Interracial Cupid Review
Overview of Interracial CupidOverview
This site focuses more on searches than creating a sense of community—there are no chat rooms, message boards or content to comment on. Subscribers can start a conversation with standard members through email or instant messaging, but non-paying members cannot interact with each other. The site offers two levels of subscription—“Gold” and “Platinum”—that offer better options for communication.
The activity level of the member base is best described as “sluggish.” There are only a handful of members online at any time. What’s more, I found very few paying members within 250 miles of Los Angeles, a diverse area where one would expect to find a lot of interracial singles. While women between the ages of 20 and 40 are less likely to pay for a membership than men are, I found this disappointing. And a search turned up only a handful of members in my area who had logged in as recently as a month ago.
For video mail and preferential placement of your profile, the “Platinum” membership is $29.99 a month (or $10 monthly with a one-year commitment). Platinum members can also type in notes about members on their profiles (no one sees these notes but you). If you can live without that or the video features, a “Gold” membership will save you some money. This one includes the usual benefits (unlimited email and IM) for $24.99 or $8.33 a month, depending on the subscription term. The subscription prices seem a bit high when compared to other options for online personals.
The site’s video features can’t be used by free members, even when communication is initiated by a subscriber. This diminishes the value of a subscription, especially with such a seemingly small number of paying members.
Members can go into great depth with their profiles—there are 12 optional essay questions to supplement the basic “about me” and “about the one I’m looking for” sort of questions. Profiles have a customizable “Quick View” that allows you to see at a glance what is most important to you—for example, whether or not someone is a non-smoker, whether or not they want kids, or what they think is their “best feature.”
The site offers profile verification, which is a great way to make other members more confident that you are who you say you are and your photos are up to date. Just send in a scan of your I.D. and they will post a “Verified” badge on your profile.
You can also set “CupidTags,” which work like keywords that come up in searches. Searching CupidTags is a handy feature. Select a term from the “cloud” and see what comes up! I picked “motorcycles” and got 22 hits in my age range, although only one was from my state (California).
The instructions and explanations on the site are poorly written, somehow managing to sound technical and vague at the same time.
Profiles— You don’t have to pay to see other members’ full profiles, including high-quality photos. You can also see if your profile has been viewed by other members.
Searches— Search by keyword or “CupidTag” in addition to the usual criteria.
Matching— The site offers a gallery of “Recommended Matches” based on the preferences you’ve set. Despite setting modest criteria, I received few matches in my state, let alone my area.
Communication— Free members can send and receive messages, but only when communicating with subscribers. The ability to “send an interest” is this site’s awkward phrasing for the simple, generic messages most sites call “Flirts.” But here, you can’t even pick out a picture or pre-set phrase to send someone—they’re simply notified of your interest in them.
Support— Members can call a number in Australia or complete an email form, but the site doesn’t offer live chat or a toll-free customer care line.
Profiles— Subscriber profiles get priority placement on the site. Another advantage of a paid membership is the additional detail you can put in your profile. Subscribing unlocks more fields in which to write about your hobbies and interests.
Additionally, Platinum members can post and view video profiles. The value of this feature is limited, however, as the vast majority of members aren’t Platinum and can’t watch your video or post one themselves.
Searches— There doesn’t seem to be any advanced search capability reserved for paying customers.
Matching— The site doesn’t promise any additional matchmaking services to Gold or Platinum members.
Communication— Take the conversation off site by including your personal email address or phone number in a message, something standard members are not allowed to do. Platinum members can get their messages translated into the recipient’s language, an interesting perk.
Support— The same basic customer-service options are offered to both free and paying members.
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Profile depth & detail
Ease of use
Number active members