When I first moved to Argentina, deleting Tinder from my smartphone just felt right. Call me crazy, but the desire to get a taste of an Eat, Pray, Love style love story was stronger than my urge to swipe right in a country where Tinder generates 2.5 million matches per month.
Yup, I took the plunge and headed straight into the Dark Ages (aka pre 2012), before four tech guys from Los Angeles got tired of texting girls they actually knew.
Admittedly, I’ve been tempted to ditch the physical search for my version of whoever Javier Bardem’s character was and reload the Tinder app (after all, my relationship with my iPhone has been on the decline ever since and, well, those kinds of relationships are hard to break). Also, Argentina is one of the ten most active countries on Tinder, behind Canada (here’s hoping that includes Justin Trudeau), the US, France, England and, you guessed it, Brazil.
Yet, despite my resistance to spending oh, you know, an hour a day mas o menos with the other 15 million Tinder users in Argentina, my fellow socially driven intern summed it up by saying: “Argentine dating culture is very Tinder friendly.”
And she was kind enough to share her story with me over some mate of course: “I hopped off the plane at Ezeiza with a dream and
a cardigan some plataformas. The first thing I did? I downloaded Tinder. It’s happening. Your gaucho Nacho Figueras is just a swipe away. And then the swiping started. OK, but not that guy. Not that guy either. OK maybe a few swipes away. Actually, Nacho, call me. This is getting exhausting.”
And then there’s the obvious.
- His name is Facundo. (It’s always Facundo.) Or Juan Manuel, Juan Carlos, Juan fill-in-the blank.
- He has a shirtless selfie with his cat. Or maybe a tiger if he’s feeling bold. The cat will look uncomfortable, you will feel an urge to call humane services, and then realize you don’t know how to do that in Argentina.
- “Tenés Wapp?” Learn this phrase. “Do you have Whatsapp?” will be the question that comes directly after “Hola.” Don’t respond “excuse me sir but I don’t know you and you could be an old man sitting in front of a 90s desktop in Iceland.” They will not find it amusing… I mean, I hear that they do not find that amusing.”
So to sum it all up, you should basically read the chapter in the book Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari and sociologist Eric Klinenberg on dating in Buenos Aires to prepare you for the real deal here. Or just read this chapter summary which basically says Argentine Culture was made for Tinder.