What does a date typically look like? A nice, fancy dinner for two at a premium restaurant. This is the imagery that immediately comes to mind when someone mentions the word ‘date’. Why is that? Dinner dates have been a common, safe option for years. It’s a formula that has been unchanged for a very long time. Moreover, most movies and shows showcase a date as a fancy outing in a nice restaurant. Hence, the stereotype. What if it was told to you that dinner dates are slowly losing relevance? They’re no longer the staple option. Confusing, right? What else could you do if you didn't go out for dinner? A newer, younger generation seems to have most of the answers.
The young generation likes adventure and thrill seeking. Hence, most dates planned by them involve some sort of physical activity. Less traditional and more authentic seems to be the new normal. BBQ, camping, street food hopping and exploring new things are what many now consider as date activities. For the less adventurous, a simple picnic, going for a stand-up show or a peaceful coffee date are the go-to.
Sober dates are routine standards. Alcohol free dates have become a more bonafide way to interact with one another and challenge traditional dating norms. A recent study conducted by Tinder showed that 72 percent people mentioned on their Tinder profiles that they don’t drink or only drink occasionally. Also, the use of the beer glass emoji and wine glass emoji has decreased by 40 percent and 25 percent respectively on Tinder year on year. In India, interests such as ‘grabbing a drink’ have also seen a decline this year while tea, coffee and going outdoors saw an increase.
Gone are the days, when looks were the gold standard for choosing someone to go on a date with. The study showed 73 percent of young singles surveyed across all genders said they were looking for someone who is clear about what they want, has a good sense of humour and has good hygiene. Furthermore, loyalty, respect and open-mindedness are considered as far more important qualities than looks.
Dr. Chandni Tugnait, Life Coach & Tinder’s Relationship Expert said, “Young adults are feeling more confident, recognise what healthy dating looks like and know what positive signs to look out for when swiping. They are able to focus on the positive characteristics and attitudes that they believe will keep them happy, content and feeling valued throughout their relationship. So while they may go on blind dates, they no longer turn a blind eye to red flags and increasingly look for green flags or positives in a match or a relationship.”
The survey also showed that awareness and investment in social issues was a factor that 75 percent of young singles were looking for in a potential match. In fact, so many Indian Tinder members mentioned LGBTQIA+, the environment, mental health, Ukraine and feminism in their bios this year, that they all rank in the top 5 local issues.
Post pandemic, young singles were more than ready to scope and play the field this year. However, they chose a high quality roster where everyone had similar interests. ‘Situationships’ came in as new to develop better relationships with a lot less pressure. A ‘situationship’ Is a casual but cleverly defined relationship.
Nearly two thirds of the young Tinder population said that they could easily identify a red or green flag while dating. Due to tips and major psychoanalysis on social media, young singles are more aware of the good, the bad and the ugly when it comes to dating and can recognise and steer clear of toxic relationships.
Aahana Dhar, Director of Communications for Tinder India said, “Indian daters are wasting no time in reshaping the dating world in their image, once they could return to IRL dating. We’ve seen singles be incredibly intentional in both who they choose to date and how they choose to date. Moving over icebreakers, young daters have also been looking for casual activities and shared experiences to get to know each other and make their first dates count. As we shift into gear for 2023, the trends of 2022 will definitely guide the way Indian daters navigate the world of dating, friends, connections and relationships – and we can’t wait to see them continue to embrace situationships, spontaneous trips and sober dates!”