Online dating can be a pain, even with apps like Tinder offering easy access to potential partners in your area. But one TikTok user decided to take online dating to the next level during the COVID-19 pandemic, setting out to go on 50 dates in all 50 states. Now, he's grown that project into a brand, developing a following online.
Who is Matthew Wurnig? TikToker goes on 50 Dates in 50 States.
At the beginning of the COVID-19 lockdown, TikToker Matthew Wurnig was just another single 20-something swiping through Tinder. The dating app was running a promotion that allowed users to match with others across the country, a feature that typically is exclusive to Tinder Gold.
"I was like, man, what can I do? What can I create to make people smile or laugh?" Matthew said. "Once I started getting matches [across the country], I was like, 'Man, what if I tried to go on a virtual date in every single state?'"
He shared the highlights of some of these dates on his TikTok account, which now has more than 325,000 followers. His videos brought in thousands of views apiece as he continued to go on dates across the country.
"My followers were asking me 'Well, what's next?'" he said. Matthew completed all 50 dates as the country began opening up. "I was like, well, you know, I got to up the ante here. And so I decided to hit the road and go meet them all in person."
In a custom-wrapped vehicle, Matthew drove across the country to go on a second, in-person date with all of the women he met online. He met up with 38 of the original 50 and even met some of his followers on dates in the remaining 12.
Since the COVID-19 lockdown began, Matthew has now been on 100 dates across the country and grown 50 Dates 50 States into a brand of his own.
Will there be a Season 2 of 50 Dates 50 States? Matthew is setting his eyes on a reality show.
Throughout his dating process, Matthew said he was contacted by a handful of producers interested in turning his experience into a reality dating show or docuseries.
"We think it has a lot of potential," he said. "It's almost like you combine Miss America with The Bachelor."
While he doesn't yet have a reality show deal, at the very least, Matthew said he wants to do a 50 Dates 50 States Season 2.
"I've thought about getting a new Bachelor and then a whole new group of dates where I'd become more of like a host type role like a Chris Harrison," Matthew said. "Or do I do it again because my followers have started to develop a connection with me and my personality? I'd have to really make sure that that new person fit a certain criteria and they were good on camera and fun."
Regardless, it seems if you didn't get a chance to date on Matthew's first national tour, you'll have another shot.