In celebration of my new book, Meet Me in Milan, which has just been released and which details my ongoing quest to find love (this time in the land of la dolce vita) I’m sharing some of my learnings from my dating mistakes in this series of slightly amateur videos. Yes, you're welcome.
Today’s topic is how to choose the perfect dating app for you. In fact, finding the perfect dating app has become as demanding and time-consuming as dating itself. There are so many to choose from. How do you know which one is the right is for you?
Well, fret no more. Your dating non-expert is here to help. Yes, I’m referring to myself.
When it comes to dating apps there are a lot to choose from. Now, options are great when it comes to dating (not so great when it comes to long-term relationships!), but when it comes to dating apps, so many options can prove overwhelming.
It’s therefore important to get clear on what exactly what you’re looking for. After all, different dating apps specialise in meeting different needs. Are you looking for the love of your life or just the love of your next Saturday night? Or perhaps you want to test the dating waters? Either way, chances are there’s a dating app that’s perfect for you.
Here’s a quick summary of some of the most popular ones:
Tinder has a reputation for being a bit of a player. It’s the kind of dating app that you wouldn’t necessarily take home to show your parents. That’s because it’s an app that is great for helping you find a good time, but not necessarily for a long time. Having said that, I know several people who were after something casual only to swipe right and end up married with kids and living the happily ever after – at least for a few years! So, finding true love on Tinder is possible but the main point to keep in mind is that it is known as a ‘hook up’ site.
If you’re not sure about Tinder, then Bumble might be a better option. It’s quickly growing in popularity, especially among single women. For starters, it was founded by a woman called Whitney Wolfe Herd, who came from Tinder and wanted to create an app that was more suited to women’s dating needs. It still has the same swiping functions of Tinder but it’s up to the woman to make the first move, thereby putting the power in the woman’s hands. And if that move isn’t made within the first 24 hours, then the match disappears forever. Keep in mind if you haven’t made the first move by then you probably didn’t want too anyway. The app deletes the match along with any further umming and ahhing you may have been doing, leaving you to get on with the business of finding what you do want.
Happn works on the premise of taking ‘a moment in time’ that people so often equate with love, giving them the chance to make that moment last a little longer. Or a lot longer, again depending on what you’re looking for. No longer do you have to walk past a café wondering whether the love of your life is sitting inside. Happn instantly connects you with people who have shared the same vicinity as you. When you pass each other, you appear on the profile of the other and if you ‘like’ each other, then you can start communicating. While I don’t have much experience on Happn, my take is that it’s for a younger crowd, although again I’ve heard of people finding love on Happn in their late thirties and early forties. It goes to show, love doesn’t discriminate, even on dating apps.
One of the original dating sites, this is the kind of app you could confidently introduce to your nearest and dearest. eHarmony has built a reputation for being serious about finding love and the extensive questionnaire, along with the monthly membership fee, ensures it only attracts people who are genuine about finding their perfect match.
RSVP was the go-to dating site back when online dating was considered so embarrassing no one dared to admit they were doing it. This site has withstood the test of time and increase in competition to offer a service that has seen thousands of people find their perfect someone. Chances are you know someone who met the love of their life on RSVP and are currently living their happily ever after. And even if they’ve divorced their ‘happily ever after’, you can’t argue with RSVP’s solid match history.
Some other notable mentions are Plenty of Fish (POF) which is a low-cost alternative to some of the other paid apps and Zoosk which is aimed at a more mature market and those looking for something more serious.
The main thing to remember is that dating apps exist to facilitate a face-to-face meeting with somebody. It’s not a match until it’s a match in person! Therefore you don’t have to rely on just a dating app. We are surrounded by people all day, every day. You could even say we’re facing an overpopulation problem. In which case, the love of your life could be sitting next to you right now.
As convenient as dating apps can be, they will never replace the human element of the dating experience. So stop reading this article, put your phone away and take a chance. Smile and say hi at someone. It is, after all, the natural equivalent of swiping right.