By Aditi Khanna ;
ONLINE daters in the UK will be able to choose to display a badge on their profiles to show if they have been vaccinated against COVID-19 or support the National Health Service (NHS) vaccination programme in a new awareness campaign launched from Monday. Leading dating brands such as Tinder, Match, Hinge, Bumble, Badoo, Plenty of Fish, OurTime and Muzmatch have teamed up with the UK Government to encourage their users to get COVID-19 vaccinations. They will add new features to their apps and websites to support the new “every vaccination gives us hope” campaign, encouraging younger people to get their vaccine as they become available to lower age cohorts in the coming weeks. “I am thrilled that we are partnering up with dating apps to boost vaccine uptake across the country. This is another incredible asset to our vaccination programme – the biggest and most successful in our history,” said Nadhim Zahawi, UK Vaccine Deployment Minister.
The new features will allow the dating app users to show their support for the vaccine on their profiles and give in-app bonuses to those who say they are vaccinated. Features will include vaccination badges and stickers to display on dating profiles, free “Super Likes”, and other boost-type features. Users will also start seeing adverts and banners for the government’s “every vaccination gives us hope” campaign.
“Dating apps and services are the start point for about a third of all new relationships. When meeting in person was not possible, services were an important way of meeting others online, with the hope of meeting up later when safe to do so,” said George Kidd, Online Dating Association Chief Executive. “About 10 million people in the UK use or have used dating apps and services... For us, every step to a return to people meeting up, making new friends, starting new relationships is a step forward for us all,” he said. Although providing vaccination status on these apps is optional, data has shown that people are more likely to date someone who has received a COVID-19 vaccination.