The 10 Loneliest Places to Live on Valentine’s Day

🎵One is the loneliest number that you’ll ever dooooo…🎵

Each year, a flock of Cupids pours over the country and takes aim at unsuspecting citizens inside dimly lit restaurants, dreamily appointed gazebos, and the backseats of 14-year-old station wagons.

Unfortunately (or fortunately, let’s be real), they often miss those of us who remain at home binge-watching romcoms in our basement.

But don’t worry, you’re not alone in being alone.

Millions of lonely hearts across the nation reserve tables for one during this Hallmark-sanctioned love month. (More breadsticks for you, amirite?)

So what parts of the country are least likely to be stricken by the love bug? Grab your coziest blanket, crank this song (trust us), and read on to learn the loneliest places to live on Valentine’s Day.

Factors we considered

We utilized the most recent US Census Bureau1 and Google Trends2 data to determine the loneliest places to live in America. Here are the factors used in our rankings:

  • The percentage of single individuals vs. married individuals age 20 and older in each state
  • A loneliness index informed by Google Trends data

We based our loneliness index on fifteen search queries that we divided into three categories—each of which we assigned a loneliness rating

Loneliness index category ratings

Index categoryLonelyModerately lonelyRomantic
Category rating123
Index category
Category rating
Lonely Moderately lonely Romantic
1 2 3

If you’re interested in what phrases we included in our index and how we calculated our rankings, check out our methodology section.

#1: District of Columbia

The District of Columbia isn’t just home to our nation’s capital—it’s also home to our nation’s loneliest group of people. The US Census Bureau reports that 70% of DC’s adult population is single, which is more than 20% higher than any other region in the country.

It’s not all bad news, however. DC residents search for “best dating apps” more than any of the other queries on our list, so at least they’re looking for love!

District of Columbia’s loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
170.10%Best dating appsModerately lonely
Rank
1
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
70.10% Best dating apps Moderately lonely

#2: South Carolina

Sliding into the number two spot is South Carolina. Nearly 49% of the Palmetto State’s population is single, and its most searched term was “I’m lonely” (a common trend among our top ten).

South Carolina’s loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
248.94%I’m lonelyLonely
Rank
2
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
48.94% I’m lonely Lonely

#3: Arizona

Arizona may have joined the union on February 14, but its residents certainly aren’t feeling the love. Although it has a singles rate only 0.05% lower than South Carolina, Arizona’s total number of unmarried residents is nearly double.

So if you’re looking for love, you might find it in beautiful, sunny Arizona.

Arizona’s loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
348.89%I’m lonelyLonely
Rank
3
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
48.89% I’m lonely Lonely

#4: Illinois

It doesn’t seem like the Windy City’s home state is blowing many kisses since it ranks as the fourth loneliest place to live in America.

However, Kate MacLean, PR generalist for online dating service Plenty of Fish, reports that a lot of Chicago residents are at least searching for a soulmate—Chicago has one of the highest concentrations of the site’s users in the country.

Illinois’s loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
448.52%I’m lonelyLonely
Rank
4
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
48.52% I’m lonely Lonely

#5: Vermont

Vermont’s the next place on our list that seems to expect a lonely Valentine’s Day. In fact, “loneliness” is Vermont’s most searched term from the phrases in our loneliness index.

Vermont’s loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
548.09%LonelinessLonely
Rank
5
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
48.09% Loneliness Lonely

#6: Michigan

Although Michigan’s surrounded by giant freshwater lakes, the water might get a little saltier this time of year (😢): the Great Lakes State is the sixth loneliest place to live in America.

Michigan’s percentage of single adults comes in just below 48%, putting the dating pool at about 3.5 million people. So there are plenty of options for Michiganders who are still looking for a Valentine’s Day date!

Michigan's loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
647.82%I’m lonelyLonely
Rank
6
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
47.82% I’m lonely Lonely

#7: Alaska

Alaska boasts a population density of about 1.1 people per square mile,3 so it should come as no surprise that its most searched term from our index was “loneliness.”

