Sunday, November 06, 2005



So you've tried meeting and dating American women. You've used some of the sites that charge you by the month to send letters off to women who are listed on the site. Or you've placed your own personal ad and sat there and waited for replies. Now, you think, it's time to try and meet foreign women. The watchwords here are "look out"! You are entering a minefield. If you aren't careful, you will hear the giant sucking sound of your wallet being emptied in your search for your perfect foreign woman. Fortunately there are right and wrong ways of going about your quest.

The first thing to understand is that there are basically four ways to go about meeting a woman who lives in another country over the net. They are very different from each other, but they all can work. You will have to decide which is best for you, or a combination thereof. The trick is, that once made, you then proceed to do it in the best, most cost effective method, avoiding the scams and other pitfalls along the way. The language barrier is but one of the hurdles you must deal with--there are many more to consider in order to do an effective job of locating your possible future mate.

The first and most common method available to you is the pen pal approach--where basically you buy addresses and converse by mail prior to traveling over to meet your new lady or ladies. This method requires a lot of time writing letters, waiting for answers, responding back and forth, etc.. It does allow you to "get to know" some ladies first prior to meeting them.

Here is the main problem. You will see literally hundreds of sites that show photos of foreign women. They will sell you their addresses for around an average of $10 an address, less if you purchase bulk quantities. This can get very expensive fast. But the trick is to purchase them from the right companies. Because if you don't, you are liable to be getting old, out-of-date addresses--the lady might have moved, gotten married, removed herself from the marketplace or gone to the moon! In direct mail, we are taught that to target the right prospects, make sure the names and addresses are less than 90 days old. In the romance endeavor, you are basically a direct mailer. But the problem is that it is currently very hard to find lists that are recent. And besides not being recent, I cannot count the times that I've found that women should have been removed from the list, yet are not--they are left on for others to continue purchasing.

And remember, you are playing a numbers game here. It is recommended that you send out lots of letters. You can expect as much as a 30% response, but usually much less. Your correspondence can begin culling the list from there. What you are looking for is someone compatible. Letter writing can be a good way of doing this---it even allows you to be brutally honest when need be. For instance, you may prefer women with a good education, with kids or without kids, attractive, certain religion, speaks English, etc.. But what if your requirements are even more--such as not ever wanting kids. Oh and here's a good one: You may want to make it clear that you aren't going to be happy with "moving her whole family" over here--in other words, you are not going to sponsor her whole family someday in getting over here. No package deal, just her and her alone. (However, I must mention that being around a Latin family is one of the best experiences you can have--you just may want to have them up here, or you may want to move down there). Or you might want to sound out her thoughts on other issues, such as her attitudes toward frugality--American movies tend to give an impression that all Americans are rich and that our streets are paved with gold--you probably don't want the type that are going to use your credit card like play money! (unless you are like Nathan E.B. Thomas, Jr. - a predator - who will just cast his net for every unsuspecting foreign woman he can - Fighter)

It is important to get these issues understood relatively early on, and letters can do this very well. (I would save the meatier issues and questions for later letters, not the first one). By this process, you will weed out the ones you are not going to be compatible with. Also, letter writing does indeed do a better job of weeding out the non-English speakers. And the ones who can speak English are generally the better educated women, and the ones that will be better able to assimilate the transition to moving and living here. You may want to exchange a few letters before calling them too.

