» Select Another Category of Reviews

How to Choose the Right Cougar Dating Website

Cougar Dating Websites image


Cougar dating can basically be defined as involving older women (typically in their thirties and older, referred to as ‘Cougars’) and younger men (referred to as ‘Cubs’). Our Cougar Dating reviews are intended for those who are looking to date online and fit this dynamic, thereby cutting out a lot of legwork. However, we should also point out that even within this niche, there is considerable latitude. You’re likely to find older guys and younger women too. Before you make a decision about which Cougar Dating Website to join, we recommend reading our buying guide and checking out some of our detailed Cougar Dating reviews.


Choosing And Joining A Dating Site

Before you plump for a site, do read our individual Cougar dating reviews and check some out first. Basic membership is free for all the sites we have reviewed, so you won't have to worry about any initial financial commitment or outlay. All you'll require is an email address to validate your membership.

The majority of dating sites don't require you to complete your profile when you sign up, leaving you with time to learn more about the site before you do this. Typically, there’s a FAQs section or help page you can consult for more details, including prices. Don’t be tempted to sign up until you’ve checked out what you’ll get for your money.


Adult content

If you’re easily offended by sexually explicit content, sites such as OlderWomenDating.com are a good choice. Likewise, BeCougar.com allows you to toggle a ‘Naughty Mode’ on and off, meaning that you can hide sexually explicit content. Conversely, those who like their dating a little hotter, CougarShag.co.uk, MilfSexDates.com and CougarFling.com are pretty wild.

In addition, some sites (e.g. ToyBoyFlirt.co.uk and CougarDate.co.uk) masquerade as Cougar Dating sites but feature a more general membership base, including younger women and older men. If you’re intent on immersing yourself in a Cougar dating community, others (e.g. OlderWomenDating.com and DateACougar.com) foster more of a sense of community for this dating niche. If you’re looking for attached members and couples rather than just singles, BeCougar.com will accommodate your preferences.


Size Of Membership Base

In our reviews we typically give some indication of the size of the membership base, which basically means the number of people registered on a site. Obviously, as a basic rule of thumb, the more members registered, the greater your chances of finding a date. However, as most sites offer free membership, it’s inevitable that you’ll find plenty of fake or inactive profiles. In some ways, the number of members online when you log in can be a better indicator than profile numbers alone. It’s a good idea to check that there’s a buzz on the site and that there are members located not too far away from where you are.



When checking out profiles as a free member, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to view full profiles until you upgrade. As a free member, photo quality and access is downgraded. The important lesson is not to be too quick to judge member profiles when you first sign up. The sites higher up our top ten feature more detailed profiles and better quality, large sized photos with multiple uploads on most profiles (e.g. OlderWomenDating.com). Remember that the quality of photos will also depend on the person uploading them and the image quality. A lack of photos on a profile suggests that the profile is fake or inactive, so be cautious if somebody without a photo contacts you. Some sites also allow members to upload short video profiles (e.g. MilfSexDates.com). The basic rule is that the more complete your profile is and the more photos you upload, the more interest you'll attract. It's advisable to login regularly too, and you'll find that most profiles inform you of the most recent activity on a given profile.



A variety of similar communication options feature on most Cougar dating sites and dating sites more generally:

  • Automated introductory messages (sometimes called ‘smiles’, ‘winks’ or ‘flirts’) are quick to send and save you the trouble of composing an email message. They can usually be sent by clicking on the appropriate button on that member’s profile page.
  • An internal email service is the default method of communication between members and operates just like your Googlemail or Hotmail account. Most prevent you from sending personal information such as telephone numbers and private email addresses as inclusions in your messages. 
  • Flirtcasts offer a way of quickly sending the same message to as many people as possible near to your specified location.
  • Instant Messenger (IM) can be found on many sites. This allows you to text chat in real time, and requires you to send an IM invitation to a person who is currently online).
  • Chat rooms can be simple text chat rooms where multiple members cannot see each other but simply type messages. Some chat rooms (e.g. on DateACougar.com) feature audio/visual chat rooms, allowing you to plug in a webcam if you have one and be seen and heard. If you click with somebody here you might wish to ‘go private’ with them, meaning that you cannot be heard or seen by other members in that chat room


Membership Options

The majority of Cougar dating sites offer two levels of membership; free (standard) membership (letting you create your profile and giving limited access to basic features) and premium membership (giving you full access to all features).

