DO or DON’T: Using Online Dating for Companionship on Vacation

by Gena Kaufman, Glamour

Another week, another online dating pattern to gripe about. I promise to write about something good to come out of online dating just as soon as it happens to me personally, not just one of my romantically-lucky friends. Hmmph.

So, this happens to me on a semi-regular basis. Not like, weekly, but enough times that I now feel compelled to write about it because I'm sure it happens to some of you guys too. I get an email via an online dating site from a guy who lives nowhere in my general vicinity, who says he's visiting my city for a weekend or such, so would I like to hang out? And I'm all, "No thanks buddy, this isn't Craigslist." Just kidding, I never even respond, because yuck!

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I don't know, maybe I'm being too judgmental. (Me, judgmental? Never!) I guess if you're spending time alone in a new place, it would be nice to have someone local show you around, and why not a person you might be able to do a little flirting with too? If that were really all it was, it could fun. But at least with the emails I tend to get, it always feels like a cheap effort to get laid on a lonely business trip with a woman you'll never have to see again, and that's just not for me.

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Sure, I have nothing against a brief romantic out of town adventure, but I kind of think it's something that's got to just happen in an unexpected but natural way. Scheduling such an encounter with a stranger on the Internet doesn't seem like it would be romantic or spontaneous; it's just weird and probably bound to be awkward, right? Or am I wrong?

What do you think: Is it a DO or a DON'T to meet someone via online dating who's just passing through your town? Would you ever try to meet up with a stranger while you're traveling? Do you get emails like this and how do you respond?

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