Busiest day of the year for online dating

The mantra of ‘new year, new you’ and all that is well and truly in the front of everyone’s minds as we head back to work this week following the Christmas break.  One look at your Facebook feed and there is a plethora of ‘resolution’ themed memes promising good intentions.

new-years-resolutions

So many of us set ourselves targets for January, and those of us looking for love are no different – and according to research the 3rd January is THE busiest day of the year for online dating websites and apps.  As us lust longing Brits head back to work, research has shown that dating sites are expecting a 37 percent hike in activity as millions log on hoping to find new romances for 2017.

busiest-day-of-the-year-online-dating

Whilst some of us may be entering 2017 newly single after relationships ran their course and ended up single before the holidays. Others may well have hung in there until New Year’s and realised they were in a relationship that wouldn’t go the distance.  Then there are some singles who have made the decision after having another holiday alone that they’ll have a go at dating in an attempt to find their soul mate.

Whatever situation you find yourself in at the start of 2017 you’ll have plenty of choice to browse through as millions of new profiles hit the online dating websites, and with the average user trawling around 43 profiles when they log on it wouldn’t go amiss to set yourself a bit of a strategy to catch the eye of Mr or Miss Right.  So here are our top tips for standing out in the busy dating pond this January:-

  • Get a great photo – honestly, one showing you surrounded by your mates drinking and partying hard may seem like a good idea but remember you want someone to notice you not the social scene you’re into, or worse even fancy one of your mates!  Remember the adage ‘a picture paints a thousand words’?  Why not consider investing in someone to help you take a great profile photo so that you really stand out.
  • Challenge the stereotypes – ladies who says men have to make the first move? Be proactive and not reactive and if you see a guy you like strike up a conversation.  Pose a series of interesting first date questions that allow the two of you to see if there is common ground before moving to the next stage.
  • Be engaged – many of today’s dating sites have a whole host of extra features that you can access as part of their membership structure.  Opting to pay for a level of membership with access to these features can work in your favour as generally people who shell out for online dating subscriptions are serious about finding a relationship.  You” have the chance to send more messages, get read receipts and send more photos allowing you make those matches quicker.

Whatever your relationships goals for 2017 the first part of it is dipping your toe into the water and seeing what happens.  With more of us than ever using dating websites as a way to meet new people around the UK,  January is the perfect time to try with so many other singletons also out there with the same agenda.

Looking for love in 2017?  We’d love to know what you look for or avoid in an online dating profile.

slate-love-heart

How far would you travel for a date?

Today I am posing what on face value seems to be a simple question ‘how far would you travel for a date?’ In particular a first date.

long distance dating

For many of us in the world of ‘online dating’ we’ve dipped our toe into this pond because our social circle of friends are all in relationships and settled and unlikely to offer any romantic leads via their circle of friends anytime soon.  The theory with online dating is that you get to meet a wider variety of people than if you went to your local pub on a Friday night.  This is certainly true you live in Sleepy Hollow and have a village population of 30 online dating is a great way to widen your dating radius in order to strike it lucky.

Looking at my recent experience in online dating I am a creature of habit. My profile clearly restricts my search criteria to under 30miles.  Why? Well for me the distance is a huge problem. Whilst I drive and love to drive, I do not want to be heading out on a Friday to meet Mr A and spend an hour and a half in my car before I get there.  Neither do I want to spend two hours on public transport just to go out for date night pizza.  In fact, my last several dates have been in about a 12 mile radius from my house for those very reasons – I am also pretty lazy and a creature of comforts….I want a relationship with someone who is close by so that when either of us is having a crappy day we can simply be there in ten minutes with a pick me up hug.  So for me personally dating way outside my postcode zone is just a no-no.  Currently Mr M is based about a 30 minute commute and we can be warm and cosy and meet for midweek cuddles, it’s not a grand tour for either of to see each other and that works just fine.

Could I honestly see myself dating Mr G in Cardiff or Mr X in Leeds….nope.  I’ve done both and it is not only exhausting on the bank account it’s pretty emotionally taxing too.  The other way to look at it is this.  If you spend 90 minutes driving to meet Mr X or Miss X and you get there and it’s the worst date ever (you know the one where you literally cannot wait for it to end) in reality you cannot walk out after ten minutes or have some sort of fake phone call from your bestie to rescue you because you’re too far away!! Once you’re there you are there for the night and that means you might drink more and end up doing the whole after dinner coffee thing!

