to do,” she laughed.

“You also have to come up with ideas and buy stuff for certain pranks. Everyone just gets lazy in the end!”

As someone who relishes in productivity and making the most of her time, Denise would not appreciate being pranked either.

She added: “Some of my friends said they wanted to put fake cockroaches outside of my (dorm) room… I hope they’re joking.”

Having a dedicated day for pranks ruins the surprise

Meanwhile, Gabriel Choo, 19, feels that every day should be April Fool’s.

He said: “The fact that there’s a specific day to prank people just makes pranks less viable. It takes the fun of pranking away because most people already see it coming. So in my opinion, having a specific holiday for it is kind of dumb.”

That’s why Gabriel sticks to pranking people on other days when they least expect it.


Gabriel and his friends pranked the freshies in their CCA that it was someone’s birthday when it really wasn’t, causing a birthday wish chain. PHOTO CREDIT: GABRIEL CHOO


While he isn’t opposed to pulling harmless pranks to confuse people, Gabriel would rather not do them on April Fool’s itself.

“Pranks are funny and seeing people’s reactions to them make it even better. I don’t celebrate April Fool’s, but I celebrate pranking,” he remarked.

Although the interest in April Fool’s pranks has been in decline, there are still many who enjoy laughing over harmless pranks and confusing their friends.

If you belong to the latter group, enjoy your Apr 1 pranks and remember to make sure no one gets hurt!

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