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Study: major Alabama cities some of the worst spots for singles


Some of Alabama’s biggest cities are among the worst spots for singles. That’s according to the financial website WalletHub. Analysts looked into 182 areas for the Best & Worst Cities for Singles (2024) report. They compared things like online and in-person dating opportunities, the number of singles in the city, costs for outings, nightlife options and the average bill for a dinner date.

Huntsville, Birmingham, Montgomery and Mobile all did poorly across most of the categories. Each spot ranked in at the bottom of the study, but the Rocket City scored the highest on decent prices for a two-person meal.

Cassandra Happe is a WalletHub analyst. She said while prices aren’t bad in Huntsville, dating doesn’t have to break the bank.

“Don't rule out more alternative date ideas, especially if you know that the person you're going to be going out with is maybe interested in something different,” she explained. “If they're nature buffs, maybe they would prefer to go for a nice nature walk versus sitting in a crowded restaurant. That's a good way to save money versus spending money on a meal,” Happe continued. “You can always pack a picnic and go for a walk instead of going to a restaurant. [Or] take advantage of happy hours and special pricing.”

Montgomery was the lowest ranked Alabama city overall out of the bunch. The area came in at the 169th spot out of the 182 cities. Happe said this was due to poor scoring on fun and recreation and dating opportunities.

“They had some lower scores for accessibility and walkability in that city. So, it's just not as easy to get around if you're not using a vehicle,” she explained. “And the balance between singles, between the two genders, there's not a good balance of male and female compared to some other cities.”

The Magic City ranked in at number 130 out of 182. Happe said low annual income and security were the biggest factors that contributed to the near-the-bottom ranking.

“Working on improving the safety, or at least the perception of safety, in that city would go a long way,” she said. “And the other thing is, they also scored lower when it came to the singles gender balance.”

Happe said dating can be enjoyable with a night out on the town or a lively music festival. But she also said dating can be more about experiences and spending time with your potential partner versus the classic dinner and a movie.

“If you're dating, if you're searching for that lifelong connection… a big part of it is just getting out and having fun and being around other people,” she said. “Dating usually means a series of successes and failures. So, being able to know that you can have fun and do it on a budget is a big thing to consider.”

While some people might be looking for love, nearly 47% of the U.S. adult population is unmarried (never married, divorced, or widowed), according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Additionally, 57% of single adults aren’t interested in a relationship or casual dating. That’s according to the Pew Research Center.

Finances are often a subject of debate within relationships, especially when it comes to sharing details about balances and transactions with a significant other.

Andrea Tinker is a student intern at Alabama Public Radio. She is majoring in News Media with a minor in African American Studies at The University of Alabama. In her free time, Andrea loves to listen to all types of music, spending time with family, and reading about anything pop culture related.

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