Love On-the-Go: Dating as a Digital Nomad
Dating as a digital nomad sounds like a romantic movie where two strangers meet by chance on the train or in a dreamy city, fall in love at full speed, and spend the rest of their traveling days together and all jubilantly.
I don’t want to spoil this fantastic but starry-eyed view of digital nomad romance, but I have to say that that’s not really the case. Dating as a digital nomad can be challenging and complicated. This is due to digital nomad life being typically quite impetuous: we’re constantly on the move. At times, it gets harder for our romantic life to keep up with the pace of our lifestyle.
Don’t worry, though. Dating as a digital nomad can be tricky, but it’s no Chinese puzzle. There are some solid ways to meet new people and make it work. The most convenient way to meet someone as a digital nomad in such a fast pace of life is probably through a dating app because when you get together with someone through such apps, it’s obvious that both parties have romantic interests in the meet-up, which saves you some time.
In this article, I’ll talk about how to date as a digital nomad, online dating and its challenges, digital nomad dating apps, and other routes to meeting people.
Off we go!
Challenges of Dating as a Digital Nomad
The very essence of the digital nomad lifestyle includes frequently changing locations, a fast pace of living, and spontaneity. It even includes a dash of individualism—especially if you’re a nomad going solo—because you’re living on your own time and terms, following your own path without almost no dependencies. In connection with this, the biggest and most significant challenge of dating as a digital nomad derives from being constantly on the move, especially if you’re looking for a long-term relationship.
Meeting someone that you’ll take a romantic interest in is as rare as it is, even in the conditions of settled life. In the life of a digital nomad, on the other hand, it’s harder to get into a romantic situation. Let me elaborate on this statement with a hypothetical example: Let’s say you’re in Paris. You’re at a rooftop bar, sipping on your delicious drink and gazing at the beauty of the city. Just then and there, someone approaches you and you start having the deepest and most enjoyable conversation you’ve had in a while. You notice feelings are taking off mutually, and you decide to spend the rest of your days in the city together. However, in most cases, both parties feel obligated to see this romance as just a fling, because they know that one party will leave and the other will stay. In the case where both parties are digital nomads, on the other hand, they probably have different paths to follow, and separate destinations in mind. It’s usually hard for both sides to take the risk and think of such a connection as a permanent one.
Such perception may get in the way of finding the motivation of putting adequate energy into the relationship to make it last. I know it all sounds so depressing but it’s a common truth. It’s not to say this doesn’t have exceptions, of course: many nomads make it work somehow.
The encounter in the hypothetical case I just told you about was one of pure chance. That’s hard to come by when you’re ceaselessly on the move. Hence, most digital nomads use dating apps to meet new people because although the picture I’ve drawn doesn’t seem so refreshing, not dating at all is a much worse option. Digital nomad life can get lonely: away from home and loved ones. Having company—even if it’s temporary—and sharing the experience, makes it much better, as well as keeping you emotionally healthier. So, get out there and start dating!
How To Date as a Digital Nomad
We’ve gone over the challenges of dating as a digital nomad, now let’s move on to the encouragement part and talk about the dating options for single travelers and digital nomads. The first step to maintaining a healthy relationship as a digital nomad is establishing it, and to do that, you obviously need to meet your significant other in the first place.
There are a few ways to meet new people to date as a digital nomad: Some are more coincidental whereas some are more deliberately taken. Find below a couple of routes you can take to date:
Meeting by Chance
This is a more coincidental way for finding someone to date. You can spend time out to try and connect with people at events, bars, and cafes. Going to concerts of your favorite bands, seeing exhibitions and the like may increase your chances to come across people that share similar interests as you. Although it’s a longer shot than the other options you have, it’s worth a try. Moreover, it’s spontaneous and fun, just like the way of the digital nomad.
Using Dating Apps
As I’ve mentioned earlier, this is probably the most convenient way to meet someone you can date. The app exists for the sole purpose of providing those who are in the dating pool with a ground to meet new people and therefore is the best option to find a date, instead of sitting around and waiting for the magic moment to come by itself. Through these dating apps, you can find both a casual relationship and a permanent one. Who knows, maybe your soul mate—with whom you’ll overcome the challenges of dating as a digital nomad—is on the tip of your fingers.
