With dating apps, social media groups, and public forums, meeting someone online is no longer considered taboo. Instead, almost every internet browser will meet someone in real-life from their online world at least once in their lifetime. With that said, while the subject is no longer scary, the experience shouldn’t be taken lightly. There are still safety precautions that you need to take to protect yourself when meeting someone from online.
Choose a Comfortable, Public Place
Public, familiar, and comfortable are the three most important elements to meeting someone that you’ve be talking to via the interwebs. Why? There’s strength in numbers. The more people that see you and surround you, the better. And, if you are comfortable and familiar, the meeting experience will be less awkward in the long run. Example? If you and your prospective honey love sports, opt to meet for a game at a Palm Springs golf course.
Run a Quick Background Check and Google Search
Google is free and background checks can be run for a small fee. If you’re serious about meeting someone from the interwebs, especially if that person is a possible romantic interest, take the time to shell out for a quick background check. Or, simply run their name through search engine databases. It’s okay to play detective when your safety is on the line.
Talk Extensively Before the First Meeting
Some dating apps are specifically for quick one-night stands or hook-ups within hours of matching with someone. Avoid these. Sure, it could be fun, but it’s also dangerous on so many levels. Instead, talk to someone extensively for several weeks, or even months, before you decide to meet up. Get to know someone through conversation first. And video-chat on occasion to make sure you’re talking to who you think you’re talking to.
Let Friends and Loved Ones Know Where You Are Going
Before meeting up with someone, tell someone, or several people, where you will be and who with. That way, if anything should happen, they know where to look for you and who to ask for information about your whereabouts. Its better safe than sorry, as the saying goes.
Avoid Alcohol or Other Impairments on Your Meet-Up
Alcohol and drugs will impair your judgments and make you more susceptible to bad ideas and crude suggestions. Avoid these. You want to stay clear-headed, strong-minded, and altogether in good health to ensure your safety.
While these tips are no-brainers, you would be surprised at how many people meet-up without taking their safety into consideration. But anything could happen. So, protect yourself by following the aforementioned guidelines outlined in this article.