Combine two of your favorite passions — dating and traveling — and you have a winning combo. You may hear of people traveling far for love, but what about joining a dating app that specializes in travel and activities? After all, isn’t dating about getting OUT there and doing things with somebody while getting to know them in the process IRL vs. just endless messaging? Plus, fun activities and travel destinations make for less pressure on the date — you can concentrate on your mini golf game or trying not to fall off your stand-up paddleboard instead of trying to think of conversation-starters.
In fact, new research even shows that Millennial daters prefer to meet someone while traveling. A recent study by Topdeck Travel, the number one provider of group travel for 18-30 somethings, discovered that one in eight Millennial men hope to find their significant other while on vacation, while one in 20 women do. It may sound counter-productive, but just because one meets someone outside of their city doesn’t mean it has to stay that way — long-distance relationships can eventually morph into same-city ones.
Topdeck’s study, by the research firm YouGov, showed that 1 in 11 postgraduate Millennials did meet an significant other while traveling abroad. Even though texting-based dating apps seem to be more popular than ever, Topdeck discovered that Millennials have other priorities, too — like traveling. And with traveling comes meeting-someone-while-traveling.
Yes, you can use Tinder, OkCupid, or other apps when you travel, but they’re not travel-specific, per se. And, sure, you can use the AroundMe app for date ideas no matter where you are, but to find like-minded daters, check out the travel-and-adventure-minded dating apps below—because there’s no shortage of outlets to meet someone like you, who wants to go explore a new city or activity.
MissTravel’s tagline is “Never Travel Alone” and there you can find someone who loves to travel as much as you do. You can send members trip proposals, indicating the location (your city, theirs, or a new place), dates, and what kind of trip you’d like: Luxury, Adventure, Romance, Foodie, Local. You can also choose who pays, you, the other person, or split it 50/50 — no awkward bill-sitting-on-the-table-forever moments.
Recently, Bustle’s Sex and Relationships Editor, Michelle Toglia, tried out this app and flew to Portland to meet Ray, a guy MissTravel paired her with after she chose from five potential matches. I’d try it!
This fairly new app does exactly what it advertises — it wants you and your date to meet outside. As I always say, none of us want perpetual pen-pals on dating sites, and MeetMeOutside (MMO) gets you off your phone and out there, doing something you both enjoy. “It’s a dating app that is connecting users based on their shared passion for adventure and an active lifestyle,” MeetMeOutside Co-Founder Rob Hand tells Bustle. “We've made it our mission to take dating from AWKWARD to ADVENTURE. We do this by finding potential matches based on your active lifestyle interests and, once a match is made, we provide you with active date destinations nearby that you can suggest via chat.”
Yep, with this app, no more “What do you want to do?” or “What do you want to do?” exchanges. In the MMO app, users choose icons that rep their favorite things to do, including writing their Top 3 Bucket List items, adding their Instagram accounts, and, in the near future, the ability to connect their fitness trackers and wearables. Then, MMO suggests date locations, like SoulCycle, indoor rock climbing, or black light yoga. It’s a fact that Gen Y (85 million of them now!) is way into dating apps — 4 out of 5 users are aged 18-34 years old — and into fitness apps and wearables, so MMO combines the best of both worlds.
With TourBar, you can find a travel partner in the tap of a button on your phone. Some people don’t like to travel alone and, if you’re one of them, you’re in luck. Plus, there is NO PRESSURE to date — you can just use the app to find a local to show you around a new town. Or, if you want to play tour guide, you can show them around your city.
Do you travel a lot for work — or fun — and don’t want to spend your downtime alone? That’s where TravelMeetDate comes in. You can find dates on your flight (!), or once you touch ground. It is a subscription-based app, though, in order to deter spammers, but worth it if it means finding someone fun to hang with, have a fling with, or even fall in love with. You can also post your travel details for other users to see. Who knows? Mr. or Mrs. Right may be just around the hotel bar corner. At the moment, the app is only $5 a month, the price of a fancy cup of coffee, or $40 a year.
You’ve may have heard about HowAboutWe, the dating app where you fill in the date idea, like “How about we… go kayaking this weekend?” They call themselves the “offline dating site,” and rightfully so. If you’re stumped and cannot think of a date idea to suggest, you can check out AroundMe for inspiration... or, you can see what other users want to go do and choose accordingly.
Skout is all about connecting you to someone with common interests, and it doesn’t have to be for a romantic outcome. You can use it both near and far, in your city or while traveling. Again, what better a tour guide in a far locale than a local? “We know meeting people can be tough, so we’ve made it our mission to bring people together from across the world to explore and embark on adventures together,” according to Skout’s website. “Use your mobile device as your guide to meet new friends wherever you go, a concert at Madison Square Garden, a bus tour in Barcelona, or a local neighborhood bar.” Sounds like a win-win — you could either end up with a new BFF or a new BF or GF.
Partake is a new “anti-Tinder” app where you can find like-minded people to do social activities with. It’s not a dating app, per se, but who knows? You and a fellow Partake-r may click over more than your love of craft beers. Whether a friend of yours cancels on you at the last minute and you have an extra ticket to a concert or want company to check out a new gastropub, you can post your suggestions on Partake — because isn’t it the worst when you no longer want to go to something because you don’t want to go alone?!
“Other meet-up apps are geared towards group gatherings, and dating apps are solely focused on romantic encounters,” Sylvester Fejokwu, Partake’s creator, tells Bustle. “Partake gives users full control over activities and offers something a little more intimate, but without the romantic overtones that come with dating apps.” Sounds great to me, not having that sometimes-awkward romantic pressure, but still doing a fun activity with other people. Speaking of which, you can plan it, as well as who joins you, or you can check out what others have created. Plus, the app is the first social activity app that has a points system that rewards users for enjoying activities with others. Currently, the app is available in New York and Washington, DC, then expanding to other cities.
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Images: Fotolia; Michelle Toglia; iTunes