Looking for love? Try the airport

Pepper Schwartz, a sociology professor at the University of Washington, believes that a busy airport is a prime meeting place for singles looking for love or just a little conversation. And to meet that special someone, you won’t need to make eyes above your newspaper, or ask the ticket agent to seat you next to a single male ala the movie “Singles.” Instead, Schwartz advocates either the direct approach (“Hi! You’re the most handsome man in the airport and I thought I’d come over and say hello.”) or the subtle approach (sit next to the person and make small talk). And now there’s another way to meet folks at the airport: online.

With online social networking becoming more and more popular, it’s no surprise that there’s a site dedicated to airport interactions. Peter Shankman founded AirTroductions.com, a site that was originally intended for business travelers to register itineraries and information about themselves so that they might take advantage of layover time for professional networking. But the site naturally evolved into a meeting place for “folks seeking personal connections.” AirTroductions will be relaunched as Triplife.com this December, but you can always try other travel-related social networking sites such as Dopplr to meet like-minded travelers looking for a little love.

As with any situation where you might approach a stranger, remember your manners and be aware of their personal space. Just because you can barely keep your mitts off the handsome hottie next to you in the waiting area doesn’t mean that said hottie necessarily wants to be fondled.

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GADLING’S TAKE FIVE: Week of July 8

GadlingTime for another week of random picks from the bloggers here at Gadling. Saddle up, simmer down and go solo on the slow train if you must.

5. Albertan Cowboy Culture: Where’s the Real Old West These Days?:

When my mind conjures images of cowboys on the open range or prairie searching for the type of things cowboys go looking for I don’t imagine them in Canada. This could just be me, but thanks to Martha the cowboys in my daydream have a new home in Alberta. Some are a little commercialized and others a bit more authentic, but you’ll have to read further for the details.

4. Why Trains Suck in America:
I’ve never taken a train in America. Have you? Ever wonder why so many Americans don’t? See why Neil thinks train transportation is basically dead in the U.S.

3. The Best U.S. Cities for Singles:
It’s summer time in the city and you’re single. Find out which city has the most singles and mosey on over to find your better half. That’s if you don’t like being single for the summer and all.

2. A Canadian in Beijing: Reverse Culture Shock:
Goodbyes and readjustment can be a tough job to tackle after a long excursion abroad. Ember hasn’t been home long and already she is back on the road touring with her band. Check out this last post in her series and find out where you can keep tabs on her future jaunts.

1. The “Wonders of the World” Votes are in!:

The world has made its final decision and the new seven wonders of the world are…

The Best U.S. Cities for Singles

You may recognize this “Singles” map from the February 2007 issue of National Geographic. It ranks the number of single women versus the number of single men in metropolitan areas, and you may be surprised at some of the results.

Girls, looking to travel to a bachelor-heavy area? The Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana metro area, for instance, has the highest population of single males, with 40,000 more than single women. On the flip side, guys, the New York-Newark urban area has 185,000 more single women than men.

What I find particularly interesting is Texas. Dallas, Austin, and Houston all have more single men than women, while San Antonio has more single women. With the influx of military personnel in San Antonio, I would have figured the opposite.

Sexiest Spots for Singles

Kiss on the beachWhen I was single, I always hoped that when I went on vacation, I’d meet a sexy woman willing to throw caution to the wind and we’d have a crazy fling. While I wish I could regale you with sexy stories of sexy times, I have to come clean: I never met those kinds of sexy women. It could’ve just been me, of course, but maybe I was going to the wrong places. But what are the right places?

  • According to Forbes, the top three cities to meet singles are Boston, Austin, and Washington D.C. (Atlanta squeaks in at number 10.)
  • MSNBC agrees that Washington D.C. is a good spot, but suggests visiting Amsterdam, Buenos Aires, Miami, Rome, Tokyo … and Juneau.
  • New York is a good option, especially if you’re a man.
  • Sperling says the top three cities for singles are Austin, Colorado Springs and San Diego. It ranks Atlanta as among the 10 worst places to meet singles.
  • Conversely, Love@AOL claims Atlanta is No. 1.

To me, it seems that it shouldn’t be so much about what city you’re in. It should be more about where you’re comfortable, and where you can be yourself. Consequently, I’m going to have to agree with Rate It All, which seems to argue that location isn’t as important as context. That site ranks the top 3 places to meet singles as school, a wedding, and on the bus.

[Photo: Michael Sarver]