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“In North America flirting is fun but Germans take it much more seriously.

In North America, it’s playful on dates whereas Germans treat it as a job interview.” Dating culture Many Germans’ detailed and analytical nature, however, has boded well for online dating, observes Shoup.

“All cities have a different vibe, and Hamburg is much more family-focused,” says Shoup, who was struck by all the mini-vans she initially saw on the street.

“I have advised people to go there if looking for something serious, but with patience I think you can meet someone anywhere.” Even in cities such as Berlin, she advised Germans and expats alike to get involved with meet-ups, whether cooking or dancing, to meet people with similar interests.

In the US it’s easy to go to a bar or a club and begin chatting with a potential mate, whereas in Germany, “people tend to stick to themselves,” says Shoup, who now works with singles throughout the country.

It’s more typical to get to know someone through an existing circle of friends, through work or through neighbours, she observed.

“Dating here is definitely difficult,” he said with a tone of resignation.

“Everyone thinks they can find someone who’s a better fit, and people often don’t really try to get deeply involved with each other anymore.” Shy about approaching a woman in German or English, Max, 30, turned to the app Tinder to find a partner, contrary to its application as an app for easy hook-ups.

“I guess it’s easier to start talking to someone when you’re already laughing about the same things.” Outside of Berlin Shoup herself turned to online dating when she did not meet anyone with serious potential in Berlin.The group Inter Nations is another resource for both expats and internationally minded Germans, and where a handful of people she knows have met their mates.She also urged singles to give speed dating a shot - even if just for practice making small talk with strangers.Canadian expat Laurel Robbins encountered similar challenges in Munich.Recently single after a 10-year-long relationship with a German, she headed to an Irish pub with some friends, noticing that no one there was mingling with strangers - even after a couple beers - as they would in North America.

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