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Virtual dating surge can be a cold Covid sensation

August 20, 2020

Virtual dating surge can be a cold Covid sensation

Love coach Adriane Hartigan warns the pandemic dating apps surge is no match for sensory judgements. Photo: Supplied

A Kiwi love coach warns virtual dating can be tough, as dating app intimacy makes a return in Covid-19 lockdown.

Bumble has doubled its users to 100 million since September 2019, Tinder has reported a pandemic spike, and Hinge profiles have also increase by 47% each month since April 2019.

Locally TradeMe’s FindSome site jumped 54% in the first lockdown.

Love coach Adriane Hartigan has seen her clients doing a lot of chatting online, but has not seen success of any interaction leading to a fulfilling relationship.

Ms Hartigan said some Kiwis have become more fearful of online dating because it can hard to virtually define what is truthful.

“Online it is hard for singles to figure out what other people want,” she said.

“For some it is nice to chat, but for others it is about connecting on a deeper level.”

“Reliance on virtual dating again can be tough.”

The Inner Circle dating app conducted a study which found 75% of singles worldwide would still rather meet their match in real life than on a dating app.

Ms Hartigan said this is because of our sensory system.

“Touching, hugging look in people eyes are so important. Our sensory system begs for physical interaction”.

Madison Merton created a Bumble account during level four lockdown but never met any of her matches.

“I didn’t like chatting on Bumble. If I wanted to engage with someone I gave them my Instagram name and started conversation on there,” the 22-year-old said.

“If you get their Insta you sort of know they aren’t fake.”

Miss Merton deleted her Bumble account once New Zealand moved to level two because she preferred to meet other singles in person.

Auckland’s current level three lockdown made meetings impossible for Miss Merton, so she decided to try dating apps again.

“I downloaded Hinge because I got sick of having to start the conversation first on Bumble.”

She is curious to see if any of the few she is currently chatting to on Hinge will ever offer to meet up with her.

“I’ve heard time and time again of people being ghosted on these apps. I think people are just bored and lonely and when it gets real they freak out because either their lying or don’t want to commit.”

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