A fifth of singletons admit to taking a friend on a date with them

Research polling 2,000 UK singles who have actively dated in the last five years found, of those who have involved pals in their dating life, 51 per cent had them show up in secret at the location.

While 48 per cent wished they could take their mates on dates, six in 10 (59 per cent) enjoy the preamble and dating debriefs with pals more than the event itself.

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And a chum’s involvement starts from the beginning, according to the survey, with almost three quarters (72 per cent) of singles canvassing opinions from friends and family before even saying yes to a romantic endeavour.

While friends are the most common choice to confer with about courting (50 per cent), colleagues (28 per cent) and siblings (23 per cent) are also popular confidants.

But 59 per cent said supportive friends and family make them feel more confident as they navigate the dating world.

Needing a boost before a date

The study also uncovered that it takes more than two people to make a date happen, in addition to the dater themselves, from the buddies that boost confidence (59 per cent) or advise on outfits (24 per cent) to the strangers that make you smile en route (24 per cent).

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Plenty of Fish has teamed up with Author and Poet, Charly Cox, to create ‘Thank You Notes’ - a digital collection of poetry based on the real-life dating stories of British singles, offering a nod of thanks to the stars who have played an unexpected role in their search for love.

Kate MacLean, Resident Dating Expert said: “Sometimes we get so caught up in the desired outcome of a date, we forget about those who help us get there.

“Dating is a journey and it’s the people around us, our support circles, who can help to take the pressure off.

“Creating ‘Thank You Notes’ is a celebration of dating and the unexpected charm that can be found in the journey - something we see our Plenty of Fish members enjoy every day as they connect with others as part of a singles community.”

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The study also found these ‘date mates’ extend beyond family and friends, with 31 per cent seeking love advice from strangers they meet out and about or on the commute.

Restaurant staff (14 per cent), taxi drivers (13 per cent), bartenders (13 per cent), baristas (10 per cent) and train attendants en route (11 per cent) have also been cited as boosting the confidence of starry-eyed singletons before a date.

Brits also confide in their exes

It also emerged exes even play a part, with 16 percent of singles confiding in a past partner before the date.

More than two thirds (69 per cent) of those surveyed via OnePoll have been encouraged by their mates to go on a date with someone who isn’t their usual type.

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But more than eight in 10 (85 per cent) have learnt more from dates that flopped, than those that were successful.

Preparations and pre-date conversations with friends begin an average of two days before the main eventThe most popular rituals include sharing information about their romantic interest (32 per cent), looking them up on social media (30 per cent), and sourcing date location recommendations (27 per cent).

When it comes to live updates, 45 per cent of singletons send messages during the date, while more than a third (38 per cent) take it as far as phoning a friend.

On average, singles will spend two hours talking to pals about an upcoming date, as 59 per cent feel more confident when doing so, and a third (30 per cent) said it helps calm their nerves.

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Charly Cox, Author and Poet, added: “I’ve loved translating the journeys and experiences of people’s dating lives into poetry - and giving a well-deserved nod to those unsung heroes who play such a huge role in the early stages”

“It’s been wonderful to celebrate the everyday interactions that can have a positive impact on our lives.”

“This collection of poetry is a wonderful reminder to enjoy the process, find joy in the nuanced, and hold tight the people you meet along the way, whether that’s on your search for love or elsewhere” To read the Thank You Notes poetry collection, visit: https://blog.pof.com/2022/05/test-pdf-file/