More and more people are finding love online, but some still prefer the in-person meet. Whether you’ve been online dating for years or you’re virtual romance averse, there are alternatives to online dating. As long as you have an open mind (and heart) you can be a successful dater without feeling the apps. Here’s how:
What was once a luxury service for wealthy men, professional matchmaking services have grown with the times, catering their services to both men and women. A matchmaker’s core job is to find a suitable match for their client. They do this by matching their clients of similar romantic desires, values, goals, religious background, dating history with others in the matchmaker’s portfolio. Once the matchmaker finds a suitable match for their client, they set up a meeting. More often than not, clients go into the first date without having seen a photo of the other person. According to a survey by the Matchmaking Institute, only a third of professionals give clients photographic sneak peeks of their date. While professional matchmakers can be costly, you get more than the professional connection. Matchmakers typically guide clients through the dating process and offer feedback afterwards.
It may sound crazy and ineffective, but speed dating events offer singletons another avenue to meet potential dates for a (slightly) longer format. Speed dating is, as it sounds, a large group of singles going on quickfire dates in a rotating musical chairs style event. Typically, the women stay seated and the men move from table to table when the timer is up. Singles get a short amount of time, usually a minute or two, to talk, introduce themselves, and see if there’s a connection. If there is, the two parties can exchange contact info and set up a normal, second date. You meet upwards of 15 people in one event, which can be a good primer for something more, but often it’s nothing more than a meeting. At least, you don’t have to worry about who pays.
The Right Place
Go where the singles hang out. Be creative. Sports bars are good for, well, the sportier, among us. Concerts and galleries are good for the pop culture enthusiasts. Timing and approach are key. Don’t go interrupting someone who’s in the middle of an intense workout, but maybe you can catch them at the smoothie bar on their way out. You can meet people anywhere. Read the body language and say hello. Make your own meet-cute.
Friends of Friends
Nobody knows you better than your pals, so ask for a helping hand (or a few). Ask them to match you with one of their friends. They know who’s single and they know the gossip. Have them flash around your social media profiles and see who’s interested. Chances are they know at least one potential match. Everybody loves to play matchmaker, and your friends want to help you. Having someone in your corner can definitely tip the scales in your favor.
You know those emails that flood your inbox inviting you to this or that? Respond YES to every one. You never know who you’ll meet. If you’re not dating online, you have to show up in more places physically. Parties and events are great places to meet people because it forces you to be present with new people when your friend group feels like a deadend for potential dates. Any time you’re putting yourself out there, you’re increasing your chances of finding someone. So get out and mingle!
We live in an online world, but that doesn’t mean your love life has to. If you’re looking for something new but are committed to offline love, go find it. Your true love is waiting.