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Digital Love

Digital Love

We met online is the new ‘We were introduced by friends’. Give it a chance this year.

Maureen Kasuku

It’s that time of year again!  The day that inspires a wide range of emotions: Valentine’s Day. For those in a happy relationship, it’s a day to show appreciation to the one you love. For singles, well, it can be a painful, chocolate-and-flower-ridden reminder of single life.

Finding love in Nairobi is like an extreme sport. This concrete jungle will show you things! ‘Traditional dating’ of boy meets girl, picnic and a happily-ever-after story isn’t working out for everyone.

So if you find yourself without a soulmate this Valentine’s Day and that doesn’t feel right, it might be time to start looking for love more pro-actively through online dating. Love in the Digital age.

We know there’s stigma attached to online dating in Kenya still. There’s even more judgment based on the type of dating site or app you’re using. But don’t fret. Online dating is the new ‘normal’. We’re just a few years behind places like the US, where online dating used to also carry stigma but where today 66% of singles use dating apps to expand their dating pools and 22% of adults actually meet and marry through online dating apps!

We break it down for you to make it simpler to find that perfect match.

KenyaCupid.com

Wildly popular. It’s free to sign up and they offer options to widen your dating pool if you pay for it. Cons: They have no matching algorithm. It’s a lot of work to find ‘the one’.  Creeps on there make it feel like an escort site.

HIV Dating Kenya

HIV Dating Kenya is an online dating community that helps singles living with HIV to find the ideal partner.  Free to sign up. Upgrade options available. It has strong privacy features.

 

Tinder

Ah, Tinder. When you get so many matches a day you have no choice but to filter by superficial things that normally wouldn’t have bothered you. Like android vs apple. That said, it’s by far the most popular dating app out here. Swipe right if you like them. Swipe left if it’s a no. Simple.  Signing up is free. They have upgrade options you can pay for. Con: most people use this as a hook-up app so, although it’s not unheard of, most people aren’t here looking for a long-term partner.

OKCupid

OkCupid has a huge dating pool, and uses a whole bunch of algorithms to find your perfect match. It has a more mature crowd than Tinder and almost everyone on there is in it for the long run and not just random hookups. Upgrading is costly but offers you so much more.

 

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It’s not an addiction, it’s a way of life. . #coffee #coffeelover #okcupid

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e-Harmony

e-Harmony has a 7-day free trial period which is barely enough time to find your soul mate. The paid option is quite pricey. e-Harmony is for people who really want to settle down.  DO. NOT. SIGN. UP. IF. YOU’RE. NOT. READY. TO. GET. MARRIED. NEXT. WEEK. Thanks, Management.

 

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Love doesn’t just fall into your lap. Unless you use our app, then it kind of does. #eharmonyworks #eharmony #MondayMotivation

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Match.com

A good mix of OkCupid and e-Harmony. Just the right balance. With a seriously impressive user base and tons of ways to connect, Match offers a fun-yet-serious alternative to sites that are too intense and marriage-focused. Free signup, upgrades available.

Hater.com

If you want to try something different, you might enjoy the irony of Hater.com that matches you with people who hate/dislike the same things. Probably not a good idea to start a relationship based on a mutual dislike, but who are we to judge? Free sign up. Wouldn’t recommend upgrading.

 

 

ONLINE DATING HACKS

  • Pictures: Don’t use pictures from when you were young and thin- you will eventually have to meet someone in person. Avoid group pics, SnapChat filters are not cool & the goal is not to see each other’s genitalia before you even meet.
  • Bio: Try not to sound like you have a personality that is shallow than water in a teaspoon. Don’t toot your own horn. Be authentic. Wit is a plus.
  • Safety: Trust your instincts- if someone seems shady, they probably are. There are literally thousands of potential dates online- wait for the next one. Meet somewhere public on your first date but avoid the sketchy neighbourhoods.
  • Relax: It’s not The Hunger Games. It’s never that deep!

 

 

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