The answer to this question depends on a whole lot of other factors beyond just the cost itself (which is important, given the tough economy and the fact that most people don’t have nearly as much extra money sitting around as they did before). Before you take the plunge and type in your credit card information, think for a moment about a) what you’re really getting for the money, and b) whether or not you really need whatever it is you’re going to get.
For instance, does the extra fee give you extra access to more potential matches? Does it make your own profile stand out more on the website? Is it necessary in order for you to be able to contact members? Or is there some other real benefit to forking over more of your hard earned money?
If you’re going to pay, my advice is to start with the minimum subscription period that is offered. Also make sure you read the small print carefully (make a copy of the terms), and pay special attention to any auto-renewals clauses. You want to make sure your card is not going to be auto-billed once your subscription expires. This way, if your credit card does get auto billed when your membership ends, you’ll have legitimate grounds to dispute the transaction with your credit card company. If it’s in the terms and conditions, there’s not much you can do.
Of course the dating site will make it sound like a terrific deal, but you need to determine this for yourself. They’ll also push really hard to sign you up for long term fees by dangling a big discount in front of you. My advice is to avoid the long term fees whenever possible because you simply won’t know if you’re getting your money’s worth until you pay the money and start using the site; by the time you figure out if it’s money well spent or not it’s too late to get any back.
Here are some of the pros and cons of free vs. pay dating sites for you to consider.
The pros of free dating services
- You’ve nothing to lose – you can simply leave if you don’t like it.
- Your credit card won’t get hit with unsuspected automatic subscription renewals.
- There are now plenty of great free sites to choose from.
- Free dating sites tend be over populated with men, often with questionable motives for being there.
- Free sites often fall short on user support and customer care.
- Since there’s no payment record, it’s much easier for people to remain completely anonymous and untraceable.
- Many have distracting and annoying advertisements.
To fee or not to fee… that is the question. What’s the best answer for your budget and your needs?