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What is a passport bro? Growing number of men are ditching American women to find love overseas

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A growing subset of men in the United States are turning away from American women and choosing to search for love abroad.

The viral movement, coined as “passport bros” on TikTok, refers to men seeking foreign women who they believe come from more conservative backgrounds and, therefore, place more emphasis on family and loyalty.

“In many cases, these passport bros claim to seek out non-western women out of frustration or wanting something new. They often blame feminism and impossible standards by U.S. women as the reason for them seeking out relationships overseas,” dating coach Eddie Hernandez said.

Relationship experts, coaches, and other experts who spoke with Fox News Digital said the term has gotten significantly more traction thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic and an abundant work-from-home (WFH) culture.

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Passport bros men leaving US for dates

Remote workers, particularly men, are heading out of the United States to find romantic partners overseas.  (Photo by Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images/Eva Marie Uzcategui/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

As of 2023, 12.7% of full-time employees work from home, while 28.2% of employees have adapted to a hybrid work model. These numbers are significantly higher for the tech field, with 85% of tech workers either fully remote or in a hybrid role; 48% are fully remote.

According to Upwork, an estimated 32.6 million Americans will work remotely, which comprises approximately 22% of the workforce.

“After people were forced to work remotely, many companies realized that people’s work was just as good or even better when they were out of the office. Some people also may be experiencing wanderlust due to being cooped up in their homes for so long, which may make the thought of a romance abroad extra enticing,” Suzannah Weiss, a relationship coach and AASECT-certified sex educator said.

However, experts suggest that many other factors have contributed to remote workers, particularly men, turning outside their own country in search of romantic relationships.

Dr. James Braham, an education expert and researcher analyzing conceptual foundations of biology, said that many of the reasons behind the trend are varied. Still, many of these individuals believe that Western women have adopted attitudes and behaviors that don’t align with their values and preferences.

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phone displaying multiple dating apps

Various dating apps can be seen on the display of an iPhone SE. (Silas Stein/picture alliance via Getty Images)

“Many passport bros express a sense of disconnection from the dating culture in their home country, which they perceive as being influenced by elements they find unappealing, such as excessive feminism, materialism, and a perceived lack of commitment and loyalty in relationships,” he said.

Experts found that some men have shifted their romantic aspirations toward various international regions, particularly Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America, hoping to find someone with more conservative or traditional values.

The attraction of Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe, and Latin America as preferred destinations for passport bros seeking love and companionship lies in the perceptions and stereotypes associated with these regions. Southeast Asian countries are often seen as places where women are raised with a strong sense of respect and commitment to family, which is highly appealing to these men,” Braham said.

Furthermore, these men also believe that Eastern Europe is regarded as a place where women embrace traditional gender roles. At the same time, Latin America is seen as a place where warmth, passion, and family values are prevalent, according to Abraham.

Paula Pardel of Bloom Matchmaking added that these men often value women who are happy to be homemakers and mothers and take care of their needs while the man is the sole supporter.

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dating app relationships

A mann goes on to a dating app on his phone. (Cyberguy.com)

“This sort of arrangement can be beneficial to both parties as long as both know what they are getting into. Open and honest communication is very important about needs and wants in the relationship,” she added.

But more standard motivations for dating overseas, shared by both men and women, have led more young male remote workers to consider romantic relationships outside of their area code.

Since the pandemic broke out, an increase of 50% in connections and conversations has been witnessed across geographical borders, according to OkCupid. Daters were also engaged in 10% more interracial relationships and there was a 15% increase in those who said they would date different religions and cultures.

In 2020, Tinder recorded a 7x increase in member’s use of the Passport feature, with 16% of all active members engaged with people overseas.  

Certified relationship expert, life coach, lifestyle blogger, and co-founder of MoodFresher Aditya Kashyap Mishra told Fox News Digital that the “allure of adventure” is a significant factor driving this trend among American men.

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“For those with remote work arrangements, the freedom to work from anywhere in the world presents an opportunity to explore new cultures, immerse themselves in different environments, and meet fascinating people. The desire for novel experiences and the thrill of embarking on a romantic journey in an unfamiliar land can be irresistible,” he said.

Mishra said that cultural curiosity, language barriers and exoticism can also play a substantial role in pursuing relationships overseas.

“The language barrier can often be seen as an enigmatic challenge rather than an obstacle,” Mishra added. “American men may find the allure of learning a new language or communicating through a language barrier as an exciting and romantic endeavor.”

Relationship expert and Nomadrs founder Tiffany McGee, whose work is inspired by her journey as a digital nomad, said the yearning to date overseas stems from the psychological concept known as “novelty-seeking behavior,” where new experiences release dopamine in the brain.

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passport with travel documents

Passport bros have faces significant criticism for their methods.  (iStock)

Additionally, “relative deprivation” also plays a role, wherein men may compare their relationship options back home unfavorably to what they perceive to be available in other countries.

But criticism of the movement has been plentiful and experts have warned that there could be negative ramifications for this modern trend.

Weiss said some of the motivations for passport bros stem from “sexist ideas” of American women being overly independent or having excessively high standards.

“As women in the U.S. become more outspoken and emboldened to ask for what they want, some men feel that they’d prefer women in other countries who will be more unconditionally devoted to them,” she said. “Lastly, the movement actually began with Black men, so it could have to do with the way that Black men are treated in the U.S. — though it also seems that some of it is based on negative perceptions of U.S. Black women.”

She stressed that it was important to note that some passport bros have been implicated in sex tourism and sex trafficking, underscoring the reality that not everyone under the moniker is simply moving to find relationships.

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Linda Whiteside, a lead clinical counselor at the NuView Treatment Center in Los Angeles, California, said there is a real risk of ignoring the challenges of navigating cross-cultural relationships.

“Dating someone who has a different culture from yours comes with a whole lot of challenges – such as adjusting to the traditions and learning their ways and how they navigate relationships. And this can be a bit much for people who are not psychologically and emotionally ready,” she said.

For men who fail to understand and adapt, these passport bros, Whiteside predicted, might be quickly dissatisfied once again and find themselves In another country back at square one.

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Braham noted that critics have argued this trend may perpetuate unequal power dynamics and objectify women from other countries, potentially reducing them to stereotypes that do not accurately represent their diverse backgrounds and life experiences.

“This criticism underscores the importance of approaching international dating with respect, sensitivity and open-mindedness,” he said.

For more Culture, Media, Education, Opinion and channel coverage, visit foxnews.com/media.


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