If you’re looking to avoid your aunt’s prying questions into your relationship status this year, this report is for you, according to the Apartment List, which publishes an annual “Best Cities for Dating” guide.
“It’s no secret that the pandemic and state lockdowns have made dating a challenge this year,” says Apartment List spokesperson Olyvia Ruhlmann. “Dating is hard enough — but throw in a pandemic, where close proximity and physical affection with pseudo-strangers is severely frowned upon, and you’re dealing with a whole new ball game.
“At this point, we think singles everywhere deserve a medal or, at the very least, a participation trophy for dealing with the beast that is pandemic dating,” she says.
But not all hope is lost, according to researchers at the Apartment List, who report that despite the pandemic’s shortened or no daily commutes and newest fashion trends in masks, singles are still making the most of the dating scene in several cities.
For individuals with social anxiety disorder (SAD), the pandemic actually helps to level the playing field by extending digital interactions before the more challenging face-to-face meetings.
Experts recommend that you discuss social distancing and other COVID-related expectations up front.
If you feel comfortable meeting in a park or open area, but not a restaurant, say so upfront.
The pandemic has brought elevated everyone’s level of anxiety, according to mental health experts who say for those particularly anxious individuals it’s perfectly acceptable to postpone face-to-face meetings entirely.
The top 10 cities for pandemic dating include:
Virginia Beach, Virginia
Las Vegas, Nevada
San Antonio, Texas
San Diego, California
Here’s how major U.S. cities rank in the Apartment List’s top cities for dating 2020 annual report.