Best Long Distance Dating Sites

Online Dating

25 Best Long-Distance Dating Sites for 2020

Amber Brooks
Amber Brooks Posted:
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The best long-distance dating sites can spark a true, loving relationship that overcomes city limits and borders.

No matter where you live, you can expand your dating pool by joining an online dating site or app. Dating platforms with large user bases have a lot of romantic possibilities awaiting a single person, and it’s totally free to dive into an international dating scene.

We’ve ranked and reviewed the top dating sites and apps for singles who are willing to go the distance to find a lasting love.

★★★★★
4.8/5.0

Relationships: Friends, Dates, and Relationships

Match System: Browse by zip, age, appearance, more

Our Experts Say: “Match has facilitated the most dates and relationships of any dating site, and its large audience and high success rate make it our top review...” Full Review »

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Match tops our list of dating sites because it has been around longer than any other dating service and has led to more relationships and marriages than any of its competitors. Since 1995, Match has fostered a dynamic and mature dating scene where physical distance doesn’t stand between compatible matches.

The Match network currently extends to 50 countries and includes over 35 million active users. The typical Match member is over 30 years old, college-educated, and looking for a long-term relationship.

Match has distinguished itself as a dating site for serious relationships by offering in-depth dating profiles and a personality-driven matchmaking process that can identify common interests and shared goals.

★★★★★
4.7/5.0

Relationships: Serious Relationships

Match System: Search, Receive Partner Suggestions

Our Experts Say: “EliteSingles is a leading dating site just for busy, single professionals. More than 80% of members have earned a college degree, and most are looking for a serious commitment...” Full Review »

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EliteSingles is a dating website with high standards and a high success rate. It has earned the esteem of online daters by using a smart algorithm to raise the caliber of matches.

When you create an EliteSingles profile, you’ll fill in details about your career, hobbies, and relationship dealbreakers (including distance from you), and that personal information will be tabulated in your compatibility ratings with other members. If another member shares a lot of similar personality traits and dating goals, you’ll have a rating of 75 or higher.

EliteSingles is a dating site for professionals, so it focuses on quality over quantity when recommending date prospects within a given mile radius.

3. Zoosk

★★★★★
4.5/5.0

Relationships: Fun Dates, Serious Relationships

Match System: Search and get match recommendations

Our Experts Say: “Zoosk is integrated with social media sites, like Facebook and Google+, so it's very popular with singles on the go...” Full Review »

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In 2007, Zoosk took a page out of social media’s playbook by launching an online dating site that offered an array of browsing and communication options. Zoosk users can favorite profiles, send virtual gifts, or spark a mutual match to catch the eye of a new love interest.

Zoosk does not put location-based limits on its users. That means a single person can tread a lot of virtual dating ground in the search for a solid match. The Zoosk search tab has a distance filter of up to 100 miles, and the algorithm uses behavioral matchmaking to recommend dating profiles based on a user’s browsing history.

★★★★★
4.7/5.0

Relationships: Casual Dates, Deep Relationships

Match System: Personality test suggests matches

Our Experts Say: “Accounting for 2% of U.S. marriages, eharmony's compatibility-based system and commitment-minded user base are ideal for those seeking a serious relationship...” Full Review »

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The founding mission of eharmony is to create love and strengthen marriage. The dating website uses a lengthy personality test to determine which members have the potential to form a long-term relationship.

Over the last 20 years, eharmony has introduced over 2 million couples throughout the U.S., and not all its potential matches are next-door neighbors. The eharmony algorithm can do a thorough sweep of the online dating scene and find a romantic partner with the right stuff.

In 2020, eharmony even developed a video chatting feature to help lonely singles under quarantine or in lockdowns. Only premium eharmony users who have exchanged several messages can invite one another to a video date.

★★★★
4.4/5.0

Relationships: Dates and Serious Relationships

Match System: Search by gender, age, education, more

Our Experts Say: “ChristianMingle is among the largest dating sites in the industry that only caters to single Christian men and women, and the site has some of the best search filters and safety features...” Full Review »

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Since its launch in 2001, ChristianMingle has kept faith alive in the online dating scene. The Christian dating website and app has more than 15 million members who are looking for a God-centered relationship and marriage.

ChristianMingle goes to great lengths to ensure its members are real people. The platform encourages its members to submit their cellphone number or log in through Facebook to add another layer of security to their online dating experience.

