6. How to Land a Tinder Date
Success! You’ve matched with that hottie with cute photos and a witty bio, and now you’re in the enviable position of being able to talk to them directly. Don’t rest on your laurels just because you know they’ve swiped right on you, though, as you can make or break the match depending on your approach. A lazy or creepy opener might even mean that they unmatch you, blocking you from any further contact.
Not every person is on Tinder looking for casual sex, but even those who are keen on a no-strings hookup are unlikely to be swept off their feet by a rude and juvenile approach
Your opening line is crucial. Your matches are likely to have dozens of other potential prospects in their Tinder messages section, most of whom will be approaching with a tired, “Hey,” or, “How are you?” There’s no need to overcook it by opening the conversation with a sonnet, but it will work in your favor if you approach in a friendly, novel and interested way. Try asking an unusual question, like “If you won a million dollars today, what’s the first thing you’d do?” or compliment a particular detail in one of their photos (“That’s a really cute French bulldog! Is it yours?”)
A disappointing number of male Tinder users think it’s appropriate to start a conversation with lewd innuendo and overtly sexual “compliments” right off the bat.
Guys, please: Don’t start a conversation like this. Make your approach flirty and friendly, and definitely avoid the negging strategy advocated by so-called pickup artists: Backhanded compliments are not going to endear you to anyone at the best of times, but they might be even worse on Tinder or other dating apps, where you can easily be unmatched with a couple of finger taps. Be positive, complimentary and charismatic instead.
Another thing to bear in mind when talking to your Tinder matches is that defensive, passive aggressive opening lines are fairly common, but rarely ever work: “Quite a lot of selfies you’ve got there,” for example, or “I guess I’ll get the ball rolling because women never start talking first.”
Don’t dump your frustrations onto your poor, unsuspecting Tinder match! Instead, spend a minute or two crafting something friendly and subtly flirty (or check out these Tinder conversation starters for ideas), and finish with a question to keep the banter flowing. Being kind and showing enough genuine interest to keep the conversation rolling is a winning strategy and should help to convert your matches into IRL dates.
Hopefully your opening line (or theirs!) has progressed into a natural, lively conversation, and you’re now both interested enough in each other to go on a first date. It can be a useful first step to exchange phone numbers so that you can text or chat over the phone, because Tinder’s messaging system can make for slow-moving and disjointed conversation. Apart from that, Tinder dates work like any other: Think of something pleasant to do, and show up on the agreed time and date, looking sharp and ready to have a great time.
When to Ask Them Out
There’s wiggle room here, and every user will have a different idea of the ideal time to progress from Tinder conversation to an IRL date. However, it’s not out-of-place to ask for a date within a day or two of chatting, or even an hour or two if things are going brilliantly. If you’re really hitting it off and you’ve had a great conversation, it’s fine to say something like, “You seem really cool! Would you like to grab a drink sometime?”