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One of the largest dating sites around today, has an enormous membership, as well as a lot of bells and whistles found only on their site. But without a decent way to review the service before signing up, is the site really worth it?

Overview from

"Last year alone, more than 500,000 singles found meaningful relationships through's online personals and singles ads. pioneered the Internet dating industry, launching in 1995 what is now the most recognized dating service worldwide, and today serves more than 15 million singles in 240 countries."

What a Membership Includes has a very healthy budget for tweaks and features, which is obvious as soon as you click on a link to visit the site. A snazzy layout, easy-to-use search features and numerous magazines, newsletters, and advice columns round out the already jam-packed site.

What is more interesting, however, is what the site doesn't have: chat or instant messaging features. Also, free members can't look at someone else's profile much less reply to a paying member who has sent them an email without first paying the monthly fee. You can peek around a little bit after creating a profile (called a "portrait"), but you won't get very far without becoming a full-fledged member. With no real way to view the site without grabbing your credit card, you'll want to read the Terms of Use fully (which are still not very forthcoming) before signing up.

Unique Features

This is where excels far above and beyond most other dating sites today. Their special features outnumber the regular ones—so much so that there isn't enough space to list them all. A chosen few at the time of posting, are:

  • MatchWords: Similar to the keywords used with your favorite search engine, users can define a list of words that other users can search them out with. You'll even get a list of some of the most recently added and most popular MatchWords to get you started.
  • Platinum: A personalized, professional matchmaker is available for users who don't have the time to weed through the portraits on
  • MindFindBind With Dr. Phil: For those in need of assistance getting started with online dating, Dr. Phil's exclusive monthly program will walk you through how to get your mind ready to date, how to find someone perfect for you, and then how to bond/bind with them over time.

Membership Costs

Unfortunately, the company keeps their pricing structure fairly hidden, and it takes a bit of searching to find out exactly what their fees and terms are; for instance, the Billing Terms page comes up blank and their Subscribe page makes no mention of associated costs. Make sure to read the fine print before giving the site (or any online dating site) your credit card, as it is normal practice to bill automatically for another month (or whichever package you'd chosen previously) once your service term has ended.

Upon posting, the current monthly cost ranged from $16.99 to 23.99/month USD, with extra costs for some of their unique features. They accept Visa, Mastercard, and most recently Pay Pal as payment methods.

The Bottom Line on This Review

Would I use to meet someone? This is the tricky part for me. I've used Match since its inception (which was actually a classifieds site, but that's another article), yet haven't met a single soul from it in more than a decade.

Now, my clients, readers and friends have, and many have found love and even marriage through the site. For whatever reason, I haven't. I have zero issue starting a conversation with someone, or attracting interesting potentials on any other dating site, it's just Match. Why do I think this is?

I've found that, for folks like myself who have a specific age range that they prefer (my age or +/- 5 years), get few hits here. Why? Match likes to tell you which age range is most attracted to you—which in my case comprises mostly of much older men. I change the settings, and I still get much older men. I pay, I get much older men. I contact men my age, and nada. Zip. I've spoken to other women in their mid-30s and older that have had similar experiences, so this might be the issue here. 

Do I recommend Yes. I'd say it's a good, solid choice if you've got the money, and I most definitely recommend the app, as well as their in-person events (look for "Stir Events" on the website). For those with specific needs with regards to age, religion, or with alternative dating lifestyles, I'd probably recommend a more niche dating site instead, or at least one that allows you to choose these markers with a definitive Yes or No.

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