Below I have documented my journey, warts and all and compiled what I think is the most comprehensive Guardian Soulmates review in 2017, including its cost, features, my summary and reviews from other users.
BY Darren, Last Updated: JANUARY, 2018
Reviewer: 30 year old Male who lives in the south of England.
To read more reviews from other age groups, please see our additional Real User Reviews below
Just in case you weren't aware, Guardian Soulmates is run by the Guardian newspaper and it generally accepted as their main source of new users, with this in mind, it might help to understand some of the demographics of the newspaper to see if it matches with your views / profile, which I have outlined in the below review.
The Guardian newspaper has a current circulation of 160,000 copies a day and their website gets over 150 million pages view a month, so their potential reach both online and offline is pretty significant.
In the below review I have outlined the Guardian's user information & demographics so you can see if those interest and lifestyle fit your own.
Guardian Soulmates is first and foremost a traditional online dating site, whereby you add your profile to the pool of other users that are on their site. Once you create your profile you are able to search profiles using different filers and search types. Guardian Soulmates also try to recommend matches that might interest you, based on your preference that you add during the sign up process, this makes it feel like quite an active community of daters and is a nice balance between the hand picked feel of match making sites like eHarmony and Elite Singles and free for all sites like Match.com and Plenty of Fish.
The below demograph information has been taken form The Guardian website to give you a feel of the type of people that will typically be joining the site, this is by no means set in stone, but from my experience of using the site it gives an accurate feel.
This all sounds very pretentious, but do keep in mind that this isn't 100% accurate to the users of their dating site and not every user will have all of these characteristics
EG I haven't met or dated anyone through this site that liked Opera and I try to avoid art galleries and hate spending money on clothes, so keep an open mind.
*All data is from the Guardian and was collated in 2010
To make this the most helpful resource I can, I have used the Guardian Soulmates advanced search filter to show you the number of users in your area to help you understand how popular the site is.
OUR SEARCH CRITERIA
Only some sites will allow me to gather this information, these are generally the more traditional online dating sites that allow open searching.
To get the data I set the search to a 20 mile search radius around each location and only featured users that logged in within a month - any extra info will be labelled below
Women | Men
AGE : 20-35
Oxford - 35 | 18
bedford - 18 | 11
gloucetser - 4 | 5
reading - 37 | 17
london - 1644 | 887
manchester - 96 | 78
birmingham - 54 | 54
leeds 45 | 38
TOP SECRET - If you want to see how many singles are in your area without signing up, use this special link I've found.
UPDATE: Guardian Soulmates have added an annoying pop up when you use the link.
To get around this, just add in an email and you will get access, easy peasy!
The table shows the current Guardian Soulmates cost to join for UK subscribers.
The App and Website prices are slightly different and you have the option to join for 1 week via the app
Their prices are pretty much straight forward and I haven't seen them change during different times of the year, so they should be the same as below (unless you have found a discount code through our site)
*The savings marked are based on the full 1 month cost of £32 a month
Payment is by card only and you can pay both via the website and the app. I always recommend you pay via the website and not the app. If you require a refund, getting it sorted via the website is so much easier than having to go through the app store and apple.
(Pink = Price if purchasing through the app)
Price Per Month
TOP TIP: Please switch off your auto renew as soon as you sign up otherwise you will be charged when your account runs out. You can do this by going into your account > subscriptions and select stop ongoing payments
The sign up process was quick, you can get access to the users and search profiles before answering any questions. It was one of the quickest sign up processes vs other sites I've used.
Keep in mind, Guardian Soulmates allowed you to change all information at any time so dont fret too much about your username or bio - just jump in and get involved.
Keep an eye out for the box ticking when signing up that asks you if you are happy for your face to be used when Guardian Soulmates is advertised across the internet.
Once signed up to a paid account you create a 'who you are looking for page' so GS can list compatible matches but you also have the option to search too. I dont feel that the whole compatible matching is necessary unless the site has a massive number of users like eHarmony.
Once signed up you are shown users who have just joined, I think this is good as you can see active members, which is a problem with cheaper and free sites.
Whenever I used Guardian Soulmates, I just use the advanced search feature to make sure members I want to contact have been active recently. There are a limited number of filers (age, location & last logged in) but I think with the number of users on their site, it works well.
TIP: Don't limit yourself to a too small area - broaden it up to get a feel for other users. Large cities will have the most users as you can see from my search data above.
You can see all the features that you get access to when joining Guardian Soulmates for free, before paying a penny!
