While you're self-quarantining, the bread in your pantry might go stale — but your relationship doesn't have to. If you can't be with your partner right now because you're practicing "social distancing," per the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), a virtual date night with your partner may be just what the love doctor ordered. If you're wondering how to have a date on Zoom. FaceTime and Google Hangouts that's equal parts intimate and productive, dating coach Cherlyn Chong tells Bustle that your question should not be how, but how often. "If you don't [frequently] make the time to see each other, even online, then sooner or later, you will drift apart," she says.
Order Food Over FaceTime
Hana, 23, knows all about FaceTime dating — her long-distance relationship keeps her video chatting with her partner often, whether she's amid a global pandemic or just another Tuesday. She tells Bustle that if you really want to blow your SO away on a FaceTime date, you should consider sending them a little takeout as a gift. "We like to send each other Uber Eats or Instacart as a surprise," she says. "The other night, I was alone at home, and a driver just showed up with dinner ready for me. It’s the little things that show we’re thinking of each other."
Netflix & FaceTime
FaceTime dates can feel like dinner and a movie when you watch Netflix together from two different locations, Taylor, 27, tells Bustle. When he started dating his long-distance, long-term partner, he discovered an app called Netflix Party, which allows them both to watch Netflix together, at the same time, while even using the same remote controls. "We use this with FaceTime, and it just connects us because it feels like we're just watching TV together in the same room," Taylor says. "If I pause the show, it pauses for him as well, and trust me, I pause a lot."
FaceTime On The Go
Michal Ann, 30, tells Bustle, her partner used to FaceTime her whenever he went out for long walks, which made it feel like they were going on romantic outings together. "I could see where he was and that helped me feel like I knew more about his life and was much more positive and engaging than getting into a rut calling each other from the kitchen table every time."
Get All Dressed Up To Stay In & FaceTime
Susan Trombetti, matchmaker and dating coach, tells Bustle that you should take measures to make yourself feel good before a FaceTime date, the way you would an in-person date. Even though your partner isn't going to smell your favorite perfume, for example, you could put it on anyway. It'll give you that extra boost of confidence that will keep the date feeling fun and flirtatious.
Karaoke Double Date On Google Hangouts
Even if you love your virtual one-on-one time with your significant other, it's OK to want to shake things up every now and then. If you've been missing those Friday nights out with your other coupled-up friends, you can still hang out with them while practicing social distancing by going on Google Hangouts. It allows up to 10 people on a video call if you're using Gmail. You can catch up for a bit, watch a movie together, or have a fun karaoke night by singing along to karaoke versions of your favorite songs on YouTube.
Group Game Night On Zoom
Since your date nights don't have to be limited to just you and your partner, you can try putting together a Zoom game night. You can invite a bunch of your friends and family for a round of charades or trivia. It's a good option to explore if you've been missing all the other people in your life that you don't get to see during this time. Getting a chance to laugh and hang out with the important people in your life even virtually, can help you get through this time much easier.
If you think you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, which include fever, shortness of breath, and coughing, call NHS 111 in the UK or visit the CDC website in the U.S. for up-to-date information and resources. You can find all Bustle’s coverage of coronavirus here, and UK-specific updates on coronavirus here.
Cherlyn Chong, dating coach
Susan Trombetti, matchmaker and dating coach
This article was originally published on