Tips To Date In New York City – Dating Culture In NYC

Dating experience | | , Copywriter & Sports journalist
Updated On: May 9, 2024
Dating in NYC
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Dating, no matter where you are, always proves to be a bit tricky. But if you’re dating in NYC, things are bound to get confusing and overwhelming, especially if you don’t know what you’re in for. 

Dating in NYC has been the basis for many culturally impactful shows that have given us a glimpse into what the NYC dating culture is like. If shows like Sex And The City or How I Met Your Mother are anything to go by, you’re in for a ride. 

The best way to get a grip on what dating in New York is like is by actually doing it, but knowing what to expect and how to maneuver your way around it will give you an advantage. Let’s take a look at everything you need to know.

What Is Dating In New York Like?

Dating in New York City can be intriguing and spontaneously fun. At the same time, a few months of dating in NYC can burn you out to the point where all you want is someone who lives in the same neighborhood as you. 

We’re pretty sure you’re going to go on at least one bad date with someone who can’t keep their phone down because of their “media” job. Or, someone whose idea of a first date is to take a walk around Times Square. “Ugh,” you think, “did you move here yesterday?” 

In many ways, dating in NYC is like dating anywhere else in the world. The Big Apple presents its own set of challenges, just like Tennessee or Cincinnati would. Let’s take a look at what you can expect. 

1. Options galore

If you’re new to dating in New York, the sheer number of single people looking for partners might come as a surprise. The city is half the size of San Francisco, but it’s got four times the number of people. However, once you get some experience, you realize that dating someone who’s not on your subway line is basically impossible. Don’t let the scale of things frighten you. As so many singles do in NYC, manifest your love and you’ll see it reciprocated.

Related Reading: 20 Valuable Tips For A First Date After Meeting Online

2. People are on the go, all the time 

It’s New York City, and everyone’s hustling all the time. Don’t be surprised if you find a bunch of 80-hours-a-week employees trying to squeeze in a 12-minute date. 

People in New York love to chat, and everyone’s got their own thing going. Everyone’s got a tiny apartment too; that’s pretty much why they’re all perennially hustling. The large dating pool and the fast-paced nature of the city basically mean you’re going to be meeting a lot of people, even without dating apps. And everyone you know is going to meet that one person you went out on a date with two weeks ago, somewhere down the line. 

3. The dating scene can be endless 

Dating and New York go hand in hand. There’s always a new romantic bar in town, and most people are up for trying out new places, new hiking trails, new rooftop restaurants, and new Broadway plays. 

There’s always something to do, and approaching it with the right frame of mind is important. At first, it might feel like things are in speed-dating mode at all times, and ghosting each other is the only way to communicate. But once things settle down and you realize that your next date may not necessarily become your partner, things will get better. 

Dating In NYC For Women 

Dating In NYC For Women 
What is dating in NYC like for women?

Unlike most other places in the world, New York City actually has more single women than single men. Combined with the unique vibe of the city and the “always hustling” attitude that’s so common amongst millennials, it makes for a very different culture than in most other places. 

The hookup culture dominates dating in New York, at least in the summer. When cuffing season rolls around, most people tend to find someone to snuggle with. The sturdy nature of the Big Apple can end up discouraging you from it all. To make sure you don’t end up feeling down and out, here are a few tips for dating in NYC for women. 

1. Know what you want 

Whether you’re dating in NYC or anywhere else in the world, this fundamental remains the same. If you’re looking to explore and casually date a few people, you might not have too many problems in the city that never sleeps. But if you’ve decided that something serious is what you’re after, acknowledging that in the first place is important. 

Speaking on the subject, dating coach Shivanya Yogmayaa previously told Bonobology, “Whether you want to make a career or you want to have a relationship, you need to know what you want. Only then will you know where you want to get to, right? Introspecting on your beliefs, values, and what you expect is extremely important. If you have certain traditional values, you should know that you need to attract someone similar.” 

Related Reading: 55 Best Ice Breaker Questions For Dating

2. Don’t pin all your hopes on dating apps 

You can get a flying start to your dating in NYC life with the help of some dating apps, but it’s probably best to not pin all your hopes on them. Pretty soon, your dating app escapades are going to go from having wonderful three-day conversations with people to not knowing if they’re dead or if they just ghosted you.

Moreover, the very real hookup NYC dating culture is what dominates these apps. If you’re looking for something different than a first date in a bar till 4 AM on a Friday night and then never texting each other again, you might want to steer clear of such dating platforms. 

Try to meet new people outside of dating apps. You might form a meaningful connection with someone in a city that boisterously encourages the opposite. 

3. Don’t let the concrete jungle wear you down 

Things go at a thousand miles an hour all the time, and everyone seems to be ghosting everyone after a few good days of conversation. Especially for heterosexual women, finding men might be a challenge due to the unique disparity of numbers between single men and single women in NYC. 

