Tinder Says 2020 Was Its Busiest Year Despite COVID Pandemic 

Even under the threat of COVID-19, people turned to dating apps more than ever before

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Tinder. Photo: Illustration by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty

With many social activities being placed on hiatus due to COVID-19, many people around the country turned to dating apps to aid their search for love.

So many people, in fact, that Tinder had its busiest year ever.

The California-based company tells PEOPLE it saw a record amount of activity on the platform in 2020, even under the veil of a pandemic.

"Tinder's engagement and activity grew significantly throughout 2020 with 11% more Swipes and 42% more matches per member," the company says in a statement.

Tinder's announcement reaffirms a trend that many dating apps — such as Match, OkCupid, and Plenty of Fish — saw early last year: that despite safety concerns and lockdowns, the need for companionship remained strong amongst America's singles.

"On March 29, 2020, Tinder's Swipe activity broke 3 billion in a single day, the first time to do so, then broke that single-day, 3 billion record, 130 more times in the last year," a Tinder spokesperson tells PEOPLE.

The company, which launched in September 2012, recently released a "Future of Dating Report," which looked at the effects of the pandemic on dating.

In the report, Tinder said Gen Z — many of whom are in their early 20s today — sent 19 percent more messages per day in February 2021 than February 2020. Their conversations were also 32 percent longer during the pandemic. (To help spur conversation, Gen Z users updated their bios three times more often than they did before the age of COVID-19, the company added.)

But dating hopefuls aren't the only ones to make changes during the pandemic.

Earlier this year, Tinder, along with other dating apps, announced incentives for users to get vaccinated, including special "I'm vaccinated" badges for people who want to share their status. Video chatting has also become more popular.

RELATED VIDEO: Jennifer Garner Jokes 'No One Swipes' on Her Tinder Profile but Tyler Cameron Says He's 'Swiping Right'

For some who have risked venturing out into the digital dating world during the pandemic, the efforts have been life-changing.

Real-estate agent Gordon von Broock and hairstylist Alix Mane met through Instagram and began dating earlier this year, they told the Associated Press. Today, they're engaged.

"I've been divorced twice and have four children," Mane told the outlet. "If we weren't in the COVID-19 situation, knowing that Gordon had never been married, was 53 years old and never had children would be kind of a little red flag for me. I would have been a red flag for him. ... But we got right to the point."

Added von Broock: "If we had met in different circumstances I would be, no way, but we had the time to really get to know each other."

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