Updated: December 3, 2021
The stats show that she’s right. Our appetite for finding someone is insatiable, even during a global pandemic. In the past 30 days, Google Trends has shown a 150% rise for people searching for “best free dating apps” in England and a 90% increase for “free dating apps” in the UK.
No list would be complete without the OG dating app Tinder, which arguably normalised swiping and the response, “On a dating app” to the question, “So how did you two meet?” You’ve probably downloaded, deleted and re-downloaded it several times and have a story or two to share from dates you’ve arranged through it. It’s largely responsible for the gamification of dating, which sounds bad in theory, but it’s just so darn fun.
Women call the shots here and have 24 hours to make the first move on the guys. If they don’t, they disappear into the ether forever… ever… ever. From 13 March to 27 March, there was a 93% increase in the app’s voice call/video chat functions. There’s also a great new feature where you can add what type of dating you’re comfortable with in these ~ weird times ~ which include virtual, socially distanced with a mask or socially distanced.
This has a social media vibe to it, as you “like” or comment on someone’s prompts, photos or videos. You’ll be shown everyone who has liked you and then you decide whether to match with them or not. Hinge also has the most incredible tag line: “Designed to be deleted.” It boasts that you can “meet people who want to get off dating apps, too.”
Since 11 March, there has been a 30% overall increase in messages sent on OkCupid globally. Matches increased by 10% and conversations increased by over 20%. Virtual dating has been booming, with research conducted by the app showing that women’s favourite virtual date is a shared activity, while men’s favourite is dinner or drinks. Use this information to your advantage.
This “slow dating” app encourages quality over quantity by showing you one match a day at noon. If you like each other, you can begin chatting without any distractions from other potential suitors or in-app notifications. Dating apps often make it feel as though you have loads of options available, but all you really need is just that one special person.
6. Coffee Meets Bagel
Known as the original “anti-swiping app,” Coffee Meets Bagel sets you up with your best matches every day at noon. Women are shown profiles of men who have “liked” them, but ultimately, it’s up to the women to decide whether they want to interact and start a conversation.
Just select whether you’re a beard haver or a beard appreciator and sign up for the app that CNBC called “Tinder for beards.” That makes it sound like there’s just loads of profiles of floating beards ready to be stroked, but we digress. Designed for women who are fans of dudes with beards, Bristlr lets you browse the facial furniture of your future Mr Right.
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