Online dating is a great way to meet new people and to actually fall in love.
A recent Match Singles in America Survey of over 5000 singles revealed that 53% of singles have created a dating profile. The survey also showed that 81% of singles are looking for romantic love and we want you to find it, safely.
At Cyber-Dating Expert, we love helping singles find love online. As a matter of face, I’ve been coaching singles for 23 years now, sine online dating was in its infancy. We also want YOU to feel safe while on a date, and know that dating sites take safety seriously and provide tips that you should know before you open your heart and potentially your wallet.
Here are some dating safety tips to remember before you head out to meet your digital crush.
- Have a facetime or skype chat, or at least talk on the phone before you meet IRL. While someone may look great in a profile, until you hear the sound of their voice, you won’t know for sure if the person is a neighbor or a bot. I call this pre-dating and if you’re comfortable on the phone, chances are you’ll have a good experience on the date.
- Find out if you have friends in common. These days it’s so easy to see if you have friends in common on Facebook or Instagram. If so, reach out to your pals to see if you can get the thumbs up or down on your potential date.
- Watch out for suitors from out of the country or in the military. A popular romance scam is one where the person is writing to you from another country. Sure I know of people from the U.S. who fell in love with someone from Paris and they lived happily ever after, but if someone is stationed someone out of the country, they might ask you for money for a plane ride to visit you. While there’s a song, “I love a Man in a Uniform,” don’t fall prey to requests for money.
- Be careful if someone says “I love you” too soon. Until you meet in person, you have nothing more than a digital pen pal. Those whose intentions aren’t sincere will want you to fall in love with them immediately. They may say, “I’ve never felt this way about anyone before.” Before you change your relationship status, know this is a common ploy to potentially get yo to send them a wire transfer when they have a sudden emergency. After all, they love you, right?
- Meet in a public place. Whether it’s a dog park, coffee bar, or a happy hour, NEVER meet your date at his or her house. Your first few dates should be in a public place, where there’s activity going on.
- Don’t get into anyone’s car. If your date asks you for a nightcap elsewhere, you’re pretty much getting into a car with a stranger. Until you get to know them better, take your own car or public transportation, where you can leave if you feel the need to do so.
- No late night dates (after 10p). This should go without saying, but it screams booty call. You have no idea what other dates he or she had that night, but 10p, means you’re dessert and it’s not a proper date. Just say no and suggest something in the daytime.
- Don’t sext before ever meeting. The match survey showed that millennials are 48% more likely to have had sex, than other age groups before they ever met their date. I call it digital foreplay, but if you’re sexting big time with someone you haven’t met, the expectation of having sex on the first date will be very high. Go ahead and flirt on text messages and have fun, but leave your clothes on.
- Let Google become your best friend. Be careful of photos that look too good to be true. Do a Google search for your date’s email address, phone number, and upload their dating profile photos to Google image reverse search. If they seem sketchy, cancel your date. If things match up, go out and enjoy your date.
- Limit the drinking on a first date. Alcohol can blur your judgment and having that second drink just might result in a late night booty call or put you in a dangerous situation. If you’re meeting for drinks, limit your alcohol intake to one drink only. If the conversation is going well and you’re not ready to end the date, order a club soda for your second drink.
If you feel that someone’s profile is suspicious, report the profile to the online dating site, who has your safety as a top priority while looking for love online.
Wishing you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may roam. xo
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Julie Spira is America’s Top Online Dating Expert and Digital Matchmaker. She’s the CEO of Cyber-Dating Expert and has been coaching singles on finding love online with her Irresistible Profiles programs for over 20 years. Julie’s the recent winner of the 2017 iDate Awards for Best Dating Coach and is the author of the bestseller The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online and ranks as the most influential person in social media in “dating” and “online dating.”