That’s all that needs to be said and all of a sudden people have a thousand different things going through their mind. Hook Up App, free dating app, swipe left, swipe right, Hot or Not on steroids, the young generations Match.com.  No, I’m not going to tell you the BEST WAY TO GET LUCKY, I wouldn’t know!  I’m going to tell you about a totally different way to use Tinder and the benefits behind it.

Tinder is a powerful social app with MILLIONS of downloads across the globe.  Although most people use Tinder for the reasons above, I have found a totally different use that allows me to get the inside scoop on a city, state or country before even visiting.  What could be better than a local who knows the city inside and out and is proud of where they come from?  Need advice on fun things to do while in town?  Chances are the locals have probably been there and done that!

I tested this out last week when I went to Istanbul, Turkey.  I matched with a lady who has been living in Istanbul for quite a few years.  Was I attracted to her?  No, I just swiped right to a WHOLE BUNCH OF PEOPLE and she came off as intrigued as to why I was swiping in Istanbul from over 5,000 miles away.  I told her right off the bat I was just looking for some ideas of things to do while in town, places to eat, information on the culture and she was full of knowledge!

She lived on the Asia side of Istanbul and I was staying on the European side so she was able to tell me what made the Asian side different then the European.  She gave me information on the ferry system between the two continents, what town to get off the boat in, different sites to see and a couple ideas for restaurants to visit.  She even gave some information on the laws so my hostel friends and I knew what we could and couldn’t do (We ended up grabbing a couple beers and taking them down to the park to drink.  Definitely not something you would want to do if it was illegal).

This individual ended up helping so much throughout the week and was just a friendly person in a foreign land.  No talk of hook ups, dating, or getting together, just an lady that was excited that I was enjoying her city and eager to get out and adventure around the city.  If you’re on Tinder and going to a different place, try it out!  It’ll give you an experience completely different then you would ever expect!

*Note* Just like many other apps, Tinder is an app that should be used cautiously.  Don’t ever give the individual private information about you including your address, apartment complex, dormitory, etc.  If you decide to meet the person meet in a area surrounded by other people and let someone know where you are meeting. It’s always better to be safe than sorry! Practice safe Tindering my friends!

-Andrew Dean

The Costumed Traveler