Under the stay at home order, more and more singles in Charlotte have embraced video dating.
“I did a FaceTime date with a guy I met on Hinge,” one dater told the Agenda. “It was really sweet, we both had our drinks ready to go. We hit it off the first night and had another one the next night with dinner.”
Zoom out: Coronavirus has quickly changed dating. Bumble rolled out a dating during coronavirus guide written by an epidemiologist. Tinder launched Tinder Passport, making it possible to match with people anywhere around the world. And Coffee Meets Bagel produced a virtual dating guide after they saw a spike in video chat demand.
Survey says: In an effort to understand Charlotte dating trends during coronavirus, we recently sent a survey to Agenda newsletter subscribers covering topics ranging from mental health to toilet paper supply to dating. More than 4,000 readers responded. While some Charlotte singles said, “no virtual dates, I’m not that into it” and “dating and bikinis are canceled until further notice,” other singles have embraced video dating.
More guys: Many singles shared that men are much more responsive now, especially on Bumble and Hinge. “Amazing how the men on Bumble and Hinge are suddenly so responsive!” one dater said.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, boredom has led to more dating app usage and connections. One respondent said, “Just bored and kind of lonely so willing to try to talk to more people. Went on a virtual Zoom date. It wasn’t as awkward as I thought it was going to be.”
Virtual dates: While FaceTime first dates may be unique to this time period, some single Charlotteans are giving it a shot. “I’ve done a couple FaceTime dates, basically drinking and hanging out,” said a dater. “They probably last longer than if you just went to dinner. Have also done a walking date (six feet apart of course).”
“FaceTimes have been super easy and casual,” said another dater. “I like it. It’s a good way to get to know someone without wasting their time in person if you end up not liking them.”
Success stories: A.C. (who prefers only to use her initials) used FaceTime to connect with a match she met on Hinge. She says, “There are pros and cons. The pros are you’re in the comfort of your own home. I’m so used to talking to my best friends on FaceTime, so it felt more comfortable automatically. It’s not like you’re going to a place and you have jitters. It’s like, ‘Oh, someone is calling. I’m going to pick up and have a conversation.’ It was just very friendly. Very conversational. Two millennials doing what we do best.”
On the flip side though, she says, “I prefer meeting in person, even though you’re nervous. You get a better gauge on if you have a genuine, more physical connection. It’s hard to read body language when you’re FaceTiming.”
Another dater named Ria met a match on Hinge. Their first FaceTime date went well, and they’ve now setup a second FaceTime date where they’ll each make a meal and eat together.
Ria says their FaceTime date enabled the pair to ask “bolder” questions. “We talked about more personal questions that I wouldn’t normally ask or be asked on a first date. Things like, ‘What are you looking for in a relationship? What are your thoughts on online dating? What are your thoughts on God?’ It was very organic. He would throw a deep question at me and I’d throw one to him. We laughed about things.”
She acknowledges that physical chemistry is harder to gauge through a screen, but says, “I still think there was chemistry even though it was just the first one. I’m looking forward to seeing how this goes. We know we can’t wait to see each other in person.”
Ria says the unique circumstances served as point of connection for them, noting, “We recognized it was awkward. We laughed about it and then it was done. It was like, ‘Let’s move on.'”