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Show ALL Forums  > Dating and Love Advice  > How many hours of online work to get one date?      Home login  
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 ohenryx
Joined: 3/12/2010
Msg: 1
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How many hours of online work to get one date?Page 1 of 3    (1, 2, 3)


When we experienced how much effort and energy was spent emailing prospective matches, wading through cheesy responses, deleting emails from weird guys, instant messaging and finally cultivating a single meeting, we confirmed the research that says it takes an average of SIX HOURS to set up one real-life date. And your odds of wanting a second date are slim. This is not a good investment of your time, unless you are willing to spend almost an entire workday, every week, just to get one date.


After reading the above statement on another site, I am moved to ask this question.

How much time, on average, does it take you working online to get an initial meeting?

Forget a date, just an initial meeting for coffee. I’m talking about the time you take conducting searches, reading profiles, composing /sending initial messages, weeding out the idiots and flakes, corresponding back and forth, working out a date/time that works for both of you, and a location, etc. The original article compared this to driving 6 hours (3 hours each way), just to have a cup of coffee.

I thought about posting this in Ask A Girl/Guy, but I really want responses from both sides of the fence, and I think this topic might be interesting enough that it shouldn’t be capped at 21 replies.
 Boricua Papi
Joined: 10/8/2007
Msg: 2
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/12/2012 9:28:59 AM
Online dating is not a looking for job thing. This is mostly entertaiment. If you are online dating thinking this is a hourly job you are a big LOSER. You post a profile, say what you want about yourself and your interests, post your best pictures, browse profiles, message some, and keep up with your life. If no one answers your email so what? Are you going to let online dating rule or ruin your life?
There are also the "FORUMS" where you can comment and read other interesting stuff from online daters. This is just fun, not only trying to find a date but to know about other people! Grow up!
 _TALL_IQ2_
Joined: 2/10/2010
Msg: 3
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/12/2012 9:33:06 AM
How much time, on average, does it take you working online to get an initial meeting?


Since I leave my computer on most of the day anyway, and check messages/Forums occasionally for entertainment, couldn't really specify a length of time per initial meeting.

Though with much experience online, I am fairly quick to judge by an email or two just who is legitimate/likely to actually show up at a set meetup for a face-to-face "first meet" instead of playing coy and elusive in the common online game of "impress me more than the others"... S
 BLoNde__ANgeL
Joined: 9/20/2011
Msg: 4
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/12/2012 4:03:50 PM
http://forums.plentyoffish.com/datingPosts14054643.aspx

here is a thread about a guy who had to email 600 women to get 5 dates...
 Stray__Cat
Joined: 7/12/2006
Msg: 5
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/12/2012 8:50:44 PM
I haven't really thought about it.
I surf here when bored.
post in the forums.
when single, I email various interesting local ladies.
and get emails from various local ladies.
(some interesting. some not)

and generally dating....just happens.
Hard to put my finger on how.
Or put it into a time frame.

I have two suggestions if one struggles with this:

1) Time spent at a gym is worth twice the time spent online.
Cus if you look good, the online stuff just goes much easier.
(Sorry. But it is a shallow world.)

2) if the above suggestion doesn't appeal or is not workable....
Get a hobby you enjoy...or travel....or build a dream...something.
Cus if you can't get out and date, you might as well enjoy life.
And often when doing so....
the dating thing just happens.
don't know why....
Maybe when we are relaxed, enjoying ourselves...
we just seem so much more appealing.
 femaleconnection
Joined: 8/12/2010
Msg: 6
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/13/2012 5:54:00 AM
This should just be a line in the water. Put up a good enough profile that will get attention, send out a few emails and walk away from the computer!

Online should never replace living a real life and mixing things up with real people. If you can spend 6 hours 'trying to get a date' then you really should be spending 5 of those hours doing something to make yourself more of a catch.

