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Encounters Dating (brought to you by The Times and The Sunday Times) is a dating site for people who really are looking for a relationship. This is best highlighted by its impressively intricate profiling system which asks a lot of relevant questions and – for best and most effective use – demands that its users supply lot of information. This is time consuming but altogether more rewarding as it allows members to take an honest approach to who and what they are looking for in a relationship. It’s not really a site for time-wasters, then, and this is also reflected in its price. A good discount is given for people who are willing to take out the 6 month package, indicative of an ethos of “taking your time” to find a partner. This isn’t a race, and Encounters Dating seems to realise that long lasting relationships are based on a foundation of honesty and patience. If you’re looking for a quick flirt and a bit of fun then this probably isn’t the place for you.
Besides the massively detailed profiling, the help section is very detailed and covers a lot of the key issues in a straightforward way through a series of links, though it is a lot of text and could benefit from a few instructional videos. If you’re still in need of assistance or want to report an error or threatening behaviour you can easily contact the help department. Information and safety is key to Encounters Dating, which does make you feel safe when using it.
Users can upload ten photos (at a decent quality of up to 4 megabytes) and searching can be as intricate and specific as you’d like. This is useful if you’re quite particular, though it can also be a little restricting if you are too specific. It claims to have sophisticated, intelligent members (we’ve no idea how they check this claim), but given its affiliation to The Times, we tend to believe them. Profiles are watched, photos are given the once over, to make sure that they are legitimate. It takes some of the fun out of things, perhaps, but makes it a safer place to be.
Features other than searching are very few but if you’re not particularly interested in virtual dates and blowing imaginary kisses from afar then it’s not a major problem. It’s a little indistinct, though, and it might have been a nice bonus to have a few more unique options available to help daters on their way.
Encounters Dating is a site for people who are serious about finding long term and committed relationships. It might lack the quirks of some sites out there but its dedication to safety and making good matches is very impressive. Other dating sites could learn a thing or two from its professional approach.
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