 

giphy

Long distance relationships are challenging in many ways but if you really, really like someone maybe it is about putting in the extra effort to make them realise they are the one for you.  Finding a soulmate today is not easy – nothing in life is and if you’re looking for someone whose values and goals align with yours and you really want to build a future with them then maybe just maybe you have to put yourself through the inconvenience.  Remember though it has to be a two-way street.

Honesty is key to any relationship but even more so for a long distance one.  If you have kids set your boundaries, be open and upfront about whether you’d relocate or not, if you have family who depend on you then make this known – in general what may seem like hurdles may not be an issue to the other party but they or you cannot make an informed decision if you do not communicate your relationship deal breakers.

If you’re making the effort then so should the other person in the relationship – otherwise, you really are flogging a dead horse and you shouldn’t have to sell yourself.  If someone doesn’t want to put themselves out for you then listen to your gut…the right person will travel to get to know you and meet you and if the relationship is right you’ll find a common ground to build a future on.

Recent studies showed that on average Brits are prepared to travel an average of 400 miles to meet Mr or Miss Right…yes really, we clearly are a committed bunch and men were inclined to travel an extra 22 miles to find the perfect woman. So whether you are online dating in Birmingham or living in London and wanting to expand your dating circle maybe its worth broadening your horizons to see what lies a little further afield.

Have you ever had a man or woman tell you that you live too far away? How have you handled it? Have you made a long distance relationship work?  Please share your comments and tips below.

long-distance-relationships

 

Are we dating in the dark ages?

The following headline jumped out at me today whilst catching up on social media on last night’s episode of First Dates.  Instantly it had got my back up:-

Is your CAREER holding back your love life? Dating app reveals which jobs are considered the ‘sexiest’ for women and men…’

Before you check your calendar the year is still 2016 and we haven’t reverted back to 1816 (although from reading the full article on the Daily Mail website you would think we have).

I couldn’t believe that we were all really this shallow in the 21st century when looking for love. Had we forgotten about the art of romance and instead become wooed by the size of a date’s bank account?

couple in love

I think I read the article with my mouth agape, which wasn’t the most pleasant for my work colleagues, but I couldn’t actually believe what I was reading.  Apparently a leading US dating app had analysed the profiles of 1.5 million of its users and claims that job titles can have a dramatic impact on people’s love lives as data shows how professions can affect likeability.

According to the survey the ‘sexiest’ professions for women were flight attendants, speech therapists and a product manager (nothing like a bit of stereotyping).  For men it didn’t get much better with the top three most ‘desirable’ professions being a doctor, psychiatrist or a lawyer!

Now it’s not difficult to spot that the male jobs are high salary, professional executive roles which is somewhat worrying as it would imply that females choose our dates based on earning potential / potential for gifts.  

As an independent woman in her late 30’s this shocked me as I really thought we were beyond the materialistic aspect of who to choose for your date.  However, upon surveying a small sample of female friends on whether certain jobs would entice or put them off a potential lover it appeared that job title was the one box all of them would look at first.

A friend of mine bluntly put it ‘there’s no way I could date the  £10 an hour pizza delivery guy when my £200 a session psychiatrist is a much better option – just think about it, you’d get awful cheap bottles of prosecco on a Friday instead of a good bottle of rose LP.”  

I hang my head in my hands.  Really – females of society – have we resorted to this in order to find our perfect date?

Ironically the men I asked weren’t much better with at least a dozen quite happy to reinforce the ‘sexy secretary’ myth or the fantasy of joining the mile high club with an air stewardess.

online-dating-profile

This begs the question, in the world of online dating how many of us actually put our real job title in our online dating profiles?  When I tried online dating a few years back I put as my job title ‘Entrepreneur and Business Owner’, after all this was what I was.  The number of high flying corporate men who approached me was phenomenal – yet for one guy who was a self employed plumber I was deemed too ‘ambitious and driven’ and he actually commented that he was threatened by my job status.

Curious.

Surely, for those of us looking to find a long term partner one of the most attractive things about a person is their desire to better themselves and grow, and our careers are the way that we do this.  Anyone with any form of gainful employment surely is an attractive option because they are showing independence and commitment for a job even if they really really hate it!  

Me personally, I am far more likely to date an employed individual (it doesn’t bother me what they do) than an unemployed individual.  

Why?  Simply because if a person is unemployed it says so much to me about how they value themselves.  There are thousands of jobs available, and they might not be what you want but they are there.  It is better to have any job than to have no job at all.

