Tinder users cancel dates over coronavirus and use Covid-19 chat up lines

Dating apps are having to adapt to the coronavirus outbreak as users cancel dates for fear of contracting the virus – or incorporate the disease into their pick-up lines.

American comedian Nicole Byer recently tweeted: "I was talking to a man on Tinder and I told him I was travelling and he said 'with this coronavirus!?' Then unmatched me."

Other social media users have shared their own dating mishaps amid the worldwide health crisis.

Tinder has started offering hygiene advice via a new in-app ad that links to the World Health Organisation's (WHO) tips for preventing the virus from spreading further.

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"Your wellbeing is our #1 priority," the ad reads.

"Tinder is a great place to meet new people. While we want you to continue to have fun, protecting yourself from the coronavirus is more important."

It goes on to list some recommended preventive measures such as washing your hands, carrying hand sanitiser, avoiding "touching your face" and maintaining "social distance in public gatherings."

Dating app Hinge tweeted: "Please wash your hands before you steal your Hinge date's fries. It's okay to 'share' fries, but not germs."

OKCupid, which requires users to fill in questionnaires and matches them with people who give similar answers, notified all users with a new question: "Does coronavirus affect your dating life?"

There has reportedly been a 262% increase in the number of mentions of coronavirus, or Covid-19, in UK profiles since January.

However 93% of UK dating app users say they intend to keep going out on dates, undeterred by the risk of infection.

Tinder has also cancelled the international release for its in-app original streaming series Swipe Night, which revolves around the end of the world, out of sensitivity to those affected by the outbreak.

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"We've decided not to launch the 'Swipe Night' series around the world this weekend," a company spokesperson said.

"We were excited to bring this innovation to our members outside of the U.S., but given the series' apocalyptic theme, and because we are sensitive to the current events our members are experiencing, we felt it would be difficult to launch it in the right spirit."

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Swingers' clubs in Paris are still open but now provide masks and hand sanitiser at their entrances, Ouest France reports.

Some health experts have advised people in infected areas to stop kissing and hugging one another in an attempt to stem the rapidly spreading disease.

Coronavirus has killed seven Brits so far, with the number of confirmed cases in the UK reaching 373.

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