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Love in the air | © StockSnap/Pixabay
Love in the air | © StockSnap/Pixabay

10 Things You Need to Know About Dating When You Move to New York

Picture of Julia Goicochea
Updated: 19 September 2017

Right up there with ‘the French girl,’ the New Yorker has become a global legend, shrouded in myth and secrecy. To help you learn how to tame love in this urban jungle, we’re lifting the veil on the do’s and don’ts of New York City’s dating scene. For the amorous out-of-towner, here are 10 things you need to know about dating in New York.

Standard dates aren’t going to cut it here

With such varied entertainment at our disposal, New Yorkers expect more than a movie and a meal come date night. With book swap parties, art openings, and kitten yoga classes (look it up now, thank us later) happening every night around the city, locals like to get creative with dates.

Transportation will dictate your dating life

By New York standards, if it takes more than two to three trains or buses for you to meet your mate, you may as well be in a long distance relationship. At some point, you will meet an attractive, funny, caring individual embodying everything you’re looking for in a match— and you will break it off once they move off the 7 line.

There may be too many options here

The only thing harder than finding ‘The One’ in a city of eight million people? Believing you’ve found them. Here, it’s easy to wonder if a better match may be out there for you, resulting in a sea of serial daters— and a drought of second dates.

A New Yorker’s main love is themselves

Let us explain: New Yorkers are busy individuals, and our paramours are one of many priorities. Here, putting oneself first isn’t necessarily considered selfish, as an independent attitude is a quintessential New York trait. That being said, if your mate is willing to skip the gym or reschedule a haircut to spend time with you, they may be a keeper.

Online dating isn’t considered taboo here

There may have been a time, or a town, when you would have been embarrassed to admit to meeting your latest match online. Luckily, New Yorkers don’t have time to feel embarrassed— or to search the city streets for romance. From in-depth dating sites to out-and-proud hookup apps, digital match-makers are a mainstay of New York’s dating scene.

Don’t underestimate the first date

New Yorkers don’t have time to waste, so it should come as no surprise that your first date will determine whether or not you get a second. From your location of choice to how you treat the waiter, you will be judged by your companion. Some tips: stay off your phone, wear comfortable shoes, and never suggest a chain.

Meeting people may be harder than you expect

In this big city, you may move here thinking meeting others will be a breeze. However, you’ll quickly find that with everyone either plugged in or rushing off, this isn’t the case.

Even a casual date may require deep pockets

You don’t need to be here long to learn New York is expensive. With cocktails costing around $15 and plates priced still higher, even a standard dinner-and-drinks date could set you back $100.

Finding a relationship is not necessarily the goal for every dater

In another time and town, one might date with the objective of building a deep connection, and eventually, a future with another individual. However, as diverse as New Yorkers are, their amorous aims vary even more. While some still seek a traditional happily-ever-after, many daters are content to stay swimming among New York’s many fish in the sea. Expect to be stood up, score a second date, meet your soulmate, and everything in between in this city.

It can be tough for New Yorkers to let down their guard

With street-harassers, scammers, and more unsavory characters around us, it’s no wonder New Yorkers have a hard exterior. Letting people in is difficult anywhere, but in a city where self-sufficiency is prized above all else, it can be downright impossible. It’s worth being patient with New Yorkers though— after all, there’s no one in the world quite like us.