How does Speed Dating and Speed Friending work virtually?
Can you do speed dating and speed friending virtually?
We know that things have been tough during the lockdown but thankfully, there is still speed friending and speed dating online for those who want to make new friends and for those who are looking to meet someone special! I have tried both during the lockdown and I enjoyed both experiences.
How does it work?
If you have an event host who knows how to use Zoom, it’s easy! Once you have joined the event on Zoom, you usually all start off in one virtual room and your host will tell you a bit about the event. For example, they will tell you how long you will have to chat with each person, what to do if you need assistance (you can raise your hand virtually or ask a question), they might even suggest some ice breaker questions. You are then put into a separate room and the next thing you will see is the person that you have been paired up with. At the end of the allotted time, it will give you a warning on the screen that the time is nearly up. You say goodbye to them, and then the next person will be visible to you on the screen. At the end of the event the host will probably bring everyone back to the same room and will let you know what the next steps are if you met anyone that you liked.
Does it work virtually?
Both worked perfectly for me, and being a person who lives quite far out of central London, I was really happy not to have to worry about getting there in time and then getting back. I also did not have to be concerned about things that could cause me social anxiety. It also felt safer, because you are in your own home and cannot be contacted unless you want to be. Also, being in my own living room, I felt much more comfortable and therefore more confident!
Do people dress up?
Most of the ladies definitely do (for speed dating, at least!). It is nice to get dressed and keep a small drink nearby (non-alcoholic for me). It adds to the feeling of it being a real life event. I would suggest making the same effort that you would if you were attending outside. If you like getting ready then it will definitely add to the experience.
Is it the same as attending in physical?
Probably not because there is no possibility of any physical contact and you may miss the buzz of speed friending when there are lots of people around you. But on the plus side, there are no awkward moments before or after either. If you don’t want to chat at the end, you can just simply say goodbye to the host and just leave. No awkward waiting around to see what other people do.
Is it worth it?
Totally! It cheered me during a tricky time (just at the start of the first lockdown in UK), and it was great to be able to interact with people during quarantine. Also some companies have reduced their prices for online events compared to in-person ones which is an added bonus!
Author: Ayesha Hamid
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