Here's a few more problems though. Remember, you are not the only one writing to these women. Often times, these address sellers sell their names to other companies. Or they themselves have purchases the names. Also, many women often sign up on more than one list in the first place. Combining these two factors, there is no telling how many times the name has been offered and sold, much less how old the names are. You really don't know how many people are sending letters to your choices. Especially to the "prettier" ones. Think about it. If it was you who was getting tons of letters, how many would you answer? Remember, these ladies have busy schedules, with work, family and perhaps school. And since very few men actually end up going to visit them, they don't get too excited about writing letters in the first place. And mailing letters costs a lot of money for most of these women. Here's another hint though. If you can ascertain which addresses are the newer ones, they will probably be the better prospects. But again, it all starts with the right list from the right company. Another problem is that your letters may go out to the wrong people simply because not enough was revealed to you in the beginning. Head shots, instead of full body shots, old photos, etc.. You all know that a good photographer can make Whistler's Mother into a raving beauty, although sometimes the opposite is true, in that a photo can hide true on-site beauty. The best portrayal is when the site uses two pictures, one a head shot, one a body shot, and both taken more candid, i.e., not by a professional. Sometimes they leave off the language abilities, number of children, exaggerate the occupation or don't show the actual city where they live. And again, very rarely do they "date" the address. And because of this cross-selling I just mentioned, this date wouldn't mean much anyway. Also, remember this--if you are from a small city, think twice about contacting ladies from big cities--they might have trouble adjusting to your small town way of life. But here's yet another hint. Writing to ladies from small out-of-the-way cities will generally yield better results. Fewer men write to them and fewer yet actually go there. And hey, if you're a studly stud and/or rich as a king, human nature being what it is, you no doubt have better-than-average chances!

Yet geography is still a potential problem. If you write to women all over the world, or even all over a particular area, is it reasonable to assume that you can get to all these places? Since only 5% of the men ever go to even one place, I think the answer to that is no. You probably don't have the time nor the money to eventually visit but about one locality, especially if you end up taking more than one trip to that area to meet your "acquaintances". So the answer is probably to indeed target one area and work that area. Then when you go there, perhaps you can meet several women at once, especially since you never know whether you will get along with any one woman you have been writing to. Remember, it is a numbers game to start off with over here, but it is still a numbers game once you get there in my opinion. You will still have to put up with being alone in a foreign country, probably needing an interpreter at times, although I recommend you converse with women who have some knowledge of English. Better yet, take some language classes! And some of these countries are none too safe. And what if you get hooked up with one of the ladies--she just might make it hard for you to hang out with the rest.

Be aware that there are also some free sites on the web that provide addresses and sometimes an Email address of foreign women. But even though free to you, the woman on the other end is paying. And because these sites are free to you, they tend to get a lot more men writing to them, increasing the competition. If you do start a correspondence with a lady from a free site, it is considered proper to offer to pay the expenses she incurs in writing to you and getting your letters.

By the way, some of the domestic, pay-by-the-month sites are getting more and more foreign women on them and they appear to have Email addresses. Sounds great, but the problem is that they don't usually have their own Email. The women usually have to use Email and translation services in their own country, which you are often asked to pay for. In fact, many of these ads are just "fronts" for this other service, usually located overseas--as soon as you send an Email, you will get back a pitch for their services, directing you to their web site. Or they could come back and say your lady of choice is "not available" and then proceed to sell you on their own pen pal address services. So what sounds like a great deal just isn't in the long run.

So even though there are pros and cons in using the pen pal approach, it can and does work. As I said earlier, the most important thing in direct mail is the list. The same holds true here. There is a book written by Gary Clark that points out which companies sell the best lists individually and in bulk. It covers this and lots of other great tips on meeting the foreign woman of your dreams. I highly recommend it. You can get it direct from the author at Your Bride Is In The Mail.

With this method, instead of buying a list of names as above, you create your own list prior to your trip. You place ads in newspapers or brochures in the foreign country and then receive responses from ladies that are interested in you. Or you send your bio and picture to several introduction agencies (see below), where it will be posted in their books or on their walls. This method is kind of a flip version of the method just described above. You are, in essence, reaching out and putting together a list of women that have shown specific interest in you first. You will not face most of the problems above, including having tons of men writing to the same one you are writing to--you will, of course, be in competition with the other men in the brochure, etc., as to who they might decide to write to. If you get letters, you can either choose to write back to the ones you want to, or to just set up visits when you get down there. The preferable way is to have some initial correspondence first however. We also recommend that out of courtesy that you also write a short letter back to the ones you are not interested in, politely turning them down. And unless you specify English, you will get back a lot of letters in the foreign language. But remember, many women generally prefer not to initiate the first contact, preferring instead to wait for your correspondence using the pen pal method--or perhaps preferring to just join the agencies in the next section and meet men after they come down to their country.

