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He was beginning a three-month solo journey through south-east Asia, and turned to the Tinder dating app to meet other travellers.

Matthew Neale used Tinder to meet other travellers and locals during a three-month trip to Thailand and Vietnam. It means you're interested in them and potentially match with them and have a conversation.

Dating apps such as Tinder are associated with hook-ups, or casual sexual encounters. But for travellers such as Mr Neale — typically aged 18 to 35 — dating apps may be as useful as a Lonely Planet guide book was to their parents. Mr Neale is one of 70 travellers from 23 countries who have shared their experiences of using the dating app while travelling with researchers from Western Sydney University. Garth Lean, a lecturer in geography Hookup someone who travels a lot urban studies, said the research, part of the TinDA Project examining travel in the digital age, was commenced in after his colleague Jenna Condie commented on the number of visitors to Sydney using Tinder.

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Apps such as Couchsurfer, Travello and Backpackr are designed specifically for travellers. Other dating apps include Bumble and Happn, Grindr for gay men as well as Stitch for people aged over But Dr Lean said Tinder was preferred because it was already on the smartphones of many young people, who were familiar with "performing Tinder".

The app also has a feature that allows users to change their location to a destination they intend to visit. Both researchers have also been Tinder tourists. Dr Lean, who initially thought of Tinder as a "quick sex app", opened an account to conduct research. Visiting Ethiopia, he had matches with two local women and a traveller. Dr Condie, who also used Tinder for research purposes in Nepal, said she discovered people on the dating app who were from her home town Hookup someone who travels a lot Britain.

The travellers surveyed by Dr Lean and Dr Condie did not use the dating app only to find sexual partners.

Other apps use GPS locators...

The first person Mr Neale met was a young Thai woman in Bangkok who took him to a night market frequented by locals. I was interested in what she could tell me about their culture and what people her age do in the city.

Ms Ung, 28, a finance worker, said she had positive experiences using Tinder while travelling solo across the US and Europe.

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However, she found that men in the US subverted the supposed anonymity of the dating app by sending messages or commenting on posts to her Instagram account, which she linked to Tinder — a phenomenon New York Magazine called Tindstagramming.

Dr Lean said Tinder presented travellers with opportunities for new social encounters, but time, the cost of phone data, safety and travelling companions were constraints. As Hookup someone who travels a lot Robson, a year-old medical student, put it: Lucie Robson found Tinder "quite a good resource" during a five-month solo trip to Canada and the US. But not every Tinder relationship is platonic. Mr Neale Hookup someone who travels a lot he was intimate with one Tinder date "and the rest were like meeting normally".

The safety and security implications of meeting people from dating apps is often highlighted, especially since the death of New Zealand woman Warriena Wright during a Tinder date with Gold Coast carpet layer Gable Tostee in A Tinder spokeswoman said users should make their intentions clear when travelling and follow its online safety tips such as informing friends and family of your plans and staying sober.

As Mr Neale put it: His suspicions were aroused when she asked him to leave his hotel room to retrieve a bag from her motorbike: You can get out of my room now'. She wanted me to leave the room with her in it so she could go through my shit and steal my passport or whatever else.

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