When I hear people saying being on a dating site is 'hard work' I have to wonder if they even know what hard work is! The work should be in creating your profile...sadly most think a blurry pic and 2 sentences is a good profile then they lament that it is taking too long to arrange dates. Put the effort in where it counts, on your profile.
 ForRumOnly
Joined: 3/16/2009
Msg: 7
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How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/13/2012 7:24:32 AM
I don't think I could give a number. Besides, it doesn't really matter. When I was dating and seeking, I'd spend time based on the number and nature of responses. I rarely initiated contact, so spent hardly any time searching and sending out emails - I mostly just responded. I found the process interesting and entertaining, so it certainly wasn't a chore, plus I had plenty of time for other things. I had enough dates to be happy with the results. I was hoping to find a LTR, and online dating was the most effective way for me to do that in my circumstances. It worked, so whatever the amount of time spent was more than worth it.
 NonamousDog
Joined: 4/20/2011
Msg: 8
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/13/2012 3:15:30 PM
ohenryx,

Most posters are shying away from actually answering the question as if they were afraid of the answer. No one even wants to make an educated guess.
 JDinMN
Joined: 2/12/2012
Msg: 9
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/13/2012 3:27:35 PM
Ding ding.


Time spent at a gym is worth twice the time spent online.


Stray Cat speaks the truth. And as a side benefit you get to be healthy. Imagine that.

IDK the time frames though. Just started. 1 hour and ticking. But I imagine in my situation it is probably 8 - 10x the time so I'm sure not liking the "6 hours average". Ack, I might surrender before the battle even begins - if that's the case.

60 hours? No freaking way. I have better things to do with my time than that. (barely, but still). haha.



 BLoNde__ANgeL
Joined: 9/20/2011
Msg: 10
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/13/2012 3:54:35 PM
I think if ordinary looking men email just the hotties, it will take them way longer than if they email the girl next door!
 JDinMN
Joined: 2/12/2012
Msg: 11
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/13/2012 4:12:24 PM
^^^ I think the girls next door are the hotties.
(tongue in cheek though - cause that is such a generalized statement).
 NonamousDog
Joined: 4/20/2011
Msg: 12
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/30/2012 2:36:14 PM
darthbanker,

You completely dodged the question. How much time does it take? Not how does it compare to other methods.

In the time it took you to compose your post, you probably could have estimated the hours you've spent online looking for dates, and divided that number by the amount of dates you've gotten.

Or are you like me, and have never actually had a date with anyone from POF?
 Maleman999
Joined: 2/14/2010
Msg: 13
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/30/2012 6:46:45 PM

Msg 4: What's a date ?


April 30, 2012
 minervyx
Joined: 5/25/2011
Msg: 14
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 4/30/2012 7:35:41 PM
initially, it will probably take a couple hours to build up an interesting profile that stands out and has good pics.

it shouldn't take too much time:
1. assuming you aren't a bad or slow reader
2. assuming you aren't a bad or slow at typing/writing.
3. assuming you are a good catch and ready to date.
4. assuming you are good at disposing the bad apples early.
 VacationGuy234
Joined: 8/1/2008
Msg: 15
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 5/1/2012 4:54:39 AM
For a guy(depending on how good looking he is), profile and pictures take a lot of thought so you'll put in about a week or more on this easily just to get setup. Then you are going to have to work on your approach and if you don't have much experience talking to women that is going to take time. In addition, you're going to have to get up to speed on your grammar because most women are nitpickers about grammar. So, now you make initial contact and you have to lay the ground work for the date/meeting. During the initial first emails you need to be thinking (and asking) about what she likes and were she likes to go before you ask for a meeting, even if it is just for coffee. If they don't have the coffee she likes, you are not going there. And, if you are going to do the dinner first, you need to take into account her diet or food allergies. If she's into health you are going to want to go for the smoothies or frozen yogurt places, etc.