Now, what is the third method you can take? It is called the full service introduction agency and it is the method I recommend the highest. This method is much different and much more effective than writing to an existing list or creating your own list. There are full service introduction agencies, many on the web, that operate a completely different way than the pen pal agencies. But you have to be careful here too. Let me explain. But first I must admit that the following is based on my knowledge of the South American market only. I have no knowledge of full service agencies in Russia or Asia. They probably exist, but you're on your own in finding them.

What is a full service introduction agency? This is an agency that exists in the foreign country itself. It sometimes has a U.S. office, but it operates primarily out of the foreign city. It is basically a walk-in agency, much like some of the full service agencies in your town. You pay to view profiles of women in that city and to have them set you up with appointments to meet as many of them as you wish. The big difference is that you have to go to that foreign city to use these services. It's very much like using a matchmaking service in your own home town, except that it is in a foreign country. Basically it becomes your vacation, and it is a fun one. Agency fees run all over the map, but this avenue is a very productive one to take. And they usually have a place for you to stay very close to the agency or even at the agency itself. And interpreters as well. Many have parties where the ratio to women to men is 10 to 1. You are meeting the ladies on their turf, and you will meet lots of them in a very short span of time. Being in a strange country with few language skills is much aided by going the full service route. You are around a comfortable environment, meeting not only the ones you see in the files, but also the ones who drop by spontaneously. You are much less likely to be "corralled" by any one lady--in fact, they know you are down there to meet lots of them. But watch out for the ones that just want to "date" foreigners just to get a night on the town.

How do you find these full service agencies? Two ways that I know of. First, the site usually only profiles a few of their women. They mostly sell you on their services. The second is to find books written by people who have been there. The one I recommend for Columbia is "The 2 Gringos Guide to Meeting Columbian Women". Go to Gringos Guide to Colombian Women. It explains all of the above and much much more.

This method is where you go travel to your foreign destination with a group, all staying together and attending pre-arranged parties, meeting ladies in a hotel reception setting. You get to see a lot of women at once (maybe a 10 to 1 ratio) and approach the ones you are interested in. It's faster and cheaper than one-on-one meetings from an agency list. And the parties are usually better and bigger than the agency parties. You will tend to get a little dazed due to the ratios and you may be monopolized by women you are not interested in, and with no agency help you have to get their phone numbers yourself.

The terms bundling or packaging describe ways to purchase combinations of the above four methods. You may prefer one, two, three or all four of the above methods. You will all have to do at least one of them--I know of no way around this. But it is your choice whether to do more. The problem is that sometimes you are not offered them individually, but in a combined package only.

Although there are four methods, these are offered by basically two types of agencies. The first is the pen pal agency (usually a re-seller itself), but they often offer the services of a full-service introduction agency through a re-seller arrangement. The second is the full-service introduction agency, which often will sell you their list of members' names in a package deal or separate. Both of these types also usually offer a method of creating your own list. If all this sounds complicated, it's because it is.

Almost every industry works this way though. However, what seems to happen in this industry is that because of re-selling and re-sellers, names and addresses can be dated and over-exposed. You just never know how old the list is or how many sites have the same women on them. Can you find the originators and avoid the re-sellers? This is very tough to do, especially since even the originators are sometimes re-sellers for parts of their service. Add to this the fact that many of these agencies create mirror sites and affiliates, and you can see the crazy situation that exists in this industry.

