Skipping the COVID-19 vaccine could cost you sex, Bumble survey warns

Didn't get a shot in the arm? That could ruin your shot at romance.

Meara Isenberg Associate Writer
Meara covers streaming service news for CNET. She recently graduated from the University of Texas at Austin, where she wrote for her college newspaper, The Daily Texan, as well as for state and local magazines. When she's not writing, she likes to dote over her cat, sip black coffee and try out new horror movies.
Meara Isenberg
2 min read

No vaccine? Not so fast.


There's a lot to consider before going on a first date with someone you've met online. Do they seem nice? Funny? Will they understand my Rick and Morty references? Approve of my collection of weird socks? As coronavirus restrictions continue to ease, the bar has inched up. 

Dating app Bumble surveyed roughly 1,000 Americans in May, and 30% of them said they wouldn't go on a date or have sex with someone who hadn't received the COVID-19 vaccine. So if you've skipped the shot so far, it could cost you a first date.

Bumble, which also offers ways to meet friends and professionally network on its app, was founded by Whitney Wolfe Herd in 2014. When Bumble Inc. went public in February of this year, Herd became the youngest self-made woman billionaire, according to Forbes. Bumble's main point of difference? When two daters swipe right on Bumble, women are required to message first.

Along with other large US dating apps such as Tinder, Hinge, Match, OkCupid, BLK, Chispa, Plenty of Fish, and Badoo, Bumble is implementing new features to encourage people to get vaccinated. A "Vaccinated" badge, for example, launching this summer, will allow Bumble's US and UK users to indicate that they've received the vaccine on their profile. 

Bumble will also offer complimentary credits for premium features to those who enable the "Vaccinated" badge. These will include giving them the Spotlight, which advances their profiles to the top of the stack, and SuperSwipe, which lets them signal to a potential match that they stand out.

Bumble's research suggests the pandemic has dramatically altered social and sexual interactions

In the survey, commissioned by Bumble and carried out online in May by research company Censuswide, 91% of respondents said they believed there was no longer a stigma attached to meeting someone online or through a dating app since the pandemic began. 

In another survey, conducted by Research Without Barriers in 2021, 62% of respondents said it was important for them to talk about key social issues on a first date, such as gender equality, politics, race or the environment. And 75% of respondents said they would only date someone if a majority of their political and social views align. No one, unfortunately, said anything about socks.