How the pandemic has affected students’ dating experiences

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Dating is no simple task — especially during a pandemic. “It’s been really hard,” said Brigham Young University student Emily Walker.

But, many people have been turning to FaceTime calls, social-distanced dates and dating apps. “I feel like dating apps are probably the best way to meet people during a pandemic,” Walker said.

Since the pandemic started, the number of users on dating apps has increased. Two of those new users were Toby Driggs and Juliana Thurgood.

“I don’t know how we would’ve met otherwise,” Thurgood said.

While the world was on lockdown, the couple matched on Mutual — the popular dating app for Latter-day Saints — and their relationship only progressed from there.

“The first time we talked on the phone we ended up talking for, like, five hours,” Driggs said.

They’re now engaged.

Now, swiping on a dating app may not be for everyone, but there may still be ways to potentially meet others from your phone.

A few weeks ago, a mysterious instagram page called “Matchmaker BYU” sparked some attention. “I think it’s really intriguing,” Walker said.

The idea is that students take a survey with 70 questions — ranging from religious and political views to family traditions to personality types — and an algorithm then uses the responses to “match” people according to their answers.

Sam and Emme are two of the five individuals behind Matchmaker BYU. They wanted to keep their last names private to enhance the mystery and magic of the survey. 

“It’s just part of the game at this point,” Emme said.

They’ve had more than 4,000 respondents and are planning to release the matches this Friday, November 13.

“We’re really looking forward to see all the feedback,” Sam said. More information about the survey can be found on their instagram page @matchmakerbyu.

No matter how you choose to date during the coronavirus, you can still do so creatively while staying safe.

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