Dating Apps: Are They Here To Stay?

STORY BY SAMANTHA KNOX

Dating apps are the new norm (Pratik Gupta/Unsplash)

With everyone stuck at home for the last 18 months, no one could go out and meet new people. That is when dating apps and online dating sites saw a spike in users. 

Matches on OkCupid have increased 10 per cent worldwide since March 2020, and conversations have increased 20 per cent. Bumble had a 29 per cent increase in messages sent during the week ending on March 27, 2020, and video calls saw a 17 per cent increase.

There were 3 billion swipes on Tinder on March 29th. OkCupid saw a 700 per cent increase in virtual dates. 

“I think this industry is only continuously growing and getting bigger in both North America as well as all around the world,” said Michael Kaye, the Senior Global PR Manager at OkCupid.

In India, “passporting” increased 25 per cent on OkCupid. 

“I think dating apps are just a really convenient way to meet people right now, especially people who are single and are in large cities like Toronto or New York City. We are all really busy with work and it is really nice to go on a dating app and learn a little bit more about someone before taking time out of your busy schedule to go meet with them,” said Michael.

But will dating apps and online dating stick around after the pandemic?

“It’s definitely a blooming industry. After the pandemic, I think it is going to become even more popular. I mean we are seeing activity and engagement skyrocket on our app and now people are getting vaccinated and they’re going out again, people are really looking forward to dating right now,” said Michael. 

Amelia joined Tinder last September.

“It was during quarantine and I was lonely and was looking for something to do,” said Amelia, who didn’t want her last name used.

“We first met two weeks after we started talking and then we started going out then,” said Amelia. She has been with her boyfriend for eight months. 

But is it easier than meeting people in person?

“I think it’s easier on an app because you have their information there and you can kind of see deal-breakers or things you like about a person, kind of know those things before you get too invested in it as opposed to approaching someone at a bar, someone you would know absolutely nothing about them, you kind of have a little bit of a jumping-off point,” said Amelia.

“I think for me personally it’s really nice to dig a little bit deeper and learn more about someone before starting up that conversation and going to meet with them in person,” said Michael.

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