Once your know their name, check the National Sex Offender Registry

Once your know their name, check the National Sex Offender Registry

Use an app such as Google Voice, which does not disclose your phone number, if you want to talk over the phone before meeting up.

Share both your date plans and your live location with a friend. If they see a drastic change in route, they’ll know you could be in danger.

Expert Tips

People are much more than a couple of pictures and a hundred-something-character bio. So, how can someone best portray themselves on a dating site or app? We had a chat with Julie Spira, author and cyber-dating expert, and Jessica Small, a licensed ily therapist with Growing Self Counseling and Coaching service, to get their insight on how to jump into the online dating world and land on your feet:

Creating a great profile

�I think you need to be authentic as you possibly can in your bio,� recommends Spira. �They’ll look at your photos and if they’re serious they’ll look at a couple of sentences [in your bio] because they want to see �What do we have in common?’ … It gives the person looking at you an opportunity to ask questions.� Small agrees. She advises giving enough information so others can easily come up with conversation starters.

You don’t have to fill every blank in your profile, but Spira does suggest sharing as much information you can without feeling unsafe. �If you don’t put in your school, which is fine, you could just say you have a degree in politics. … As much as I believe in being an onion and peeling off a layer at a time, people have a split second [when online dating] to decide whether they are interested in you or the next person.�

When it comes to pictures, Small suggested keeping away from bathroom selfies and such. �Have great and thoughtfully chosen pictures-[they] may be the only thing someone looks at. Each picture should have a purpose that gives information about you.�

When you get a match and it’s sugar daddy Las Vegas time to message them, ask �a specific question or comment about their profile�. Don’t start a conversation with nothing but a �hey,� Small said. Interestingly, she also considers talking about how much you hate online dating as a big no-no. �You’d be surprised at how often this happens,� she told us. Seems like complaining about your online dating life to your matches happens so often, it has earned its own name: �whelming.�

Choosing the right site or app for you

Spira believes there’s no one best site or app for everyone, �It’s not a one-size-fits-all formula». Instead of trying to find the best one she recommends that people join two to three online dating services at a time to �cast a wider net.� �The more people that you meet the better a dater you become� and the more you realize what you’re looking for in a relationship, she said.

Small believes that sites that ask users to fill out a questionnaire or require a paid membership plan �tend to attract people that are more serious about looking for a relationship� but she does underline that �one is not necessarily better than the other.� She also advises not placing a high level of importance on compatibility percentage scores offered on certain sites, �I don’t think it is overly accurate and often we connect with someone that is not exactly like us.�

Before choosing which service to use, she recommends thinking about what you are looking for and considering the type of person you think that particular dating service may attract. She, like Spira, also recommends joining more than one to increase your chances.

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