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Young couple wears masks and maintains social distancing on a romantic picnic for Valentine’s Day during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Valentine's Day Ideas & Dating Safely During COVID-19

Feb 04, 2021

Dating has always been a complicated topic for singles to navigate, especially with the recent rise in popularity of dating apps and websites. However, the spread of COVID-19 has sparked many new questions and concerns about dating. This Valentine’s Day will be the first that we will celebrate while social distancing, and there has been much discussion about how to do so safely. Here are some ways you can spend date night safely this year.

Discuss COVID-19 Safety Concerns With Your Date

Start with the COVID-19 talk. This is especially important for those going on a first or second date and who are getting to know each other. In your initial conversations with someone, try to find out how safe they have been during the COVID-19 pandemic. How many people do they live with? Do they have a job that increases their chances of exposure? What precautions do they take? Do they go to restaurants or bars often?

In addition to hobbies, interests, sense of humor, and other things you learn and assess about a potential partner, you should take into consideration how safe they have been. If it becomes clear that either they have not put much effort into social distancing, or their daily lives simply put them at a higher risk, it may not be safe to meet them in person.

Video Dating During the Pandemic

If you’re still getting to know someone and aren’t certain how safe it is to meet with them, video dating is a good option to consider. It’s the safest way for people to engage with each other, especially for those with underlying health conditions. It’s also a good time to learn more about what precautions they’ve been taking to stay safe and whether meeting them in person would put you at risk of exposure.

As with virtual meetings at work, virtual dating skyrocketed in popularity in 2020, with many first dates taking place over FaceTime or Skype. There has also been a rise in unique video dating services. People are finding that not only is it safe, but it can also be more convenient, easy, and comfortable. Video chatting as a first date might be here to stay.

Valentine’s Day While Social Distancing

There are ways to get creative with virtual dates. This Valentine’s Day, consider playing games on services like Jackbox or Houseparty, streaming a movie on Netflix together using a plug-in like Teleparty or Sync Watch, or simply cooking the same recipe for dinner while video chatting.

If you’re ready to meet up in person, there are a few guidelines you should follow to stay safe. First, it’s a good idea to both get a COVID-19 test four or five days before meeting and quarantine until your date.

When deciding where to meet, consider an outdoor area without crowds. The risk of transmission in public is significantly lower outside than it is inside. Having a picnic, planning a bike ride, and parking next to each other at a drive-in movie theatre with the windows down are a few fun ideas for dating outdoors. Make a deal to both wear masks and maintain distance.

The spread of COVID-19 has complicated many things, including the already complicated journey of finding love. But hopefully, with these tips and guidelines, you can still celebrate Valentine’s Day with someone special while being safe.

If you have additional questions about COVID-19 and your risk, schedule an in-person or virtual visit with your Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Group primary care physician.

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The New York Times | The New Rules of Dating
NPR | Coronavirus FAQs: What Are The New Dating Rules? And What About Hooking Up?