Dining and sex may be out, but love is most definitely still on the cards for the UK’s 7 million-strong dating population. While the dynamics may be different, the premise remains the same: narrow down your options, test the waters, find true love. In fact, far from putting the kibosh on romance, if you’re single and looking for love, this coronavirus malarkey may even do you a few unexpected favours.
Here’s the lowdown on the perks and pitfalls of dating during a pandemic.
Back To Basics
Where once there was Tinder, Grindr and Feeld, ready and waiting to provide “encounters” with a single swipe right, in the time of coronavirus, things have become more simple and yet more complicated.
Yes, we’re having to put in a little more leg work, there’s zero physical reward and everything’s online, but there’s also something kind of quaint about this hands-off approach to dating.
When you remove the physical side of the dating experience - when a one-nighter could leave you breathless for all the wrong reasons - suddenly we find ourselves prioritising conversation, humour and shared interests.
Getting to know potential partners through a screen may seem weirdly formal initially, but actually, connecting on a more emotional level, getting to know each other and just talking, is a much more intimate way to connect.
The coronavirus pandemic has impacted the dating scene by forcing us back to basics - it’s essentially courting, circa the 1800s, but with a digital twist.
If we were mid-pandemic just thirty years ago, the dating scene would have been up the proverbial creek. Thankfully, we can enjoy the advances in technology to date virtually, in a host of interesting ways.
Sure, you could chat on Zoom, maybe add a background of your cat for a bit of personalisation… or, you could take your date on a virtual tour of an art gallery or aquarium. Test out how competitive your potential partner is with some online gaming. Feeling peckish? Why not order-in from the same restaurant, light some candles and have a first date with a difference.
There really is no end of ways you can make technology work for you when it comes to online dating. So, embrace the change and enjoy being able to flirt from the comfort (and safety) of home in your pyjama bottoms.
Top Tips For Online Dating
It may be modern, but that isn’t to say that online dating is without its difficulties. Here are our top tips for getting started.
Mute Your Notifications
Nothing quite kills the mood like an email from your boss chasing up that new report. You wouldn’t take a phone call or check your emails during an in-person date (unless you’re some kind of reprobate), the same rules apply to online dating.
Go Easy On The Dutch Courage
Let’s face it, the drinks are cheaper at home. It can be easy to nail a bottle of vino during the first hour of a virtual date, but slurring won’t win any hearts. Moderate the booze - thank us later.
Make the most of this new way of dating and skip the mindless small-talk (unless you enjoy that sort of thing of course). Be honest about what you’re looking for, ask the important questions and embrace being able to cut to the chase.
Have you had luck finding love in the time of coronavirus? We’d love to hear about your triumphs (and tragedies). Share your favourite dating tips with us in the comments.