Couple holding hands

Dawn dating: the trend swapping late-night dinners for morning meet-ups

More people are swapping traditional evening dates for early morning coffees, walks and more. We speak to three women who’ve jumped on the trend and how it’s changed their perspective on dating.

Have you ever been asked to go on a date at the crack of dawn? Perhaps for a super early breakfast or morning run? Well if you have, you may be a part of the dawn dating brigade – an emerging trend that is seeing people swap after-work drinks for sunrise walks.

The term was coined by dating app Badoo after seeing a considerable rise in morning dates among singles, with the platform finding that 51% have been on a pre-10am date before or would like to start doing so.

But while the idea of morning dates signifies a change in attitudes towards dating, it also coincides with a more cost-effective way of dating amid the cost of living crisis, as more people embark on walks, runs and coffees instead of splashing the cash at bars and restaurants.

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“Morning dates have completely changed dating for me,” says Eva.

The 26-year-old said the move to morning dates gave her a fresh perspective when it came to dating, adding that it was always “the go-to to have drinks or go out for dinner”.

“It’s actually much more exciting to change things up and go out for breakfast, lunch or do a fun activity in the daytime.”

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Megan, 28, agrees with Eva’s stance, adding that her interest in morning dates keeps things “exciting”.

“I get bored quite easily, so doing different things at different times definitely makes for a change,” she says.

Megan, who has been single for five years, says her first dawn date was a morning walk with a person she matched with on the dating app. “I have a dog, so I was going out for our usual morning walk, and I decided to invite the person I had matched with to come along with me, as they said they often go on morning runs before work,” she said.

“As a result, our date was a bit different from the usual. It also stripped away the nerves that come with a date later on in the day and if you do have a connection, you’re left wanting more, which is always a good thing.”

The more relaxed nature of morning dates is something that also appealed to Louisa, who embarked on a dawn date in a bid to “mix things up”.

Photo of Louisa
Dawn dating: Louisa

“It just got so boring having the same type of date each time. Evening drinks are always nice but it’s quite samey, especially as there are not loads of wildly different places you can go to for that kind of date,” she admits.

Louisa says she first went on a dawn date a few weeks ago, where the duo sat outside a local coffee shop and “had a lovely time”.

“There’s much less pressure with meeting someone earlier in the day – you see a side to people that just feels more real.”

Ditching dinners in favour of these early morning meet-ups can make a real change to your dating experience, with Badoo finding that people choose to date early doors because there’s no expectation to drink alcohol (43%), it’s a nice way to start the day (35%), and they feel fresher and more energised in the morning (34%).

“I’m just having a lot more fun,” says Eva. “Me and the guy I met have made dawn dating a bit of a tradition, and while we’ve started going on evening dates too, we sometimes still grab a coffee and go for a walk on a Friday morning. It’s nice to switch things up.”

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Image: Getty, Louisa


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