How to safely date online during the COVID-19 pandemic

Posted at 11:55 AM, Aug 04, 2020

There's still no telling when we'll return to the old normal here in the United States, but that's not stopping people from dating and trying to meet new people online.

With the pandemic top of mind, most online daters are doing their part to stay safe.

“Video is very strong at assessing appearance, personality. There's no reason to meet up with someone when a simple two or three video chat can disqualify them,” said Geoff Cook, CEO of The Meet Group.

The Meet Group, which owns several social networking apps, expects people to continue to video chat before going on a date in person even after the pandemic. But the company has also noticed a need to help online daters make healthy decisions. So, it created the Safer Dating Advisory Board.

The Meet Group recruited epidemiologists and infectious disease doctors to come up with tips for safer dating. The first thing the health experts suggest is that daters be honest with one another.

“Talk about comfort level, with in-person interactions, with potential dates,” said Dr. Tali Elfassy with the Safer Dating Advisory Board. “Talk about your normal activities in your day to day life. So, let your potential partners know if you work from home, whether you live in a multi-generational household.”

Both people should assess their own risk and whether they feel comfortable with in-person dating.

People should listen to local orders, especially if they live in an area with a high number of cases. The advisory board says people in these areas should stay home.

If daters do choose to go out, they should meet outdoors, wear a mask, and if they are meeting a lot of people, they should get tested and try to reduce the number of people they're meeting.