• Susie Wilson

The New Etiquette of Dating Post Covid-19

What Singles Can Expect Once We’re Out of Quarantine

In many years to come, various generations could very well be telling their grandchildren “my first date was on Zoom!”? Despite the discouraging news of the pandemic, there is the possibility for stories of hope and love on the dating front. 

Social distancing will prove difficult for many single people who do not have physical contact with others. Touch is as important a social condition as anything. It reduces stress. It makes people trust one another. It allows for cooperation.

This need for human contact will remain stifled in the foreseeable future, even as parts of the economy reopen. Singles rejoining the dating scene need to understand the new realities and adapt. 

Managing the New Social Realities 

People diving into the dating pool after the pandemic will need to understand the rules have changed. A shift in dating etiquette will mean more first dates happen virtually, with people using tech to filter down “second date” prospects.

Finding spontaneity will challenge many daters in this new dynamic. Perhaps they will need to use Zoom or another video call application to have a picnic in the park where they stay 40 feet apart. Or, have a Netflix Party to watch the latest rom-com together while they chat. Smart daters will turn challenges into an opportunity, by playing the piano for virtual dates or showcasing another creative talent.

Singles must understand social and physical boundaries after COVID-19 and understand when someone they like is hesitant to meet in person. Dating during this time will require patience and understanding, and a willingness to engage in longer courtships in order to develop deeper bonds. 

Relying on Technology

A silver lining for dating via video chat is it removes some pressure from physical intimacy early in a dating cycle. People engaging in a few dates via Zoom or FaceTime must take the time to get to really know other people in a more connected way. The focus shifts towards deeper conversations, instead of the speed of Tinder and other mobile-based dating apps that were commonplace before the pandemic.

Virtual dates are also free, which should provide relief for cash-strapped daters. 

While video dating will never replicate the physical touch and sensations that come with in-person interactions, it does at least provide sight and sound. As social distancing eases in the coming months there will still be a slow entry into going out to eat or catch up with friends at the bars for happy hour.

Video dating is around to stay and will serve as an important launching point for post-COVID-19 relationships. For example, FilterOff is a video chat-based app that functions as a 21st Century speed dating. With the app, users can pick three video dates a night which each lasting just 90 seconds. The user then decides if they want to talk to the person further and ultimately ask them on a social distant date. 

The pandemic shifted how people interact physically, but it inspired creativity and resilience. It is after all “physical” distancing, not just “social distancing.” Dating etiquette after the pandemic will adjust, but the need for deep human connections remain.