I saw a joke on an American late-night show about that Germans fold their toilet paper. I got confused. As a German myself I thought "Wait what? What's wrong with that?" and I assumed North Americans use single sheets of toilet paper. But recently I watched an episode of "F is for Family" where workers at an airport complain about having to use single sheets.

After some research I found that it seems to be best practice to use more than single sheets (see e.g. the presumably north-american website http://www.howtowipeyourbutt.com/), which, since "when in rome...", makes me wonder:

Is it common practice in North-America to use several sheets of toilet paper at once? If yes, why would the joke be funny?

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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it has nothing to do with travel. Feb 5 '19 at 10:54
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    Agreed, with David. No one is using toilet paper on you except yourself, and if they are, in going to assume you're paying them to do so, and they will do it in whichever way you prefer.
    – choster
    Feb 5 '19 at 13:29
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    @LightnessRacesinOrbit Huh? It's the same paper. You can use it exactly how you use it at home. What Americans do makes no difference whatsoever. Feb 5 '19 at 16:42
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    @LightnessRacesinOrbit The question is whether North Americans use toilet paper in a different way from Europeans and about why some joke is funny. Neither of those is a question about travel. If the question was "Is there a difference between North American toilet paper and European toilet paper?" then the answer being "no" wouldn't disqualify the question. But the question isn't that. Feb 5 '19 at 17:45
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    @DavidRicherby My reasoning was that it is a question about a difference in cultures and this way related to travel.
    – M. Stern
    Feb 5 '19 at 17:53

The debate is between folding it or crumpling it, it is not about the number of sheets. A single sheet would be inadequate in most cases in either form.

I know this is a strange question. Heck, you may have never even thought about it before. However, when watching TV with the German boyfriend recently, a show mentioned that different cultures have different methods for using toilet paper. In particular, they said that Germans fold and Americans crumple.

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Source: https://welcometogermerica.com/2014/11/toilet-paper-culture-germans-fold-americans-crumple.html

Then there is this survey about bathroom habits

Folding versus crumpling. Overall almost 50% more people fold their toilet paper rather than crumple it. Age increases the chance you will be folding rather than crumpling. Women are significantly more likely than men to crumple than fold. Spending more time in the bathroom increases the chances of you crumpling versus folding.

Must Read: The 3 Types of Toilet Paper Users: Which One Are You?

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    This is scary and eye-opening at once. Feb 5 '19 at 9:05
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    Trust the Germans to be anal about how to use toilet paper. hehehe Feb 5 '19 at 12:28
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    TIL I'm German. Feb 5 '19 at 14:56
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    @AlexanderMatrosov It feels like if you crumple it does a better job of getting into any crevices or wrinkly areas (speaking as a woman).....If you fold, it just kind of skims across the top. Feb 5 '19 at 15:39
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    Afaik, there's nothing "American" about crumpling. This is just another internet myth that came out of nowhere. I'm American and I've known plenty of people growing up who do one or the other. Crumpling definitely isn't more prevalent. Folding probably is, in fact.
    – user91988
    Feb 5 '19 at 16:04

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