Letterman and Tiger caught cheating, divorce on the down because of the economy and people like The Bachelor's Melissa Rycroft getting dumped on national television were some of the sensational trends and highlights of 2009. And in the same calendar year, that former bachelor/dumper Jason Mesnick started his own safe online haven for single parents, and former Eliot Spitzer call girl Ashley Dupre was "rewarded" with an advice column in the New York Post.
Sensational headlines aside, what's in store for singles in 2010? SingleEdition.com put our trend watchers on the lookout and here are some of their predictions:
Starting Businesses on a Single Income: A flailing economy and high unemployment will continue to push people towards starting up their own new businesses. We suspect that an increasing number of them will be single income entrepreneurs. Of course the tax breaks offered by the Obama administration to small businesses will be added inspiration! Yes it's true, under the small business tax break, small businesses are able to claim up to 50 percent when they purchase new assets, including computers, before 31 December 2009. So hurry up if you need to get a PC, because the deadline is fast approaching!
Mobile Love: While big name dating sites like Match.com will continue to unleash applications that introduce singles to one another on the fly, also on the horizon for 2010 is a steady stream of flirty and fun voice-enabled social networking and dating tools. Teligence, a Canadian-based company, is ahead of the game, giving new meaning (and function) to group chatlines by allowing individuals to connect using LiveLinks for fun, friendly and flirty conversations. Available in 1,300 markets across North America, LiveLinks may just give those big dating sites a run for their money.
Solo Travel Remains a Big Focus: In 2009 we heard about the first singles-only matchmaking flight to New Zealand followed by a Royal Caribbean Cruise for Cougars in the Fall. Tour and hospitality providers will continue to recognize the solo travel segment, offering specialty trips and discounts to independent travelers. In fact, Single Cruise International and Dating Coach Kira Sabin have already organized a single women's only makeover cruise that is scheduled to set sail sometime in the New Year. And once again, our partner, Escape to Shape, has extended a super saving of 25% to SingleEdition.com readers for an exclusive and magical seven-night journey to Marrakech, Morocco. All vacations are scheduled for May 2010 and subject to availability.
Surrogates for Single Men: Though it’s hard to calculate surrogacy statistics accurately, all evidence shows that surrogacy has been experiencing a baby boom. Single by choice moms will be accompanied by an increasing number of unmarried men who choose to go down the parenting route. With the increasing number of single straight men looking to start their own biological families, this baby boom among single dads will not necessarily be a gay-man phenomenon.
Do It Yourself Dining: Food is personal so it makes sense that the focus this year will be on individuality among consumers. The "I, Me, Mine" trend predicted by the Food Network for 2010 will have more people brewing their own beer, curing their own meats and customizing restaurant meals based on personal tastes and preferences.
By Sherri Langburt for SingleEdition.com