To quantify this in time, given the amount of info you need, you won't be able to do more than two dates a week effectively. I'd say at least a weeks worth of effort for each meeting which would probably take place within two weeks.
 BLoNde__ANgeL
Joined: 9/20/2011
Msg: 16
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 5/1/2012 12:19:04 PM
The reason why it takes u guys so long is cuz u pick women who are way out of ur league...they can pick & choose- i see such unrealistic behavior, mainly from men, but women r guilty too. Makes me think no one owns mirrors & or they are all blind. Most women do not want to date men they find too old or not attractive...the better looking ones can even go w/ younger men esp. if it is "sex only"...many years ago, a kind man told me: "If it is just gonna be hump-n-dump, then go 4 a hot guy!" Let's face it, women can get laid alot more easily then men!
 Texan_Gal
Joined: 10/22/2011
Msg: 17
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 5/1/2012 12:48:00 PM
Just getting a date, I'm an attractive young woman, so probably less than five minutes. Getting a date with someone I actually want to date, well that's a rare breed.
 NonamousDog
Joined: 4/20/2011
Msg: 18
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 5/1/2012 2:05:11 PM
BlondeAngel,

So, are you suggesting that every woman in my 'league' is interested in me? I would suggest to you that only a small minority of the women in any guy's 'league' will be interested in that particular guy. Your idea that it takes guys a lot of time and effort to find dates because they are going about it "wrong" is mistaken.
 HawkingJr
Joined: 4/16/2007
Msg: 19
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How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 5/1/2012 5:26:30 PM
From my posts and my occupation, I'm obviously an extremely statistically-oriented person, and even I don't know the answer to that question. All I know is that it's a VERY bad ratio, whatever it is. I've been on here continuously for over 5 years and met 3 women during that time, the first of which I don't think really counts since I had known her in real life before re-discovering her on POF (it's not likely she would have given a damn about me without that prior real life connection). One of the other two emailed me first (I get one of those an average of every 3 months) and actually only wrote me a handful of times before meeting me... but it took her a YEAR to make that decision. (Obviously I heard nothing from her for months at a time.) The one woman who was a complete stranger that I emailed first and eventually met actually did so after only a couple weeks of largely disinterested emailing on her part, so when I threw out a "let's meet," I was pretty stunned she agreed. So the 3 I have actually met, I strangely enough spent very little total time communicating with them at all before meeting. (All three were one-time meeting busts, by the way, that I didn't even count as dates, and they probably didn't either.)

But obviously that's not really the question. I have in fact sent out far more than 2000 first contact emails since I've been on here. I have on occasion spent several hours a day writing first contact emails (and hitting the 40 max). "Fortunately," not too many write back and those that do rarely say much more than a few words, so it's not like I've wasted any significant amount of time on follow-up messages with most women on here. But there are major time-wasting exceptions. The most attractive woman that ever wrote me first continuously emailed me for a YEAR, except for every time I asked her if she wanted to meet, she'd disappear for a few days, then mysteriously reappear. I probably spent hundreds of hours writing her alone. There were a few others, but none that ever made it to a year. On here. On other sites, I've made it to 3 years without ever meeting, despite ferocious back-and-forth emailing. My last unquestionable date, who came from another site, was the single example of someone I emailed back-and-forth with for 3 years and then actually met, but during those 3 years we were dating other people on-and-off, so there's some explanation to that.

I mean, if I had to take a stab in the dark, I'd say that it currently takes me more than 500 hours worth of online interaction to land one meeting. That's not as absurd as it sounds (it's as SAD as it sounds, but not absurd). There are 8760 hours in a year and counting all 3 I have met from POF (whether they should be counted or not), I meet a woman on average every 14,600 hours (aka every 1.67 years). 500/14600 = 3.4% -- so I would be spending 3.4% of each day online per date. 3.4% of a day is less than an hour. Heck, back when I was gung-ho serious about this site (first 1-3 years), I averaged WAAAAAAAY more than an hour a day on it (and I'm talking about the dating side, not the forums -- I knew of but completely ignored the forums the first couple of years that I was here). So maybe 500 hours is actually underplaying it. Maybe's it's closer to 1000 hours of online time per meeting.

