Gen Z, Millennials Move Away from Dating Apps, Report Finds


WASHINGTON, D.C. — Younger generations are increasingly leaving dating apps behind in favor of live events, according to a new report.

The event management site Eventbrite found a significant rise in speed dating and singles events over the past year, with over 1.5 million searches for such events on the platform.

The report, which analyzed event data from a one-year period, revealed a 42% increase in attendance at singles and dating events from 2022 to 2023. Eventbrite's CEO and co-founder Julia Hartz commented on the trend, stating, "Singles have voiced their frustrations with online dating, and we’ve heard them loud and clear: they want more in-person opportunities to connect and bond over mutual passions, be it paddle board yoga, kombucha brewing, backyard beekeeping, or freehand glassblowing."

From URL to IRL: What’s Driving the Transition:

Younger generations face many challenges with online dating, such as finding someone who shares their interests—45% of Gen Z and 35% of Millennials consider this one of their biggest dating obstacles. Safety is also a top concern; 47% of those who favor in-person dating believe it reduces the risk of someone hiding their true identity. Many modern daters also crave deeper connections beyond surface-level interactions, which is why the majority of Millennials (69%) prefer in-person dating because it feels more genuine, the report states. 

Embracing Shared Experiences for Authentic Connections:

Eventbrite’s research found that Gen Z and Millennials are exploring new ways to connect, moving away from traditional hangouts like bars and parties to activities like social clubs and hobby-based events. They now see third places like coffee shops, bookstores, and libraries as ideal spots to meet potential partners. Many also want to share interests such as cooking, popular with 46% of Gen Z and 41% of Millennials, and niche hobbies like thrifting clothes and collecting. Plus, about a third (33%) think they’ll meet someone special at activities like dance classes or painting workshops.

Redefining First Dates: Putting Fun First:

When it comes to planning a first date, 82% of Gen Z and Millennials want to do something they both enjoy. Budget-wise, 62% of Gen Z aim to keep it under $50, though spending habits vary by gender. Traditional gender roles still influence planning, with 63% of men enjoying taking the lead, while 74% of women like being surprised. As dating norms change, so do activities; 42% of singles want to step out of their comfort zones. Notably, 70% of men, 74% of women, and 72% of active daters—consider a first date successful if they have fun. Moreover, 32% of men and 29% of women believe a unique experience is crucial, often seeing it as a potential stepping stone to other future dates. 

The shift in the dating scene comes as many young daters experience "swipe fatigue" from popular dating apps, according to the report.

Click here to view the report. 

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