A new poll recently created quite a stir on social media – the number of men under 30 who haven't had sex is so dramatic that a particular segment of the internet is calling for a right to sex. There was a big factor they all seemed to miss, though; the poll wasn't about whether they'd ever had sex. It was in the last year. And the numbers were pretty similar for women.
It highlights something we already know about Gen Z, whose oldest members are 25 — they aren't interested in casual hookups or one-night stands. Instead, they seek a fulfilling relationship that adds value to their lives.
The pandemic changed the dating landscape
The pandemic may have wreaked havoc on the average social life, but it has made people more discerning regarding dating.
Tinder and Hinge are being pushed aside for new dating apps that offer a twist. One focuses on videos only, embracing a TikTok style. There is no need for a detailed profile but an opportunity to insert hashtags, age, and location. The more users use the app, the better the algorithm recommends potential suitors. Another new app offering a twist is based on meme preferences. The app matches people based on the memes they love.
But forget about Snack and Schmooze for a moment because Gen Z has carte blanche regarding fun dating activities. The cost of dating has been steadily rising, with the average first date calculated at $150. That tally includes the cost of new clothing, transportation, and activities.
Companies are dedicated to creating experiences for Gen Z, a great way to get more bang for your buck. You shouldn't need to go into debt to create a connection with someone, so a harbor cruise offers an exciting adventure and plenty of time to chat and get to know each other. Wellness retreats and spa days are relaxing opportunities to unwind and get deep. For the bolder types, go smashing or bouldering.
Core values count
Dating should be fun, but hookup culture altered how people viewed it, and Gen Z is flipping the script. The dramatic dating games and old-school rules have been thrown out, and Gen Z embraces honesty! So, platforms that provide a space for people to be open about their intentions and honest about their feelings will succeed. The time-wasting behavior that Millennials accepted is no longer going to wash for the new demographic.
Gen Z is looking to state their values, discuss their goals, and address them early on in their dating journey to ensure there are no mistakes about who they spend their time with.
While any generation will tell you they are looking for a serious relationship with someone they deeply connect with, Gen Z is willing to wait for that in a way previous generations were not. Their dating success is due to their ability to define what they want clearly. Gen Z'ers want to find someone with similar political beliefs. They're interested in people as passionate as they are about green issues. The current landscape has made people more discerning about who they choose to spend their time with, and dating is no different.
The pickiness could also be down to the cost of dating. Gen Z'ers prefer splitting the bill and want to spend their hard-earned cash on something other than dating a dud. It's far better to get to know someone a bit better before the meetup and to look for someone that ticks all of the boxes before you splash the cash to see them face-to-face. Perhaps that is the draw of a dating show like Love is Blind, which has already been made in the United States, Brazil, and Japan.
There needs to be more data to determine whether G Z'ers will be more into marriage than Millennials, mainly because the youngest members are only ten years old. However, the numbers so far suggest they might not be as concerned with the idea of marriage. Who knows how it will shape as they settle into careers and move onto the next stage? After all, several Gen Z'ers turning up on shows like Love is Blind, keen to settle down and start a family.