#bumble | #tinder | #pof People trying dating services during pandemic, advised to ‘take it slow’

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry isn’t the only one urging singles to keep things slow as the province looks to loosen some COVID-19 restrictions.

A Vancouver-based matchmaker says going back to basics may be a good thing.

“If you meet someone, try it on,” says Jill Carter, with Modern Pursuit Matchmaking.

After two months of physical distancing restrictions and staying at home, she’s noticed more people have been ringing her phone in recent weeks.

“I mean, I have one client say, ‘You know, Jill, like I’m just so bored and I’m going crazy here.’”

B.C.’s top doctor gave the O.K. for in-person dating Tuesday.

“So, pick somebody, see if it works, and take your time. If you’re going to be pulling them into your small circle, then make sure you’re the only one in their circle, as well,” Henry said when asked for advice to those who are considering dating, and whether the virus can be spread through kissing.

“This is a respiratory virus that spreads through droplets, so, yes, we’ve seen it with other diseases that can be spread this way. So, yes, I would expect that if somebody was sick with it and they were kissing somebody else, they could actually, quite effectively pass it on that way,” she added.

“But if you are going to start a relationship with somebody, now is not the time to do rapid serial dating.”

Carter agrees.

“Don’t skip from partner to partner and just connect with that person and see where it goes.”

Carter says going for a walk outside instead of a restaurant for a date is refreshing, and allows people to connect better.

Meanwhile, interest in dating has increased this month, according to the latest data from the dating app Bumble.

In Canada, Bumble saw a 71-per-cent increase in video calls during the week ending May 1 compared to that end March 13.

“This only further validates that when physical connection is limited, humans will seek out other means to interact and engage, and video calling is meeting that demand,” Megan Leahy, with Bumble, says in an email.

The average video or phone call time for the week in May was 33 minutes.

Globally, Bumble saw a 16-per-cent increase in messages sent during that week in May, again compared to March, with video calls up 38 per cent.

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