Travel. Love.

Doesn’t the title sound like a romantic movie? Indeed, travel is often closely associated with love. Finding surreal love in the romantic city of Paris, for example. Shedding all pragmatic inhibitions and just letting yourself loose and doing what your heart tells you to. Ah, such an enviable life.

And in the new year, most singles would hope that this is the lucky year for them to find love. Well, Exalted Salvation offers a way for you to find your dream date while travelling, the way movies portray it! What do I mean?

An online dating website for the frequent flyer! If you’ve watched things like The Terminal or Up In The Air (I haven’t actually watched the latter but who wouldn’t want to meet George Clooney in an airport?), you’ll know that people have a hell lot of time to wait for the next flight. What better way to spend this time than to lounge in the departure hall, sipping an exquisite duty-free coffee and chatting it up with a stranger in comfortable surroundings?

I haven’t tried the service but apparently you input the terminal you’ll be at, your flight number and your interests, and they match you up with someone. For singles desperate to make new friends, try this while going on your business trip!

And while we’re at it, let me talk about what I feel about dating.

My parents met through the Social Development Unit’s programme. They were pen-pals who then turned to phone friends and then got married. Theirs was a pretty failed marriage right from the start, and perhaps it is because of their example that I grow wary of dating services. If a guy has no mutual friends with me, had no way of meeting me except through an artificial fix-up, knew nothing of my past, probably never intended to befriend me if not for this artificial fix-up, how do I trust him enough to spend the rest of my life with him?

I don’t believe in fate, but I think that if there was no reason for us to ever meet or become friends, then we should not force it.

Research has shown that people are more likely to develop romantic feelings with online people. It is a psychological thing, so they say (which should go under a Saturday or even Friday article but I don’t have enough information on it to warrant one anyway), that we tend to have a better impression of people we talk to online. There are many theories surrounding this in media studies, postulating that people are able to project a better impression of themselves online, and also perceive others to be better when faced with incomplete knowledge about them. There is a point in this, since long-distance relationships are becoming all too common nowadays. But naturally, I still draw a line between online friendships and online dating. Online dating is still a dating service, which I find is the main source of those online con cases you see in the newspapers.

But really, the worst con is marrying somebody who turns out to be one you didn’t expect.

The best places to meet new people is in gatherings of people with similar interests, such as anime conventions. In this case, perhaps this airport dating is not so bad after all. If you are interested in travel, you would be more likely to find someone also interested in travel through this service, wouldn’t you?


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