With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, it’s that time of the year when we start thinking more about our love lives, or lack thereof.

Online dating is a very popular way to find a date these days. It saves you from the tired old clichés of hooking up with someone at a bar, or going on a blind date arranged by a common acquaintance. Instead, you get a convenient way of meeting a likeminded person.

Anyone who is new to online dating may not be sure where to start. There are countless websites all vying for your time and, in some cases, money. Being able to know the differences between paid dating websites and free dating websites is therefore a good idea for anyone who is considering making the jump into the online dating world, as it will provide you with a better idea of what to expect from each of these.

Free Dating Sites

Free dating websites are a great place to start for anyone curious about online dating. They allow you to learn the ropes and get to know how it works and what to expect from it. If you’re hesitant to fork over money for something you don’t know will suit you, you can definitely benefit from free sites. It’ll give you the opportunity to test the waters, and see if online dating is something worth pursuing.

Unfortunately, the fact that these websites are free of charge can often result in many people registering for different reasons than expected. Some enjoy building up fake profiles for fun. Others use free dating sites just to talk to people without looking to secure a date. Often, people are there just looking for something physical. Many such profiles are long forgotten.

So, if you are using a free dating site, you might not necessarily find people who are truly looking for a serious relationship or meaningful dates.

Paid Dating Sites

The most notable difference when it comes to paid dating websites is the overall quality. Search results, profiles, and the general interface tend to be a lot more sophisticated and likely to yield better results. This is because paid dating sites have regular income from subscribers, which can be used to improve their matching algorithms and services.

As a result, you will find that being matched on paid dating sites is a lot more likely to lead somewhere than on free ones. Rather than just matching people based on their location and a few other factors like age, ethnicity, religion, and marital status, paid dating sites offer more complex matchmaking algorithms, taking into consideration factors like general interests, on-site activity, hobbies, etc.

Another appealing aspect of paid dating sites is that people using them tend to be looking to gain the same things – the chances of finding the right person and starting a serious relationship.

Interested in becoming a premium dating site member? Choose one of the best online dating sites and start the journey towards complete happiness by finding love online.

Emma Walters
Emma is an arts and science student graduating this year from NYU. She loves New York City and writes about her big city single-hood experiences. “Being single in the Big Apple is more of a task than a status”, she says, “Dating sites are great for socializing, especially if you’re new in town”. Emma is a regular contributor to the Top 5 Dating blog.
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