Dating can be awkward, scary, and a pain at any age. True, being in the over-60 group may mean that more people your age are already off the market, but online dating can help you find mature singles in your area that you would have never met otherwise.
To help you find your perfect match (whether you're interested in something casual or a long-term relationship), Mashable tested the best senior dating sites out there. Our goal? To figure out which dating platform is the best fit for you.
If you're hesitant about trying online dating as a senior, you're not alone. Finding a dating site that feels comfortable and natural is intimidating for everyone, and even the best senior dating sites can feel especially awkward. Young folks are completely desensitized to these apps, and there's a bit of a learning curve for new users. But here's the thing: Seniors actually have tons of advantages when it comes to online dating.
For starters, many people in their 20s aren’t ready to settle down. But as an experienced lover over 60, you’ve been figuring out this whole “love” thing for longer than millennials have been alive. You know the red flags, and you know what you want. EliteSingles’ senior dating blog notes that older singles realize life is too short to play games.
Plus, online dating gives you access to a wider pool of potential matches. When you’re limited to meeting people in your local area, your options can be pretty slim, and finding a potential partner may seem impossible. The best online dating apps are like windows to the world, letting you connect with people from everywhere. Plus, they're super convenient. You can hop on a dating website or launch a dating app and start surfing potential matches from the comfort of your couch whenever you please, day or night. This means you can take your sweet time getting to know someone before you meet in person.
We've gathered the best dating sites for seniors below based on our own experiences, hands-on reviews, and research with dating app users. We've also included some info to help you make the most of online dating.
How to avoid senior dating scams
Unfortunately, not everyone online is looking for a real connection. You can also find heartless scammers who are only interested in luring in seniors and stealing their hard-earned money. These scammers use false information to create a fake profile and pose as someone they're not (such as a member of the military). They may also pretend to be interested until you've formed an emotional bond — and then the demands for money start coming.
The Department of Homeland Security has a guide for spotting romance scams online. Here are some additional tips for avoiding online dating scams:
Beware of excuses to avoid in-person meetings; scammers often make and break dates.
Never send money to someone you meet online for any reason, including "loans."
Protect your personal information like social security, bank, and credit card details.
Meet in public for your first date.
Trust your instincts; if it doesn't feel right, walk away or block the person.
If you think you've been scammed, report the scammer to the dating site or app you're using and file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). You can also place a fraud alert on your credit report in case your personal info was compromised.
What are the best dating sites for seniors?
After trying these dating sites and apps for ourselves, we put together a list of the five best dating sites for seniors and one last resort option. Many dating sites offer matching features for users over 50, but our favorite senior dating sites feature additional matching options for singles over 60 and 70. All sites offer a free membership option, but you'll probably need a paid account to access the real in-depth features, such as unlimited messaging or seeing photos. (Note that prices for dating apps and sites are constantly changing. We update regularly, but there might be minor price differences.)
Mashable tested all of the senior dating sites included below. From easy-to-use apps to more serious-minded dating websites, here’s to finding love later in life!
UPDATE: Sep. 22, 2023, 1:00 a.m. EDT This article has been updated to reflect our latest hands-on dating site reviews. Ultimately, we decided to remove Zoosk and relegated Our Time to "last-resort" status.