With so much open space, singles need to go to great lengths to find love in Alaska. But hey, at least it’s easier than finding it in DC (the loneliest place to live on our list).

Alaska's loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
747.58%LonelinessLonely
Rank
7
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
47.58% Loneliness Lonely

#8: Maine

Maine is the only state in the nation with a single-syllable name—so it seems all too appropriate that it’s home to so many single people.

Maine’s percentage of singles is 46.82%, which means almost 500,000 people are legally unattached.

Maine's loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
846.82%LonelinessLonely
Rank
8
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
46.82% Loneliness Lonely

#9: Oklahoma

Oklahoma ranks as the ninth loneliest place to live in America. And based on its most-searched term from our loneliness index, we’d say Sooners are probably okay with that.

Oklahomans googled “Anti Valentines Day” more than any other phrase from our list, so we’d say it’s a good place to live if you’re looking for something unromantic to do on February 14.

Oklahoma's loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
946.51%Anti Valentines DayLonely
Rank
9
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
46.51% Anti Valentines Day Lonely

#10: Kentucky

Last but not least, the tenth loneliest place to live is Kentucky.

“I’m lonely” is the most searched phrase here, so a whole lot of people seem to feel blue in the Bluegrass State.

Oklahoma's loneliness data

RankSingles (%)Most searched queryIndex category
1046.20%I’m lonelyLonely
Rank
10
Singles (%) Most searched query Index category
46.20% I’m lonely Lonely

Methodology

We ranked each state based on two factors: each state’s percentage of singles and a loneliness index. The percentage of singles was taken from the 2017 US Census Bureau estimates and includes anyone that’s not currently married and is twenty years old or older.

The Census Bureau’s youngest age group for this data ranges from 15 to 19 years old. We opted not to include this subset since it started at such a young age and nearly 98% are single.

The loneliness index was determined based on search queries using Google Trends. We divided these queries into “loneliness index categories” and assigned each category a rating from one to three (of course, one is the loneliest number).

The percent of singles made up 60% of the final score and the loneliness index made up the remaining 40%.

The following list includes our chosen search queries sorted into their assigned loneliness index categories:

Loneliness index

Category 1: Lonely

  • “I’m lonely”
  • “Loneliness”
  • “Anti Valentines Day”

Category 2: Moderately lonely

  • “How to find love”
  • “Best dating apps”
  • “Matchmaker”
  • “Speed dating”
  • “Dating advice”

Category 3: Romantic

  • “Date ideas”
  • “Honeymoon destinations”
  • “Wedding ideas”
  • “Romantic getaways”
  • “Valentines Day”
  • “Relationship advice”
  • “Open relationship”

