This installment of a three part series had been delayed for good reason. We had been patiently waiting for feedback from a contact, a Ukrainian citizen, who had volunteered to provide information of her past experiences in dating, or more accurately – “scamming” foreigners within online dating sites.
We have taken particular interest in this opportunity as we have had prior knowledge of her reputation as being a well trusted source in the Ukraine travel business.
It took a considerable amount of time to complete the interview and also verify her identity and credentials. Over time, we developed a considerable level of trust. The emails and conversations we shared were informative and worth sharing with our readers.
When we asked Katerina her reason for reaching out to us, her answer was simple.
The interview below was translated with minimal edit. Here is what Katerina had to share with us.
James: Thank you for contacting us, Katerina. We appreciate your willingness to share your knowledge and experiences. The conversations that we shared earlier this summer were very interesting and I have no doubt that our readers will find this information very useful.
Katerina: Maybe some will benefit. That is my purpose. I’m very pleased that you were willing to talk with me. When I discovered your website I was amazed to see how you were willing to give strangers free assistance - and for so many years!
James: Thanks, but… well, that’s not entirely true. Years ago, we were providing some private consultations and of course now we have the premium subscription service. But yes, from the beginning we decided against making ukrainemarriageguide.com a profit venture. Any income the premium site generates is used to support and maintain the site.
James: Katerina, What can you tell me about your current profession?
Katerina: I am a regional account manager for a software firm that serves both foreign and domestic partners.
James: I understand that this is a recent career change for you.
James: Can you tell me about your previous profession?
Katerina: Well, I began working for a travel agency while I studied at the university. With the agency I would book hotel rooms, flats, auto transport as well. While working with them, I had developed relations with many of the clients, foreign travelers. Being honest, most of them were men looking for sex and a good party. Some were interested in finding Ukrainian wife or simple travel companion. My job was to arrange for the needs of the foreign tourists, but it was us and the local girls that would benefit from this type of special service, not the tourists.
James: I believe I understand. We have shared with our readers before, about how many of the travel agencies throughout Ukraine provide matchmaking services or even escort services.
Katerina: This is common. Running a business is difficult in Ukraine. Travel agencies never refuse an opportunity to earn additional business. If a foreigner is looking for sex, we explain this is not our duty and direct them to an escort type agency or try your luck with a romance tour, which brings good profit. But if the man, most often clients are men, simply wants a date companion then we use the girls from our affiliate dating agencies.
James: Please tell us about the dating agencies in Ukraine. What results can a foreigner expect from such agency service?
Katerina: I will not say they are all identical, but most are. The girls from the agencies are well trained and have an agenda. They are taught that in order to stay safe they must control the arrangement. Their only goal is to steer the relationship to their financial benefit. There is a very specific plan and timeline that the girls follow, more of an industry standard, truly.
James: When you say plan, what do you mean?
Katerina: The girls will charm the men, secure their confidence and then keep them close. Money and gifts will come. Shortly after the routine becomes tiresome, or more specifically, the money stops coming, the girls will show some distress to their online lovers and make their own problems, the problem of their online companion. The war in Ukraine has made this easier, because of course we are all victims of bad circumstance, yes?
James: But this sounds typical of how many men and women behave within personal relationships, isn't that fair to say?
Katerina: Of course, the difference would be a highly organized and repetitve process.
James: On a large scale...
James: What motivated you to do this type of work? Simple profit or were you yourself hoping to find true love? Maybe a Sugar Daddy?
Katerina: At first, I was hoping to find a man that would help me with my finances so I did not have to work while attending university. But yes the money was good. When the girls make money the agencies… I would get a percentage of the profit. This is highly organized.
James: Are you telling me that all of the girls that are registered on dating sites are scammers? None of them have genuine interest in honest relationships?
Katerina: Oh Please! [laughs] Tell me what it means to be a scammer! No really, tell me.
James: Well, deception, false intent…
Katerina: Listen, if a woman is online dating and she likes someone then she will do what comes natural and make an effort to grow the relationship and attempt to get what she wants - money, gifts, or even love. If her interest grows and she has genuine desire then she will invite the man to become closer.
James: you just mentioned “love” last in your statement. Any reason why?
Katerina: Wait… However, if a woman invests her time in online dating and she is sincere and eventually discovers that the man she met online is some horny bastard that is only looking for hot sex and blowjobs, then of course she may want to respond by manipulating the situation to her advantage regardless of what happens to this person. What is difficult to understand?
James: [laughs] Very well said. I also believe online dating is a risk that is shared, but I would now like to direct our conversation toward the existence of career professionals whose sole purpose is to extort money and wealth from naive or unsuspecting foreign travelers that have genuine interest in companionship.
Katerina: Very clever…
James: Thank You.
Katerina: This is the main reason I approached you. I have witnessed and taken part in many situations where foreign men, and even women had their finances, their careers and entire livelihoods destroyed because they were too busy chasing a fantasy dream that never did exist. I made a lot of money with online dating, but I also invested much of my time and had subjected myself to extreme risk while doing it… and maybe even more now because of this interview.
James: Nothing has changed. I will honor your terms publishing this material.
Katerina: I do not feel it is appropriate to discuss this matter as in how “evil the agency girls can be”. Because for most of them, life is shit in Ukraine. Many of the girls support their entire families with their income as I do. Rather, I will explain some things in regards to what foreign travelers can do to protect themselves while dating in Ukraine, online or traveling here, whichever it is.
James: Fair enough.
In Part III of Online Dating in Ukraine, we will summarize and share all that Katerina has to offer in an easy to read format. Coming Soon.
We would like to thank Katerina for her time in discussing these matters and also for cooperating in our verification process.
It is our intention that this material will help broaden individual perspective of the realities involved in Online dating culture in Ukraine.