What do the key trends in 2020 tell us about the future of dating?

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  • We may be post-ghosting, but now there's a whole new set of dating trends to navigate. From 'being Kanye'd' and zoning in on the zodiac, to 'yellow carding' dates by calling out BS, Olivia Foster reveals how the landscape is shifting

    We all know the stats: there’s currently more single people in the world than ever before. That means more people dating, more people logging on to apps, and more people trying to find love in the 21st century.

    While 2019 bought us dogfishing (using someone else’s pup in your pictures to make you look cute) and orbiting (where an ex lurks around your Insta story views, but never actually talks to you), 2020 has it’s own set of game-changing trends to watch out for. Here’s how the dating landscape is shaping up…

    Being Kanye’d

    They’ve talked about their school, their friends, their art degree and spent 45 minutes reliving that time they went backpacking in Thailand and took mushrooms. But, as you nurse your third glass of wine, you realise they don’t seem to know anything about you. Why? Because you’ve been Kanye’d. According to research by Plenty of Fish, 45 per cent of us have endured a one-sided date – the kind where you could probably write up their CV from memory, but they’re not 100 per cent on your surname. Pay close attention to whether or not they’re truly interested in you, because if they’re only talking about themselves there’s only one question worth asking: ‘Can we get the bill?’

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     Star-lost lovers

    ‘See the thing is, it’s because I’m a Virgo,’ a man once said to me while trying to excuse the fact that he’d cancelled on two of our dates at short notice. Research suggests 58 per cent of millennials believe in astrology – and, yes, that does explain all of the mercury in retrograde memes you’ve seen – but how does this translate in the dating world? Well, with apps like Bumble now allowing you to filter your matches by star sign, it looks like we’re going to have to add, ‘It’s because you’re an Aries,’ to the list of possible rejections you’ll face. 

    Digi-date detoxes

    From Jenga speed-dating (yes, really), to chatting up that person you fancy in the gym, 84 per cent of people still say they’d prefer to meet people IRL than via a dating app. In 2020, we predict more daters will choose to tone down their tech in a bid to experience their own illusive ‘meet cute.’ The main problem? We’re all going to have to learn how to talk to people without our phones…

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    Self-partnering

    We can thank Emma Watson for this one, but 2020 will be the year more women become happy with their single status. Thankfully, we’re already working hard to remove the stigma surrounding those sans partner: research shows that single women without children are now the happiest subsection of society and a new survey by Mintel has revealed that 61 per cent of single women are happy to be flying solo. We can only hope that, over the next year, that number continues to grow.

    Yellow carding

    Have you ever experienced bad-dating etiquette and wish you’d said something? You’re not alone. In fact, 27 per cent of daters claim to have called someone out on their terrible Tinder form and, providing you do it in an adult, responsible way, this is one dating trend we’re absolutely championing in 2020. Because, ultimately, if more people talked about how bad dating habits affected them, we might be able to adopt better ones.

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