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Great Date Now review: Great Date Now is a TOTAL SCAM

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12:52 pm EST
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I have been a member of the service for several months now and extremely angry with my matches. I've only been on 2 dates and I cannot believe who my Matchmaker set me up with. I truly believe this is a total scam. I went in the NYC office and met with the sales woman by the name of Catherine Ginter. I signed up with her and paid over $10, 000 to meet the upscale executives that she had promised. During my meeting she spoke to me as if I needed help in every aspect of my life. She spoke down to me and made me feel like crap on my dress attire as if I am NOT Worthy, not to mention her preaching Tony Robbins and how he could change my life! If I wanted to know those things, I would have asked! How dare she, she should look at herself in the mirror as poor representation for ANY company. She has fabricated and made up stories to make herself feel better, calls herself the only Executive Matchmaker for Great Date Now but on the website she is NOT even certified. What do you see in her as a company? You need to know what you employ and would never deal with such an unprofessional. She has also spoken poorly, leaving out names, of other colleagues she works with and claims herself to be part owner! I would advise ALL not to trust and just stay away from the Executive Matchmaker Cathrine Ginter, for she will rip you off like I was.


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Mar 20, 2011 1:34 am EDT

I have also experienced the same kind of situation. In addition to all of that i have been complaining alot about the fact that my calls were never returned, I was assigned to one matchmaker but they changed all the time and they never knew anything about my file...i was so upset because i am a nanny and that kind of money is very hard to make. So far, they owe me 8 days in totals over 10 but i got so frustrated that i decided to take a brake from them since the contract was an unlimited one.

Feb 17, 2010 9:41 pm EST

Do you guys realize that the matches who are repulsive and inconsiderate as you would imply are also members? There is the issue! These people paid the same money as the people who think they are so glamorous and awesome and they want matches, too! People are so unrealistic about this whole thing. I am sure the Matchmakers build it up to be the best experience it can be, but what person who is trying to make a sale is not going to do that? Let's be realistic. They are trying to sell you a package- do you think they are going to say " You are ugly and fat and socially awkward so I can only set you up with people with these same qualities"? Who would join? You guys must be professionals and intelligent business people for the most part and it's pretty odd that you would not realize this is sales as much as it is anything else. They are selling you a service! They have the best intentions but the people you want to be matched with probably don't want to be matched with you. Otherwise matchmaking would be the easiest gig on earth.

Jan 15, 2010 11:20 am EST
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It's a pitty. The company was a great company until the economy tanked and so did the the firm. It's very unfortunate. I loved my experience with them back in the day when I worked with Beth O'Malley and Catherine Ginter. She and Catherine as well as Donna Rossi were some of the greatest matchmakers and women I have ever met! Beth worked as a psychologist and really helped many of her clients see their blind spots. Obviously the sort of people seeking out a matchmaking service need some help otherwise they would be dating on their own! And Catherine, who also works as an image consultant, tweeked and improved the image of countless men and women who quite frankly needed a serious image update in order to re-enter the competitive dating world. Catherine tweeked my friend and me as well, and I still use several of the techniques she gave me that dramatically improved my image and confidence. I am better for having worked with each of them. Donna was just a pleasure to speak to everytime I had a question about my matches. Some of the greatest matchmakers the Company had left after the owner changed the business concept and platform. Many matchmakers chose to leave the company because they did not agree with the company's business practices. Did the company ever bother to inform the clients of their departure - no. I wish everyone well wherever they are.

Jan 13, 2010 9:31 am EST

I am also completely dissatisfied with the dates they have offered me. None of them have anything in common with me and are far from attractive. I accepted the first date 2 yrs ago and he showed up an hour late and was extremely repulsive. Since then they have offered email photo of prospective date. I have refused all they have offered. They said I should be more willing to compromise with my likes. They refuse to offer me a refund. Please post if there is any way out of this contract.

Dec 31, 2009 6:07 am EST
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CBS broke this story on the News last night and I read further online that Great Date Now filed for Chapter 7 on Dec 16th. The story below appeared on CBS's website. Apparently GDN's and Meet Over Drink can not charge more than $1, 000! We were all ripped off-period, end of story. It doesn't matter if you found true love or not. And I know all of us did not get what we paid for, I did not and I'm very open minded when it comes to dating. The question is how do we get some of our $ back!

At the Westchester County Department of Consumer Protection, they've been tracking compaints about the dating service for over a year.

People were very, very disappointed and really hurt, " Westchester DCP Director Gary Brown said.

The matchmaking company is one of the largest in the tri-state, with seven offices in New York City and its suburbs.

Scores of customers have filed former complaints, while many others have vented frustration in online forums, claiming "Great Date Now" and affiliated company "Meet Over Drinks" took money for matchmaking services but failed to deliver.

