Dating is hard. Sure, it can also be a lot fun — you meet new people, have new experiences, and maybe even a little romance — but most of the time, hard. And after a while, that can start to wear you down, and the negatives might feel like they outweigh the positives. But if you're serious about finding a partner, and the apps and set-ups just aren't getting the job done, it may be time to consider something a little more old-school: A matchmaker! I know what you're thinking: “How much do matchmakers cost?" Good question, and the answer is... it depends! I reached out to a dating coach and to a matchmaker to find out what you can actually expect to spend when you hire the big guns — romantically speaking.
When Alessandra Conti, celebrity matchmaker for Matchmakers in the City and Erika Ettin of A Little Nudge broke down the fees for their matchmaking and coaching services, respectively, I was honestly a bit surprised. There was a bit of sticker shock — that is, until they explained all they do for their clients, and it became clear that you're getting exactly what you paid for.
So, if you're ready for love and want the guidance of a seasoned professional, it's time to start saving up. Besides, you can't really put a price tag on true love, can you?
Well, I guess technically you can. Here's what experts say that looks like.
How much does it cost to hire a matchmaker?
When you hire a matchmaker, you should be prepared to make a bit of an investment. The price range for date coaching, Ettin says, runs from as little as $59 to have “a [dating] profile written” by a professional to upwards of “$4,000 to have your entire dating life managed for you, including a profile, new photos, and a date concierge service,” she says.
Matchmakers like Conti also provide a range of services and price points for clients. "At Matchmakers In The City, we have an $100 option to be a part of our passive database,” explains Conti. In this case, “members are interviewed, background checked, social media checked, and sex offender searched, and then are entered into our database to be potentially matched with one of our Priority Members," she reveals, adding, that for priority members, the cost is higher, but so too are the services provided. “Priority Memberships have payment plans beginning at $1,900.” The cost can also depend on where you're located, says Conti. “Local memberships in our service areas (LA, NYC, SF, & DC) are from $5,000 to $15,000, and then National and International Priority Memberships begin at $25,000.”
On the one hand, that all may seem be a bit intimidating, but think of it this way: That price point likely means that whomever you are being set up with is as serious about finding love as you are — especially if they're opting for the more full-service options.
What makes that price tag worth it?
If you're looking into hiring a dating coach or matchmaker, it's likely because you’re tired of the more traditional routes and would like a helping hand. Ettin says clients usually come to them for a few different reasons. “They've tried online dating and it hasn't worked, so they need some help; They haven't tried online dating (maybe divorced after a long marriage) and need guidance; or they are too busy and can't/won't make the time for online dating, so they'd rather outsource," she says. That's where the experts come in — and making that choice, Conti says, “is definitely a love-life changing decision.”
To help illustrate what that means, Conti explains the process that you go through when you work with a matchmaker like herself. The first step, she says, is the the interview, and “during this in-depth, private, one-on-one meeting with your Matchmaker, she will learn all about you: From who you find attractive in the public eye, to your favorite travel memories, to how many children you want to have.” From there, the matchmaker puts together a list of prospects and then “the actual matchmaking begins! We interview, background check, and social media check each Member, and ultimately select your matches based on this process. It’s absolutely a team effort, a methodical process, and one that is as old-school as it gets.”
From there, the matchmakers plan every detail of your date, taking all of the guesswork and back-and-forth of setting it up off your hands. “Once we have made all of the preparations, you will meet your match and enjoy getting to know each other!" says Conti. That sure beats a night of crossing your fingers!
How to find the right matchmaker for you.
While the matchmaker or dating coach will take on a lot of the footwork, there is one bit of screening you will have to do, and that's finding the right coach or matchmaker for you. The first step to finding the right service, Ettin says, is to just start asking around and find out if anyone you know has worked with someone they liked. “A lot of our industry — matchmaking and date coaching — is based on word-of-mouth referrals... just like in any relationship, you and the matchmaker [or] coach, have to click,” she says.
Conti agrees that it’s essential to do your research. “Make sure that the company is certified through the Matchmaking Institute,” she says. This is important, she explains, because “The Matchmaking Institute has a strict code of ethics, has a certification program for Matchmakers and companies, and really is a great resource for singles who are looking for the best Matchmaking firm for them.” And lastly, she says it’s vital to “ask if the company you are thinking of working with performs background checks on potential matches — and clients!” She knows what she's talking about, saying, “I have been a personal Matchmaker for seven years, and I have seen first hand how important running a thorough check on a potential match can be ... it might seem excessive, but safety while dating is number one!”
So, while going the matchmaker or dating couch route may cost more than a dating app, it really can make the whole dating process a lot easier. If that sounds like something you’re interested in and you have the financial resources, I say go for it. Treat yourself, and find the love of your life without any added stress. Sounds like a win/win to me.
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