I've added this section to warn you of some of the things you should watch out for, no matter which method you use. I've mentioned some above, but here's a few more, especially when you get into the meatier issues of reality. Horror stories abound. Basically you are trying to avoid the visa and green card seekers. Without getting into the stories, I'll move right to some hints. Generally it is better if you go for women older than 25--over 30 is even better. They are more ready to settle down. You will of course want to find out if she has kids. Can you tell if she wants marriage, or just what are her intentions? Do not, under any circumstances, give her money. Small gifts are ok. Meet the parents. Does she have relatives in the U.S.? This could mean trouble. And as I said above, is she going to want to move her whole family to the U.S.? I guess the best advice is to go slow. If something doesn't feel right, it's probably not. Just move on.

I hope I have explained this field adequately for you. I feel this industry is in need of a huge revamping. But under the current structure, the best I can do is leave you with my own recommendation. I believe there is no substitute for a trip down to your selected country. And I believe it would be better, more fun and a lot less hassle and discomfort if you aligned yourself with a full service introduction agency in the foreign city of choice. Also, I believe you can accomplish more in 10 days down there than in writing letters for a year! Purchase either directly or through a good re-seller, if you can find one. Then you decide whether you would like to contact or at least have a list of women from that city prior to going down there. If so, I would first purchase, in bulk, the list of ladies that belong to that agency, writing to the newer ones first if marked as such. I guarantee--this list will be a lot "cleaner" than any other you could buy. And if you can find an originating full service introduction agency that doesn't re-sell their names, so much the better. You may also purchase other names from the better pen pal sites. Then I would decide if I also wanted to create my own list of names. Finally, I would look at group tour options. And as I said above, some or all of these services can be offered on a packaged or bundled basis.

Some guys join more then one full service introduction service, even in the same city. And many of these agencies have affiliations with other agencies in nearby cities, especially if you stay at the agency's facilities in those other cities.

Using this method, you can meet a lot of women easily in a single trip. And think of it from her viewpoint. You have actually taken the time to come all the way there--this shows real commitment on your part. But be careful--don't let the raw attractiveness of these ladies overcome some of the more practical aspects and requirements of a L/T relationship. But even then you may want to write to some ladies first, either from your the agency's list or from a list you create yourself.

Whichever method you choose, choose it wisely and follow the rules above, including the dangers I pointed out. Read these books, get your passport, pack your bags and go on a vacation you will never forget.

These are many other topics to consider when searching for a foreign bride, not the least of which is letter writing advice, fiance visas, safety considerations, what to bring if you go down there, which country and city to target, bringing her home, even which agency or agencies should I use, travel details, culture shock, learning the language, etc.. By reading the above books and others, you can acquaint yourself with these and other important issues.

Again Don't assume all these ladies are just dying to get out of their country. Latin families are strong and many of these women are well-established. To many of these women, the U.S. is a place to visit, not to live. It may very well be YOU who will be asked to move down there! Business people, scientists and professionals worldwide seem to want to come to America, but for the average citizen of a country like Colombia, they are quite content to stay in their own country and culture, with their own language and next to their own family.

But let's just say it--nothing wrong with saying it--foreign women look at American men for stability and ability to provide. It isn't just a cultural thing but a product of our economic system. Our economy makes it possible for a large percentage of men to support a family. That makes us really attractive to women where male unemployment is chronically high. If marrying an American man means they must move to America, most will do it. Good luck! Buena Suerte!

by William Gregg

I guess you could sum it all up with the thought that many people have baggage. The net gives them a place to hide it but sooner or later it surfaces. Hope I'm not too far into that category. Anyway just wanted to add my two cents worth about foriegn affairs. Under no circumstances am I saying that cross border relationships won't/don't work. On the contrary I think mixed relationships can be very fulfilling because of the different backgrounds, but they will always be harder work. The larger the culture difference the harder the work.

As a younger bloke I went looking for a bride in the Philippines. I'm upfront enough to say that I was driven by insecurities more than I was driven by wanting the particular attributes that asians bring e.g. closeness of family, & I was unprepared for the baggage that growing up in poor country (relative to a developed country) causes. Time & tide work their way and I'm divorced and wiser for the experience.

