Using human curation and AI, a local startup has made date night easier than ever.
Raleigh startup LetsGoRaleigh sends you personalized date plans that match your preferences and budget on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Launched by recent NC State graduates and Co-Founders Thomas Armstrong and Parker Mayes, the startup is focused on helping busy couples prioritize their relationships.
“We help couples make a habit out of date night,” Mayes said.
It is free, Armstrong said, but they are introducing a monthly subscription version soon, which offers ‘on-demand’ date night plans and reservations made for you to restaurants, activities, etc.
LetsGoRaleigh is participating in the current cohort of the NC State’s Andrews Launch Accelerator, a 14-week summer program where NC State-connected founders work on their concepts and build their companies. Past cohorts have included Triangle startups DNAli, TSV Analytics, ZuZu For Kids and Sovereign Energy.
After being heavily involved in entrepreneurship at NC State, Armstrong said the accelerator had been a dream of theirs.
“We’d actually applied in previous years with other concepts,” he said. “But nothing that was anywhere near the amount of validation and traction that we’ve gained with LetsGo.”
Since its initial beta test in December 2022, LetsGoRaleigh has grown to about 500 users located across the Triangle. Armstrong and Mayes expect to double that number in the next few weeks, then double again next month (and so on).
With the era of dating apps like Tinder and Bumble targeting singles in their 20s, the market targeting the stage after—meaning long-term relationships—is overlooked. Mayes said there were not many major players in the space.
They are only launched out of Raleigh right now, but as they launch new cities, they will have a designated city manager, ideally a local person who knows the best city spots.
The human element is really what creates that personal touch, Mayes said.
The pair collaborated on various ventures together during their time at NC State. One of them being The Entrepreneur House, a co-living community of entrepreneurs aged 20 to 26 located in Raleigh.
A new study even revealed about half of married couples don’t have regular date nights, but those who do are more likely to be happily married.
So, with additional inspiration from Raleigh-based Offline—one of GrepBeat’s 2022 Startups To Watch honorees—and San Francisco-based The Nudge, LetsGoRaleigh was born.
Their vision for the company goes beyond helping the well-being of individual couples, Mayes said. They hope the date nights and relationship-building will lead to more fulfilling and exciting lives, in turn creating positive community change.
“That’s really what gets me excited is the impact that we can have long term on a community, on a city,” he said.
Right now, Armstrong said they are working to expand to Charlotte and have started to build their waitlist.