All the Things You Can Get Out of Dating Apps Besides a New Boo

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If you’ve ever used any sort of dating app (and who hasn’t these days) you’ve probably quickly realized that once the novelty is over, dating apps can be super stressful and sometimes feel like a job. In fact, there are tons of studies which suggest that dating apps actually make you more lonely or that they make it more difficult to settle down with one person.

But the thing is, while the fruits of your dating app labor may have not resulted in a boyfriend, they can often result in something else: experiences and stories.

Perhaps you got to see an awesome part of the city that you never knew about, maybe you ended up making a really good platonic friend. Maybe you just had some awesome sex. Regardless of all the shitty dates you’ve been on, you can’t deny that dating apps have made it incredibly easy to meet new people all around you, and with add-ons like Bumble BFF, your ability to network in your area is at an all-time high.

At minimum, you’ll probably get at least one awesome date where the person might not be your soulmate, but the place makes up for it.

Nina* got a chance to see Beyoncé in Central Park for free.

“It was a guy from Tinder. I met him once for coffee while I was in NYC over the fall, then he just randomly asked me if I wanted to go for our second date — and it happened to be a Beyoncé concert. His parents owned a really big tech company in Cali and he was a design student at Pratt. I found out on the third date that he was a virgin which was just too much for me and made me end it.”

If you’re not into Beyoncé, Mariana* also got to snag a concert ticket.

“I was sort of seeing this dude from Tinder and we made a date to see [The Menzingers] a while in advance. The whole thing turned out to be a disaster–I told him I wasn’t staying the night and he just broke down at some point asking why I didn’t like him back the way he liked me. I booked it and I left him crying back at his place and things basically ended after that. He never asked for me to pay for the ticket.”

Another awesome way to utilize dating apps is to find yourself a cute tour-guide for when you’re in a new city. Tinder offers Tinder Passport for the small price of $7 if you want to pencil in a foreign fuck buddy ahead of time, but you can also just wing it when you’re there.

I essentially Tinder-ed my way through London, which you can read more about here. But, one highlight was when I matched with a cute French guy who offered to give me a tour of Brick Lane in East London. He showed me a bunch of cool shops and art galleries, we drank at a beer garden, he introduced me to a super cheap bagel spot, and then we ended the date at his flat and drank wine with his two roommates. He never tried to make a move and never hit me up for a second date (I wasn’t into him in that way either), but he was super sweet the whole date and showed me spots I never would’ve known about otherwise.

Even if you’re not in a foreign country, you can still def find a cutie who wants to play tour guide. Says Elyse:

“I got a free private kayak tour of San Diego from Tinder, which was really cool. I’m working [in San Diego] for the summer for an internship, so I don’t really know anyone and matched with this guy who gives kayak tours at La Jolla through the caves and stuff. It was honestly so much fun. He came in on his day off to do it, but he kinda went into tour mode and like did all his fun facts and corny jokes that he normally does, so I didn’t feel like there was that much flirtation happening.”

I bet you’d never guess that you could get ahead in your studies or career from Tinder, but these people prove that you can legit use Tinder for anything.

Stanford student Alicia* found her lab partner on Tinder, and has the screenshots to prove it.

Daniel* did some dating and networking at once and landed a business deal:

“I met a girl on Bumble and it turned out that she was a fan of the company that I work for. She worked in the music industry in an area that my company was trying to move into. I told my boss about my connection (obviously not mentioning how we met or that we were fucking), and our companies are likely going to have a partnership because of it.”

Sometimes, your most awesome Tinder find is simply a guy with a pool so that you can escape the imminent death of a sweltering NYC summer, as is the case with Brandi*.

“I’ve gone on a LOT of dates via the apps (usually in like 2-week bursts and then I get bored or am focused on one guy), but I very rarely expect it to become a real relationship. I just think it’s a fun way to meet guys that I would never meet in my everyday life, especially in a place like New York where they come from all over. That has resulted in some surprisingly great dates and some terrible ones where I wonder what I ever saw in that person. These all amount to great stories though. I went out with a guy recently who had a sick pool on his rooftop. I’m trying to convince him to have my friends and I over for a pool party but the weather and our schedules aren’t cooperating.”

Perhaps you don’t make it to happily every after, but you do make it to an awesome orgasm — in Quiznos, of all places. Says Brad*:

“We hit it off on Tinder and it turns out that she was living below one of my best (gay) friends. She came into the restaurant I was bartending at and we had instant animalistic physical chemistry. Once I got off work, we both walked to Madison Square Park. The fountain was off, so we climbed in there. It was after hours so the cops kept patrolling around, we both got a ticket for being in the fountain (I actually had to go to court). We joked about how we were Bonnie and Clyde and the first thing she says after is ‘we should fuck right now.’ I had to take a train back to Jersey early and didn’t want the hassle of ‘pretending to be a host while pushing her out at 6 a.m.’ The Quiznos in the park is 24/7, she went into the bathroom which is single stall and huge, and pulled me in. Great mirror. Great fuck. The risk of it is what made it hot. After about five minutes people were pounding on the door. [We] kind of finished and booked it out, screamed something about diarrhea and left. We dated for like two months after… ended up getting into a major blow out fight… never saw her again.”

Even if you don’t find a lab partner, a business partnership, or a pool; there’s one thing that you can almost always find on a dating app if you’re patient, and that’s food. Eva admits:

“Me and my friend used to use Tinder when we were too broke to eat dinner. We got to eat at the nicest restaurants. We wouldn’t eat all day (because poor), then we would impress our dates with our ferocious appetites. We would only swipe right on old rich guys.”

Eva dubbed her strategy, “food ghosting,” which might seem cruel, but it’s not like men don’t take advantage of women ever either. Jeanie had a similar strategy:

“I went on so many dates when I lived in the city, but because of my schedule and the fact that I was broke, I was way more likely to go out with a guy if he offered dinner/lunch/any sort of food. I was introduced to some banging restaurants in New York and had some pretty damn luxurious meals considering I had no money.”

Dating apps aren’t for everyone, but if you don’t find Mr. Right by swiping your heart out, it doesn’t mean that you were wasting your time. Instead of searching for a husband every time you meet a new dude, focus on the experience and try to live in the moment and appreciate it for what it’s worth. If what it’s worth is a free dinner, that’s fine with us.

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