Online dating made easier

2/9/2015

Valentine's day is a high point for many dating websites, and these sites are often based abroad. Complex terms and conditions has proven to be a source of trouble for many Swedes, but a few codes of conduct makes it easier.

Many of the reports that ECC Sweden and the Swedish Consumer Agency receive every year, show that many consumers are a bit careless when it comes to reading the terms and conditions before signing up to an online dating service. This allows people to involuntarily get caught in tricky subscriptions.

According to statistics Swedes are the most active on dating web sites during January and February, and in Sweden alone the industry turnover has tripled in just a few years. Hence, here are our best advice when it comes to avoiding costly mistakes while dating online:

  1. Check out who you are dealing with and where the company is based.
  2. Does the dating service claim to be free of charge? Make sure to find out exactly what is included, and which functions you actually have to pay for. These conditions are often inexplicit.
  3. Read the terms and conditions carefully. Look for information about your right to withdraw and how to use it.
  4. How long is the membership period? The membership period is the minimum term for which you will have to pay even if you no longer want to be a member.
  5. Always choose credit card payment if possible.
  6. Find out whether the terms and conditions of the trader has any provision regarding the ownership of your pictures.
  7. Note the difference between the cooling-off-period – which normally is 14 days counting from the conclusion of the contract – and your right to end your membership after the binding period.
  8. If you wish to cancel your subscription, contact the trader in writing as soon as possible and inform the trader clearly that you are using your right of withdrawal.
  9. Will the membership be automatically renewed after a certain period of time? If so, check when and what action you need to take if you do not want to continue as a member.
  10. Once you have registered with the website, wait to receive an order confirmation. Read the confirmation to review the scope of the contract. Does it confirm your expectations as to the content of the service?

If you have entered into an agreement with a dating service that you regret, and have failed to come to a solution with the trader, you can contact ECC Sweden for help and advice. More information about our phone counselling is available from this page.