After filling in the questionnaire, the man registered for the site and was delighted with the follow-up email he received.
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.
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.
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.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.They were good-looking women in his local area with similar interests – world travel, theatre and cooking.He didn’t hesitate to pay the £180 for 12 months’ membership as pretty much everyone he’d seen so far he would have gone on a date with, so there seemed to be a lot of potential for meeting someone special.Searchmate has disputed Aileen’s claims and said it had not received any correspondence from her after the letter was sent in November.