Everyone knows that collegiate dating is hard (and borderline non-existent) — it’s hooking up that’s as easy as shooting drunk dudes (fish) in a college bar(rel). You head to the nearest party, move yourself to the closest dance floor (or raised surface), pound back a couple (dozen) cups of vat, and you’re ready to meet the man of your dreams. Unfortunately, he usually ends up being about as far away from Prince Charming as humanly possible, which you inevitably don’t notice until you’re walk of shaming the next morning.
The advent of the internet meant that you can move the awkward encounters that usually happen at the bar straight to your fingertips, sans alcohol. Tinder’s basically the bar at closing time, only you’re dead sober. It’s the kind of fairy tale we used to dream about when we were younger. While you’re not exactly ready to head over to Match.com and call it a day, that doesn’t mean you should resign yourself to late night MOs with the frat stars on campus. After all, you never know when you’ll meet an overgrown frat star with a job and everything. In fact, he could be just a swipe away. If you’re looking for someone you won’t have to see around campus when things inevitably take a turn for the worst, then dating apps might be your calling.
If you’re ready to dip your feet into the pool of eligible bachelors on the internet without moving a muscle, Tinder is the app for you. It’s the perfect self-esteem boost, without leaving the comfort of your couch. Best of all? You can match with someone who actually goes to your school. There’s nothing better than confirming your mega crush thinks you’re cute before throwing yourself at him in a drunken haze. Dating websites might best serve the post-grad crowd who don’t have access to huge amounts of alcohol and a million members of the opposite sex regularly, but you can still kill time during study hours by swiping.
Hinge’s creep level is unclear at this point. It’s less creepy than Tinder, in that it connects you with friends of your Facebook friends. In some ways it’s way more creepy, because it brings up all those guys you definitely should be FB friends with but aren’t because you don’t want to. It’s basically a way to connect with those guys at school that would make you Eskimo sisters with the entirety of the campus. You have to live in a pretty major area to use this app, because if you’re at the University of Kansas it’s doubtful that all of your Facebook friends are also app dating.
Before you go to a restaurant you check Yelp reviews, so before you hook up with a guy why wouldn’t you check his Lulu review? It’s the perfect reminder that we’re all just sloppy seconds to someone. Whether you’re reading a review from a scorned girlfriend or a hook up, it’s obviously from a girl who’s no longer with your #SexPanther (be a centerpiece, not a side piece). It will creep you out to the extreme, but wouldn’t you rather know his sexin’ or commitment score (depending on what you’re looking for), before it’s too late? After all, anything’s better than crying after a run-in with someone who #ShouldComeWithAWarning.
If you’re trying to get it in without a commitment, then you should probably head to the nearest fraternity party… but there’s always OkCupid if you’re looking for someone specifically weird, instead of just a general weirdo. Because it’s not connected to Facebook you have to worry about being murdered, but you could also potentially find someone who wants to take you on a real life date (like in the movies!) so, there’s that. As long as he’s not a Catfish of epic proportions, you’re golden.
If you’re too young for JDate, but old enough to have your parents on your back constantly about bringing home a nice Jewish boy, look no farther. Swipe your way to the chuppah and prepare to tell your grandkids how he had you at “Hillel.” Sure, it’s not exactly a “meet-cute,” but as long as he’s pre-law or pre-mad your parents will be pleased as punch.
Grouper is all the fun of meeting someone new, without the pressure of needing to cyberstalk beforehand. If your dream date involves a full-on stranger, this is the app for you. It connects you and two friends with three dudes, and you all meet at a fun bar. It’s slowly taking the stigma away from online dating, along with Tinder. While all of the above could potentially have creeps up the wazoo, unfortunately real life does too. You might as well start swiping to find a formal date that hasn’t hooked up with the entirety of your campus.