Good information BeachBum although if you don’t mind me saying, your ‘17% calculation’ suggests you have made a lot of ‘friends’ on dating sites yet have not met any face 2 face yet. Maybe an idea would be to concentrate on fewer ladies and get on a plane?
Maybe so. I just started looking at these sites last May and wasn't ready to jump in with both feet and make a trip yet this past summer. I wanted to develop a bit more of a relationship through letters, chat, and possibly Skype before making a trip and was thinking next summer would be a good timeframe. I'm not a big fan of Eastern Europe in the winter time, been there, done that, and froze my tail off. I personally didn't think a letter or two and a few chats with 18 women was excessive over the last six months to work it down to the three women I'm now friends with on Vkontakte, but to each his own. I have Skyped with one recently since she speaks good English. I'm pretty new to this, but was thinking having 3-5 good relationships before making a trip might be a good number. I think it's manageable. I still look at the dating sites, but would not get more than two more Vkontakte friends before thinking that's enough. So based on my history, that might take meeting about 12 more women on dating sites max. I personally think I am focusing on a small number of women at 3-5. I use Vkontakte to confirm legitimacy and sincerity and then don't spend a lot of time and money on insincerity. If you think about it, two letters each way on a pay per letter site is $20-$30, that's a cheap first date in the US and you may have learned more about each other, if those letters were long, than you would on a first date. After those first four letters, a jump to Vkontakte is reasonable in my opinion. Prior to any letters though, you might want to check Vkontakte to see if they are there. I've found 80-90% of them easily.