As I handed my keys to the parking attendant, I started to panic. I could hear my heartbeat in my ears. My stomach felt like it was going to fall out my butt. I had this lump in my throat like after you dry-swallow a big pill. I looked at my friend and she, too, was freaking out mean-girls style. We walked up to the restaurant on Hollywood Boulevard and opened the door to walk in. I took a deep breathe and then said “Reservation for Nikki.” The hostess then led us to a table where three young men were already sitting. They stood up and we all started to introduce ourselves. At this point, it was apparent to the rest of the restaurant that we were Internet dating.
In this day and age, Internet dating has become a norm. Hearing the romantic love story of how two newlyweds first met more often than not begins with some variation of the web. Though there is a certain precedent around online dating, you’ll be surprised to know that out of the 54 million single people in the US, 40 million of them have tried online dating. After meeting through friends, online dating is the second most common way that couples get started. Some say that people internet date because they are too anti-social to meet people in person, however this is far from true. In fact, studies show that the people who are more sociable are more likely to date online. I can almost guarantee that a couple you know met online in some form because its been proven that one in four couples meet on the internet.
Here is a list of the 5 most popular dating websites I’ve heard about:
OK Cupid- This free site is known as the fastest-growing online dating site. They use a specific calculation to help you find that perfect someone to fulfill your every request.
Match.com- This site was one of the first online dating sites and one of the most popular. The site services 24 countries and hosts websites in 15 different languages. Their mission is “to help singles find the kind of relationship they’re looking for.”
JDate- For all you matzah-ball-loving, challah-baking Jews out there, JDate just may be the site for you. I know my Jewish
mother is dying to sign me up for JDate and even offers to pay for the hefty $40 monthly membership. Though this site is one of the most expensive, it has a high success rate and many Jewish individuals prefer this site over most. Whether your looking for a good meal with good company, searching for your prince charming or dusting off your pick-up lines and returning to the dating scene, JDate prides itself on being the site for you.
eHarmony- Whether or not you’ve seen the commercials or the ads, eHarmony is another well-known dating website. It was started by a psychologist, Dr. Neil Clark Warren, who decided there was a better way to meet the love of your life than by chance. The site continues to evaluate what makes relationships work, keeping its customers happy.
Grouper- Too scared to go on a one-on-one date with a complete stranger you met online? I don’t blame you. Grouper is a great new site to meet people in an unfamiliar city. Unlike any other dating service, Grouper asks you to pick two friends to accompany you on your date, making it a group outing. This site is becoming increasingly popular as it’s getting younger individuals involved in the online dating process. While there is no fee to sign up on the site, each Grouper you go on you pay a set fee of $20, which includes a drink at the venue. They form the matches based on people’s Facebook profiles to gage interests, physical appearance and to ensure you are meeting someone new.
While all of these sites are great options, I chose to use Grouper. I decided to do some research for my next blog post on internet dating, and what better way than to experience it myself! It definitely was quite an experience. My two friends and I were scheduled to meet up with three guys at Loteria Grill in Hollywood. Though it was a bit of a rocky start with all of our nerves on the table, after no time it seemed like we had known each other for a while. Now, at the ripe age of 21, I definitely was not looking for “the one” on this date. I was simply looking to meet people and see what all the fuss was about. It was an experience indeed and I would definitely recommend the site to anyone just looking for a good time meeting new people.
What do you think? Would you give internet dating a chance?