"The gist of the complaints was, 'I was promised a certain number of references per month, I didn't get them, and the few that I got were really unsuitable, '" Brown said.

New York AG Cuomo is suing the firms, seeking nearly $1 million for unhappy clients.

Cuomo accuses owner Gary Ferone of deceptive business practices, including charging clients $5, 000 or more – well above what state law allows.

"You can't be charged more than $1, 000 in the contract, so if the company wants more than that amount of money from you, that's a red flag, " Brown said.

Ferone works out of an office in Purchase, but no one was there when CBS 2 stopped by seeking comment.

The "Great Date Now" Web site has been taken down, but "Meet Over Drinks" is still actively seeking clients.

Ferone's company has also plastered tri-state roadways with thousands of signs, trying to drum up business for his matchmaking firms.

He's still trying to play matchmaker, even after filing for bankruptcy the same day the attorney general filed suit.

Ferone did not respond to repeated requests for comment.

New York has a "Bill of Rights" for dating service customers.

Dec 30, 2009 5:32 pm EST

I agree with everyone else's bad experiences. Dawn dissapeared after she reeled me in, after telling me she has never had anyone make it to the 10th date, because they always meet their soul mate before that. Does anyone know how I might get my money back? perhaps Small Claims Court? Thank you.

Dec 14, 2009 6:19 pm EST

Well ... My name is Theresa and am currently a client of "Meet Over Drinks" Long Island. I have read all complaints and thought it would be nice to share a great experience. It's the holidays and I told my Matchmaker I wanted to fall in love and be matched with someone real special by the holiday season and going into 2010. I think it's only fair, and have referred new clients to her, that there be a commendation for what people do right and when they make others happy. My Matchmaker did, in fact, care about my happiness and well being. She was attentive, cordial, and stern when she needed to be. She would give advice whether I liked what she had to say or not. To make a long story short, I am happily with my significant other and happier then I've been in years. I think the problem is people do not give it the time and patience they deserve to let the journey take it's course and work for them. They would rather display bad publicity than working with their Matchmaker so they can do their job. Again, whether anyone is interested or not, this experience has changed my life for the BETTER and I have met the love of my life. I owe it all to YOU Dawn! Don't fight the process, embrace it and it will work for you.

Nov 14, 2009 3:46 pm EST

I have just written to the Dept of Consumer Affairs in NYC, and I suggest all those to do the same as well as write to our Attorney General. This company scammed me for $3500. If you have been scammed by Catherine Ginter and GDN, please respond. We need to all team up together to get back at this company. I heard their MAIN office is in Panama? Is this true? With help from my attorney I tried to contact them, but they didn't respond back. I found out Catherine Ginter was GONE, a MONTH after I wrote a letter to them asking for my money back. They were acting as if nothing was wrong. Of course something was wrong. Emails and phone calls from my attorney went to them, and again they did not respond back. Do NOT sign up with this company or Meet for Drinks! Write to the DCA and your ATTORNEY GENERAL!

Oct 07, 2009 10:42 am EDT
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Look at this ad they are placing for a "Sales person/Matchmaker" - it is clear that you don't have to have ANY experience to be a matchmaker for them - just good at sales:

Meet Over Drinks Matchmaking, with 10 locations throughout New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia and Connecticut, is seeking a STRONG SALES PERSON/MATCHMAKER for their PHILADELPHIA office location.

Rapid growth in our service requires top closers with an energetic outgoing personality. If you have what it takes to be the area's best matchmaker, we should talk. If you have experience in health clubs, diet centers or media sales, you may be the perfect fit. Other great fits include professionals with a psychology background, promotions experience or experienced recruiters.

If you have the desire to create dynamic relationships while growing a truly rewarding income in a service oriented business, then this opportunity is for you. We have ten great locations and continue to grow with new locations opening every year.

If you feel you are a great fit for this position, please respond by email to this ad or fax your resume to [protected], subject header: PA Matchmaker.

We look forward to hearing from you and hope you will visit us at to find out more about our great services.

among74 is friends with the nooniemouse and likes to troll the boards.

Aug 13, 2009 9:27 pm EDT

i met with dawn tefel and was disgusted. she had a STRONG sales pitch which i sadly bought, but i should have known better since she had a gawdy, fake 4 carat piece of cz on her left hand. does she think that would help us to sign up?

2 hours after i left the office i had such buyers remorse i called to cancel the agreement and sent the certified letter to the "corporate office" to cancel immediately and get a full refund.

of course i was completely ignored by both the manhattan and purchase office, which claimed they never received my certified letter. um. ya. the post office has proof dummies.

after sicking my credit card company on them, mentioning the large amount of complaints the better business bureau has on their company, and threatening to come to the office personally to get my money back, i finally got my refund.

this is a complete scam and i wish i had done this kind of research prior to getting scammed.

ladies and gentlemen, please don't trust this company, no matter what they call themselves. they are con artists.

