Requirement for each event vary with the organizer.
Specific age range based on gender is a common restriction for events.
Many speed dating events are targeted at particular communities: for example, LGBT people, polyamorists, Some feel that speed dating has some obvious advantages over most other venues for meeting people, such as bars, discotheques, etc.
in that everybody is purportedly there to meet someone, they are grouped into compatible age ranges, it is time-efficient, and the structured interaction eliminates the need to introduce oneself.
Furthermore, issues such as religion, previous marriages, and smoking habits were found to play much less of a role than expected.
A 2006 study in Edinburgh, Scotland showed that 45% of the women participants in a speed-dating event and 22% of the men had come to a decision within the first 30 seconds.
As reported by the BBC in the Science of Love, it only takes between 90 seconds to 4 minutes of face-to-face interaction to determine attraction, which gives speed dating an advantage over online dating.
While over 100 companies in the US offered speed dating through online registration during the growing of the Internet, between 20 three large speed dating companies emerged with a national footprint in the US, with events in over 50 US cities: Hurrydate, 8Minute Dating and Pre-Dating.
Hurrydate was acquired by Spark Networks (Jdate/Christian Mingle). The advantage of online speed dating is that users can go on dates from home as it can be done from any internet enabled computer.
Pre-Dating was acquired by Cupid.com, but eventually became independent again. The disadvantage is people do not actually meet one another.
One of the advantages that speed dating has over online speed dating and online dating in general is that when being face to face with someone, you get a better sense of who they are due to their body language, gestures, tonality and more.