There are websites like www.meetic.fr – “one of Europe’s most popular internet dating services” – but none of my friends who are members on these types of “international” sites has ever had a normal date, and by normal I mean the potential soul mate shows up. Of course, there's a choice of clubs along the Coast where Romeo or Juliet may cross your path – like archery, on the golf course, or at an art outing – but the fantasy of marrying a French person usually neglects the red flags: cultural differences, inability to communicate ... and even food appreciation, which typically means what lovingly goes up must spiral down.
Brit Karen May, 54, was a widow for three years when she decided to try and meet someone. “I joined international dating sites which were … interesting!”
Karen, who has lived for nearly a decade in Provence, tells us. “Let’s just say that requests for erotic afternoons were not unusual – no sex please, I'm British!
“I did meet some great guys though, mostly French, but what I really missed was the silly shared humour, the culture I grew up with. I searched for a reputable site that had fellow English speakers and couldn't find one. A friend suggested I start one and after much research – I did.”
Karen launched www.Expatdatingfrance.com for English-speaking expats in France. “Most dating sites are partnerships or affiliates meaning they buy in their population. I have to be commercial but I decided to build a reputable and trustworthy site with no advertising, no gimmicks and no hard sell.”
www.Expatdatingfrance.com has been online for less than a month (at time of print) and already has 600 registered members.
“It’s remarkable how the site has taken off. We’ve even had our first success story (see above),” Karen says. “I've even been asked if I can start up in Spain.”