So whether it’s the pizza delivery guy on a Wednesday or my personal trainer on a Friday if either of them ask me out on a date over Christmas I would quite happily say yes!

white-home-decoration-candles

Have you had other online daters hit on you because or your job description on your profile? Or perhaps you have had potential dates fizz out when your job doesn’t meet your date’s expectations?  We’d love to hear from you.

Don’t fancy being lonely under the mistletoe this Christmas?  Take advantage of our ‘early bird’ offer and save 40% on our VIP packages from the 13th – 15th December.  Just enter code PMFJINGLE40 when you sign up to any of our online dating sites.

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Festive Date Suggestions for Christmas Time

coffee cup in the snow

Let’s be honest now. Christmas time is one of those times of the year when you dream of a romantic Christmas like in the movies. You want to be the couple who go ice-skating hand in hand while snowflakes gently fall around you, you want to walk around Christmas markets sharing sweet treats and getting tipsy on mulled wine, you want to take long walks across frosted landscapes and then find a roaring fire to cuddle up in front of together.

Whether you are 25 to 95, we’re all secretly hoping for a little magic at this time of year but sometimes we all need a helping hand in creating the right backdrop. At Plenty More Fish we love finding fun ideas for alternative dates and we’ve come up with some fabulous ones around the UK. So find yourself some mistletoe and get ready to pucker up!

Unleash Your Creative Talents – if you’re in or around Manchester have a go at making each other a really special and heartfelt Christmas gift at one of the Winter Workshops which run right up to the 23rd December. A great way to work together and use your hands (in a Ghost pottery style) and make a gift for one another that will be something you remember for years.

Night at the Museum – No matter how confident you feel on a ice-skating rink (I am more Bambi on ice than Jane Torvill) – you must visit the National History Museum ice rink. It is a seriously romantic place for a winter Christmas date – with sparkling garlands and trees wrapped in shiny fairy lights all around you, there’s also a huge enchanting Christmas tree in the middle of the skating rink. We suggest that you pretend you need to hold tight to your date – oh you really can’t skate? With live music every Thursday you can skate and dance the night away in each other’s arms.

christmas date ideas London

Travel Europe (without leaving Edinburgh) – Scotland is beautiful at Christmas time and Edinburgh is one of my favourite cities. If you fancy taking your date on a European extravaganza the traditional and romantic Christmas Market in the heart of the City of Edinburgh offers a unique shopping experience for every visitor with its fair of crafters, artists, gift shops and gastronomic surprises. Get into the Christmas spirit!

The Ultimate in Sophistication – if you want to wow your date with something a little sophisticated we would recommend heading to the ‘Forest on the roof,’ an enchanting Alpine chalet-style restaurant and bar right on top of the huge Selfridges store. Hot chocolate bar choices will be a perfect start for a chilly night (who doesn’t love chocolate tasting kisses?!) Who knows, maybe this time next year you’ll be heading to the real Alps with your perfect someone.

Christmas dating suggestions

A Little Cabin in the Woods – what could make a more magical date than an enchanting gingerbread cottage packed to the rafters with cosy sofas and warm blankets for the ultimate cuddle fest! If you are a fan of a Gordon Ramsay cuisine and crazy for Christmas, pay a visit to the enchanting York and Albany Gingerbread Cabin in London. Yes, that’s right. The cozy décor and wonderfully built winter cabin have walls good enough to eat. Just remember that feeling the ‘hygge’ (creating warm and cosy moments) makes people open up so it could be the perfect place to take your date to the next level.

the-gingerbread-cabin-london

Head out into the wilds – one of the best things about the winter is those really frosty, bright, cold days. They make everywhere look like something out of a fairytale. So take advantage of what is around you, pack up a picnic (think cosy festive foods like a flask of mulled wine, door-stop sandwiches packed with turkey stuffing and cranberry, delicious rich mince pies) and take your date to the great outdoors. A stroll around a country park, a historical property or a nature trail allows the two of you to spend some quality time away from everyone else and is a lovely romantic gesture. Just imagine, if it snows how magical it would be with tiny snowflakes falling as you share a private kiss.

Kissing in the snow

Do you know of any other festive date-venues over Christmas for a little date magic?

Plenty More Silver Fish Success Stories

Sam & Jacqui – October 2016

pmfsilversuccess

“I contacted Jacqui because you advised me of a perfect match.
Our profile was the first attraction.
The first date was at Pitlochrie.
We kissed on the second date at Callander.
We have been with each other nearly every day since.
Plenty laughter in the relationship but no stories to share yet
We hope to travel and have a long and happy future together

Thanks again
Regards
Sam & Jacqui”

Congratulations, to Sam & Jaqui who were matched together in our Silver Pond which specialises in dating for over 40’s.  We love to hear of a good online dating success story, so if you’ve had success using Plenty More Fish tweet us @plentymorefish.

