I attended a cocktail party sometime last week by new online startup Finalsip at Ah Sam’s Cold Drinks Store, 60A Boat Quay. Can we all take a moment to appreciate how absolutely adorable that name is for a bar?
Moment over. You can drop by Ah Sam’s for his custom tailored drinks (much like Bar Stories, they create a drink for you based on your personality and preference type) or just to ogle at, well, Ah Sam. (He’s very cute.)
Ah Sam’s Cold Drink Store
60A Boat Quay
6:00 pm – 3:00 am
Anyway, I was there for a cocktail party/ workshop where I (pretended to) learn to make my own cocktails at home – they even sent me on my way with a starter gift set of liquor and a cocktail shaker – courtesy of Finalsip. It all kind of links in with the overarching theme of drinking, and you’ll see why in a minute. Finalsip.com is one of those social sites which is gamified for an element of fun, and this one simulates a virtual club environment where you get to meet real people (safely) and clock points which can in turn be exchanged for real prizes (legit) from places like MBS, Miu Miu, Chanel, or if you’re more practical, Tangs, Robinsons, and Courts. It’s all very Iggy Azalea.
I tried it out that day on my mobile (currently it’s web based but they’ll be releasing an app version soon i should think) and this is how it works.
1. Register. They’re very concerned re: spam and trolls, so you need to wait a while for them to make sure you’re a real person and verify your account personally. Consequently, a profile picture featuring your actual face is required. They dont ask for much in the sign up process to preserve your privacy, you don’t even need to enter a bio byline. When you register, they give you a free bottle.
2. Try to pick up someone. Much as one does, in a bar. It’s a bit like ebay, really. Everyone has a virtual bottle, and you buy shots off them using your points. You start off with a few thousand free points which regenerate each day, but obviously there’s an option to purchase more for a starting point of about ten bucks if you’re the impatient sort. If you’re the last person to buy a shot, you get the option of messaging them to ask for a meet up in real life. So for example my bottle has five hundred shots and people have been buying ten or twenty off me at a time. The person who buys the very last shot and empties my bottle can send me a PM to chat me up. There is no other way to contact or communicate with a user on the app.
3. Actually go dating. If you end up meeting this dude who bought your shots (or girl), you should snap a photo of yourselves together because that gives you like a zillion extra bonus points online which you can use to redeem like, a Chanel bag. If you have enough points i mean, but that goes without saying. Finalsip is very careful to emphasize that this is not a dating app, it’s one where you meet people like yknw, friends, and get to know more people and socialize, but i think it’s rather inevitable that people are going to start using it for it’s dating function. Lets be realistic here. But sure, you can go on it to try and meet more girlfriends or something, just buy up their shots and chat them up. You really never know. 5 meet ups also win a mystery dinner somewhere each month, so that’s that.
4. Be materialistic. And use those points to get stuff. I actually redeemed a hundred dollar TANGS voucher on the day itself while playing, but im the type to spend all my points in any game the minute i reach the minimum needed to redeem stuff. If you’re patient, you can persevere till you get a Miu Miu or iPhone (yes it’s an option).
You can sign up and start playing here at their website, or check out their facebook page for more details. Here’s an instructional youtube video also, in case i wasn’t clear enough or if you’re the visual type.
Personally: I can’t wait to see if this actually takes off in Singapore. I can imagine this flying with people in Europe or America, no problem, but singaporeans are relatively more conservative crowd. It’s true that everyone is subconsciously or otherwise out to get something out of meeting another person, and this app incentivizes that, which is quite clever, but to be told face up that they know your motivations are materialistic can be dicey ground for some people. Also, it’s purely superficial- without a byline or bio, the only way people decide whether or not to chat you up/ hang out with you is based on that profile picture you upload. It also simulates real life really, in a bar or club, you trade in the currency of good looks, but once again, i dont know how people will react to their intentions being exposed to transparently.
Still, it’s a clever idea, and i’m not sure if it’s been done before but if apps were giving away free MiuMius i’m sure i would have heard of it sooner. You technically dont have to fork out a cent since the app regenerates points for you each day, so there’s no harm in trying it out while it’s still so new. You know what they say about small pools and fishing chances.
Thank you for the invitation, Finalsip!
& to the rest of you, quite literally, cheers.