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.Unlike many bars, a speed dating event will, by necessity, be quiet enough for people to talk comfortably. Participants can come alone without feeling out of place; alternatively it is something that women who like to go out in groups can do together.

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They spend a long time in the office and so they have little time to invest in finding love.

"It's becoming harder to meet suitable partners these days and that's one reason why people are getting married later," says party organiser Natsuko Minami.

Speed dating, as two separate words, is often used as a generic term for similar events.

The first speed-dating event took place at Peet’s Café in Beverly Hills in late 1998.

Usually advance registration is required for speed dating events.

Men and women are rotated to meet each other over a series of short "dates" usually lasting from three to eight minutes depending on the organization running the event.

Each pairing gets two minutes, before everyone swaps partners.

Some couples seem to hit off instantly, while others are shy and conversation is muted.

If there is a match, contact information is forwarded to both parties.