And, oh yes, I would definitely describe it as a "job." Obviously I cannot sit back and wait for women to email me, since I only get 1 first contact email every 3 months (which seems ridiculously low, until you consider that I am in the bottom 1% of men on the site by searchable characteristics and in fact usually only get about 2-3 non-stealth unsolicited views per week when most men get dozens). And since I have a lifetime response ratio of about 5%, I have no choice but to send out hundreds of emails to get any kind of interaction going. It's definitely a job. The more unattractive you are, the harder you have to work to get dates/meetings. That's just the law of the land. And I don't disagree with the loser assessment. It is what it is. Admittedly, though, like any job with long hours, low pay and practically zero fringe benefits, eventually, the site broke my spirit around the same time I became super busy in real life with my other jobs, so now I rarely ever email anyone on here -- with exactly the same results as being an extremely active member. Just less hopeful.

BTW, Blonde Angel: I pretty much email anyone I could see myself dating, which is like 90% of women on here, so I hit nearly all of both the hotties AND the supposed notties (to most guys but apparently not me). You can't go wrong there statistically (however, you can lose your mind trying to come up with thousands of original emails for every one of them...)
 HawkingJr
Joined: 4/16/2007
Msg: 20
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How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 5/2/2012 10:54:00 AM
I have a much lower "time spent vs. meeting" ratio on other dating sites, including Match. Even with some email relationships dragging on for years before meetings (or never meeting). POF is the worst case scenario for me in almost every way.

It doesn't have any real preference listings besides age (which is actually not a preference but a requirement) and few women write their preferences on their profiles (most don't for good reasons) so almost any woman messaged on here is a shot in the dark for ANY guy, and almost every woman is eligible to be messaged. Compare this to Match, which has every preference under the sun: I already know I would be wasting my time with 95% of the women on there before I even attempt to send an email because their preferences disqualify me. It also means there are very few women on there I am "eligible" to email so there is no reason to get more than a single month membership every 6 months to a year, because I usually end up emailing all those I'm eligible to email within the first few days of a new membership and turnover is not terribly fast. But anyway, point is, I get a much higher response ratio on Match, because I'm only emailing women whose qualifications I fit. And you definitely can't look at the women you qualify for on Match and attempt to extrapolate that information to POF because they're just completely random in appearance and personalities. Which also is true from my real life dating. About they only thing they've all had in common is that none of them were in their right minds (sometimes because of insanity, sometimes because of immaturity).

POF is also too big. It's funny, I've seen women around here say if they had very few options on this site, they just wouldn't date any guys at all if none of them met all of their qualifications, but I'm definitely much more popular on smaller sites where there's less "noise" and I don't get lost in a gigantic sea of men (somewhat literally). Even if Match didn't have preference listings, it would still be superior to POF because although they actually aren't that far apart in total number of unique users, Match has FAR less actual paid members who can email and read emails, which whenever I'm on there gives me an advantage. As opposed to POF, where no guy has any communication advantages since everyone can email.

But I'm not rich (or else I would have no problem whatsoever getting a date) and can't afford to be on pay sites continuously, nor is there much of a point since most of them have a much smaller pool of women I can contact and I quickly run out of them, therefore I'm always continuously on POF and OKC, wasting my life away by emailing tons of women who I have no idea if they would be interested in dating someone like me.

What I'm saying is, your results on Match, even for you (whatever you look like), can in no way be comparable to similar POF activity. Every man on Match has significant advantages on that site vs. POF. If I thought it would work (and all evidence points to the contrary save your own example), I actually do have the time to write a very detailed first letter to the "perfect woman" on Match (assuming I met her preference listings). But most women have indicated they are freaked out by such things so I usually go simple (yet still personal) and that works out fairly well, at least as far as responses are concerned. Curiously, the one "recent" (actually a few years ago) meeting I got from Match came as a result of a three sentence email that she claimed was the coolest thing anyone had ever written to her -- and it wasn't even an attempt to get a date, because she was a mile outside of my league and her preferences disqualified me (the only time I've ever written a woman whose preferences disqualified me on that site). She had something extremely rare in common with a woman whose profile I stumbled across on POF around the same time so I emailed them both just to point out that similarity -- never heard from the POF woman (despite having the exact same wording in the email I sent to the Match woman). But the Match woman admitted it wasn't like she was being bombarded with emails either, despite undoubtedly being in the top 10% of women on the site -- she told me she had once been on POF but found it a waste of time (too many emails to deal with, from too many freaks). Less competition, more success! That's just how most other dating sites are, even the most popular one (Match), ironically.

