More than 280,000 marriages each year are a direct result of an Online dating service, according to Online Dating Magazine. Millions of people use these services every month, most hoping to find the love of their life.
But is online dating service the answer for you? We talked to two valley area women who date online and would definitely recommend it to their friends.
Forty-three-year old Charlotte Burton is a divorced mother of two. She describes the dating scene in Columbus as "a real joke."
Burton says, "It comes to meeting someone, you either met someone who is too young, or want more of a partying scene. Or you meet men who are just jerks." So Burton decided to try her luck online and signed on with Match.com.
"I had never done this before in my life," said Burton. She admits she was a little apprehensive at first, but decided to give it a try just the same.
"People need to have an open mind to it. I really believe that there is a lot of stigmatism to it. Again I can only stress it's no different from meeting someone on the street or in a restaurant," said Burton.
She believes the key to making sure you attract someone compatible is to be honest about who you are and what you want.
She had certain qualities she was looking for that were non-negotiable. "He definitely had to be a man of God, not just talk about it you had to do the walk, and he had to be divorced. And most important, he had to have children or have a serious love for children because in my life my children come first," Burton said.
Twenty- seven-year-old Devon Jeffers' list of priorities was a little different from Burton's. She moved to the valley just a few months ago and turned to online dating as a way to meet new friends and maybe find her soul mate in the process.
Jeffers says overall her experience was good, though she admits not everyone she met online told the whole truth.
"I had some doozies," says Jeffers. "One guy lied about his age. He told me he was 38, but he was really 45."
Both Jeffers and Burton agree that honesty is the best policy when it comes to online dating. But experts say there is some information you should withhold for your own protection. Things like your address and phone number should never be given out.
Security experts say when meeting someone that you met online in person for the first time, always do it in a public place where you're comfortable. They also suggest you tell someone where you are going and who you are meeting.
Our two ladies agree and say they are always cautious and careful about their information and who and where they meet. Both say they have met someone special online and are hoping they have indeed found their Prince Charming's.
If you're interested in online dating there are some other facts that you should know. The two most popular sites are Match.com and E-Harmony, with Match.com being number one. It will cost you from about $17 to $30 a month to subscribe to Match, depending on how long you sign up for. E-Harmony is a little pricier, more like $30 to $60 a month. Many online dating services will allow you to browse for free. Good Luck!