Life Advice



Erika Ettin: What are you doing on Thursday? The new online dating app that is trying to change the game

Erika Ettin, Tribune News Service on

Published in Dating Advice

Over my career, I’ve heard all the complaints about online dating apps and websites:

“It takes up too much time.”

“I never know when to make a move to meet in person.”

“I don’t want a pen pal; I want a partner.”

Well, there is an increasingly popular new app that is addressing many of those issues. It’s called Thursday — and that’s because the app only goes live on that day of the week. Because you only have 24 hours at a time to arrange a date, it cuts down on the endless swipes and conversations. It also prompts users to take the potential to the next step pretty quickly or lose out completely — once the clock strikes midnight and Thursday is over, all connections are deleted.

There are other advantages to this approach too: It cuts out scammers, who often take advantage of the anonymity of dating apps to gain trust and con users. It also gets rid of the people who are only swiping for amusement (or to get a confidence boost) without any intention of finding a relationship.

And after the many changes in dating that have come with the pandemic, I think everyone is looking for a connection without a screen. Maybe an app can still help facilitate a meeting without spending hours each week on it. Maybe one day a week is all you need … and why not Thursday? It’s actually perfect, as you can make plans for that very weekend.

The app also hosts in-person events — on, you guessed it, Thursdays — to give you the chance to meet other singles looking for love without ever unlocking your phone. The events are currently only available in London and New York, with hopefully more to come.


Call it old-fashioned, but skipping right to the part where you meet face to face does work. I encourage all my clients, no matter what app they are using — Bumble, Hinge,, OkCupid — to suggest a meeting sooner rather than later if the conversation is going well. No matter how great a discussion is over text or how attractive a person’s photos look, you can get so much more information in person … and decide much more quickly if there’s a connection. Even if the answer is a disappointing no, at least you know and can move on without spending a lot more time on that person.

So how do you do that? Here are a few easy ways to move a conversation from the app to in-person.

— When someone asks you a question, reply, “It’s actually a good story … better in person. Any chance you’re free this week to meet?”

— “I’m enjoying talking to you, but what this conversation needs is nachos. I know a good spot.”

— “Have you ever tried (insert brewery, restaurant, coffee shop or other location)? I’ve been meaning to. Maybe this Friday if you’re free?”

After you agree on a time and place (and I recommend doing this right on the dating app/site), only exchange numbers for contingencies a day or so before the date. Then a short note on the morning of the date will do the trick. “Looking forward to meeting you tonight!”

Does Thursday sound like the app you’ve been waiting for? It may be worth a shot — both for finding a partner and keeping yourself from endless swiping.

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