With virtual dating up by 36% during lockdown, it’s no surprise that single people are becoming more and more adept at spotting romantic potential via video call.
Digital daters can tell if there’s a spark after just 30 seconds, according to a new poll, which may be bad news if you’re somebody who people take a while to warm to.
People are embracing the “new dating normal” too, with six in ten people saying they’re enjoying chatting with people over video, according to research from Virgin Media.
One in four will continue to keep up virtual dating even after lockdown fully ends, to screen out non-starters in the search for romance.
It’s not just that initial connection that has been intensified by the coronavirus lockdown, either.
The average time spent on an online date is 60 minutes, compared to 86 minutes for an in-person date.
It’s cheaper too, as daters will save an average of £18 per date by opting to meet people online – and if you factor in travel, it probably equates to quite a lot more.
Watch: The UK’s sexiest accents revealed
If you are somebody who takes a while to warm up in social situations, relationship expert, Alix Fox, has some tips to boost your confidence when online dating.
“While it can be hard to get yourself ready for a date in the same place that you’ve been working from home all day, showing your real-life surroundings on a video call gives a more genuine, authentic impression than using a digital background,” Fox explained.
Being punctual and present is also vitally important for first impressions. “It’s important to respect your date’s time and show effort,” she adds.
While many of us are tempted to talk about COVID-19 as our first topic of conversation at the moment, Fox suggests cutting that out.
“While coronavirus is front of mind for many of us, you don’t want it to entirely infect and direct your every conversation,” she said.
The research also found that 55% of people found their relationship blossoming quicker than usual - probably down to the absence of other plans and commitments.
In fact, a third of people are less likely to date numerous people digitally, while 45% are more likely to make their relationship exclusive if they’ve been on a virtual date.
Additional reporting by SWNS.