Online dating tips: how to have fun and stay safe

Online dating is a common way to meet people. Here are a few tips you can follow to make the overall experience fun and safe.

Online dating tips: how to have fun and stay safe

Understand what you want

It's important to know what your goals are for joining an online dating site. Are you looking for casual dates, a long-term relationship or perhaps something else?

Add a few photos to your profile

By adding photos, more people will notice your profile. It's important to add good recent photos of yourself because you don't want to mislead or lie to potential dates. Place at least a high-quality head shot on your profile. Additional photos should reveal what you do for fun including hobbies or sports. Don't forget to smile in the photos.

Choose a descriptive screen name

For your online dating profiles, choose a screen name that indicates the type of person you are. One way to do that is to mention any important hobbies or interests you have such as reading, animals, nature or volunteer work. A screen name is often the second thing that people notice about your profile, so give yourself a good name.

Create a colourful profile

You want your profile to be more than name, rank and serial numbers. You want a profile to express your personality. What makes you special or unique? What have you learnt about life or yourself? What do you want out of life? By answering these questions succinctly, you provide a clear picture of who you are.

Make plans to meet soon after contact

Once you have connected with someone, make plans to meet in a few days. Of course, talk on the phone first to get a sense of who this person is. However, there is no point in spending weeks emailing, texting or talking to each other. It's important to meet for coffee or for drinks to know if you have chemistry. If not, you can move on.

Always be honest

You don't have to reveal every secret in the first email or on the first date, but it's crucial to be honest. The truth often comes out anyway, so be upfront about things without disclosing everything too soon.

Little things mean a lot

Before you upload your profile or send emails or messages to your potential love interests, use a spell checker to eliminate any errors. It also doesn't hurt to have a friend or family member proofread what you've written. You want to put your best foot forward even in small ways when communicating with dates.

Dating online can be a worthwhile experience if you do it right. By avoiding mistakes, you have a better chance of success.

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