Let’s face the facts: People don’t meet people in bars anymore. But they do meet people on Tinder while they’re drinking in a bar (or while drinking on the couch at home), and that phenomenon comes with its own set of regulations. Here are the rules to follow when Tindering while drinking. Don’t pretend you haven’t done it.
Don’t give your phone to a friend.
You’ll be tempted to pass your phone to a buddy or bored bartender when they ask you if they can take a look. But don’t do it. It’ll be fun in the moment as everyone gathers around, laughing and swiping, but they could be swiping your soulmate away without you even knowing it. Plus, putting your phone in someone else’s hands is always dangerous. Just ask yourself: When was the last time you cleared your search history?
If you end up talking to someone, let a slightly more sober friend proofread your chats.
You might think you’re being impossibly charming and clever but what you’ve actually written is, “sup wat u doikn rigt now? I’m drilkl.” Find a friend who hasn’t been doing tequila shots all night and show them your draft before sending off something you might regret.
Wait until the next day to make any actual plans.
We’re not saying that sober you wouldn’t suggest a rock climbing date at midnight on Tuesday, but just to make sure, save the planning for the next day when you can competently consult your calendar and remember that you have a trick knee.
Don’t order any top-heavy drink.
Double-fisting a phone and a very full Martini is a risky challenge. It requires coordination and balance—two things you don’t usually have in abundance after drinking. Skip anything that comes in a V-shaped cocktail glass and stick with a sturdy lowball drink or bottle of beer. You can have that celebratory Manhattan after you’ve matched with that super-sweet person whose only pictures were of them skydiving.
Give yourself a cut-off time.
When you combine alcohol and Tinder, time somehow just disappears. Give yourself a time limit—an hour and a half to two hours if you’re alone or just 30 minutes if you’re with friends—and stick to it. If you don’t, you could wind up with permanent Tinder neck.
Avoid the urge to swipe right on someone just because they have a cute animal in the picture.
After you’ve had a few drinks, your standards of datability start to slip. Don’t be taken in by sneaky Tinder profile tricks. Look closely at anyone whose pictures primarily feature adorable puppies, cool cars, sunglass shots or slightly blurry pictures that wind up actually being screenshots of famous actors.