Finding love can be tough, and it can be even more difficult in later life. While it's always nice to meet someone in a spontaneous way, like when you're on your local dog-walking route or while travelling, dating for over 60s has become much more common. Dating sites have also increased in popularity in recent years, making it a whole lot easier to meet new people.
As well as expert tips, you'll find a variety of free dating sites for over 50s and 60s that can help you find your perfect match and there are plenty of success stories to back them up. To help you find the right dating site for you, we've considered the membership, features and navigation to narrow things down for you.
How do I know I'm ready to start dating?
"When it comes to deciding whether you're ready to date, remember there's never going to be a perfect time to dip your toe back into the world of dating," says dating expert Hayley Quinn. "Instead of waiting, try tentatively dating in a way that feels safe and approachable to you. This could be going along to a group class in person, instead of learning online, or doing some coffee dates with potential partners online. Remember the best partners for you will respect your boundaries and the pace you feel comfortable with taking the relationship at."
Expert tips for dating for over 60s
"There's really never been a better time to date as an over 60," says Hayley. "With the advent of online dating, it's become infinitely easier to meet and connect with other singles, even if your social life means you're not able to meet that many available partners. This reflects social trends where many empty nesters have become 'silver splitters' choosing to find a new partner, to go along with a new chapter in their lives."
"Even if dating feels like it's drastically changed since you were last single, the fundamentals remain the same. Authenticity is not only attractive but will help you to filter for the best-suited partners. You're at a stage in your life where you feel more comfortable with who you are, and being candid, this can play to your advantage.
"Remember to marry some of the wisdom you've gained about who you are, with the optimism and open-mindedness that you might have had in your 20s. Keep an open mind about who your ideal partner could be, and go on dates (initially at least) with the mindset of having fun and being curious, not 'is this person going to be my life partner?' (That's a bit too much pressure!)."
Dating for over 60s sites
Keep in mind that although many of these dating sites for over 60s are free to join, there may be extra costs further down the line in order to send messages and interact on a deeper level.
You might not know that we actually have our own dating site here at Yours. It's free to join and free to browse people's profiles who all share interests and values with you. There's no pressure at this point to start paying for your subscription, but if someone does catch your eye, you can then upgrade your account for £34.95* per month to start messaging people.
Match also has a branch of their site made exclusively for seniors. It's one of the best-known dating websites that pride itself on creating long-lasting relationships. Although it has some free features such as allowing you to post photos, send and receive winks, conduct searches, and use a matching system based on appearance.
This is the number one trusted dating app in the UK, with someone finding love every 14 minutes. They use a Compatibility Matching System to help you find your perfect match who are serious about finding love. They've already matched over two million singles and have an exclusive site for the over 60s. Their free basic membership includes access to millions of relationship-minded singles, unlimited matches, their versatile communication tools, as well as access to limited messaging.
If you're concerned about safety when dating online, then you might want to give SinglesOver60 a try. It's free to join and they have a UK based team of moderators to ensure everyone on the site is who they say they are. You can also have a sneak peak of singles in your area before signing up and there's also a site for over 50s and over 70s too.
Looking for something serious? Elite Singles is specifically designed for those serious about finding love. They're constantly improving their matchmaking technology to find you the perfect match, and as a result, it has a very high success rate. In the free basic version of Elite Singles, you can go through the personality profile, get the results, create a profile, and match with others, however, you won't be able to see anyone’s profile photo or send anyone a message.
This dating app is specifically made for mature singles looking for love and it's fully operated on your smartphone device. They match people on the basis of location, lifestyle, personality and goals. It's free to register for a basic membership where you can set up a profile and have limited communication with other members.
Staying safe when online dating
There's no denying how brilliant the internet can be when it comes to meeting new people and connecting online. There is however a darker side to the web, and you should always act with caution when meeting someone new online.
When the time comes to meet up in person for your first date, make sure you meet in a busy place, let friends and family know where you are going and keep in touch with your loved ones regularly so they know you're okay. Before heading to their house or yours for an at-home date night, make sure you know one another really well.
*Prices may change