Online daters turn to ChristianMingle when they’re ready to get serious and meet a person who holds Christian values dear to their heart. “On our first date, he drove the whole five hours it takes to see me,” said Kaleigh in an online success story. “Falling in love was so easy and natural, and by the sixth-month mark, we were engaged!”

★★★★★
4.6/5.0

Relationships: Friendship, Casual Dates, Serious Relationships

Match System: Search by age, location, height, education, ethnicity, and religion

Our Experts Say: “SilverSingles is a fast-growing, easy-to-use niche dating site exclusively for active daters over the age of 50...” Full Review »

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SilverSingles is among the best long-distance dating sites for seniors who want to reconnect with the dating world. This premier site has sparked countless friendships and relationships between single adults in their 60s and up.

Becoming a member of the SilverSingles community takes less than five minutes and requires minimal personal information. Senior singles don’t even have to upload a profile picture if they don’t want to. However, the site curates a potential match list based on dating profile information, and those with profile pictures tend to get more attention online. You can read our full review to learn more about SilverSingles.

★★★★
4.1/5.0

Relationships: Deep Relationships or Just Casual Dates

Match System: Search by location, age, more

Our Experts Say: “BlackPeopleMeet.com is the one of the largest and most popular dating sites for black and biracial singles, and the site is used by more than 5 million people a month...” Full Review »

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BlackPeopleMeet boasts having the largest network of Black singles in North America, so it’s a legit place to diversify your dating prospects. The BPM dating website and app provide potential match lists sourced from coast to coast.

Singles can search for dates by ZIP code, state, or province on BlackPeopleMeet and add filters based on age, gender, ethnicity, and appearance.

“I found a wonderful man on this site,” said a BlackPeopleMeet member in an online success story. “He is from Baltimore, Maryland, and I am from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The distance between us is a little over an hour — but, if not for this site, we may never have crossed paths.”

★★★★
4.3/5.0

Relationships: Dates and Relationships

Match System: Search by profiles by zip and more

Our Experts Say: “OurTime is well-known in the over-50 dating crowd, particularly because it has a ton of helpful search features and an easy layout...” Full Review »

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OurTime is a mature dating website and app that can assist senior singles in the journey to love. Virtual matchmaking tools recommend potential dates based on similarities in age, background, and relationship goals.

Many individuals have carried on a long-distance relationship through the OurTime network. Its real-time chat tools and phone call forwarding offer ways to connect that are private and secure. Online daters can also arrange a video date to ensure their online crush is a real person and not a scammer, catfisher, or fake profile.

★★★★
3.9/5.0

Relationships: Hookups, Chats

Match System: Search by encounter, location, and more

Our Experts Say: “BeNaughty is a premier hookup app where you can feel comfortable expressing your desires. Plus, it's free to join, browse, and flirt...” Full Review »

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BeNaughty has become a dating hotspot for sex-driven singles of all ages. Seeking a romantic partner on this hookup site is a one-step process. All you have to do is enter your dating dealbreakers in terms of age, gender, distance, and appearance, and the site will automatically create and update a potential match list that meets your standards.

Single women enjoy free communication on BeNaughty as long as they upload a picture to their online dating profile. The moderators will check all profile photos to ensure they are legitimate and appropriate.

BeNaughty users can organize the match list by distance if they’re looking for a nearby date, or they can sort it by popularity or online activity if distance isn’t such an important factor. The site can cast a wide net on behalf of users and search for compatible dates within a 100-mile radius.

★★★★
4.0/5.0

Relationships: Hookups, Casual Dates, Affairs

Match System: Search by age, location, appearance, and more

Our Experts Say: “With its massive user base and advanced privacy features, Ashley Madison is the #1 site for discreet hookups, dates, or relationships...” Full Review »

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Ashley Madison is an affair dating site that started as an idea in Canada and became an online dating sensation encompassing 65 million people in 53 countries.

Single and married individuals have jumped on board Ashley Madison’s dating platform because it offers an exciting opportunity to meet new people on the down low. The sex-driven folks browsing this married dating app don’t let age, distance, or relationship status keep them from finding a new romance.

Whether you’re looking for a flirty conversation, a hot date, or a long-distance affair, you can scout the dating terrain on Ashley Madison to find the most promising options either in your area or out of state.