However, there are odd exceptions. Cougared.com offers completely free membership and access to all features. Meanwhile, IDateMilfs.co.uk has two levels of premium membership; a more expensive subscription (Gold) that gives full access to all features and a less expensive subscription (Silver) that offers partial access.

Unless you join a completely free site, the owners will do all they can to get you to upgrade, so they make some money. The trade-off is that for your subscription fee you get full access to communication features. As a free member, you’re more or less unable to communicate with other members, which means you’re very unlikely to find a date. Other advantages of upgrading include extra enhancements, better quality profile photos, no ads and you’re more likely to be taken seriously by other members. You’ll also appear above free members in searches and profile listings.



Prices vary considerably, but the general rule of thumb is that the longer the subscription you take, the cheaper it works out per month. Renewing on a monthly basis can be very expensive, costing around $25.00-$30.00 a month. Joining for a longer period can reduce your monthly fee to around $15.00. Some sites (e.g. DateACougar.com and BeCougar.com offer a 3-day trial for about $8.00, which is a good way of testing the site with minimal financial commitment; free membership won’t give you access to all features and so it’s hard to judge a site as a free member. It’s better to bite the bullet and pay more to join for an initial month than to sign up for 3 or 6 months. If you’re happy after a month, then think about taking out longer term membership. Just remember that subscriptions will keep renewing unless you cancel them. 

A number of sites (e.g. CougarShag.com and FilthyOver50Dating.co.uk) also offer optional extras to enhance your profile when you join. We don’t offer any specific guidance as to whether these are worth the money or not, but just be aware that they’ll be added on to your monthly subscription price and will keep renewing automatically. Just make sure you know what you’re getting for your money before agreeing to a subscription package; check out the help pages and feel free to email customer support.   


Other Features

Some sites offer novel features that are designed to interest you and get you connected to as many members as possible. A few sites offer ‘Rapid Match’’ or 'Encounters’ features (e.g. CougarFling.com and CougarLover.co.uk) that show you member profile photos for you to decide whether you’d like to meet or not. Other sites include blogs, diaries and forums, which can also connect you with like-minded members and make for a more immersive experience.


Search Options

Search options are fairly standard and will include a range of tools such as:

  • Quick/Basic search. This type of search restricts your options to a few basic criteria, including age, location, relationship sought and distance.
  • Advanced search. Usually unavailable to free members, the advanced search lets you specify a much wider range of profile criteria so that you can pinpoint exactly what you’re looking for.
  • Username search. Allows you to enter a member’s username (or part of it) to find their profile.
  • Location search. Enables you to search for members based upon region, country, city, zip code or distance from your location.
  • One-click tab searches. These are quick searches used to generate members based on a single criterion; commonly, new members (so you can check out the latest members), members online (if you want to find somebody to chat with) and new profile content (pointing you to more active profiles that are content-rich).
  • Recommended Member search. This type of automatic search matches you with members who match your preferences (based on your profile data).
  • Reverse Matching. In contrast to the above, reverse matching returns profiles of members who are looking for somebody like you (based on your individual profile data). 


Help And Technical Assistance

All sites will offer some kind of help/FAQs page on their site as well as email support. Some of the better sites offer telephone or live chat support to resolve your query more immediately. However, telephone support and live chat support may only be available to members who upgrade their membership. Premium members generally take priority over free members.


The Bottom Line

Millions of people use online dating as a way of meeting other people and find it a fun and convenient service. If you’re looking to meet Cougars or Cubs, why not check out our reviews and boost your chances of success.