How to Spend Less Time Searching on Dating Apps

Here’s the thing with dating apps: The people who are on them don’t want to be. Okay, there are some exceptions who reeeally like window shopping, but for the most part, people on dating apps want the dating, not the apps. Many would prefer to find their special someone and delete the app once and for all, but even those just looking to casually date would rather spend more time face to face. And yet, so many of us find ourselves getting sucked into the vortex of endless profile pictures and don’t realize it until it’s 2 am and we have carpal tunnel syndrome from all the left-swiping.

There are a few tricks, though, that will help optimize the time that you spend on the apps. Is it a fool-proof way to get more dates? Of course not! It’s dating after all, and foolishness is built into the equation. But if you use these three tips, at the very least you’ll spend less time staring into the abyss.

Start Specific

If you’re in or near a big city, the sheer number of people on these apps is absolutely staggering. If you’re not careful, you could end up swiping for hours (or days) on end. This is why it pays off to be specific, at least initially. Start with the filters that are really important to you. If you really want someone who lives within 10 minutes of your apartment, then start with a small radius. Or start with a year or two around your ideal age. Yes, this will limit the number of people who appear while you’re swiping, but that’s the whole point. Maybe you’ll find some promising leads in that first batch. If not, start gradually widening your search parameters.

Take Days Off

There are a lot of good reasons to simply force yourself to not look at the app for a bit. The first is plain old sanity. If people are starting to blur together into some amorphous uni-face, it’s time to step back for a bit. But there’s another good reason to take breaks. Those periods away will give more people a chance to see your profile and swipe right, and if you’re moving around the city, your profile will likely be seen by people who hadn’t seen it before. It will also give new people a chance to join the service. Most dating apps try to show you people who have already liked you, so when you come back, you may find a fresh crop of new faces.

Pay for Salvation

The best time saver of them all ain’t free, but it sure is effective. Prominent apps such as Tinder and Bumble both offer a paid service that will simply show you everybody who has already right-swiped (i.e. “liked”) you. That means that when you do open the app, you can just skip to that select list, and if you see someone that interests you, you know that swiping right will be an automatic match. Of course, this isn’t perfect; other people will be using the same technique, and you’ll never see each other. In general, though, it will save you a ton of time. This upgrade isn’t cheap, but how much is that time and headspace worth to you?

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