In the latest episode, Victoria Zito gets a little jittery when she FaceTimes with new love interest Emmelle, a woman she met on a dating app. Zito admits she hadn’t spoken face to face with Emmelle but they messaged each other.
In an interview with Showbiz Cheat Sheet, Adja Toure laughed about how online dating apps helped her line up her dates before arriving in Paris. “Not knowing the neighborhoods very well and not knowing where to look, I actually ended up reverting to a dating app,” she dished. “So fun little fact, about a month before I actually moved to Paris, I downloaded the passport version of a dating app and was swiping around like getting ready. So I was setting up my dates a month in advance because that’s how type-A I am.”
And while not all dates are found online, the twentysomething Real Girlfriends in Paris cast actually reflects how Gen Z is dating – and succeeding at making connections online.
‘Real Girlfriends in Paris’ cast are a good representation of Gen Z dating behaviors
According to a study by the online dating app Tinder, Gen Z used the dating app specifically to meet new or different people. The app acknowledged that the pandemic kicked online dating apps into high gear with this demo.
“Gen Z spent more time talking on Tinder, as 19% more messages were sent per day in Feb 2021, compared to Feb 2020,” according to the Tinder press release. “And conversations were 32% longer during the pandemic. Members also updated their bios more often to fuel conversation, with Gen Z updating their bios nearly 3x as often as they did pre-pandemic and still 2x as often as Millennials.”
Online dating connections are a mixed bag of success and fails
While online dating apps fueled connections during the pandemic, Tinder found that at least 40% of Gen Z users planned to continue using online dating apps post-pandemic. Real Girlfriends in Paris cast is representative of this behavior as about half of the cast seem to use a dating app in some capacity.
Kacey Margo prefers to strike a balance between in-person and online dating. She made an online connection with a professional handball player, Leo. “I met Leo on a dating app,” Margo explains in a confessional. “We matched in February. We went out for the first time on Halloween. But he’s so busy. Like he’s a whole professional athlete. I just hope Leo is fun off the court.”
The Real Girlfriends in Paris cast go to a handball game and plan to meet up with Leo and his friends after the game. But Leo is a no-show, which is a total letdown for Margo. “Flipping embarrassing dude,” she says in a confessional after receiving a text from Leo that he can’t meet them. “I feel like Parisian men and men, in general, don’t really take me seriously.”
Dating apps are the norm for Gen Z
Margo told Showbiz Cheat Sheet she has a better way to meet men. “You can find the really cute boys down by the river. Like a nice drinking day … like let’s go hang out!” she laughed during an interview.
But Margo and others view dating apps as just another avenue to make connections. TikToker Niki Patton offered her insight into online dating.
“I think it’s actually a really fun way to meet new people in general. Not necessarily people I’m romantically interested in,” she told Bustle. “I recently went to Hawaii with some friends, and we were like, ‘Let’s just go on Tinder and Bumble for fun.’ It’s just a game. I know that most people [my age] don’t take it so seriously.”
Real Girlfriends in Paris is on Monday at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo.