Between free online dating services and casual meet-ups offline, the dating world offers endless opportunities for gay men to mingle with new people. Finding someone to date seems as simple as swiping through members' photos until you find someone to flirt with.
As much as gay apps and sites promise to help you find Mr. Right, dating online can leave your deeper romantic aspirations unfulfilled. What if you didn't have to leave your future up to luck or an algorithm? A dedicated consultant or matchmaking agency can mean the difference between chasing limitless thirst traps and meeting that perfect gay mate to share your life with.
What is matchmaking?
Dating apps, friends, and families easily love to help others find someone to date. But as much as their help and enthusiasm come in handy for casual flings, sometimes it's advantageous to leave love up to the professionals.
A skilled matchmaker brings couples together by scouting a wide range of gay singles to select their ideal partner based on preferences, goals, and personalities. Gay matchmakers essentially use their network, expertise, and objectivity to act as a conduit between potential candidates and set up special dates for clients.
How does gay matchmaking work?
Matchmaking is more of an art than it is a science as every matchmaker suits their clients' needs differently. The overall role requires them to be an expert at reading people, implementing action plans, and developing an intuition for compatibility.
The typical format for matchmaking is to set up a pre-approved consultation with you one-on-one, and then develop an in-depth profile that includes your relationship history, the type of relationship you want, your lifestyle, etc. Matchmakers then seek and screen potential matches to determine who the best fit is. Once they narrow down their best options, they'll arrange the dates between you and their candidates. Extra services will also include an image consultant, priority registration to more elite matches, pre-date pep talks, and post-date analysis.
Matchmaking vs online dating:
When you sign up to gay dating apps or sites, you're relying on yourself to do all the work – regularly logging onto sites, reaching out to potential interests, and meeting them in person. In contrast to dating online, gay matchmaking sites and apps act as a combo of a love coach and therapist. They are always on the clock to find potential dates and help you fix issues that leave you stuck in a romantic rut.
Allowing people into your life is one of the most vulnerable responsibilities you can dive into. As you're looking for someone to proudly share your life with, there are significant differences in using matchmaking services versus tackling the dating scene on your own.
Pros for finding a matchmaker
Gay apps and sites are a fun and accessible part of the dating process. But, if you want to venture beyond acquaintances to serious commitments, a matchmaker can help avoid the pitfalls of online dating such as navigating mixed signals and wasting time with fake accounts.
- Avoid scams. Gay dating sites boast about the number of users on their site, but abandoned profiles or sketchy memberships are rarely accounted for. Matchmaking services eliminate the hassle of dealing with scams and securely vet dates to ensure you meet the best of the best.
- Handle the fine details. Instead of wasting time browsing, messaging, and trying to meet someone, matchmakers handle all of the heavy lifting. All you have to do is provide your matchmaker with an overview of who you are, show up for a date, and focus on being your authentic self.
- Creative dates. Heading to a movie and a restaurant are the most convenient options to make a first impression. However, matchmaking services strive to draw you and your date out of your comfort zone to share a unique experience that can lead to something more.
- Quality over quantity. Most free gay dating sites rely on photos, profiles, and algorithms to make a connection. Matchmaking apps and sites ensure that there's more than just automated chemistry by conducting thorough consultations for you and their candidates. Prefer quality over speed.
Cons for finding a matchmaker
If you're aiming to find someone quicker through matchmaking apps and sites, the process might leave you disappointed. While hiring a third-party removes digital obstacles with online dating, a matchmaker may be more costly and time-intensive than what you might expect.
- Price. Starting prices for monthly or per-date packages commonly start anywhere between $350 and $2000+. The more exclusive or high-end the matchmaker is, especially with millionaire clients (wanna know how to meet your gay millionaire? KeYou is here to help), the more expensive a matchmaker will be to hire.
- No refund. Matchmaking services ultimately aim to make your dream relationship goals come true, but a successful connection still depends on personal compatibility. You can wind up going on several dates, but it might not end with the perfect results you want.
- Slower process. Using a matchmaker won't yield automatic matches. While they might work within a time-frame to offer you potential candidates, it'll take time before they present their partners and get the ball rolling.
- Relinquish control. When you put your romantic destiny in the hands of a skilled professional, you must maintain trust that the matchmaker is doing their best to set you up for success.
- Honesty is their policy. Sharing your innermost values with a matchmaker can be intimidating, especially if you're used to dating behind a screen. It's best to have a thick skin because most matchmakers are honest and straightforward about how you can improve your love life.
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Choosing the right gay matchmaking services for you
Instead of an imaginary figure flinging arrows between star-crossed lovers, matchmakers realistically bridge the gap between you and other clients. Knowing what kind of "Cupid" you want to work on your behalf will ease doubts that your gay romantic life isn't left up to chance.
- Qualifications. Trained certification is few and far between, often inspiring matchmakers to start their own business from the ground up. Professional backgrounds in psychology, communications, and hospitality is a major plus.
- Ask the right questions. A matchmaker should comprehensively address your lifestyle and personal preferences such as religion, marriage, kids, relationship history, etc. If possible, the screening process should include background checks.
- Offer success rates. Not all professional gay matchmakers' stats are equal. But if they're hiding their track record of satisfied clients, marriages, etc. look for a matchmaker who is more transparent.
- Advocate for you. Your matchmaker should be realistic about your compatibility with other gay men. However, they should never make you feel like you need to lower your standards and always advocate for you as a valued client.
- A straight ally. If LGBTQ+ exclusive dating services are difficult to locate in your area, try to find compassionate straight allies. Many heterosexual matchmakers are open to working with same-sex, transgender, and queer singles.
Key LGBTQ+ matchmaking services in the U.S.
Matchmaking might seem like an antiquated way of meeting somebody, but their services offer a potentially life-changing experience that could help you land Mr. Right instead of Mr. Right Now. The key matchmaking services below are a beneficial starting point to finding your happy-ever-after. San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, NYC, LA and other gay-friendly cities across the US have a lot to offer. Check our choice of matchmaking websites.
- Bespoke Matchmaking listens to their eligible gay and lesbian clientele, providing a confidential environment to share their lifestyle aspirations. The agency operates out of San Francisco, Los Angeles, Toronto, and New York.
- Caliber Match in Chicago offers a local and national network of LGBTQ+ singles looking for love. Beyond specializing in gay matchmaking, the site includes a personal lifestyle consultant and relationship coaching.
- Dallas Fort Worth Singles uses their 25 years of experience in the industry and 72pt Compatibility Test to map relationship goals and expectations. The Texas-based agency screens clients with a simple application and a follow-up complimentary consultation before moving forward with face-to-face encounters.
- ManMates was the first personalized gay dating service in America. In New York City, New Jersey, and Connecticut, the longstanding service works with gay men for more than a year to prepare them and help locate their perfect match.
- H4M Matchmaking works with almost 3,000 gay and lesbian singles across the U.S. Their premium service addresses several cities in the U.S. and includes a range of prices, age-ranges, and a thorough vetting process.