You go, Glen Coco! You took the vibe check to the next level and found someone who matches your daredevil energy on Tinder Explore.
It’s finally time to meet your match for the first time, and if you’re feeling butterflies in your stomach, you’re not alone. Everyone has had a case of first-date jitters, thinking about how to make that first impression count. Yet the prospect of a genuine and authentic connection in–person is exciting (ugh, can we just, like, skip to the good part already). Afterall, you want to know that your quirky ice breakers were magic, not just on text, but will fosure work like a charm IRL, amirite?
With Cupid just around the corner, this Valentine’s Day, Tinder spoke with several Gen Z in Singapore to find out what truly matters on a first date. With Gen Z valuing authenticity and being open to seeing where things go, first dates have unsurprisingly become more about the vibes and less about the wow.
While impressions still count (no socks with holes, y’all!), nothing beats having an honest and authentic connection, no cap. Troy, 24, said, “I used to be fixated on trying to make the other person like me based on what I know about them, but now I just put myself out there. It’s whether or not they like me for who I am.”
And ultimately, what gets you a second date is whether your vibe checks out on the first date. Xin Hui, 22, said, “I think I’ll only go on the second date with the person if I feel like we have more to talk about, based on our conversations on the first date.”
Tinder recently launched Fast Chat: Blind Date in Explore, bringing the blind date back with a new social experience that pairs members before allowing them to view each other’s profile. This makes conversation, rather than photos, the first impression, reflecting the modern dating habits of Gen Z who put authenticity first. Blind Date is now available in the U.S. and will be rolling out to Tinder members globally, including those in Singapore, in the coming weeks.
Alita Brydon, Dating Expert and founder of Bad Dates of Melbourne, a popular Facebook hub for people to share the good things, and sometimes hilaaaaarious sides, of dating, talks to Tinder about how her perspective on how first dates have changed.
She said, “First dates aren’t as intimidating as you think, they have become much more relaxed, and getting to know your match has become more chill. My top tip is always to focus on getting to know the person – talk to them, give them your full attention and see how you connect. A perfect first date is when you and your match have a good time. That’s it!”
Here are Alita’s top five tips on how to skip to the good part the next time you go on a first date, along with 100% authentic anecdotes (IYKYK) from Singapore Gen Zs.
Tip #1: Stay open-minded about first dates
We’re reframing what a great first date is, and focusing on having a good time. It doesn’t have to be a drink and a movie, it could be a quick coffee, roller skating, or a virtual date with Tinder’s Face-to-Face video call. Sometimes it’s romantic, sometimes it’s flirty, sometimes it’s chill. The win is simply giving it a red hot go!
“I just go with the flow. I see what energy they give me, and I will return the same vibe.” - Jing Wen, 23.
Tip #2: Don’t forget to have fun!
Take the focus off ‘perfect,’ and remember that a great first date is when you and your match both have a fantastic time. One of my favourite stories is of a man whose first date showed him how she could fit her fist in her mouth. While this party trick is not for everyone, it impressed him and they ended up getting married.
“I tell stupid jokes all the time. If she can’t laugh, she’ll find me annoying. I don’t want to have a rehearsed character, because it’s going to fade.” - Shern, 23.
Tip #3: Always be yourself
Taking the plunge to go on that Tinder date can make you feel a little vulnerable, first date jitters are real! But remember it’s impossible to connect when you’re not yourself so leave that dating ‘strategy’ at the door, take a deep breath and be yourself – the right person will want you for who you are.
“I’ve been told by a lot of my friends that I’m quite nonsensical and that I show that sense of humour in the way I carry myself. But I think that sometimes, the best thing that you can do is just be yourself. You shouldn’t try too hard because you might end up coming across a bit disingenuous.” - Delilah, 22.
Tip #4: Treat your date with dignity
This will always be the most important part of any first date. It’s an easy one to get right and makes the world a better place.
“What I look for in a person on the first date is.. How will I connect with that person? Do you have manners? Are you respectful? It’s important that we align on both a mental and emotional level as well.” - Sithein, 22.
Tip #5: Give your date your fullest attention
Make sure you listen and ask your date questions about their life and experiences. It’s easy to talk about yourself on a date, but paying attention and making eye contact show that you’re genuinely interested in the conversation. So put your phone away, and show up - especially if you want a second date!
“Focus on just seeing them as a person and having a good time.” - Shern, 23.