Millennials Spend An Average Of 10 Hours A Week On Dating Apps, Survey Finds, But Here's What Experts Actually Recommend
Trying to find "The One" on a dating app can take some serious time and effort. How much time, you ask? It might surprise you to find out that millennials spend 10 hours a week on dating apps, according to a new survey. But do we really need that much time to be successful?
Dating app, Badoo, recently surveyed its database of 370 million users worldwide to discover how much time people really dedicate to dating apps. On average, people spend about 90 minutes a day online dating, and men tend to spend more time swiping on apps than women do (85 minutes versus 79 minutes a day).
It may seem like a lot, but according to the survey, people log on about 10 times a day on average, and each session lasts about nine minutes long. So most people aren't exactly on their phones for an hour and a half straight looking to meet new people. When you're logging on multiple times a day, you never really realize how much time you're actually spending on dating apps. In short, the minutes really do add up. But they might not be necessary.
"I would say that 10 hours per week is a bit much," online dating consultant, Stacy Karyn, tells Bustle. "But this also depends on the person."
If you genuinely enjoy the process of online dating, it might be OK for you to spend more time on them. However, if you regularly get frustrated or upset by the process, Karyn suggests cutting down your usage down to prevent dating app burnout. "I’ve seen many people make the mistake of spending hours at a time on dating sites, but this can also be counterproductive," Karyn says. "The only thing you need to be successful is consistency and patience."
Focus on sending a specific number of messages a day and limit the amount of times you log on. Answer all the messages that need your response, send out a few new ones, and don't log back on until the next day. "By doing this, you will be allowing these interactions to unfold naturally, rather than forcing them to develop quickly," she says. "This will also enable you to spend more time on self-development and growth, which makes you a bigger catch in the long run."
If spending 90 minutes a day on a dating app is too much, how much time should you actually be spending on it? Of course, it may depend on what you're looking for, but generally, here's what dating experts have to say on the matter:
1. No More Than 15-20 Minutes A Day
"If you are using dating sites and apps to find a more serious relationship, I recommend to my clients that they try not to exceed 15-20 minutes a day (or every other day)," online dating coach, Eric Resnick, tells Bustle. "If you spend more time than that, you end up turning online dating into your part-time job. There's a big difference between what the dating sites want us to do and what actually helps us meet the love of our lives. It's not a numbers game. By turning it into one, we are only hurting ourselves.
2. 30 Minutes Per Day, Several Times A Week
Licensed psychologist, Dr. Wyatt Fisher suggests spending roughly 30 minutes on the app several times a week. "It can give you a chance to know one another online before deciding to take the budding relationship offline," Fisher tells Bustle.
3. 30 Minutes A Day, On Weekdays Only
"I advise clients who are managing their own accounts to log in every day through the week (M-F), spending a half an hour minimum. I also do this for clients who I'm representing online," Anne Marshall, online dating coach and matchmaker tells Bustle. "We take Saturdays off because everybody needs a life." But she suggests hopping back on the apps the next night.
"Sunday evenings are always busy, so I'll log in then for a few minutes just to see if anything new or interesting has come up," Marshall says.
4. 2 Hours A Week, Max
Aleeza Ben Shalom, dating coach and matchmaker tells Bustle spending 30 minutes to two hours a week on a dating app in total is your best bet. "Being on dating apps makes singles hopeful, anxious, or depressed," Shalom says. "You want to spend enough time on the site to be productive and stay hopeful, but not enough time to get anxious or depressed. Also, most people are on multiple sites. After about two hours weekly, you're just reviewing the same people." Waiting for the next week can bring you fresh new people to go through.
5. 3-4 Hours A Week
As Scott Carroll, MD, psychiatrist and author tells Bustle, 10 hours a week is too much time if you're looking for a relationship. If you're spending 10 hours a week swiping, you're not going as many dates IRL as you could, he says.
"There is a point of diminishing returns where you've swiped on your best matches and are just wasting time or focusing on the entertainment factor rather than on meeting quality people for a relationship," he says. "You should be able to check out and swipe on your best matches in three to four hours a week and spend the six to seven hours you save actually going on first dates." After all, you really can't get an accurate sense of person until you meet them face-to-face.
When it comes to online dating, the amount of time you spend on it might not actually help your chances of being successful if you're looking for a relationship. But the when you log on might. According to Badoo, Sunday night around 7 p.m. is the busiest night for online dating. So if you want to up your chances of success, logging on at that time could work in your favor.