Since I moved to London, I’ve really struggled on the dating scene. Why? You would think with a city full of singletons it would be easy to find a date for a Friday night. No, it’s not. Sorry to break this to you but living in London is nothing like Sex and the City. Yes, this isn’t New York but it’s still a big city with lots of single people walking around. The problem with being single today is you can’t get eye contact with the cute guy on the train, or the guy on the tube platform or the guy who walks the same way to work as you because….they’re all glued to their phones.
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Dating apps like Tinder, Bumble, POF, Happn and JigTalk are currently the most popular ways to meet other single Londoners. I’ve used them all and I’ve had zero luck out of any of them. I’ve had a few dates with their help but they give such a false interpretation of the person you are speaking to most of the time.
Recently, these apps have left me with a low self of steam. The older I get the less matches I am getting. This is due to the age limit you set on the apps. I asked a lot of guy friends what their age limit is and quite a lot of them said 30 and under.
Suddenly, at the age of 31 I feel….undateable?
Personally, I 100% prefer meeting someone in person and seeing if there is a “spark” before going on a date. Real life chemistry. I don’t care what your Uber rating is or how tall you are. I want to know if you can make me laugh, if we have anything in common and if we can hold a conversation without any awkward silences. You just can’t get that from an app.
I’ve been making more of an effort lately to get “out of my comfort zone” and go out more to meet new people. More importantly, to get off my phone and detox myself away from those dating apps. I went to a great event called “Vix Dating Fix” hosted by Vix Meldrew, a Sex and Relationships blogger. The event was a great confidence booster so I felt more comfortable meeting new people, we played a few fun ice breaker games and we swapped hilarious dating war stories.
I learn’t two mains lessons about myself from the event. Firstly, I prefer talking to someone new face to face for the first time as I feel less pressure and anxiety than through a dating app. Secondly, I get a more honest perception of the person I’m talking to rather than a glorified bio description and a photo.
There was one daunting question that was hanging over my head…
How do you meet new people on your own?
I don’t go out a lot and I also work a lot which is why I was using the dating apps so religiously in the first place. Pretty much all my friends are married or in long term relationships so I’ve lost my wing women. I’m not exactly just going to go to a bar on my own and hit on guys am I?
Speed Dating didn’t even cross my mind till I saw a blogger friend, SophieRose tweet she was at an event. Speed Dating? That’s so old school! But she loved it and urged me to go. So I did…and I loved it!
The Speed Dating event I attended was hosted by DateinaDash and it was held at The Exhibit in Balham. This was my first event so I was pretty nervous and I was going on my own. I wanted to be comfortable so I wore jeans, a nice top and my Toms. The event says to arrive 15 minutes early but I guess I was too punctual as I was the first girl to arrive so I was sat there for a wise on my own. Awkward.
The girls go into the room first and then the host gives us the breakdown of what happens. There were 14 girls and we all sat at different tables. The standard speed dating set out. Then, HERE COME THE BOYS! They literally get paraded into the room. Just like if Take Me Out was reversed.
I know, I know! There’s one important thing you really want to know…
WHAT WERE THE GUYS LIKE???
There were 14 guys at this event and I had 4 minute dates with all but 1 of them. Why is this? He decided to leave half way through. He sounded very rude so I wasn’t bothered I didn’t meet him. 4 minutes per date was more than enough time.
Most of the guys were pretty nice. They were all polite, introduced themselves and there weren’t any awkward silences which I was mostly expecting. There was an odd ball or two but I knew I only had to get through 4 minutes till it was over and onto the next.
I don’t want to name, names so I’m going to leave that part out but here’s a brief idea of the dates I had:
- Guy 1: Was really nervous too, polite, nice but was super frigidity. He helps get people jobs. Not like a job center and not a recruiter. I could see him eyeing up some of the other girls which was a bit rude but I didn’t really mind because I was super keen on him either.
- Guy 2: I really liked from the get go. He was super cute and he worked in TV. Obviously, if you read my blog you know I’m a super nerd when it comes to television and I also have a degree in TV.
- Guy 3: Super into Art. I don’t think he even asked me what I did and just couldn’t stop talking about Art. Actually, I don’t think he even asked me a question thinking about it.
- Guy 4: The Crane Engineer. What??? Quite a funny conversation after I told him how much I hate cranes ruining my beautiful London skyline. Lovely guy though.
- Guy 5: Was a no within 10 seconds. He looked so bored and he just didn’t want to talk to me. This was one of the only dates which was difficult. He was a chef too. Shame.
- Guy 6: This guys couldn’t sit still. He clearly had ADHD or something. He couldn’t stop talking. He was from Australia and a teacher in training. Really lovely guy.
- Guy 7: This guy was my fav. If that’s ok to say? We just clicked straight away. He had great banter and we laughed the whole date. I was actually gutted the date ended. It went super quickly. Proving not all guys in Finance are boring. Bonus points for being super cute.
- Guy 8: This guy was from Italy and was leaving to go back home in 2 days. What??? Instantly, I was thinking he was only there for one thing. I gave him a chance to explain and he was there to perfect on his English. He was in the army and had an English test the next day. 15 dates = 15 opportunities to practice. Very clever.
- Guy 9: This guy was super sweet. He’s a personal trainer for OLD PEOPLE! His clients are 65-85. Amazing. Such a lovely job. Very nice guy.
- Guy 10: This guy was a serial dater. It was his 5-6th dating event. I had a cheeky glance at his dating sheet and he had ticked yes for every date he had so far, even me and he only just sat down?
- Guy 11: This guy was the Italian guys soldier friend. Same situation.
- Guy 12: Lovely guy but seems a bit tired. We were getting to the end of the event to be fair. He was a landscape gardener. Love creative people. Lovely guy.
- Guy 13: The Accountant. Another lovely guy but don’t really remember much from the date but he was super nice.
So there you have it. 13 dates with 13 guys. Mostly all great dates too apart from a few red herrings.
I’m so glad I went to this event. I had an amazing time and honestly I would totally go to another one. DateinaDash have events all over London and not just Speed Dating events. They have Play Dates where you can play board games, Jenga and even Twister. There are also Pub Crawls, Quiz nights and much more. Something for everyone.
There’s events for different age ranges too which really helps narrow things down better than a dating app. I highly recommend going to event. Just try it. You never know where it will lead or you’ll just have a great night out.