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The Her Campus Guide To Dating This Semester

The beginning of a new semester is arguably the busiest time of the year. From getting settled in your dorm to syllabus week and studying, it’s hard to figure out when you’ll be able to carve out a few minutes to focus on your social - and dating - life. And on top of it all, there’s a global pandemic in the mix. (Remember when your biggest fear was getting mono from someone at a party?) Whether you’re on campus or at home, this semester is an opportunity to meet new people, near and far (wherever you are), virtually. So, sit back, download Bumble, and keep reading for our ultimate guide to dating this semester. 

Curate a Bumble profile that you’re proud of

Don’t rush through filling out your information. It can feel awkward at first trying to choose photos and decide what to say about yourself, but just know that everyone else is doing it too! Just like Rome wasn’t built in a day, a successful dating profile takes time. (I mean spend at least 5 minutes on it, ok?!) Keep your bio short and punchy to quickly capture potential matches’ attention. Use that sassy, witty, punny bio you’ve been writing in your head for all of quarantine. Take mine for example: “CEO of eating a whole box of cheez-its in one sitting.” Just me? Ok. Don’t forget to add badges to your profile too. Give matches a glimpse into your astrology sign, political passion, and even pet preferences. 

Get real with your profile pictures

Make an authentic first impression by choosing high-quality pictures that show off your sparkling eyes and smile. Move over filters, it’s 2020 and we don’t have time for partners who don’t love our natural beauty! Pro tip: avoid group photos. You’re looking for someone for you, not someone who would want to date your whole friend group. (Psst. The experts at Bumble say using three or more pictures on your profile increases matching by 30%!)

Check for a photo verification badge

As with any online activity, catfish are out there. Fortunately for us, Bumble has a photo verification feature to ensure the person you’re talking to is who they say they are. If one of your matches isn’t verified, you can request they do so directly in the app. Bumble’s global photo moderators (real-life humans!) will then verify if the user is who they claim to be. Better safe than sorry.

Make the first move

This is quite possibly the most exciting moment of them all: You matched with a cutie, and now it's time to get the conversation started. Whether you’re crafting your first move (because women make the first move on Bumble) solo or with your roommates, this could be the moment you speak of at your wedding and for years to come. (Sorry, I’m always getting ahead of myself.) If you can’t think of something to say, don’t stress! Bumble has over 20 conversation starters you can choose from or edit to add a personal touch. Want to step up your game even further? You can opt to make your first move with Bumble’s ‘Question Game’ feature to learn about your potential match right from the get-go. And now...we wait for a response.

Keep it within the app until you're sure

So you and your match have been messaging back and forth for a few days - how exciting!  Your safety is a priority, so feel empowered to keep your communication in the app and give yourself time to figure out if you’re really feeling a connection before you share your number. What’s next, you ask? The first date. (Drum roll, pleaseee!) 

Schedule a first date

Since the conversation is already rolling, either you or your match can initiate a video or voice call - all with Bumble’s in-app features (so no exchanging real information until you are ready). Getting ready is easy! Keep your workout leggings on, brush your hair, throw on some light makeup (or not) and a clean top, and you’re ready.  Getting ready for a ~virtual~ date is so easy, it might make you want to quit IRL dating altogether. Virtual dates are a great way to confirm if there is chemistry (and even ask if they’ve been social distancing). Who knows, you could end up chatting for over an hour (or three!). 

Get creative for dates

Don’t let a great match go stale - lean into virtual dating and have fun with it! From hosting a virtual happy hour or a movie marathon to ordering in similar takeout, this new normal could lead to your most important relationship yet. Get inspired by these virtual date ideas here (we especially love the TikTok dance-off idea). 

Don't get discouraged, try the distance

If you don’t find ‘the one’ right away, don’t give up. Virtual dating takes time and patience just like IRL dating. Play with the Bumble filters to find people who have similar interests or the same Bumble badges as you. Or even extend your distance setting to be nationwide - there is no better time to try long-distance than while you’re practicing social-distancing, anyways! 

Be kind to yourself

These are words to live by. Dating safely isn’t just about physical health, it’s about mental health too. If at any point you feel overwhelmed, stressed, or simply distracted by your virtual dating, Bumble has a feature that lets you “snooze” date mode on the app and take some time for yourself. The team behind Bumble cares about its users, empowering them to take a dating detox when you need one. Confidence and joy radiate from the inside out, and we want to make sure you’re heading into your Bumble journey on the best note possible!

Starting a new school year can be scary, but dating doesn’t have to be. So make the first move, and download Bumble!

This is a sponsored feature. All opinions are 100% from Her Campus.

Madeleine managed the Her Campus national branded content team. She graduated from Fordham University in 2015, where she studied communications and marketing. Before joining HC, Madeleine most recently was the branded content editor for Delish.com and HouseBeautiful.com. She currently lives in New York City with her boyfriend and their cat, Beignet.
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