Once you pay for a Guardian Soulmates subscription, you will be able to send messages and see the full gallery of pictures. You can also use additional search filters in the advanced search section (like you, have viewed your profile, height, body type etc etc) but in all honestly these aren't that needed.
The Guardian Soulmates App is currently only available on the Apple store, Guardian Soulmates have said they aren't currently working on an Android app - sorry guys!
The app has different pricing compared to the site, they are very similar with the exception of the 1 week option via the app. To be honest a 1 week membership is a bit pointless and I would recommend signing up via the site anyway.
The app has exactly the same features as the site, its easy to use and will no doubt be useful if you have an iphone or ipad. Go download it if you have signed up.
Like most dating site, there is no such thing as a Guardian Soulmates free trial - whilst they used to issue one, it was a test and it wasn't profitable, so they have cut it in the bud - sorry if you missed it. If this changes, Ill update this page.
Guardian Soulmates do offer a 14 day refund policy which is pretty standard across online dating site, if not with all of them. There is a catch though.
All refunds are given at a pro rata rate, so if you have been online for 5 days, they will work out how much per day your membership is and refund you the amount based on that - again, I've seen this with some others sites too.
You have 14 days to cancel, to cancel you need to email them asap
this is only for subscriptions bought via the site, to cancel a membership bought via the app you need to go through the app store and try to contact apple....this is the reason I advise buying your subscription through the website.
NOTE: If for some magic reason you find a free trial, then your 14 days to cancel starts at the start of your free trial, not your paid membership.
Dating can be expensive, even for you more affluent Guardian Soulmates users. I've tried to bring you the most up to date promo codes and discounts below, if you find any others that aren't listed here, please head over to our Guardian Soulmates Promo Code page and add them in the comments, your help is appreciated by all of my lovely users.
*EXCLUSIVE 20% DISCOUNT*
*New To Guardian Soulmates?
Chances are you are debating whether to join a few dating sites, with Match.com being one of the most popular in the UK I wanted to quickly highlight the main differences from my point of view, having used both of them.
For a full Match.com review, please take a look at the in depth guide I have written.
Guardian Soulmates VS Match VERDICT
No site can compare with the number of users Match.com bring to the table.
If you are new to online dating, then I usually recommend one of the big 2 dating sites (eHarmony or Match.com) or give a free app a try to find your feet.
But if you have used some form of online dating, free or paid, before and are looking for something more then Guardian Soulmates COULD be a good choice for you.
If you are considering joining, I would go sign up for a free account and have a look at the matches in your area first, you get some great benefits by just joining (for free) and it doesn't hurt to have a gander before parting with your cash.
Newbie to online dating - Match.com
Want something a bit more targeted, live in/near a big city, give GS a try.
Guardian Soulmates manually vet all new users/ I tried uploading a few tester photos and got rejected, so I guess they do put this into practice.
There is also no way a user can mass email, so this deters scammers. On top of this, you have the option, as with all dating sites, to block people.
If you have any concerns you can contact them on email@example.com to report any weird behaviour.
We ensure every site we work with on Whichdate.co.uk is a full member of the Online Dating Association and thereby have a binding partnership of their Code of Conduct within the online dating industry. We believe this ensures all sites which we use and recommend are, to our knowledge, the best at protecting their users and offer the best service in the industry.
GUARDIAN NEWS & MEDIA LIMITED
68164, Kings Place,
90 York Way,
020 3353 2000
Overall my time on Guardian Soulmates was good.
I didn't know what to expect, as I said above the demographics seem a bit pretentious (I dont know what that says about me) but most of the people I met and talked to have been in a similar situation to me. Conversations have been good, no worse or less than Match or eHarmony.
In terms of usability, it really doesn't differ much to other paid sites, easy to use, the only bug bare was that it wasn't available on my android device.
MY RECOMMENDATION: As Ive said before, online dating is a numbers game. If you havent used online dating before then use match.com or eharmony if you are looking for a serious relationship. If you are looking for something more causal or not sure what you want, then maybe look at an app or free dating site to get you used to the process. If you have used other dating sites before and want to try something different then Guardian Soulmates is a good choice, especially if you live in or near a big city and extra points if you fit the demograph above. The people Ive met are probably some of the best matched I've been on a dates with, so take from that what you will.
CHeck out our site for any live discounts and 100% take a look around before paying for anything, you can look at profiles without paying a penny.
The below reviews have been added by our fine users to help you get a deeper insight into Guardian Soulmates in the hope that it will help you make a decision.
Im enjoying my time on Guardian Soulmates. Looking forward to my third date with a match and she is great so far.