Here, one of the disadvantages of online dating creeps in. The paradox of choice means you’ll be going on some (read: a lot of) bad first dates, but that’s just part of the process. If finding the love of your life was so easy, it wouldn’t be as enticing, would it? As a result of the harshness of the city, you may opt to put on a rude exterior as a self-defense mechanism. We get it, dating in NYC can be a bit rough, but don’t let it affect your graceful energy. 

4. Approach dating in New York City with the right mindset 

No, you’re not going to find the person you’re destined to be with after you cross paths on the busy street one too many times. No, you’re not going to bump into each other in the library, striking up an instant conversation while picking up the books that fell down from your hands. 

Speaking on the subject, Shivanya previously told Bonobology “Just like you actively search for a new job, one should approach the dating game in a similar fashion. You need to give yourself as many chances as you get. When you find a hundred matches, you’ll find someone who actually clicks with you.”

Dating In NYC For Guys

Everyone knows something you don’t, and you’ll never know the connection you form with them unless you let go of your preconceived notion. That’s the mindset you should have while dating in NYC. 

These few tips for dating in NYC for women won’t bear fruit unless you actually go out there and date a few people. Get acquainted with the city, and don’t let a few bad experiences get you down. Oh, and try to find a few non-bar first date options as well. Not only will you save a pretty penny, but you’ll also remember what you said to each other the next day. 

Dating In NYC For Guys

As we mentioned, there are more single women in NYC than single men, which means that most men won’t have a problem finding someone to spend a ton of money with, on a cocktail with a little umbrella in it.

However, the problem isn’t landing a date, it’s conducting yourself during it. Dating in NYC for guys is largely similar to how women experience it, since the culture and the vibe of the city doesn’t change for anyone. So, the tips below can work for everyone. Nonetheless, here are a bunch of tips for dating in NYC for guys that are bound to up your dating game. 

1. A bar isn’t the only place for a date 

The perfect date starts with the perfect location. While New York is brimming with a million new bars and romantic restaurants at every corner, some of the best dates you have will be in anything but a bar. 

Take a walk around the Met Museums, or you could even kayak across the Hudson (psst, it’s free as well!). Or, you could make a small trip to Brooklyn and take a look at the Botanic Gardens. 

2. Common tip for dating in NYC for guys: A little courtesy goes a long way 

Dating etiquette can literally make or break the deal the minute your date sees you. Things like being well-groomed, paying attention to your date, and asking them thoughtful questions about them will leave a lasting impact. On the other hand, if you show up to the date and never put your phone down, you can’t really expect your date to be too flattered. 

3. Be clear about your intentions 

Men, especially in a place where they outnumber single women, can often make it seem like all they’re after is casual stuff. Coupled with the underlying fast-paced hookup culture of the city, this assumption is rampant. 

Whether you’re on a dating app or you’re meeting someone in person, make sure they know about your intentions from the get-go, even if you just want something casual. 

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Related Reading: What To Wear On A First Date? (For Men)

4. Be charming 

Dating in New York City means you’re going to come across extremely attractive, multi-cultural, and interesting individuals all the time. It won’t be uncommon to find two or three languages being spoken in the same restaurant, and finding driven individuals is not going to be a challenge either. 

While that may seem like too much pressure, try to focus on being yourself. Don’t let the first-date nerves get to you. Also, being a bit humorous will help you leave a mark. 

5. Offer a safe space, not a sleazy compliment 

As we’ve mentioned, single men outnumber single women in NYC. As a result, most women have had really bad experiences at the hands of men. Whether it’s listening to them talk endlessly about sports, being extremely perverted, or just plain rude, there’s a chance the woman sitting opposite to you has been through it all.

As a result, she might appear cautious and might need time to open up to you. In such situations, make sure that you prove that you’re a cut above the rest, and offer a safe space for interesting conversation and an emotional connection. Frankly, that’s just basic dating advice. 

Dating Culture In New York City 

Dating and New York offers perhaps the most interesting experience you’ll have. In a place where everyone’s looking to make a name for themselves, it’s understandable how a hookup culture takes precedence. 

However, that’s not to say that you won’t find love or make a lasting connection with someone. By knowing how to approach dating in NYC, you can start your very own rom-com as well, starring you, of course.

The city offers a vibrant and dynamic recreational life, as well as a cut-throat professional one. Most people in NYC look for a quick fix of romantic escapades, but the sheer volume of singles promises that you’ll find what you’re looking for eventually. 

If dating in NYC has got you confused about your next steps, Bonobology boasts a panel of experienced dating coaches and therapists who can tell you exactly what you need. Till then, try to say yes to more experiences that come your way.

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1. Is dating hard in NYC?

For some, the fast-paced nature of dating in NYC may get too much to handle. However, if you know how to handle it in the right way, you can maneuver around the dating culture of the Big Apple just fine. 

2. How do you find a relationship in NYC?

You find a relationship in NYC just like how you find it in any other place across the world: by trying your hand, keeping your expectations in check, being honest, and of course, bringing your A-game.

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