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Zoey explains: what is speed dating?

19 Feb 2014
Hi! I’m Zoey and I have worked for SpeedDater for over 6 years now. Some of you lovely singles may have spoken to me on the phone, you lucky people! I am based in our head office in Edinburgh. Although I am pretty clued up on singles events and how they are run, I know that there are still some singles out there who have never attended a speed dating event before. Curious about how it all works? Let me give you the low down on speed dating.

What are speed dating events?

Speed dating events are fun nights out in which you can meet other singles in a friendly environment. We run singles events in a variety of cities across the whole of the UK. In total we run up to 80 singles events a month, which include a variety of different age ranges and styles such as: dating for professionals, elite singles, singles parties, cookery events, quiz nights and more! In recent years our over 40 dating nights have become as popular as the 20s and 30s. Each speed dating night can have up to 15 dates in smaller cities and up to 20 dates for speed dating London. Our largest singles night is the lock and key format in London which has up to 300 singles per event!
We understand that it can sometimes be difficult to meet other singles, particularly when you are new to a city or are in the position where all your friends are in serious relationships. Having the courage to approach someone in a bar can be a daunting experience (I know, I’ve been there) especially if you don’t know who is single. That’s why our singles events are great - everyone attending is single and there to meet new people just like you. The speed dating format makes it really easy to meet lots of people. You will be surprised at how easy/fun the singles nights are. We also have a high success rate – over 80% of singles get at least one match. Click here to read some of our success stories.

Our singles nights venues:

Our stylish venues are a key part in our singles events success. They are the backdrop for your singles event and they must have the right atmosphere. We always use conveniently located venues for our guests and take into consideration each event we host. We know that everyone’s likes are different. That’s why we like to choose a variety of venues, but most importantly they are welcoming and cosy. They can range from very intimate private areas within a venue, which is great for getting close to that certain person you fancy, to exclusive use of a whole venue for our larger singles parties. Our speed dating venues range from cosy pubs to wine bars, stylish cocktail bars to private members clubs. We are always looking for new venues to host our singles events, so if you have any in mind I would love to hear from you.

Dress code for your singles event:

Our singles events are relaxed and friendly so wear what you feel comfortable in, I know that I would love to go everywhere in my PJ’s because they are super comfy, but we all now that first impressions count, right?! Dress as if you were going on a first date, after all you are going on many first dates in one night! Many singles come straight from work so are in smart business wear. Some venues may have their own dress code requirements, please do check in advance if you are unsure.

When you arrive at your singles event:

You will find our friendly host who will be wearing our SpeedDater t-shirt (all our hosts do look rather dashing in their speed dating shirts). Your speed dating host will sign you in and give you a name badge, scorecard and pencil. They will then direct you to the bar, where you can buy a drink (if you want one). Our venues often have special drink offers happening from happy hour or 2 for 1 cocktails. You can’t beat a cheeky cocktail! I love a mojito, especially on happy hour ;) Once everyone has arrived our host will explain how the speed dating event will work and answer any questions you may have. So what are we waiting for… let the speed dating commence!
Typically each date is around 3-5 minutes, depending on how many singles are attending. We usually ask the guys to rotate which the ladies stay seated. The single guys will move up the numbers in order, so for example male badge 6 will start at table 6 and then move to 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 and so on! Even if the date is going really really well the guys will still need to move on anyway. The format is deliberately fast paced, that way you can meet a lot of singles in one night. The fast pace also means that if you are not hitting it off, you only have to kill a few minutes before the next date arrives. If you feel like 3-5 minutes isn’t enough, make the most of the half time break to continue some conversations.

After your singles event:

After your speed dating event has ended, stick around and chat more with the other singles. We all know that 4 mins can fly by, so staying that bit longer after the singles event has finished will give you that extra chance to make a good impression. The next day you can log in to the SpeedDater site and then enter your Yes/No/Friend matches. There is also a free messaging service, so get chatting to the other singles and maybe arrange a first date?
Now you know what our singles events are all about, why don’t you try one out? Click here to see the upcoming schedule of singles events. The most important thing to remember is not to take it too seriously and have fun. Let me know how your singles nights go by emailing
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