It's best to use the dating service's internal, secure messaging system until you feel as though you know the person to some degree.
This ensures that when you do run into the inevitable creep online, you remain anonymous and safe. So it helps prepare yourself if you remember that going into the online dating process.
Don't agree to do something just because it sounds like fun or exciting if it's really not you.
The point of online dating isn't to reinvent yourself or to try out everything new under the sun.
Always talk to the other person by telephone at least once before agreeing to meet for your first date.
Ask for a photo (if they didn't provide one in their profile) so that you can be assured of meeting the right person.
Be Realistic Prince (or Princess) Charming may very well indeed be waiting for you online, but you should also set your expectations just a little bit lower. Don't believe that everyone who shows interest in you is worth your time.
And don't get disenchanted if your first date decides they don't want a second.
So go slowly with new contacts and get to know the person via messaging and emails first.
There's no need to be paranoid about your privacy, but at the same time, it is wise to take simple precautions that will ensure you remain safe until you are completely comfortable.
Some people also use a cell phone or even a public pay phone to ensure their potential match can't get their home telephone number. Remember, you don't have to meet everyone you communicate with online.
Use Common Sense It's funny I have to write those words, but they are just so important.
We sometimes feel like we've made an "instant connection" online with someone we've only just met.
It's to find someone you're most compatible with, which means being yourself.