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From app to altar: How a first move on Bumble led this Filipina to say “I Do” at her own Bumble-themed wedding

Love knows no bounds, and for this 32-year old podcast host and content creator, it all started with a match on the app that started a movement by putting women in charge when dating. From missed connections to second chances, Joelle and her partner Leni showcased the power of love and the magic of perfect timing by tying the knot on April 4, 2024 with a little help from their ultimate matchmaker, Bumble.

Embracing a non-traditional wedding where every detail, from the decor to the vows, was a tribute to the romance that brought them together, Joelle and Leni carefully curated every detail to reflect the essence of their Bumble success story. From the Bumble-yellow arrangements adorning the venue, bee-themed cake buzzing with excitement, and vows that echo the language of their Bumble journey, promising to be kind through thick and thin, their wedding is a reminder that love can be found in unexpected places.

Joelle’s journey from app to altar is also about rewriting the rules of dating.  Finding new connections through dating apps has become the norm, with more people seeking meaningful relationships through social networking platforms like Bumble—according to the popular dating app, 1 in 2 Filipino singles surveyed (49%) would consider using an online dating app to meet potential partners in the future, with 45% of women stating that they are open to do so*.

Bumble’s APAC Communication Director Lucille McCart says: “Today, we raise a toast to Joelle and Leni as they welcome an exciting new journey as a couple who took a chance on love through dating apps. Their story reminds us why we do what we do at Bumble—to help people find meaningful connections, nurture healthy relationships, all while empowering women to make the first move. We’re so honoured and grateful to have been part of their amazing journey, serving as the little matchmaker in their #BumbleSuccessStory. We hope this lights the way for our Bumble community, reminding them to keep their hearts open as they go through their own path to finding love and building healthy, fulfilling relationships.

On Making the First Move

In 2022, Bumble revealed that 62% of people surveyed** state that men are expected to take the lead in dating and relationships, while only 17% think women should do so. However, it’s worth noting the power of making the first move and Joelle personified this power when she initiated the conversation, asked for the first date, and said the first ‘I love you’.

It’s incredible to think that something as simple as making the first move on Bumble led me to this moment,” says Joelle. “In a world where we often wait for things to happen, it’s empowering to take control of your own dating journey and pursue who you truly want—and that’s exactly what I did! I married my Bumble match—thanks to Bumble, my ultimate matchmaker. By making the first move, I believe it set the tone for a healthy relationship built on equality, kindness, and mutual respect.

How to marry your Bumble match? For singles looking to turn a connection into a lifelong relationship and marry their Bumble match, Joelle herself shares insights on her own path to #BumbleSuccessStory:

• Be clear about what you’re looking for. Before you get swiping, take a moment to consider what you want in a relationship and from a potential partner. When I was dating, I was initially looking for fun and I made sure to indicate this on my profile. When I was ready to settle down, I became more intentional with my conversations and added that I was ‘looking for a relationship’ as one of my Lifestyle Badges.

Set up a fun Bumble profile. No matter what kind of connection you’re looking for, you’ll have the most success by using Bumble’s many features to capture who you really are. Your first photo is your first impression– so make it your best! When I set up a Bumble profile, I made sure to reflect the real me – fun, adventurous, and a little bit quirky! 

As a radio DJ and voice-over artist, I decided to keep my profile description short but sweet. I dubbed myself a ‘voice in a box,’ a playful nod to my profession that never failed to spark curiosity. Every match I encountered couldn’t resist asking what that meant, and it always served as a great icebreaker, paving the way for engaging conversations.

• Be open to dating outside your type. While I was clear with what I wanted, I was still open to exploring new connections. Bumble coined a trend called ‘open-casting’*** which refers to how more than 1 in 3 (38%) people around the world are now more open to who they consider dating beyond their ‘type’ and more than 1 in 4 (28%) of us are placing less emphasis on dating people that others ‘expect’ them to.

But while it’s important to be open-minded, don’t compromise on your values and deal-breakers. Be willing to meet different people, but stay true to yourself!

• Know when to let go. Not every match will lead to a healthy relationship, and that’s okay. Trust your instincts and don’t hesitate to move on if the connection doesn’t feel right. I learned that the sooner you let go, the sooner you’ll meet the person who’s a better match for you!

• Fall for their reality, instead of their potential. It’s easy to get swept away by someone’s potential, but focus on their reality. Pay attention to how they treat you and others, their values, and their actions. I focused on who they were at that time and from there, I tried to see if that matched who I was at that time!”

Bumble is free to download and is widely available in the Apple App Store, Google Play Store and the web.

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Dexter Francis De Vera is a manila-based art director with over 20 years extensive experience in the media industry producing editorials and advertising, retail space design (store displays), and more. His inspiration has always been the most powerful and most influential segment of the design world—fashion. As managing editor, he is responsible for curating, developing and overseeing editorial and social media content for iEventetc. Keep in touch with Dexter through [email protected]