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Because of this it had suspended her account, even though she had not asked for this to happen.Searchmate has now offered Aileen a full refund of £1,295.The site explained that this was down to most of the gentlemen who were active within her area “going on hold”, meaning they could no longer be contacted.Searchmate offered to upgrade Aileen to its “Platinum” membership, a service via which customers are assigned their very own matchmaker who will proactively look for potential matches outside Searchmate’s client base.In total, the site offered the man four suitable profiles “in his area” – none of which met his criteria.One of them lived hundreds of miles away in Ireland and would be unreachable without an expensive ferry or plane journey.They were good-looking women in his local area with similar interests – world travel, theatre and cooking.

This is mainly because cheaper competitor sites and smartphone apps, such as Tinder, have boomed in popularity, explaining why some of the UK’s pricier dating services are suffering – and possibly going to greater lengths to keep singles signed up on their books, Another site at the higher end of the dating market is Elite Singles, which is designed for people with a certain level of education.

When the man complained to Elite Singles, it refunded him without a fuss, as it has a 14-day refund policy.

When contacted by Telegraph Money, Elite Singles admitted that disappointment over the number of paying members was a “very common” complaint.

It promises “affluent, educated men and women between the ages of 30 and 55, who are all looking for a long-term commitment.” It charges £180 a year for membership.

Another Telegraph Money reader, who does not wish to be named, turned to online dating after his relationship came to an end in February.

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