Pining for love, passing on apps: Why are some singles in Australia hesitant about dating apps?

Samuel TanAPAC Data Journalist / B2B Content Manager
April 19, 2024, 8:08 AM GMT+0

What’s holding back singles in Australia who are keen on finding their special one but have yet to try any dating apps so far?

In Part 2 of our three-part study on Dating app usage in Australia: Popularity, Concerns, Aspirations, we explore the top barriers to dating app usage in Australia, and how open those who have yet to use dating apps would be to trying them in the future.

Why aren't some singles in Australia keen on trying out dating apps?

Latest research from YouGov Surveys shows that seven in ten (70%) Australian residents have never used a dating app before. When asked why, two in five (40%) say they are already in a romantic relationship – the most common reason – while another quarter (23%) say they are not looking for a relationship at this point in time.

Among singles who are keen or open to finding a romantic partner, around a quarter cite preferring to meet people (and possibly their significant other) in person (24%) as the top reason for not having tried dating apps to date.

The next most common reasons centred around issues of safety and privacy – such as the possibility of being catfished / duped by fake profiles on dating apps (19%) and having to share personal details and dating preferences (15%).

Meanwhile, about one in seven (14%) are sceptical that dating apps can help them find a serious relationship or are not willing to fork out money.

Notably, only a tenth (10%) say having to swipe through dating app profiles puts them off, while just 8% feel uncomfortable about introducing a person they’ve met on a dating app to their friends and family.

How open are such singles to trying out dating apps in the future?

Among single Aussies who have never used dating apps but are open to starting a relationship, 15% say they are likely to try out dating apps in the future.

On the other hand, about half (52%) say they are unlikely (not too / not at all likely) to consider using dating apps, while a third (33%) say they would never use one. That tells that the majority of those open to using dating apps have already done so – and of those who haven’t yet dabbled, only a small minority are willing to consider doing so.

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This article is part of our three-part study on Dating app usage in Australia: Popularity, Concerns, Aspirations, which explores the dating apps most popularly used by Aussies, the kinds of relationships and qualities that various dating app users look out for, plus top reasons why other singles are hesitant to try out dating apps. Explore the full series below:

Part 1 – Scroll, Swipe, Settle down: Which dating app’s best for Aussies looking for a fling vs life partner?

Part 2 – Pining for love, passing on apps: why are some singles in Australia hesitant about dating apps?

Part 3 – What Aussies want in a romantic partner: How Zoosk users value looks and Hinge users seek values


Methodology: YouGov Surveys: Serviced provides quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. This study was conducted online in January 2024, with a national sample of 1,029 Australian residents, using a questionnaire designed by YouGov. Data figures have been weighted by age, gender, and region to be representative of all adults in Australia (18 years or older) and reflect the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) population estimates. Learn more about YouGov Surveys: Serviced.

Cover image by Alvarog1970