I’ve been traveling over the past six months, and being the talker that I am, I’m almost never alone. At hostels, I’m constantly meeting people and enjoying the company of others. That said, every once in a while, when I’m new to a place or staying with a friend who’s at work all day, I’ve turned to a dating app.
Through this process, I’ve discovered a lot of differences from country to country, had great memories, and met wonderful people. I’ve also messaged others who can hold a conversation as well as my friend held her liquor last night, (I held her hair back, don’t worry) and was given unsolicited dick pics.
When I was in Vietnam, I felt like matching with most of the options I was given could be considered borderline pedophilea. So many young boys on their gap year, or living it up for the holidays. I wasn’t mad at it, I always like a good baby face. It also makes sense they’re there considering SE Asia is dirt cheap and many of them probably knew student loans were right around the corner.
In Japan, the men on the app were older. And by older I mean closer to my age, and more established. Generally speaking, I had more of an interest in meeting up with them even if they didn’t have a baby face.
Regardless of what the guys are like or where you are, you have to be willing to put in the effort even with the knowledge that you may never meet up. Sometimes they leave the country before getting together or plans change and life takes you in a different direction. Other times you want to meet them because you like their face but realize what’s behind the face is as basic as my old neighbor who drinks Starbucks pumpkin spice lattes in the fall, and wears Uggs in the winter, even while living in California. Also, it could very well be that they’re just on the app for validation or entertainment.
What to expect is that the array of people and your amount of matches changes based on location. The experiences you have, great or not as great, will probably be better and more memorable than sitting alone in your hotel room refreshing your Facebook newsfeed for the 1,000th time. The downside is weeding through the people who’s messages are as stimulating as watching paint dry, and the occasional unsolicited dick pic.
I’ve connected with all types of life. I met up with people from Pakistan and Israel, to Scandinavia, the UK, Canada, and different parts of the US. Wow, sounding like a serial dater over here. I like to look at it as a serial adventurer and opportunist.
Do I think by doing this I’ll find me a man who will put a ring on it? No, although I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have my eye out for dual citizenship. I’m doing it because I love connecting with people, and to be frank, I almost always have a great time.
This is just my experience with a dating app that I was using, but maybe you’d find different results through your personal experience. If you’ve ever thought about giving it a go, I’d encourage you to do so. Listen to your gut, keep your wits about you, and go make some great memories and connections.