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.
In the UK, there are two companies that run events in more than twenty cities: Speed Dater and Slow Dating.
Usually advance registration is required for speed dating events.
Most speed dating events match people at random, and participants will meet different "types" that they might not normally talk to in a club.
On the other hand, the random matching precludes the various cues, such as eye contact, that people use in bars to preselect each other before chatting them up.
Other studies found speed-dating data useful as a way to observe individual choices among random participants.
A 2005 study at the University of Pennsylvania of multiple Hurry Date speed dating events found that most people made their choices within the first three seconds of meeting.