Aug 02, 2009 7:53 pm EDT

please please please contact me- let's take them to court- I loathe GDN/meet over nothing

group voices work

[email protected]

Jul 09, 2009 9:49 pm EDT

GDN is a total scam...such a scam that they are now changing their name to Meet Over Drinks since there are so many complaints on them. DO NOT pay money for either of these services. Stay away from Dawn Tefel from the Long Island office she is the biggest con artist of them all! It does not matter which location you go to you will get the same thing...nothing but ripped off. It is an absolute crime that they have been able to get away with what they have been doing to people. Once you pay you dont hear from them again. You will not be sent out with anyone unless you call and harrass them...and once they do send you out it is someone that is not in your match criteria at all. Dont be fooled by any positive reviews on Great Date Now as it can only be written by the con artists running the scam. Anyone who has had contact with GDN knows it is a total scam..and Meet Over Drinks is to be their next big scam project!

Jun 25, 2009 3:05 pm EDT

People live in Manhattan and STILL pay money for dates? What is this world coming to? TEN GRAND? Holy cow.

Well I have GREAT NEWS for everyone. DATES ARE FREE. Heck, send me $13.50 for a martini and some bus fare...I'll have you married by the end of the evening.

Jun 25, 2009 2:47 pm EDT

There is a new Matchmaker in the Manhattan and NJ offices. Catherine Ginter no longer works there so perhaps this explains the lack of communication. The Company should do a better job of alerting the clients when matchmakers leave. People should keep in mind the matchmakers are employees of the firm --the do not make policy or have complete control over the process. If you are having a problem with the matchmaker, chances are it is the company who should bare the blame -- it seems there is an incompetency of the company to provide adequate staffing and suppport. The matchmaker ends up getting all of the blame but this is not fair. There are fundamental flaws in the company and structure. Do your homework before deciding to go in this direction.

May 15, 2009 4:01 pm EDT

Great Date Now has done nothing but be a help to me. I signed up with them in June of 2008. After meeting 3 men who were nice but just not for me, they introduced me to my fiance. While we have been together for a little under a year, I continue to keep in contact with my matchmaker and assistant matchmaker to refer single friends and have a fantastic working business relationship with them. I am a NJ based client and can offer NOTHING but positive reviews. As for those who have posted their uunhappiness and negative experiences. Did you ever stop to think that maybe you have unrealistic expectations and are the problem? In ANY business there will always be unhappy people. There are people out there that are just so jaded and negative that if prince charming walked up and smacked them in the face, they wouldn't even realize it.

Grow up !

May 12, 2009 9:46 pm EDT

STAY FAR AWAY FROM MEET OVER DRINKS! For $3, 500+ they will be sure to ignore your phone calls and all of your concerns. Customer service is non-existent and it is my fault that they don't return calls b/c I should know that they are busy. Also, they promise pictures but then don't want to provide them to you and don't provide any guidance as to how the process works. MY PERSONAL MATCHMAKER - the scam artist who convinced me to hand over my AMEX has not returned any of my calls since our first meeting. The assistant matchmaker is absolutely useless --- someone above referred to the assistant matchmaker as a glorified receptionist, I think they were giving the assistant matchmaker far too much credit. Fortunately I didn't pay all fees up front and I had AMEX charge them back; no further charges have been authorized so hopefully I didn't get scammed out of any money. Filed a complaint with the BBB as well. Heed my warning and stay away from them...they love you until they get your money and then you will never hear from the company again.

Apr 22, 2009 2:38 pm EDT

BUYER BEWARE! LOOKS LIKE GREAT DATE IS UNDER A NEW NAME...don't be fooled! The new name that they are also using is MEET OVER DRINKS! It the same offices aa well as Matchmakers.

Apr 21, 2009 8:38 pm EDT

Like many others that have joined GDN, I've had nothing but bad experiences. I signed up in September, paying $6500 for 6 matches. Although, I was uncertain about joining GDN after my meeting with Catherine Ginter, she promised that she could change my life. Since I got tired of meeting guys on line that clearly misrepresented themselves, I decided to let Catherine help me. I should of listened to my first instinct .

I handed over my check and she said that it would take two weeks before we could get started until my back ground check was done. It was over a month before I heard back her. Her excuse was that she was emailing me and it was most likely going to spam. I checked my spam folder and there was nothing in there from GDN.

The matches that Catherine fixed me up with weren't even close to what I was looking for. She never returned my calls when I called after the dates to speak to her about the matches. Since joining the agency I've spoken to three different assistant match makers, who also don't routinely return your calls. I have only been on two dates since I joined, the last one being in January. When I call there to ask if Catherine has anyone else in mind for me, their famous words are "She'll get back to you"...I'm still waiting since January to hear back after multiple messages left since then!

