MANILA, Philippines – Paired ones will likely flock to dating places such as restaurants, museums, hotels, cinemas, or some place else to celebrate Valentine’s Day for whatever reason.The rest should know better than to hit congested roads and crowded malls on Saturday, February 14.Couple Rica and RJ, 20-somethings shacked up in Cubao, Quezon City, said they will have at home a 6-course meal that includes “Greek salad, sole meunière amandine, and roast chicken” – and then light a tall candle, perhaps.
But singles who are looking to stay-in for apparent reasons need not despair.
A fraction of the population has actually already been turning to an alternative that evades Metro Manila traffic, embarrassing menu choices, and awkward first meetings: online dating.
These online dating sites are still a long way to profitability.
But what they are keen on is growing their user base.
This is probably because the system works: swiping left (also, clicking an ‘X’) or swiping right (clicking a heart icon) can become habit-inducing.
“Each day, there at 1.5 billion profile ratings (swipes) on Tinder, which result in more than 22 million matches,” according to Rosette Pambakian, vice president for corporate communications and branding.
The Philippines is a relatively new market for the California-based firm, she added.
But it will not be found lacking when it comes to local stories, good and bad, which have been published online or heard first-hand from friends.
As expected, there is a noticeable upswing in use as Valentine nears, Joseph Phua, chief executive officer and co-founder of dating app Paktor, said.