More than half the UK population is now single, according to the Office for National Statistics, and the largely unregulated dating industry is estimated to be worth hundreds of millions of pounds.
Matchmaking services are emerging with increasingly adventurous fee structures — particularly in central London, which has more than its fair share of wealthy singles.
The £6,000 fee I paid is at the lower end of the London introduction agency range. Discretion and privacy are understandably sought by all involved, making it hard to get a reliable gauge of the success rate of these services before joining — or even indeed how they operate.
Wondering how to get to the second date with someone you met online? As most online daters know, it's not the first date that's hard to get — it's the second. When you're getting to know your date, don't be prepping your next thing to say while he's talking.
But if you're dating online because you want a relationship and not just a date, making a connection and getting that second date (and third and fourth) is the whole point. You may be tempted to make that first date a sleepover. To find out if there's a spark, you can't just talk about the weather. Ask him a question to get him to expand on what he just told you.