WASHINGTON (February 3, 2014) -- AARP is celebrating the 1-year anniversary of AARP Dating powered by HowAboutWe, a dating site designed to help people find love online by going on great dates,offline. On AARP Dating, 50+ singles finish the phrase, “how about we…” with the date they’d like to go on, connect and get together.
Over the past year, AARP Dating users have suggested nearly a quarter of a million dates since launch. By providing a platform that helps singles connect in person, AARP is actively helping its members combat social isolation, a problem that impacts as many as 17% of older Americans1, often negatively affecting their health and quality of life. With 45% of older adults (65+) divorced, separated or widowed, a modern service that provides a quick, easy way to meet new people is more important than ever.
“It’s never too late to enjoy another person’s company and admiration. And, contrary to what you may have heard, it’s a lot easier and better after 50 than when people were young and a whole less secure in who they are and what they want,” said Dr. Pepper Schwartz, AARP’s Love & Relationships Ambassador. “People can do well alone, but I think we were all meant to love or at least be affectionate with someone. Dating, flirting, sharing feelings, and maybe, if we’re lucky, falling in love, is good for our heart, mind, soul and body.”
True Life Stories from Real AARP Daters: From finding a serious relationship, to getting out and meeting new people, success for AARP daters is as varied as their stories:
- Stuart, 58: “I met a wonderful woman and we’re still dating 6 months later. We share tons in common, are always laughing and are looking forward to a long future together. It was my first and only date on AARP. Best $12 investment I’ve ever made.”
- Christy, 55: “After years of quiet weekends home with Hallmark movies, with the help of my children I signed up for the site. Pleasantly surprised and flattered by several invitations, I responded to one and we’ve been seeing each other for the past five months. Excited to have that missing spark back in my life!”
- Laura, 61: “I like the way the site focuses on date ideas because it lets people show their personality. I’ve gone on lots of dates, so I’m enjoying it so far.”
Culture + Coffee + the Great Outdoors = The Perfect Date on AARP Dating: After analyzing close to a quarter million dates suggested by AARP Dating users over the past year, three major trends emerged in their dating habits:
- The top date for AARP singles? Getting some fresh air: As demonstrated by their wealth of dates, it’s clear that 50+ singles are an active, outdoorsy bunch: they love to venture outside and get moving on first dates. More than ⅓ of all AARP Dating dates involve taking a walk outside, most often at the beach or park. And when they’re not out for a stroll, AARP Dating users stay active most often by suggesting hiking, bike riding or kayaking.
- AARP dates are fueled by java: Where do AARP Dating singles get all that energy? We blame the coffee. One in four AARP Dating dates involve the buzzy beverage, and 70% of the time those coffee dates are paired with another activity, such as catching a show or going on a bike ride.
- Setting the scene with Inspiring, arty dates: When they’re not outside or getting their caffeine fix, 50+ singles are drinking in culture, most often suggesting dates that involve live music, art exhibitions and comedy shows.
- Battle of the sexes—women like to dance, men like to dine: Women on AARP Dating are four times more likely to suggest going out dancing on a first date than men are. They’re also five times more likely to suggest drinking beer. (Men, on the other hand, prefer dinner and wine on first dates).
How 50+ Singles Use AARP Dating: They’re optimistic, weekend-loving and equal-opportunity daters.
- New Year, new opportunities: Sure it’s cold out, but that won’t keep 50+ singles down. They sign in and post dates most often during late winter and early spring -- specifically in January, February and March -- ringing in the New Year by getting out and meeting new, like-minded people.
- Weekends are where the fun is: 50+ singles by and large love to post dates on Saturday, more than any other day of the week. In contrast, 24-34-year-olds post dates throughout the week, favoring Monday and Wednesdays. Women of all ages prefer to set up dates mid-week, since they suggest more dates on Wednesdays than men do. Men, on the other hand, do the majority of their date-planning on the weekends, posting more dates on Sundays than women.
- Messages from AARP Daters—thoughtful and selective: Overall, 50+ singles on HowAboutWe Dating tend to be more selective with their outreach and send on average 44% fewer messages than singles between the ages of 24-34.
- Equal opportunity messaging: 50+ men and women are equally successful when sending messages. Both receive nearly the same amount of responses, with women receiving just 4% more replies than their male counterparts. In contrast, women between the ages of 24-34 are significantly more likely to receive a response than men of the same age.
○ Top Three Most Responsive Cities for 50+ singles: 1. New York, NY, 2. Cincinnati, OH 3. Cleveland, OH
○ Top Three Most Responsive Cities for 50+ Men: 1. Albany, NY, 2. Dallas, TX 3. San Antonio, TX
○ Top Three Most Responsive Cities for 50+ Women: 1. New Orleans, LA 2. Cleveland, OH 3. Indianapolis, IND
AARP Dating can be accessed at dating.aarp.org and gives visitors to the site an exclusive 7-day free trial, plus a 50 percent discount for AARP members who choose to subscribe to the monthly service.
AARP recently released Dating After 50 for Dummies, authored by AARP’s Love & Relationship Ambassador Dr. Pepper Schwartz. Both she and AARP Contributor and author of The Best of Everything After 50: The Experts' Guide to Style, Sex, Health, Money, and More, Barbara Hannah Grufferman are available to discuss the 50+ dating landscape, offer tips on creating a profile, suggesting dates and sending messages, as well as how to survive Valentine’s day as a single person. Real 50+ singles on AARP Dating and HowAboutWe are available for interviews upon request.
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AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, with a membership of nearly 38 million, that helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment and income security, retirement planning, affordable utilities and protection from financial abuse. We advocate for individuals in the marketplace by selecting products and services of high quality and value to carry the AARP name as well as help our members obtain discounts on a wide range of products, travel, and services. A trusted source for lifestyle tips, news and educational information, AARP produces AARP The Magazine, the world's largest circulation magazine; AARP Bulletin; www.aarp.org; AARP TV & Radio; AARP Books; and AARP en Español, a Spanish-language website addressing the interests and needs of Hispanics. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political campaigns or candidates. The AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. AARP has staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Learn more atwww.aarp.org.
Founded in 2010, HowAboutWe is a digital lifestyle company dedicated to helping people fall and stay in love. Headquartered in Brooklyn, New York, HowAboutWe is comprised of two subscription-based products, HowAboutWe Dating and HowAboutWe for Couples, and HowAboutWe Media, an independent media network devoted to all things love, sex and culture. For more information, visit www.howaboutwe.com.