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Debrett’s gives dating tips to over-50s from advice on how to write your profile to kissing on a fir

Debrett's, the authority on etiquette and behaviour founded in 1769, has published a guide to dating for over 50's. Almost 1 million over-50s consider using dating sites but aren't always sure how to begin. Their manual is aimed at on-line dating users and is intended to help the over-50s singles “tackle modern dating dilemmas” — the most notable, of course, being “how do I turn my computer on?” and “why does this man want to marry me (and borrow £100,000 at the same time)?”

Clearly these are not issues clients of a personal introduction agency like INTRO will have to overcome as we carry out identity checks to ensure that we are introducing you to genuine people and that profiles are an accurate representation.

We have selected a few of their tips here:

Choose a recent photograph for your profile (not more than a year old) and avoid using your old favourite from your 21st birthday party

- their research showed that more than half of over-50s preferred to use a profile photo up to 10 years old, either mistakenly believing they still look the same a decade later or they thought it would improve their chances on dating sites. This is doomed for failure though as there really is little point in trying to mislead and potentially disappoint your date if you ever meet in person.

Communicate with confidence and keep your first message light-hearted and brief

- you are much more likely to get a positive response if you come across as someone who would be fun to spend time with. Avoid going into detail about your previous relationships.

Don’t feel you’re jeopardising your prospects if your instincts are telling you to throw caution to the wind

- according to Debrett's, modern romance often involves a briefer ‘courting’ period, so don’t feel you’re jeopardising future prospects if your instincts are telling you to throw caution to the wind”. Nearly a third of the over-50s would “sleep with someone on the third date or before”, with only 14% waiting between six and 10 dates.

Women can now take the initiative too

- Debrett's advises that the online dating world is an egalitarian plane and although apparently half of women feel too nervous to do so, they really can make the first contact without appearing forward.

Following up after a first date

- the guide tackles the age-old dilemma of how long to wait before messaging after the first date. According to Debrett's, “strategic delay is not necessary” in modern dating, and a friendly text message within 24 hours of meeting is the norm.

Avoid 'ghosting'

- 'ghosting' (the practice of ending a personal relationship with someone by suddenly and without explanation withdrawing from all communication) is to be avoided and luckily something that 96% of over 50s say they wouldn't do. It’s best to be honest from the start and say how much you enjoyed meeting your date, but that you would prefer to remain friends.

Don't give up - with over 1 million single 50+ year olds looking for love, there really is going to be someone for you. If you don't feel that online dating is for you, please do get in touch with the friendly team at INTRO. We'd love to have a no-obligation chat with you. We meet all our clients in person and offer a confidential and personal matchmaking service. We write our client's profiles for them, help with photos and discuss any potential matches with them. If you would like to have a chat with one of our team, either call 01625 909222 or email us at

To download the full Debrett's guide click this link

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