For men thinking of taking on a foriegn bride, you need to be sure what your own drives are. If you can't relate to women in your own country, what makes you think you'll do better with a foriegner??? Remember the first law of travel "When you travel you always take yourself with you!" The airline may lose your baggage but it'll catch up with you. You still have to relate to a woman. You will sooner or later realise that you've made the job harder because of cultural differences.

I spent about a year all up living in the Philippines so had a good chance to check out the prospective grooms that poor endlessly into the country. We were basically a bunch of losers, sad but true, often broken of heart & spirit. But all long on hope. The women. mmm. Some were looking for good men most were just looking to get out of the country.

For those interested in a foriegn bride you'd best find out which of these two groups your prospective falls into. Ask what she thinks life will be like abroad. If she says she doesn't know or has no idea then proceed. if she says that it'll be really fantastic, give her a wide berth. Why ? well mostly because you will find it hard to live up to her expectations. You don't need the extra hassle that it will create. Remember her view of you may be due to you fronting up with large amounts of money, due to the favourable exchange rate rather than the fact that you own a mint. If she thinks your loaded it's going to be a shock when she finds out you live in a caravan.

Try to find out if she has any hobbies or interests you relate to. That may sound like the same as courting women in your own country, and it is! For the same reasons, you'll need to talk and spend time together, you'll need something to talk about and do together!!!

Is she the oldest or youngest in the family? If she is the oldest, expect her to be sending money home to support the younger ones through school. Now do you think it might be a good idea to check out how employable she'll be in your country? If she has no skills then money sent home will be from YOUR pocket. You may have a problem with this. Better talk about. Early.

Keep in mind that a foriegn bride will relate to you in the same way she culturally relates to men in her own country. Check out the locals on this score. If the men have reputations for playing around she probably will be insecure and jealous, not her fault, she grew up with it.

Some third world countries are very conservative. In some places in the Phillipines it was considered as good as being engaged if you bedded a girl. In the provinces just visiting the parents and meeting the father could be considered similarly. Remember, you are an ambassador for your country, the locals won't understand if you stuff up due to lack of savvy about local customs. Try to leave a good impression. I don't really have an axe to grind here. I avoided many of the pitfalls but my ex and I had too much baggage. For those who want to pursue this avenue I wish you well, please go forward as well prepared as you can.

At the time I was looking to meet a Philippino wife (13yrs ago)I didn't consider my self a loser, but in retrospect I was certianly in that group. Don't believe that just having money makes someone a winner, You can be rich and be just as stuffed up as someone who is broke.

Keep in mind that women from third world countries are likely to be very emotionally tough, they are not weak, they need to be tough just to survive in those conditions. It is very likely that they will be stronger than you.

When all is said and done the failure rate of Philippino/Australian marriages was about 85% in 1986. It may have improved marginally since as the governments on both sides don't like this situation. Don't for one moment think that the situation will be different in your country. Try ringing the local embassy or your immigration dept. Someone there will have the figures.

Keep your eyes open in a foriegn land. I saw rip offs and abuse by both sides that make the worst stories about internet dating, on this site, pale into insignificance by comparison.

Thoughts on the net. Well it's a bit like all the porn sites, so much promise but when you get there is it really what you wanted. The Net has the capability to put you in touch with many people most of whom would not have come into your life otherwise. I don't see that the net itself is to blame for all the disasters we read about. Perhaps these people were disasters looking for a place to happen, the net just makes it faster and easier. Ultimately we must all be responsible for our own actions.

I try to view it as a way for people like myself to meet other like minded people (yes, still long on hope!) The local governemt area I live in has a population of 20,000 max. If you have esoteric interests (like me, spiritual, metaphysics, human counsciousness, telepathy, esp etc.) then your chances of finding a similar soul in such a small population base is very limited. So the net can be a plus.

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