The Culture of Jewish Speed Dating

By | August 21, 2014

The whole concept of speed dating was the brainchild of Rabbi Yaacov Deyo of the Aish HaTorah. He was very concerned about the fate of single Jews in large cities including New York where the Jews were a minority and so he decided there should be an easy way for them to meet and mingle in the hope of meeting someone to bond with. The single word ‘speeddating’ is an Aish HaTorah trademark. Speed dating as we use it is a term used to describe the process.

Rabbi Yaacov promoted speed dating as a convenient, fun and stress-free way for Jewish singles to meet each other in the hope of finding an ideal life-partner. Increasingly fast paced life styles led to the growing success of speed dating with more and more singles finding this a convenient place to meet like-minded singles of the opposite sex in the hope of finding their perfect life-partner.

The Jewish speed dating event is essentially a social gathering. A group of as many as 100 singles or as few as 30 singles meet up with each other with the intention of finding a person who they would love to date and they exchange information during a series of timed conversations. The time limit of the conversations are pre-set by the organizers of the event. The groups are also organized according to age groups or professional levels to increase the chances of meeting another like-minded individual.

The orthodoxy of the Jewish culture is maintained at these speed-dating events. Conversations are duly monitored and last approximately seven to eight minutes between two members of the opposite sex. Participants formally shake hands with each other by way of introduction and only when a certain level of comfort is reached do the participants progress towards seeking a date with each other.

Statistics reveal that the success rate of these speed-dating events is rather high. Almost 50% of participants do find another single with similar interests and many of these meetings end up in marriage.

Each pair of individuals gets about seven minutes to chat and get to know and assess each other. If one person wants to know the other person some more and would live to meet up, they could post a ‘yes’ message against that person’s name and then move on to the next individual.

If the ‘yes’ messages are mutual the individuals are connected within about two days, either by a phone call or by e-mail. The matched couple will be given the others phone number so they could now communicate with one another and setup their own dates. Speed dating encourages individuals to meet several times in the effort of finding the perfect partner. 80% of individual do request repeat dates.

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