Guide To The Best Senior Dating Sites 2021
What Is Senior Dating?
Senior dating caters to those who are over the age of 50 and have very different needs—and interests—than younger singles. Some seniors, for example, maybe looking for a potential match, while others may simply want to meet up with someone to go to events with, go out to eat with, or spend evenings at the movies with.
According to Lundgren, “dating apps provide an almost overwhelming possibility to meet new individuals.” “I typically compare it to throwing a bunch of fishing hooks into a pond.” You have no idea which line will catch on, but you put it out there anyhow. It’s thrilling to consider the possibilities.”
Health Benefits of Senior Dating
There’s no denying the importance of companionship. In fact, several studies highlight the benefits relationships can have on a person’s overall health and well-being. Here are a few to consider:
- You can help your heart. A 2017 newsletter published by the National Institutes of Health suggests strong social ties (like those formed in dating and romantic relationships) may help reduce stress and heart health-related issues.
- You can live longer. A 2010 study in Annals of Behavioral Medicine confirms the positive power of stable social surroundings, noting specifically that loneliness can lead to increased morbidity and mortality.
- You’ll help your overall health. The Harvard Second Generation Study reports how happy people are in their relationships has a huge influence on their health and can even help to delay mental and physical decline.
How Does Online Dating Work for Seniors?
Older adults can easily find websites geared toward their specific age group. For example, sites like Silver Singles are reserved for those 50 and up. Other popular senior dating sites include:
- OurTime (ages 50+)
- Plenty of Fish
You usually register with your email address if you want to join a senior dating service. You may be requested to complete a detailed personality exam or select interest filters such as “mature dating,” “gay senior dating,” or “older ladies dating” in some situations. After that, you’ll almost always be asked to upload a photo of yourself.
After you’ve completed your profile, you’ll start receiving local matches. (Each dating service has its own algorithm for assisting you in finding suitable mates.) Many websites allow you to message a match privately using an online message function once you’ve connected with them.
What to Look for in Senior Dating Sites
Here are some features you can expect from most dating websites designed for older adults.
You may be prompted to fill out a questionnaire to assist limit down matches, depending on the site. It could be a multiple-choice “quiz” or a fill-in-the-blank survey that helps you communicate what you’re searching for in a companion. Questions about your body type, education level, smoking and drinking habits, religious beliefs and practices, hobbies, political views, and match preferences, as well as your age range, height, marital status, education, and other factors, are common.
A Detailed Profile
Your profile is your opportunity to showcase your unique personality. Depending on the website, there are different fields users can fill out, such as your interests and preferences in potential companions. Be sure to share details about yourself, but be careful about revealing too much personal information in your profile.
Privacy and Safety Features
Reputable dating websites disclose the steps they’ve taken to keep your data private and keep you safe while you use their service. Look for words like “encryption” (which encodes messages so they can only be read by the sender and recipient), “scam detection” (which detects potential fraud like fake profiles and stolen photos), and “sex offender checks.” Know that not all free dating sites complete criminal background checks on their users.
The cost of meeting a possible match is determined by the dating site. Silver Singles, for example, offers a free basic membership, but you can upgrade to a premium service that gives you unrestricted access to all profiles and allows you to construct a more thorough profile. The pricing arrangements differ from one website to the next.
Communication and Connecting
Once you’ve set up your profile and uploaded a photo, you can begin connecting with potential matches. The options for how to do so are broad, but they often include messaging on the app or website itself, as well as an option for audio and video calls.
The Site’s Network
Before joining a site, do some quick research. Most websites will publicly list their number of active members, and they should be able to share the process by which they match you with singles in your local community.
Along with matching you with potential partners, some sites offer bonus services like a professional matchmaker who can find matches for you, a dating concierge who can help you plan dates and invitations to member-only events. However, there may be an extra cost associated with these add-ons.
Look Out for Dating Scams
“Seniors are particularly vulnerable to these scams since they tend to have money and good credit, making them lucrative targets,” says Bischoff. “They tend to be socially isolated and thus less likely to report the crime or ask a close friend or loved one for help.”
Watch out for red flags, including:
- Being asked for money.
- Being informed by the person of their financial hardships.
- Being asked to share a compromising photo.
- Being told to invest in a get-rich-quick scheme.
Tips for Safe Dating
- Join a reputable dating site. Before you sign up for any dating website, ask your friends for recommendations and listen closely to their feedback. You can check the Better Business Bureau to see if they’re accredited and whether they have any complaints filed against them, says Lundgren. “It’s always smart to make sure a website is secure so your information isn’t vulnerable. You can look in your browser for a lock icon. If you see a message that says your information isn’t private/secure don’t enter your personal information.”
- Don’t give out extra personal information. It’s important to protect your anonymity, Lundgren says. Avoid sharing your last name, town or city, where you work, specific details about you (like volunteer or alumni organizations you’re involved in), and your email address and phone number. “Don’t forget—you don’t want to share your kids’ names, either,” says Lundgren. “It’s very important to protect your family’s identity as well.”
- Prepare for the first conversation. When you keep communication limited to the app or website, you create a clear record of all of your communications, which is helpful in the event that you need to report an issue, says Amber Artis, a certified matchmaker, and relationship expert and CEO of Select Date Society. If you’re ready to speak on the phone, consider using Skype or create a separate email address just for dating that doesn’t show your full name. Connecting with a potential date in a safe way also helps you confirm the person isn’t using fake photos or information about themselves.
- Tell friends and family members when you’re going on a date. Always inform a close friend, colleague, or family member when you’re meeting someone new, says Artis. “Share your location with them on your phone, and check in with them before, during, and after the date,” she says.
- Always meet in public. It doesn’t matter how comfortable you are with a person or how much chemistry you have—it’s very important to meet in public, especially initially, says Artis. “Do not go to their home or invite them to yours until you know them really well,” she says. “This means you should have several in-person dates in a public place first.”
- Never send anyone money. Anyone asking for money or claiming to be experiencing financial issues raises a giant red flag, says Artis. This happens often, and the majority of romance scam victims are women over the age of 50, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. “This person is likely trying to scam you,” she says. “I urge everyone to use their best judgment and listen to their instincts. If you have a gut feeling that this person isn’t legit, heed your inner voice.”