Admittedly when my editor approached me to write an article on the single life in Canberra, I was slightly apprehensive. What the hell am I going to discuss? I’m certainly no ambassador for dating LOL, I’m an independent female with far too many jobs and not enough time flicks hair.

I do, however, need to acknowledge the current dating landscape in Canberra which is hard to understand at times. There’s all these unspoken rules like, ‘don’t play games but play the game’ and ‘if you’re keen you need to pretend not to be’. I mean, imagine if you could catch a man like you could catch a Pokemon – that would be bloody brilliant!

These days it’s like a conflict of YOLOs. Should I just ‘YOLO it’ and approach them? Yes, actually, you should – why not? Our generation (Y) has developed an acute anxiety surrounding human interaction, thanks to being connected to our screens all day. Let’s not swipe right on Tinder, send them a charm on Happn or a creepy inbox message after a next-level CIA standard Facebook stalk, ok? For once, just walk up and say hi.

Forget about the initial fear of rejection because let me tell you, my most incredible date wasn’t set up via an app. It was while I was lining up to get into a bar and we ended up ditching our respective pals and headed to an intimate wine bar. And if I hadn’t approached that handsome human, I wouldn’t have spent the time I did making the greatest memories.

Speaking of bars, in my limited experience I’d say Hopscotch is a great venue for meeting eligible bachelors/bachelorettes. There’s not a lot of pretentious-ness and it always seems to be bustling with Canberra’s vast array of cultured humans. Not to mention, it’s so much nicer to meet someone face-to-face, you get a feel of their vibes… and height.

To help out my fellow singles I’ve compiled a little list of things to know and do (in my humble opinion) when approaching the dating scene in Canberra.


Practice common courtesy. If they buy the first drink, you buy the next. Being courteous can only be a good thing, especially on a first date.

Make sure you ask your date questions about what their hobbies are or what makes them happy – don’t just let them ask all the questions. This is a getting-to-know-one-another process after all.

Be open-minded. Arrive at the date with zero expectations, great people come in all shapes and sizes and as the saying goes ‘you can’t judge a book by its cover’.


Assume they will pay. This is the 21st century and guys don’t always have to pay on the first date. Also making assumptions is never a good idea.

Let your past govern your future dating life. Not all people are the same and as I said before it’s refreshing to arrive at a date with an open mind and zero expectations.

Talk about work the whole time, it’s unoriginal and boring. Unless you work in a panda enclosure – then please only talk about your work.

Now you know the dos and don’ts of Canberra dating, lets move on to some dating tips:

If your tight on cash – surprise them with a picnic.
It’s always a good idea and there’s such little expectation involved. Pro tip; make sure there’s a sunset and everything will be great.

Menu tasting – some restaurants invite the public to dine in and taste its up-coming menu. Sage’s current Taste and Test sessions let you savour an array of dishes and score them out of 10. It’s a really nice way to keep the conversation flowing and who doesn’t love eating?

Go karting – DO I NEED TO ELABORATE? No. Just don’t be boring AF and take it too seriously.

Breakfast – everyone’s favourite meal.

A day trek – perhaps for your fourth or fifth date.
Venture out to Booroomba Rocks for a mini hike. You’re pretty much guaranteed to have a deeper connection while you’re navigating through the wilderness. Plus, it’s hilarious to get lost together and find your way back. You’ll also discover who’s the bossier one.

A road trip – always seems to be a winner.
You can challenge each other’s Spotify playlists and chat about anything and everything, because you don’t have to look at them! Perfect opportunity to have the ‘what are we’ discussion.