Mate1 claims to be one of the most visited dating sites with around 31-million registered users - however the number of people active there is probably far less. A trial membership costs USD$ 1.95 for 3 days. Mate1 is for people who want casual dating rather than marriage or a long-term relationship.
One of the annoying things about Mate1 is that it doesn't have an upgrade page. You will only find-out the cost of joining if you read the "fine-print" after selecting the 3-day trial which states that the trial will be extended to a full membership (costing $49.95 per 30-days) unless cancelled before the end of the 3 day period.
If you do opt for the free trial, be sure to put a reminder in your diary to cancel before the end unless you wish to extend it to a full month's membership.
You can use the free access mode to peek inside and decide whether an upgrade is worthwhile.
As a new joiner you can create a personal and voice profile complete with up to twenty photos. They do allow you to personalize your profile and make it as detailed as you want.
Once this step is finished, it's possible to browse around and get in touch with others using e-flirts. Only when you upgrade can you use the site's email or chat features. If a match works out, you can place the person on a Hot List. If not, just stick them on the Block List.
Mate1 follows an easy to navigate format and a range of ways to find and get in touch with others.
As well as a basic search facility, a number of useful options are provided that allow you to browse profiles by country, city, keyword or nickname. There are also options for body type, work and education and lifestyle. There's also a "Matches" button, but this only displays a search based on your location and the gender you are seeking.
"Interested in me" is freely accessible and will show you who has flirted with you in the past or who has been auto-matched with you (against your personality and interests). Those who've upgraded also have the possibility to see who's viewed their profiles.
The site does display advertisements and some of these are adult in content - upgrading allows the site to be viewed free of ads.
Mate1 is quite a big site - you shouldn't have too much trouble finding friends, or even romance and love. There's no hiding that it is more suited to people looking for causal hookups rather than relationships. The lack of a clear pricing page does count against the site in my opinion.
By Tara Miller