Spending Time in Coworking Spaces
Digital nomads usually prefer to work in coworking spaces, libraries, or office spaces. Spending time at these places that meet the nomad's needs will allow you to meet a fellow nomad and people who share the same mindset, lifestyle, passions, and ideas as you, which will allow you to go on dates, build stronger connections, and possibly long-lasting relationships.
Joining Online Digital Nomad Communities
There are many online digital nomad communities like forums or Facebook groups. You can join these communities to connect with other digital nomads, backpackers, and expats in your current area. Networking through these communities may incidentally bring your soulmate before you.
Couchsurfing or Coliving Spaces
I’m guessing there are very few travelers who haven’t used or at least heard of Couchsurfing. Although it’s not a dating app, Couchsurfing allows you to meet like-minded hosts and fellow travelers, which can be an organic way to meet your significant other. Even if that option fails, there is always a chance for you to build life-long friendships through Couchsurfing.
Co-living spaces, on the other hand, are places designed to fulfill the needs of frequent travelers such as backpackers or digital nomads. These places, like coworking spaces and Couchsurfing, enable digital nomads to get together with congenial people who share the same pursuits.
Maintaining the Relationship
Now that you’ve found your partner, it’s time to tear down the challenges of dating as a digital nomad. You’re luckier if your significant other is a digital nomad as well. Even if you’ve planned to go to separate destinations, you can meet halfway or make new plans together. If your partner is a settler, on the other hand, the bargain is a little harder. However, you can still make international vacation plans that are suitable for both parties.
Tips for Digital Nomad Couples That Got Together On-the-Go
In this part of the article, as someone who’s had the experience, I’d like to give a few tips to those digital nomads who merge their travels together upon becoming partners.
1. Make Plans Together
Having room for spontaneity is great when you’re a solo digital nomad. However, when you’re traveling with a partner, especially one you’ve just started getting to know, it’s always in your best interest to plan ahead; and do it together.
2. Don’t Get Freaked Out Easily
Traveling with someone and hence spending heaps of time together may be overwhelming at times. You’ll be learning about each other’s deepest and darkest personality traits in very little time compared to other modes of relationship. You should try to remain calm during such a process and enjoy getting to know your partner and your travels together.
3. Leave Space for Each Other
Since you’ll be spending a lot of time together as you travel, you need to give each other space to relax from time to time, to prevent the relationship from becoming smothering.
4. Have an Exit Plan in Store
This tip may sound a bit selfish at first glance, but I assure you, it’s not. Traveling with a partner you met along the way is an excellent experience, that’s for sure. However, you should have an exit strategy if things go awry. After all, you’ve just met them: if you’re seeing red flags, you should act before things get crazy.
The Five Best Dating Apps for Digital Nomads
Over 30,000 digital nomads use the dating app Fairytrail to find partners to enjoy upcoming adventures together. The app connects travelers according to matching destinations. After getting connected, you can chat and set up video calls with each other.
Miss Travel has more than 680,000 travelers registered to share their trips. When you share your route on Miss Travel, other active users can request to join you on your journey, and you may end up finding the perfect travel companion.
Designed particularly for digital nomads, remote workers, and global citizens, Nomad Soulmates is one of the best digital nomad dating sites. It also has an active Facebook community that allows you to connect with nomads nearby.
Nomad List is a website that allows you to learn about the WiFi connection quality, living costs, and standards of many destinations around the globe. In addition to providing such comprehensive information, Nomad List creates ground for you to meet other nomads in your current location.
One of the best apps to look for for your nomad soulmate is TourBar, where you can easily connect with people who share the same lifestyle and passions as you have. TourBar is also one of the safest dating apps because of its verified user process.
Other than the dating apps that are specifically designed for digital nomads and travelers to meet each other and partner up, there are also regular dating apps that everyone uses, from which digital nomads can benefit as well. The most popular and helpful of these apps are as follows:
Digital Nomad Dating: The Wrap-Up
Although it has many perks like constant exploration and excitement, becoming a global citizen, learning new things every day, and enjoying the world to the fullest, it’s a crystal-clear fact that digital nomad life can get lonely sometimes. It’s also true that dating as a digital nomad is not a walk in the park. It’s challenging, demanding, and at times overwhelming. However, if you find a balance by following my tips and talking everything through with your partner, traveling the world with your significant other and sharing all the great experiences is a matchless joy.
Therefore, my dear fellow single nomads, get out there and start dating by downloading one of the nomad dating apps or going to a coworking space to spend your workday, whatever suits your mood!