Having had a degree of success from online dating over the last year, I’ve decided that I’m an expert and keep trying to impart my knowledge on anyone who’ll listen. Here are some quick tips for any potential daters out there.
- First off, internet dating is great. You should give it a try, what’s the worst that could happen? Don’t answer that.
- Don’t pay for a dating website if you’re too chicken to start messaging people. I handed over £30 to the first site I signed up to and then didn’t use it. That’s money I could have spent buying alcohol to drink alone in my flat. What a waste.
- You don’t have to pay for online dating at all – there are free sites that are worth trying out first. OKCupid is a well-designed site with a reasonable number of nice, normal, attractive people. PlentyOfFish is hideous in terms of the site’s appearance and usability but is, I think, the biggest free one out there. Unfortunately the sheer quantity of fish means that the quality is lower and you have to sift through quite a few ‘interesting’ profiles to find the good ones.
- Everyone I know who has used Guardian Soulmates says it’s good, the obvious benefit being that the danger of finding yourself on a date with a Tory is really, really low. However, bear in mind that there’s no point being on the paid sites if you don’t pay as you can’t send messages.
- Try to avoid using ‘wink’, ‘like’, ‘meet me’, ‘favourite’ or whatever feature the site you’re using has to achieve the same as a ‘poke’ on Facebook (ie, nothing). Make the effort and send a message.
- If you see a profile you like, send the person a message then move on. Do not spend a whole evening crafting the perfect message while planning out your lives together because there’s a good chance they won’t reply and you’ll be gutted.
- Struggling to find the courage to contact people? Have a drink and then try again. Repeat as needed.
Right, that’s enough for now, I have a date to get ready for.
Players: 2 (though you’re likely to get quite a few messages from people who think the game is better played with 3)
Ages: You decide
Vaguely interesting fact: There is a dating site called Love Horse. Amazing.
Verdict: With a little bit of effort you can find yourself on some fun dates with nice people you wouldn’t have otherwise met. And there’s also the potential that you’ll meet someone awesome. Good luck.