Complete rankings for the loneliest states in America

RankStatePercentage of SinglesLoneliness RankFinal Score (out of 10)
1District of Columbia70.10%23.6
2South Carolina48.94%13.29
3Arizona48.89%13.29
4Illinois48.52%13.27
5Vermont48.09%13.25
6Michigan47.82%13.24
7Alaska47.58%13.23
8Maine46.82%13.2
9Oklahoma46.51%13.19
10Kentucky46.20%13.18
11New Hampshire44.41%13.11
12Montana43.77%13.08
13Iowa42.83%13.04
14New York52.09%22.88
15Nevada50.90%22.83
16Rhode Island50.63%22.82
17Florida50.46%22.82
18Massachusetts49.71%22.79
19California49.44%22.77
20Connecticut49.03%22.76
21Pennsylvania48.55%22.74
22Hawaii47.32%22.69
23New Jersey46.82%22.67
24Arkansas46.22%22.65
25Colorado45.59%22.62
26Washington45.40%22.61
27Louisiana53.34%32.56
28New Mexico52.76%32.53
29Wyoming42.54%22.5
30Mississippi51.84%32.5
31Idaho41.15%22.44
32Alabama49.14%32.39
33Maryland49.08%32.39
34Georgia48.81%32.38
35Delaware48.79%32.38
36Ohio48.41%32.36
37Missouri47.27%32.31
38West Virginia47.14%32.31
39North Carolina47.04%32.31
40Oregon46.94%32.3
41Tennessee46.65%32.29
42Indiana46.53%32.29
43Texas46.28%32.28
44Virginia45.78%32.26
45Wisconsin45.46%32.24
46South Dakota44.38%32.2
47Minnesota43.64%32.17
48North Dakota43.47%32.16
49Kansas42.90%32.14
50Nebraska42.18%32.11
51Utah38.14%31.95
Rank
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State Percentage of Singles Loneliness Rank Final Score (out of 10)
District of Columbia 70.10% 2 3.6
South Carolina 48.94% 1 3.29
Arizona 48.89% 1 3.29
Illinois 48.52% 1 3.27
Vermont 48.09% 1 3.25
Michigan 47.82% 1 3.24
Alaska 47.58% 1 3.23
Maine 46.82% 1 3.2
Oklahoma 46.51% 1 3.19
Kentucky 46.20% 1 3.18
New Hampshire 44.41% 1 3.11
Montana 43.77% 1 3.08
Iowa 42.83% 1 3.04
New York 52.09% 2 2.88
Nevada 50.90% 2 2.83
Rhode Island 50.63% 2 2.82
Florida 50.46% 2 2.82
Massachusetts 49.71% 2 2.79
California 49.44% 2 2.77
Connecticut 49.03% 2 2.76
Pennsylvania 48.55% 2 2.74
Hawaii 47.32% 2 2.69
New Jersey 46.82% 2 2.67
Arkansas 46.22% 2 2.65
Colorado 45.59% 2 2.62
Washington 45.40% 2 2.61
Louisiana 53.34% 3 2.56
New Mexico 52.76% 3 2.53
Wyoming 42.54% 2 2.5
Mississippi 51.84% 3 2.5
Idaho 41.15% 2 2.44
Alabama 49.14% 3 2.39
Maryland 49.08% 3 2.39
Georgia 48.81% 3 2.38
Delaware 48.79% 3 2.38
Ohio 48.41% 3 2.36
Missouri 47.27% 3 2.31
West Virginia 47.14% 3 2.31
North Carolina 47.04% 3 2.31
Oregon 46.94% 3 2.3
Tennessee 46.65% 3 2.29
Indiana 46.53% 3 2.29
Texas 46.28% 3 2.28
Virginia 45.78% 3 2.26
Wisconsin 45.46% 3 2.24
South Dakota 44.38% 3 2.2
Minnesota 43.64% 3 2.17
North Dakota 43.47% 3 2.16
Kansas 42.90% 3 2.14
Nebraska 42.18% 3 2.11
Utah 38.14% 3 1.95

