Using free dating sites and apps to meet new people, make friends, and find a romantic partner has become increasingly common among us millennials. Gone are the days when we had to worry about telling others that we met our significant other *gasp* online.
Many people our age regularly use free dating sites and apps to look for a date or just someone to talk to. I used to look for online friends on such websites too—as a matter of fact, that’s how I met my boyfriend Lean. (Check out his awesome blog here!)
I discovered only recently that you could actually use these platforms to make your travel a lot easier. And why not? It connects you with people AND you can find great advice from locals that you won’t get anywhere else!
Here are some of the ways that you can use free dating sites or apps to your advantage and make your trip more fun. If you’re traveling anytime soon, you might want to try these.
When you’re in a foreign city, how do you find the best hole-in-the-wall or a speakeasy (you know, if that’s your thing)? If you want to go where the locals go, try using an app like Tinder to get recommendations. You don’t even have to meet with someone to get information; you can just post on your profile that you’re visiting a certain city and you want to get around on your own. You can even say that you’re looking for someone to hang with, if you feel like it.
Be transparent and set boundaries
Are you looking for a romantic fling? Someone to watch a football match or a movie with? Are you in the city for a couple of months or just a couple of days? Be specific, and choose to be straightforward with your date. If you’re just looking for a language exchange partner, tell your match upfront so they won’t think that there’s a chance it could develop into something deeper. If you have a spouse or significant other back at home, make sure to disclose that as well.
As a final word of advice, remember to take the same precautions as you would when you are in your own city. There are so many scams out there that I don’t have to remind you to be on the lookout all the time for con artists and scammers. Whether you’re in a developing country or a European village, there will always be people preying on travelers, so watch your back.
As much as possible, meet your date in a crowded place and see to it that someone in the city knows your whereabouts. Always trust your instincts. You wouldn’t want your life to be another installment of Taken, would you? Don’t ignore your gut feeling!
Have you ever tried using dating sites or apps like Tinder to meet people while traveling? How did it go? Share your story with us in the comments below!