Writer’s block? Tips for the perfect dating bio

Whilst we may be a generation addicted to selfies and photos, it is safe to say that a well-written quality dating profile will help you stand out in the crowd and catch Mr or Miss Right.  The thing is we’re just not very good at selling ourselves, it isn’t in our nature to ‘brag’ about our plus points but in reality this is exactly what you need to do in the world of online dating.

tips for writing an online dating bio

Even if you’re not a budding wordsmith with a little thought and creativity you can create a knockout dating profile. Still need a guiding hand?  Our top tips below will prompt you in the right direction.

  • Keep it short and sweet.  Entice your date with just enough to peak their interest.
  • Kids in your photos. Always a risky one as parents tend to keep their kids off the internet. However, if you are a single parent most of your pictures will contain your kids so a quick disclaimer about who that kid in your photo belongs to are appreciated, but not necessary.
  • Funny is good. Witty is better.  Be original and don’t copy and paste from other profiles.
  • Please, no inspirational or insightful quotes. Online dating is not the platform to promote your views on mindfulness or inner peace.
  • Guys, please don’t put your height in your bio. Whilst there may be shallow girls out there that open with this question, most of us are better than that!

Regardless of whether you’re a young professional or one of the many over 40’s daters, making the right first impression is key and a good dating bio can be a great way to introduce yourself.

If you’re looking for a potential date what are the things you look for in a good profile?  We’d love for you to share with us your profile ‘deal breakers’. 

Take the plunge this Black Friday weekend with a HUGE 40% off our online dating memberships – just enter code PMFFRIDAY when you sign up.  Be quick though as this offer is only valid until Sunday 27th November 2016.

Plenty More Fish Discount Code

The big question not to ask on a first date

Believe it or not there is actually a question that is best left avoided when you head out on a first date.  When I tell you what it is it might actually surprise you, because it is not what you think and the topic for this week’s blog acts as a cautionary tale for all of us in the world of online dating.

questions not to ask on a date

I posed the following question to a guy friend of mine the other week who has been dipping his toe in the singles dating pond, ‘what’s the one question from women on a first date that really winds you up?’

His answer….. ‘When they ask me what I do for a job.’  

I looked at him eyebrows raised and somewhat quizzically and couldn’t understand why this seemingly innocent question was obviously like a poison apple.   So over a fantastic keralan chicken take out we discussed the reason why this question is seriously taboo on the dating circuit.

On further investigation, it transpired that there are in fact a whole plethora of questions that are more likely to sabotage a first date than to send you both off into the sunset in each other’s arms.  Between us, we came up with just some of the real situations below (and yes they are totally cringeworthy!);

  • How come you’re single?
  • What are your plans for the future?
  • What happened in your last relationship?
  • What is your ideal date?
  • Do you still speak to your ex?
  • Would you have sex on the first date?

My companion for the evening admitted on one first date the girl he met asked him if he had any ideas as to where their relationship was going.  He was so shocked by her forthrightness that he excused himself there and then because there was no chemistry at all on his part and she made it very clear she was in for the long haul.

As he put it to me…’there was no point flogging a dead horse and she’d only be really disappointed that I lied to her.’

The questions above might seem a really obvious dating faux pas to make, but just why is asking someone what they do for a job so wrong?  Well, in all honesty, it sends out the wrong signals.  

If your date replies with the answer that they have a high-powered executive job it may well lead to the assumption they are wealthy and in return implies that you are materialistic and motivated by money.  You may well be, and that’s your choice but as first impressions go it probably isn’t the one you want to make.  Your relationship should be based on personality, shared interests and chemistry not whether or not you wish to hire this person.  First dates are awkward enough without asking the above question – and does it really make a difference if he’s a labourer or a lawyer?  

young couple in love on a date

There’s a fine line between getting to know someone and digging a little too deep, so try to think before you speak.  When getting to know your date it is important to remember that there’s much more to us than our professions and lots of people don’t define themselves by their jobs at all.

If you really want to get to date number 2 then may I suggest you stay well away from asking the killer question above as well as some of the other bizarre options listed!

Have you been on a date lately where the questions have veered into the bizarre?  We’d love to hear your tales and pet peeves.

Photo credit: K.G.Hawes Question Mark? via photopin (license)

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