This category specializes in dating websites for people with hearing impairments, those who use sign language or those seeking relationships in the deaf community. Anyone can use the sites regardless of their hearing status. This means that some sites are actually quite generic dating sites with no special features catering for hearing needs. These generic sites are often clones in a group of sites managed by the same network but with "deaf" in the title. Other sites provide special features for people with hearing issues or people seeking others with certain hearing issues.
How to deaf dating sites differ?
Three things worth noting about the sites in this category are as follows:
The sites vary in terms of the special features they offer. Some sites automatically assume your demographic just because you sign up for a "deaf dating" website. Other sites add a range of hearing and sign language options in the profile features. It depends on why you wish to use a deaf dating website.
If you are looking for a partner with a specific hearing status or sign language skills then check in our review that the site has these features otherwise you might waste time signing up for something that is pretty generic. Of course people may add this information in their profile's text body but this will not be picked up in the computer matching. This means deaf people are excluded from computer matching, which is pretty limiting on a deaf dating site.
If you are interested in reaching a wide range of people who happened to have signed up for deaf dating, then the generic sites will provide this. Incidentally the two 100% free sites are more geared towards actual deaf dating issues so you have nothing to lose by choosing one or both of them in conjunction with a more generic paying site with a large database of members.
Check the features list on each of our reviews that it has the criteria you need for your search. That way you will get the best of both worlds. We noticed particularly that the sites in on-line deaf dating also seemed to be used quite a lot for general networking and making friends, more so than in other more generalized dating categories.
Videos are a great way to show off your personality and of course you can use sign language with this feature. Basic search facilities like quick search, user-name, ZIP code are offered by all the sites. Some sites in this category offer more sophisticated and inventive ways to search and browse. This is what makes the difference between an average site and a site that you want to go back to again and again.
Signing Skills and Hearing Status
Like any demographic dating site, these products are used in the following ways:
Some of the sites in this category cover a wider range of hearing status options than others. One site is devoted to American Sign Language Users, but all of the others cater for signing skills to varying degrees. When they give options such as "deaf", "hard of hearing" and "sign language used", these options can be used to search for profiles that match those criteria.
It is quite a complex range of options and some sites offer more options than others. Some people may decide they would rather find a partner who has a similar disability to themselves, either due to past experience or that they feel they would get the most out of life together that way.
Living with any disability can be incredibly isolating and these dating sites may become a very useful resource as part of the social networking scene. Computer-based communications are the gateway to bringing people together despite physical barriers, but watch out for what the site actually provides in terms of features.
CODA (children of deaf adults) is another status that might be useful for members when searching. This option only came up in the no#1 review so on the whole hearing status options are not well catered for in a sophisticated way in the majority of deaf dating sites.
Muteness and speech ability is also very important in deaf dating but not often catered for by most of the sites in this category. Searching by keyword is a way of getting around this lack of information, but still depends on members adding hearing status information on their profiles. Check our features and search features lists that the site has the criteria that are important to you.
Value for Money
The Deaf Dating sites seem to be cheaper to subscribe to than some other dating sites but the pricing structures vary so check out the best deal by reading our reviews, reflected in the number of stars given for "value for money". We liked the free sites here because they are more dedicated to deaf issues and seem to have a good member base so rate well in terms of value.
Also, make sure that, if you sign up for a special trial price, you are not automatically billed at a higher price when the trial is over. Although pricing structures vary here, the highest price is under $40 per month. The monthly rate goes down if you pay for more than one month in advance.
The quality of Internet dating products very much relies on your chances of getting a date. This means not only the volume of users but also whether they are active and that new people are joining on a regular basis.
Just a tip - three months is a comfortable length of time to spend on on-line dating once you have chosen a site. You can tell quite a lot from a free trial membership, whether it has enough matches for you to contact. Then if it is a good site with plenty of member activity, you should have a good run of dating in a three month period. You need time to get over one disaster before plucking up courage for the next so three months is about right, depending on how brave you are!
Probably the best way is to find a top quality paying site and sign up with one or both of the 100% free sites as well. You might bump into some of the same people but you can build your social networking by accessing different features such as groups and forums. If you have specific needs such as a certain sign language, you might need to do this anyway to widen the net as this is not well catered for.
Choosing to search within the deaf community might make it easier for some people to converse more freely because they feel they share common ground. You have the amazing opportunity to make friends both across the globe and nearer home that you might never have met otherwise. With all online dating, remember that people on-line may not, in reality, be as they seem. There are varying degrees of screening used. Generally the more you pay, the more rigorous the screening process. If the site is popular it is more likely to have a reputation to uphold. But no site is 100% safe. As with all Internet Dating follow the following safety advice:
If you follow those simple on-line dating rules then it should be possible to stay safe, meet fun people and have a great dating experience!
The bottom line
As with any niche online dating category, it's useful to have an idea at the outset about what you are looking for and how much you are willing to spend to get it. If you're on a tight budget then it may make sense to begin by trying out some free dating websites. However, if you're willing to spend a little, it may make sense to sign up for a free trial with a few subscription based websites, see which one suits you best, and then upgrade your membership in an effort to improve your online dating experience.