Loneliness index: Each state’s most Googled search query

StateTop QueryLoneliness index categoryLoneliness rating out of 3 (1=loneliest)
AlabamaHoneymoon DestinationsRomantic3
AlaskaLonelinessLonely1
ArizonaI'm lonelyLonely1
ArkansasHow to Find LoveLonely – Moderate2
CaliforniaBest Dating AppsLonely – Moderate2
ColoradoBest Dating AppsLonely – Moderate2
ConnecticutMatchmakerLonely – Moderate2
DelawareRomantic GetawaysRomantic3
District of ColumbiaBest Dating AppsLonely – Moderate2
FloridaMatchmakerLonely – Moderate2
GeorgiaRelationship AdviceRomantic3
HawaiiMatchmakerLonely – Moderate2
IdahoBest Dating AppsLonely – Moderate2
IllinoisI'm lonelyLonely1
IndianaHoneymoon DestinationsRomantic3
IowaAnti Valentines DayLonely1
KansasRelationship AdviceRomantic3
KentuckyI'm lonelyLonely1
LouisianaRelationship AdviceRomantic3
MaineLonelinessLonely1
MarylandOpen RelationshipRomantic3
MassachusettsBest Dating AppsLonely – Moderate2
MichiganI'm lonelyLonely1
MinnesotaHoneymoon DestinationsRomantic3
MississippiWedding IdeasRomantic3
MissouriRelationship AdviceRomantic3
MontanaLonelinessLonely1
NebraskaHoneymoon DestinationsRomantic3
NevadaMatchmakerLonely – Moderate2
New HampshireLonelinessLonely1
New JerseyMatchmakerLonely – Moderate2
New MexicoOpen RelationshipRomantic3
New YorkMatchmakerLonely – Moderate2
North CarolinaRelationship AdviceRomantic3
North DakotaValentines DayRomantic3
OhioRomantic GetawaysRomantic3
OklahomaAnti Valentines DayLonely1
OregonOpen RelationshipRomantic3
PennsylvaniaMatchmakerLonely – Moderate2
Rhode IslandBest Dating AppsLonely – Moderate2
South CarolinaI'm lonelyLonely1
South DakotaValentines DayRomantic3
TennesseeHoneymoon DestinationsRomantic3
TexasRelationship AdviceRomantic3
UtahDate ideasRomantic3
VermontLonelinessLonely1
VirginiaRelationship AdviceRomantic3
WashingtonBest Dating AppsLonely – Moderate2
West VirginiaValentines DayRomantic3
WisconsinRelationship AdviceRomantic3
WyomingMatchmakerLonely – Moderate2
State
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delaware
District of Columbia
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming
Top Query Loneliness index category Loneliness rating out of 3 (1=loneliest)
Honeymoon Destinations Romantic 3
Loneliness Lonely 1
I'm lonely Lonely 1
How to Find Love Lonely – Moderate 2
Best Dating Apps Lonely – Moderate 2
Best Dating Apps Lonely – Moderate 2
Matchmaker Lonely – Moderate 2
Romantic Getaways Romantic 3
Best Dating Apps Lonely – Moderate 2
Matchmaker Lonely – Moderate 2
Relationship Advice Romantic 3
Matchmaker Lonely – Moderate 2
Best Dating Apps Lonely – Moderate 2
I'm lonely Lonely 1
Honeymoon Destinations Romantic 3
Anti Valentines Day Lonely 1
Relationship Advice Romantic 3
I'm lonely Lonely 1
Relationship Advice Romantic 3
Loneliness Lonely 1
Open Relationship Romantic 3
Best Dating Apps Lonely – Moderate 2
I'm lonely Lonely 1
Honeymoon Destinations Romantic 3
Wedding Ideas Romantic 3
Relationship Advice Romantic 3
Loneliness Lonely 1
Honeymoon Destinations Romantic 3
Matchmaker Lonely – Moderate 2
Loneliness Lonely 1
Matchmaker Lonely – Moderate 2
Open Relationship Romantic 3
Matchmaker Lonely – Moderate 2
Relationship Advice Romantic 3
Valentines Day Romantic 3
Romantic Getaways Romantic 3
Anti Valentines Day Lonely 1
Open Relationship Romantic 3
Matchmaker Lonely – Moderate 2
Best Dating Apps Lonely – Moderate 2
I'm lonely Lonely 1
Valentines Day Romantic 3
Honeymoon Destinations Romantic 3
Relationship Advice Romantic 3
Date ideas Romantic 3
Loneliness Lonely 1
Relationship Advice Romantic 3
Best Dating Apps Lonely – Moderate 2
Valentines Day Romantic 3
Relationship Advice Romantic 3
Matchmaker Lonely – Moderate 2

Sources

  1. US Census Bureau, “American FactFinder: Marital Status (S1201)
  2. Google, “Google Trends
  3. Census-Charts.com “Alaska Census Data: Population & Housing Density

About Colin Holmes

Colin Holmes
Colin Holmes is no stranger to moving: he’s done so five times in the last five years, and he’s used his expertise to help over 185,000 readers plan their moves in the last year alone. As a former journalist and documentary interviewer, Colin brings a wealth of research experience to Move.org.