Chocolates & Trinkets

Online shopping is now allowed! Thank goodness. Spoil your partner with a bunch of flowers or a chocolate gift basket from Netflorist. You'll brighten their day with this small show of care and affection. Bella Luna is now also offering online shopping and delivery. If your significant other is having a birthday soon, gift them with a meaningful trinket or personalised accessory. Nothing says 'I love you' like a surprise birthday present.

Talk, Every Day 

How many times have you heard the old adage - communication is key to a successful relationship? Seeing that you will be attempting a long-distance relationship of sorts for the foreseeable future, communication is likely to become more important than ever. If you don't already speak to your partner via text or phone call every day (seriously, why not?), make an effort to start now. However, your conversations may need to be more in depth, as you lose contact time together. Listen to your partner more intently, making sure to check in on their state of mind and emotions during the lockdown period. If they are feeling anxious or alone, do not dismiss their feelings. Now is the time to show your support and be a shoulder to lean on, even if you aren't able to comfort them in person.

Send Them Songs

Yes, we know it's a little cheesy, but there is nothing sweeter than knowing that your partner is thinking about you. Send your special someone a playlist of songs that remind you of them or share a memory you have of them related to a certain piece of music. If music isn't your thing, find a romantic poem, an inspiring video or uplifting podcast to share. In a time when celebrating milestones and special moments together is not possible, sending your partner the gift of music may become your go-to love language. Check out our Quarantunes Playlist on Spotify for inspiration.

Video Chats & Virtual Dates

Who says you can't go on a date in your pajamas? Thanks to the magic of the internet and smartphones, taking your significant other on a date means you don't actually need to leave the house. Organise a virtual date with your partner over video chat. Whether this means having a morning get-together over coffee or a simultaneous movie streaming date, is all up to you and your loved one. (If you're having dinner together over Chat, don't forget to dress up a little to show you care!) Again, it will be important to communicate and listen while on your date. Eliminate distractions and focus solely on being present with your partner.

Stay At Home! 

The best way to show you partner love and care during lockdown is by staying at home. The very last thing you want to do is spread COVID-19 to them or their family. It will be difficult, but distancing yourself from the people you treasure most is imperative at this moment. Save up all that date money over the next few months to lavish your partner with once quarantine is over. You never know, they may just ask you to move in with them so you never have to be apart again!

Do you have any other ideas or tips on how to keep the romance alive while under lockdown? Let us know about them! 

With over 159 million active users, including over 71 million Spotify Premium subscribers, Spotify offers a choice between an ongoing free ad-supported music service and a fully featured, ad-free subscription option. At R59 per month, it is a deal and a half. Spotify delivers music for every taste and mood. South African users have instant access to a wide range of local playlists expertly curated and regularly updated by our team of music experts, including Hip Hop Juice, Top Hits South Africa, House Nation, iGqom Le and SA Gold, alongside millions of Spotify and fan-built international playlists.

How To Use Spotify

Seeing as we're all new to the platform, take a moment to study this nifty Spotify cheat sheet which will get you well on your way to jamming out to the top tunes from around the world. A major feature of the Spotify service is its personalisation, which allows fans to find the music they already love with ease, and will also help them discover new music and artists to love, based on their taste and listening patterns. When a new user joins Spotify, we take them through a ‘Taste Onboarding’ process, which helps Spotify quickly learn more about your music tastes.

Globally, Spotify has changed the way artists connect with music fans. Musicians want their music heard and Spotify has succeeded in introducing artists to millions of people the world over.

By Shawn Greyling

music apps

SoundCloud

If you are tired of listening to mainstream and/or commercial music, give SoundCloud a try. Not only are some mainstream songs available for listening, but the platform is dominated by upcoming and underground artists/musicians. You also get a chance to listen to songs by not-so-well-known artists before they become a big hit!

Compatibility: Android and iOS.

Cost: Free.

Apple Music

With a vast library of over 30 million songs, Apple Music offers music streaming to subscribers. You have the option to create playlists and discover new songs under the 'For You' section that compiles recommendations from what you listen to. You can even stream featured content uploaded by artists and explore curated playlists at will!

Compatibility: Android and iOS.

Cost: R59.99 for one member | R89.99 for up to six members.

YouTube

Offering more than just music videos, this app gives you access to remixes, covers, full albums and classic recordings. You don't actually have to create a personalised playlist, you can search for artists, songs, videos or albums and the app will automatically generate a continuous streaming station for you, personalised through your preferences.

Compatibility: Android and iOS.

Cost: Free.

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Tidal

Offering the capability to stream high-fidelity music, Tidal has gained its spot as one of the top music streaming apps due to the incredible sound quality. Featuring a library with over 25 million songs, you can even watch over 75 000 ad-free videos. What's more, you also get curated lists, music identification and music-discovering tools.

Compatibility: Android and iOS.

Cost: R139.99.

Spotify

Thanks to its recognisable interface, Facebook integration and over 30 million songs, Spotify has also earned itself a spot in this list of top music streaming apps. Not only is it great online but you also get access to some music, which is available for offline listening. The app now has a browse function that allows you to find cool playlists!

Compatibility: Android, iOS and Windows Phone.

Cost: R139.99.

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Prime Music

Prime Music, which falls under the Amazon Prime umbrella, allows you to stream music you have bought from Amazon. You can also stream music stored on your phone or tablet. If you are a Prime subscriber, you get access to over a million songs and playlists, all ad-free. You can also download your favourite songs or albums and listen offline!

Compatibility: Android and iOS.

Cost: R139.99.

Google Play Music

With over 30 million songs, ad-free songs of different genres and artists to stream from, subscribers absolutely love Google Play Music. Allowing you to create your own radio station with all your favourite songs and artists, the app is definitely winning in the music-streaming department. The app also features a constantly-improving recommendations option based on your listening habits.

Compatibility: Android and iOS.

Cost: Free.

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TuneIn Radio

Giving you access to over 100 000 international radio stations, what more could you possibly ask for music streaming wise? You get access to everything from music and talk shows to sports, news radio and podcasts! Who needs a radio anyway when you have your smartphone or smart device? The best part is that you can even listen to local radio stations!

Compatibility: Android and iOS.

Cost: Free.

Microsoft Groove

Microsoft rebranded Xbox Music to Microsoft Groove with the release of Windows 10. With the app, you get access to over 30 million songs, ad-free, options for custom radio stations, offline listening and cross-device syncing. Not only that, you can also download MP3s onto your OneDrive folder for listening offline or off the grid!

Compatibility: Android, iOS and Windows Phone.

Cost: Free.

Rhapsody

Rhapsody recently refreshed its interface as one of the longest-running, online music streaming providers. The app allows you to create or listen to custom radio stations of your favourite artists. You can also access a number of live radio stations through the new Rhapsody unRadio for a certain fee per month. The app/service is compatible with smart devices, speakers and game consoles.

Compatibility: Android, iOS and Windows Phone.

Cost: R139.99.

Please note that costs may change over time.

By Cleopatra Shava