Our lives have moved online and the internet has changed the way we do a lot of things, forever. Including the way we make friends, meet people, and date.

A few years ago if you told someone you’d signed up for an online dating service eyebrows would have hit the roof, people would have coughed, blushed, and not known where to look. Today we all know at least one or two married couples who met on Tinder or Ok Cupid. Times have changed, and so have we.

So, if you don’t fancy facing the upcoming festive season alone, take a look at our article on the best online dating apps (and some pointers on how to use them).


Easily the most popular dating app on phones in South Africa – it’s no secret that Tinder is so popular that there are even drinking games built around the app. That said, I know two married couples who met on Tinder, so it’s not all just hook-ups.


This one lets the ladies have all the power. The girls get to make the first move, and they’ve only got 24 hours from matching to do it – which puts the pressure on to do something. This might sound crazy but the concept is to avoid having matches sitting on your list who you never end up sending a message to.


Zoosk has superpowers because it integrates with Facebook and Google+ to help you find people who share similar interests to yours. So you don’t have to fill in long questionnaires about yourself, because the app uses machine learning to craete your profile and find you matches. Pretty sweet.

OK Cupid

This one is a tad more complex than the others, but it’s all in the name of giving users weighted suggestions for matches. Ok Cupid takes a lot of the guesswork out of online dating for you by letting users answer personal questions and rate how important these topics are to them. The app then matches you up with others who share your views and opinions.

Coffee Meets Bagel

This one is new to us here in South Africa, but its got such a great interface that it has to be mentioned. It works kind of like OK Cupid in that you need to answer questions about yourself. This is a good one to try out if you’re looking for something a little less terrifying than Tinder. As the name suggests, you can expect to meet people who will meet you for a coffee and take it from there, rather than anything too intense.

Pointers for Newbies

If this is your first time using a dating app (or if you haven’t had much luck before) make sure you take note of the following pointers:

  • Include at least one recent, clear, portrait photo of you and only you. You can’t have every photo be a group photo.
  • Don’t include a photo of yourself pulling a middle finger. We are not sure where this trend started but, guys, it doesn’t work.
  • Include at least 3 interesting facts about yourself in your bio, which are not too generic. Note: enjoying hiking, wine and Netflix are not interesting facts.
  • State your intentions. You don’t have to announce that you are trying to get married – but if you are only looking for a hook-up, or for something more serious, find a non-threatening way of saying that upfront.
  • If you match – say hello. It’s weird and unnerving to have a whole bunch of matched profiles that you don’t chat to. Girls, you don’t need to be shy here, either. This is the digital age, after all. Go ahead and say “Hello”.

When you do start chatting:

  • Have a sense of humour
  • Show some confidence, but without being arrogant
  • Ask open-ended questions
  • Be you – being authentic is important if you want to meet someone who you will genuinly get along with

No idea what to say? Why not try one of these super-cute opening lines?

  • Titanic. That’s my icebreaker. What’s up?
  • Hey so let’s just skip to the important stuff. What’s your favourite Spice Girls song?
  • Do you have an ugly boyfriend? No? Want one?
  • Hawaiian or pepperoni?
  • Are you my appendix? Because I don’t know anything about you but this feeling in my gut is telling me that I should take you out
  • (if she / he is wearing a hat) Hey, I like the way you wear your hat. It makes you look like you’re plotting something. Want to help me kidnap three puppies?
  • If we were to go out for dinner, where would we go?
  • Do you read Dr. Seuss? Cause green eggs and DAMNNN GIRL.
  • Hey, what have you been up to today? I just saved a baby duck from drowning.
  • Hey. So when our friends ask us how we met, what are we going to tell them?
  • On a scale from 1 to 10, you’re a 9 and I’m the 1 you need.
  • You’ve just won a free trip to anywhere in the world! (Not from me, it’s coming in the mail.) The catch is you have to leave tomorrow. Where are you headed?
  • I woke up thinking today was just another boring Monday (or whichever day of the week), and then I saw your photo on my app.
  • Soon there will be married couples whose how-we-met story is “we both swiped right, and then he asked me to marry him.” I’m not gonna ask, but it’s tempting.
  • On a scale of 1 to “Hey you in the bushes!” how creepy have your interactions on Tinder been so far?
  • Dark chocolate, turtle cheesecake, or Cherry Garcia? If you had to choose…
  • Hey, how’s your day so far? I just got a haircut without running it by my mom. I feel like such a badass.
  • What’s a smart, attractive man/woman like myself doing without your number?
  • (knife and fork emoji x 4) I’ve got all these forks and knives all I need is a little spoon.
  • I was trying to come up with a good pick-up line but then I realized they’re lame so all I have to give you is a hello and this shrug. Hello. (insert shrug emoji)
  • I ate an entire box of mini tacos last night and I wasn’t even high.
  • If two vegetarians have a fight, is it still called a beef?
  • Two truths and a lie: ready, set, go!
  • Could you date someone who orders a plain bagel with plain cream cheese when they have other options?
  • I can feel you staring at my profile from here.
  • Katy Perry or Taylor Swift?
  • Your Sunday breakfast personality is __? A) Waffles & pancakes, slowly savored. B) Apple & granola bar on the run. C) Aggressive mimosas. D) Sleeping til lunch.
  • My friends would be jealous if you went out with me.
  • Has anyone ever told you that you look like [fill in name of obscure actor/actress].
  • Hope you like cheesy pickup lines, because if you were a fruit you’d be a fineapple.
  • Your natural beauty radiates from my phone. I just got an instant tan from your glow. BRB applying aloe vera.
  • Hey, how was your weekend?
  • I would totally let you take me to brunch tomorrow.

(Thanks Zoosk for the opening line inspiration)



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