At this point, I am filling a complaint with the Better Business Bureau in hopes that I can save someone else from throwing their money away to this business. I'm also hoping for a partial refund and will continue to spread the word NOT to join this's a total scam!

Feb 27, 2009 11:36 am EST

Going on dates to fulfill the requirement is certainly sleazy. Happening to 'come across" and then examining someone else's cell phone bill AND using the information for dating espionage is equally as sleazy. That tactic is one only a wife deserves!

Jan 22, 2009 2:23 pm EST

Well I signed with Catherine Ginter well over a month ago for $10, 000 and still have not received a match. Whenever I call the Manhattan office she is never there, let alone making matches. Her Assistant is very gracious and accommodating, however, always tells me she is not in when I call. I don't know if she dodges her calls but with no disrespect, whomever is writing her positive comments must be trying to back her out of her negative one's. I happen to feel the same exact way about my experience as some do and believe to have paid way too much money to be ignored. I wanted to believe in her because I wanted this so badly but knew there was a vibe about her that was simply phony and not genuine. I felt there was a hidden agenda with her and a non-comfort level in her honesty but willing to give it a chance. I do not feel she represents her seat well at all and feel slighted by the fact of enrolling. I may need to move in a different direction because I am not comfortable with someone I do not trust.

Jan 15, 2009 6:13 pm EST

My experience was, I actually dated one of the silent partners. I did not know any of this at the time. He would go on dates to fullfill the requirements and sometimes get lucky. To my surprise I came across one of his cell phone bills and found numerous unknown numbers. I actually called a few and WOW! He was actually going on one to three dates with different women trying to have sex. Then I found one he was having an affair with for 5 monthes. The woman was divorced and had children. Therefore, he would see her one to two times a week or even skip a week due to conflicting schedules without my knowledge. He would say he had a business trip and instead would be taking one of these women away. I was SLEEPIG WITH ENEMY! One o my girlfriends dated a guy that's very good friends with these owners. Yes, it's true they do have more women then men and yes they do charge the women more. They will send you out on any date to fullfill the requirement. We broke up and my friend told me the guy I was dating was being sued. I have no hidden agenda, but to let women know beware of the skum that's really out there! The man I'm talking about will tell you he's in real estate and he is, but he is also involved in this service for his personal benefit.

Jan 14, 2009 6:33 pm EST

I am forty five years old and re-entered the dating world in early 2008. I naturally started with looking online, where I batted my head against a wall for months… After the online fiasco, I decided to sign on with a dating service, thinking that I would have a more targeted and more meaningful experience. Having heard about It’s Just Lunch, I joined. It did not take me long, however, to realize that they are a charade. They tout themselves as matchmakers. However, all they do is lie to their members and randomly set up dates just to meet their contractual obligations. This left an extremely bad flavor in my mouth regarding “matchmaking” and “dating” services.

However, I needed to do something… So, I researched other services, found GDN, and met Catherine Ginter. To be totally honest, after my IJL experience, I was extremely reticent to join another dating/matchmaking service. As a matter of fact, it took Catherine five or six months of multiple meetings and discussions to sign me up. I ended up signing up, despite my reservations, because I developed a good working relationship with Catherine based on trust.

Since I have joined Catherine has connected me with a several women: all of whom are a leap in quality above women I have met elsewhere. She has spent a lot of time not only preparing me for each date and coaching me throughout the process but also selecting the best potential matches for me. Such attention to my “case” has turned what could have very well been another debacle into a bona-fide match search and a healthy, personal growth-oriented experience.

I cannot emphasize how critical it is to a people-oriented business such as GDN’s to spend the time and effort to develop, maintain, and ACTUALLY DELIVER on relationships. As a Partner in a management consulting firm I know very well how important it is not only to find leads and close on them, but also to actually foster them and deliver results. In this manner, my business is fed by all sorts of references from happy clients and referrals from happy clients. If I focused just on closing the sale, I would rapidly “burn out” my opportunities and I would end up in rapid “churn” mode, rather than having the business grow on its own through world-of-mouth and high-caliber reputation.

Catherine’s approach to working with her clients meets and exceeds this model and enables GDN to totally differentiate itself from other services, such as IJL. I frankly don’t know how you would build your business without her. The person posting the initial post is missing the whole point of hiring a good matchmaker.

Jan 14, 2009 5:22 pm EST

I have worked with Catherine for over four months and I have her to be one of the most professional women I have ever met. She goes the extra mile with her clients offering them support in many areas of their lives; she doesn't just make matches. This woman posting is clearly the problem. Matchmakers are just that--matchmakers. They are not magicians. This woman needs to see if she is the common demoninator in this equation. I have nothing but the utmost respect for Catherine and her standard of excellence in her work.