How to Meet Someone Without Online Dating

Ditch the Dating Apps. How to Meet Someone Without Online Dating

Are you tired of going out with people you meet on dating apps and having it turn out to be a total bust? Or even worse, getting ghosted? While many people have success with dating apps, I am going to suggest you stop spending time on creating the perfect dating profile and find a better way to meet someone. My way is also more fun.

Instead of joining a dating app, join a club or team that interests you. With the advent of event websites like Facebook and Meetup, there are almost unlimited options out there. Here’s why this is better than a dating app: you’ll meet a lot of people with common interests and make some new friends. Your life will generally be richer and fuller and more fun. Even if you don’t end up meeting your special someone, you are still enriching your life. But you never know, along the way, you may just meet a potential partner with whom you share a hobby.

Love is a grand thing, but friendship and common interest are generally needed to sustain a relationship long-term. With dating apps, once you find someone you like, you need to find out if you actually have anything in common. If not, it may be hard to build a long term relationship with that person. Even if you do think you might have something in common, you’ve got to have that first awkward date. You’re both dressed up, wondering what the other person is thinking, all of it. It is exhausting just thinking about it.

Try one of these options instead:

Physical Activities


Recreational team sports are a fun way to get some exercise and meet some friends. You’ll meet the other players on the team and all of those who come to cheer them on. Then, the after party! If it is a sport you truly love, you’ll have a blast whether you meet someone or not. Not sure what sport to try? It doesn’t have to be one of the major ones you’re probably thinking of. You can even try out up and coming sports like cornhole or disc golf. These sports are gaining popularity, have local followings, and are very welcoming to new players.


There are often many types of fitness clubs to join, and I am not only speaking of brick and mortar gyms. My city has a huge cycling club with hundreds of riders that meet daily. On Saturday mornings in the summer, the streets around here look like the Tour de France. There are also running clubs, outdoor yoga clubs and other types of events.

Joining a brick and mortar gym is another great way to meet people. Besides, if they’ve seen you sweaty and smelled you at the gym and still want to date, you certainly do not have to worry that you’re not attractive enough to them.

Special Interests

The internet has assisted people with so many special interests to find others like them. Local or national, there are clubs or meet-ups for almost anything. Civil war re-enactors, bingo players, auctioneer calling, you name it. Clubs based on heritage or cultural traditions are flourishing. Clubs exist to try new restaurants, to see movies, to do almost anything you can think of.

While book clubs are still immensely popular, now you can join clubs for books for almost any niche – sci-fi, historical romance, young adult alien abduction – whatever floats your boat. If you happen to have a passion for vintage books or maps, you can start your own clubs or maybe someone else already has.

I’ve seen clubs where people get together to speak in a foreign language or to talk philosophy. This is a perfect place to meet someone, and instead of swiping right, in French club you can say, “Bonjour, mon ami” with a flirty smile on your lips.

Political Action

Depending on the government that is in place where you live, there may be opportunities where you can meet with people of the same political mindset. Some political clubs are based on activism or community service and others just meet-up with like-minded people.


Volunteering is a great way to meet people that share your values as well as doing something good for the community. I know that if I’m bringing home a new partner it is nicer to tell my parents I met them when we were both volunteering at a food pantry instead of at a bar or a hook-up dating app.


Cooking classes are popular for this reason – people love socializing around food. Toastmasters is a popular club for people who want to improve their public speaking skills. There are various business networking events and clubs as well, and the more you show up, the more people you will meet. Spending your time on classes that make you feel fulfilled will make you a stronger person and better partner down the road, and you never know whom you may meet along the way.

Internet Forums

This one can be kind of shady in some people’s minds, but it is really no different than a dating app, or is it? Let’s say that you really love watching American baseball. You find a chatroom or forum where you can talk baseball with other fans from home while you watch the games. Over time, you become friends with some of the regular forum users, maybe you meet up. At this point, you have an established friendship around a common interest. A good starting point for kickstarting your new relationship. Thousands of people have found their life partners this way.


This is a little different from special interests and sports because there are so many options out there now due to technology. For one, augmented reality games are extremely popular. Augmented reality games involve using one’s mobile device to go out in the world and play games based on location. Niantic has two extremely popular games: Pokémon Go and Wizards Unite. Fans of these games often have meet ups several times per month. If you love one of these games, how great would it be to make friends or have a partner that also loves the game as much as you?

Board games are also having a huge renaissance right now. For one, extremely clever new board games are being released all the time. There is a large market of people who really enjoy playing them. There are board game cafes and clubs popping up everywhere. Perhaps you’re a lover of Boggle or Dungeons and Dragons? Either way, there is a club out there for you. Games don’t have to mean what you might have grown up with either. While Monopoly and Life have their places, new games like Tokaido and Ticket to Ride represent a great gateway to a whole genre of games you might not have known existed.

The reason the above ideas are great for people looking for love is that you know a little more about a person than just what they look like and what you can share over text message in an app. If they’ve gotten out of bed and come to play Boggle with strangers, you know not only what they look like but also that you share a common interest. That’s more information than you’d get on any dating app.

Of course, once you are there in person, you still have to talk to someone, right? Approaching someone or chatting is easier when you’re there to do something you enjoy. They’re seeing the real you – what really makes you happy. Neither of you are there to try to impress each other, so perhaps you’re getting a realer version of the person that you’re interested in. This makes for a more compatible couple in the long term.

Put yourself out there. At the very least you’ll be doing something you love or learning something new, and you’ll become more fulfilled and happier as a person. Best case scenario? You have a Boggle partner for life.

What is your favorite ways to meet someone? Let us know in the comments below. And sign-up for our newsletter to receive advice straight in your inbox.

Don’t forget to read submissions from reader’s like you here of their real life love stories. And fictional short stories here. Would you like to share your story or write a fictional piece? Submit your story here.

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