It’s been a year full of making up for lost time, re-evaluating our priorities and embracing ourselves. But now, as we peer just around the corner to the year ahead, let’s predict what’s to come on the dating scene.
Quality not quantity:
In the age of online dating, ‘swiping right’ has become a household term. Particularly, 337 million of us worldwide are familiar with a dating app swipe. However, rapid-fire swiping may become a thing of the past and instead we are looking towards high quality matches, rather than high quantity. Having a ‘type’ is going out the window, with 38% of people more open to dating someone who is not their physical type and instead, 68% of people prioritising emotionally maturity over appearance. Taking a more deliberate and intentional approach to dating is the rise that we expect to see in the coming year, otherwise known as ‘slow dating’. Through this, we will break out of the ‘he’s not my type’ box and open our horizons to new experiences with people we may have never previously considered.
While monogamy is still considered the most desirable and fulfilling relationship structure, there has been a consistent decrease in its prevalence over time (Roseneil et al., 2020). Meanwhile, the acceptance of polyamory has been steadily increasing, from 5% in 2006 to 25% now in Americans (Gallup). We are becoming more comfortable with, and open-minded to, non-traditional relationship set-ups and we predict that polyamory will continue to increase in 2024. It’s the year of freeing ourselves from ‘traditional’ monogamous relationships and rejecting the pressure of timelines and milestones. Instead, pursuing the most fulfilling and meaningful connections, however that might look for each of us.
The Cost of Loving Crisis:
With the current economic crisis being a common topic of conversation, there’s no surprise that this is playing a role in how often we are going dates and which date spots we are choosing. With little sign of things slowing down, we predict the increase of more relaxed low-cost dates, such as a walk or home-cooked dinners, which are certainly easier on the bank account than the usual up-market restaurant. Going hand in hand with this is the growing interest and awareness into our environmental impact, creating a rise in ‘sustainable dating’. Local farmer’s market dates, hiking, visiting art galleries and boycotting the big chains for somewhere low-key instead.
I’m sure we’ve all heard the term Artificial Intelligence (AI) flying around a lot this year, although for the most part we likely don’t quite understand what it is or how it works. So what impact does AI have on dating? AI in the online dating industry has been rapidly increasing, often playing a role without us even knowing. From message prompts to profile suggestions and even advising which photographs might gain you the most traction on your profile. But moving forward, AI could remove swiping all together. Through analysing vast quantities of users’ data and algorithms, we think your thumbs may be out of action in the new year. Instead, dating apps will understand your tastes and preferences, and do all the hard work for you.
Back To (Virtual) Reality
While we have (hopefully) left the difficulties of dating in lockdown behind us, virtual dating may be coming back in fashion. We now look towards Virtual Reality (VR) dates. As VR is ever improving, the use of such technology to go on the most immersive and adventurous, yet interactive, dates become increasingly likely. No longer will we be going to our local restaurant or bar, but instead we could be exploring the Amazon Rainforest or discovering the pretty streets of Rome all while being hundreds if not thousands of miles apart from one another. Forming connections with people you wouldn’t otherwise meet and long-distance relationships might become easier than ever!
While the dating landscape can evolve in unexpected ways, we look forward to welcoming the 2024 dating world with open arms. If you are feeling overwhelmed by the thought of dating and need support on how to approach it, get in touch and learn how we can provide tailored advice and guidance to help you navigate dating with confidence.