Singletude: A Positive Blog for Singles

Singletude is a positive, supportive singles blog about life choices for the new single majority. It's about dating and relationships, yes, but it's also about the other 90% of your life--family, friends, career, hobbies--and flying solo and sane in this crazy, coupled world. Singletude isn't about denying loneliness. It's about realizing that whether you're single by choice or by circumstance, this single life is your life to live.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Online Dating Review Sites

For today's Singletude, I've compiled a list of online dating site reviews.

Internet matchmaking has evolved so much since the days when AOL Personals had a corner on the cyberspace meet market. Today, a single just venturing into the wonderful world of Romance 2.0 faces an overwhelming smorgasbord of choices, from mass-market dating hubs with all their bells and whistles to exclusive niche communities. Even Net-savvy singles may occasionally want an update on what's new, what's hot, and what's not in the web dating department. So here are 50 sources for reviews that can help you choose the right online dating service for you.

As you browse through the following links, keep in mind that sites who give unanimously glowing reviews may be affiliates receiving kickbacks. However, I've included them for the useful information they provide about size, structure, pricing, and so on. Also be aware that reviews may be partially outdated, so if you're interested in a dating site, you may want to read several opinions and investigate the site yourself before committing to a paid membership. Nevertheless, these reviews will help you narrow the field before you reach that stage.

In the list below, asterisks (*) denote sites recommended by Singletude as particularly comprehensive or well-balanced in their reviews. Double asterisks (**) are awarded to the cream of the crop. Plus signs (+) indicate sites that include user reviews, which are presumably unpaid and therefore unbiased. Tildes (~) symbolize sites that review or link to an impressively large selection of online matchmakers, especially new and/or niche services.

There's also a small category for sites dedicated to personal experiences with online dating. Here the plus sign (+) represents sites whose focus is on positive stories, while a minus sign (-) marks sites featuring negative stories. The absence of a marker implies that the site presents a balanced picture of both positive and negative experiences.

Alternative Dating Sites~
Best Online Matchmaker Sites-Best Online Dating Sites Review
Cupid's Reviews*+~
Cupid's Matchbook Romance
Date Seeker*
Dating Directions
Dating Directory Review
Dating Muse*
Dating Service~
Dating Site Advisor~
Dating Sites*
Dating Sites Reviews*+~
Dr. Dating*~
eDating Central
Free Dating U.S.A.*~
Internet Dating Directory
No. 1 Reviews**~
Online Dating Magazine**~
Online Dating Reviews~
Quality Singles
Romance Stuck
Rosalind's Dating Site Reviews*~
The Dating Advisor*~
The Single Source~

Personal Experiences

Internet Dating Stories
Internet Dating Tales-
Internet Love Stories
Online Dating Experiences-

Is there a particular online dating site that you or someone you know had a good or bad experience with? Can you recommend that site to other singles (or warn us away from it)?


CC Solomon said...

I think match is worth a shot if nothing more than to get out there. I have never met any crazy people and the quality of men is actually pretty good. Even made a few friendships. I think they have a three day free trial.
I also recommend, as a free sight, The pickings aren't as plentyful as the paid sites like match but I made a couple of connections on it and say its worth checking out.
Not really into yahoo although it is suppossed to be pretty popular- I just was underwhelmed by the selections. Also not into a little too, lets say, free spirited for my taste. And not feeling eharmony- too much money and too restricted but if you want someone to do all the work for you and you don't mind traveling to meet your date then it might be useful.

bobbyboy said...
I agree as they also have get-togethers which can help relieve some of the worries about meeting just one person from online.
Although it's based around western men and Thai ladies, I have made quite a few really good friends of all nationalities through the years there (In person). I have seen a good amount of romantic hook-ups also! It has free and premium membership, but one can hook up with the free membership quite easily.
Similar to the above site, but based from western men and Filipino ladies. It's completely free and the chances of finding a partner are quite high.

Clever Elsie said...

Cat: Thanks for those great suggestions! My experiences, both directly and vicariously through friends, mirror yours.

I've found Match to be the best paid site in terms of overall quality of the members, the accuracy of matches, and the range of features offered. On the downside, it's expensive, but as you pointed out, you can sign up for a free trial for three or seven days, depending on what kind of promotion they're doing at the time.

I've browsed Plentyoffish, and though I haven't tried it myself, a lot of people seem to like it, and you can't beat the price.

Yahoo is currently the number one dating site, but like you, every time I've browsed it, I haven't been impressed with the selection.

Lavalife seems like a more affordable option since you pay as you go, but those contacts add up quickly. I haven't checked out the site in quite some time.

As for eHarmony, well, I won't even get started on that. All I'll say is that if you're asking for that much cash and can't deliver a match, you should have a money back guarantee. I've never used the site because I believe I know what I'm looking for better than their computerized algorithm does, but let's just say that the feedback I've gotten from others has been disenchanted to say the least!

Bobby: Now here are some niche sites I know nothing about! Thanks for bringing them to everyone's attention! It's always good to get feedback on new or lesser known sites.

Are the "get-togethers" sponsored by Plentyoffish live events? If so, what format do they usually take (i.e. parties, dinners, cocktails, movie viewings, speed dating, etc.)?

bobbyboy said...

Hi Elsie,

I haven't gone to one of these events, but they show pictures of their get togethers most times. I have found that the member pictures are the same as the ones at the get togethers.

I believe the members make the events, which I have done on the two other sites I've posted, so I think it's a member thing.

"If so, what format do they usually take (i.e. parties, dinners, cocktails, movie viewings, speed dating, etc.)?"

Yes to all lol. It depends on the person making the event. It goes by area as well, meaning, if you follow a certain forum topic about events in your area, they send you the info when the event will take place :)

opinionated said...

I look at occasionally but it seems many of the dating reviews there are written by the advertisers themselves, so not exactly unbiased.