I don't think there's really anything *I* can do to change my success ratio on this site, as I've pretty much changed everything dozens of times over during the years, and the results were all exactly the same. I mean, there's truly nothing to be done about increasing the number of unsolicited views I get, which is based entirely on what women search for and my physical attributes -- basically, very, very few women ever search for someone with my characteristics, and that's just the way it is. It's also been said by most guys around here that they get most of their meetings as a result of women contacting them first. Because I rarely get viewed, I have accumulated approximately 20 first contact emails from women over the past 5 years (and 5 meet-me's over the past 3 years), and as anyone can tell you, you're probably not going to have any real interest in the majority of people that contact you on this thing (the majority of mine have been undateable by most anybody's standards), so the chance of me getting a good date from someone emailing me is basically a number approaching zero, which is why I can't take an inactive role on this site like many other men are capable of doing and expect anything to happen for me.
 neck romancer
Joined: 9/7/2006
Msg: 21
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How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 5/2/2012 10:59:26 AM
if your doing it right... just the amount of time required to set up your profile. So less than an hour.
 neillinnorwich
Joined: 1/10/2009
Msg: 22
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How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 5/8/2012 11:48:47 AM
Well, it's definitely more than 6 hours. I guess a conservative estimate might be an hour a day on average for about 3 years I've been on the site is ~1000 hours, which has resulted in a total of 5 dates so that's about 200 hours a date!
 DannyDoesItGood
Joined: 2/7/2015
Msg: 23
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 10/8/2015 8:37:07 PM
I'm not sure hour many hours but I have never been on less than 2 hours each session. At about 5 days per week that's 10 hours per week X 7 months to get my first date - you do the math. I know that my first date was after 820 girls messaged over 7 months. As of this writing I'm at 1025 women messages over a 9 month period and have only 3 dates under my belt. That's 0.003% . Only one of those turned to a second date and the other two were never to be seen again.

In my opinion this was a HUGE waste of time. Someone else pointed out that at any given time there are nearly half a million people online so 1025 is a fraction of the people and that 3 dates is quite good.

3 dates in 9 months ? YIKES ! ! !

For the record none of the dates lead to sex. I would only estimate that for sex a man would need to spend at least 24 to 48 hours a week and message over 2500 women. Essentially a part time job.

Who has time for that ?
 coffeetogo127
Joined: 5/16/2015
Msg: 24
How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 10/8/2015 8:46:20 PM

For the record none of the dates lead to sex. I would only estimate that for sex a man would need to spend at least 24 to 48 hours a week and message over 2500 women. Essentially a part time job.



You arent talking about getting a date you are talking about getting laid. If your purpose using a dating site is not for dating but for sex, then of course you will not experience success. Its surprising what honesty can do
 LetitiaLeGrande
Joined: 3/22/2015
Msg: 25
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How many hours of online work to get one date?
Posted: 10/9/2015 12:16:30 AM
as has often been recommended, you meet as soon as you have a number and have heard a voice, within a week or so and no more. If the other party is hesitant or makes excuses, move on. All this falling in love with some cyber spectre with hundreds of messages flying back and forth, fantasies going wild, is just a waste of time and often ends up with disappointment and disillusion.

if a guy is here primarily to get laid, he will find it much harder generally no matter how much time he may put into it all. If both parties are interested in actually meeting up, it should be fun and not work and will happen sooner rather than later.
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