★★★★
3.5/5.0

Relationships: Hookups Only

Match System: Search by location, interest, more

Our Experts Say: “Make no mistake: this site isn't about making friends, it's about short-term "hookups" and affairs only. Note that a basic account costs $14.95/month, but it's well worth it if casual sex is your goal...”

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Adult Friend Finder has over 103 million users worldwide. That makes it one of the largest sex networks ever launched, and one of the best virtual places to go if you’re feeling horny and want to chat up a potential partner.

Singles, swingers, and polyamorous groups are welcome to try their luck on the AFF platform. This online dating service has search tools, forums, blogs, groups, and video livestreams geared toward all sorts of kinky activities.

With an AFF free trial, you’ll have access to a vast dating pool of sexually curious and flirtatious people — and you never know where the next online chat or video chat will take you.

★★★
3.4/5.0

Relationships: Hookups Only

Match System: Search by location, interest, more

Our Experts Say: “A hookup site specializing in casual encounters, secret affairs, live chats, and member videos, FriendFinder-X skips the awkward "dating" stage of a relationship and fast-forwards straight to the sex...”

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As an instant hookup site, FriendFinder-X powers local searches by ZIP code, but it also allows singles to explore date prospects and meet sexual partners outside their city limits.

Members can browse the discussion forums, blog section, and live model shows to discover all kinds of flirtatious opportunities. FriendFinder-X appeals to sexually active singles and couples who aren’t getting satisfaction in their daily lives and want to up their dating game.

FriendFinder-X facilitates intimate encounters online and offline so adults can find the sexual release they’ve been looking for.

13. Flirt.com

★★★★
3.5/5.0

Relationships: Hookups, Casual Dating, Chats

Match System: Search by age, location, gender, orientation, and other factors

Our Experts Say: “Flirt.com frees singles to chat with attractive locals and pick up dates on the spot. This hookup site is always open to horny and sexy people seeking one-night stands, casual dating, threesomes, and other sexual encounters...”

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Flirt.com offers instant chat tools to help a romantic relationship flourish into a real-life hookup. The casual dating site gives its members everything they need to reach out to a new person and see if the attraction is mutual.

Singles do not have to create a match or pay for a subscription to send messages on Flirt.com. All female members enjoy unlimited messaging, and all male members can send five free messages per day.

If you want to jump-start a romance on Flirt.com, you can always use the FlirtCast feature to send a flirtatious greeting to every compatible member within a certain mile radius.

14. MenNation

★★★★
4.0/5.0

Relationships: Daters & Hookups

Match System: Search by age, zip code, more

Our Experts Say: “MenNation is a well-established gay dating and hookup brand, having been founded in 1996. It's totally free to join, view profiles, receive matches, and flirt...”

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MenNation can guide men to a gay lover in another ZIP code or even another country. The gay hookup site has millions of international members who are feeling horny and ready to meet someone new. The personal ads often feature sexy pictures and explicit invitations to get intimate online or offline.

Single men, gay couples, and groups can use MenNation as their digital wingman and search far and wide for a desirable male companion. MenNation users can search the singles database by location, online activity, appearance, and kinks,  and they can join men-only chat rooms and video streams to start sexting strangers right away.

★★★★
4.0/5.0

Relationships: Hookups Only

Match System: Search by location, interest, more

Our Experts Say: “LesbianPersonals provides a fun, quick, and easy experience for gay and bisexual women looking for sex online. Join for free, and you'll be able to search and communicate immediately...”

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LesbianPersonals offers a female-friendly space where women don’t have to put labels on their sexual relationships. A lesbian single can chase after local women, a straight couple can solicit threesomes, and bisexual ladies can have all sorts of fun.

As a hookup site, LesbianPersonals puts people in touch with hotties and encourages virtual conversations. The website’s live chat room and videos can connect singles and couples to a larger dating world and provide romantic options that would be beyond their reach otherwise.

Plus, LesbianPersonals is a trans-friendly dating site so singles can go outside the binary gender box when looking for hot dates in the LGBTQ+ community.

16. Tinder

In 2012, Tinder went absolutely viral in the online dating scene. It was the first dating app to pioneer swipe-based matching, which gives singles the power to screen potential matches and find dates who are exactly their type.

Tinder has become an unqualified success story ever since. The online dating app has been downloaded over 340 million times and created more than 43 billion matches. It is currently available in 190 countries.

Screenshot from Tinder's website

The Tinder app has helped local singles play the field and find the perfect match.

Tinder has a reputation as a hookup app, but that’s not all it’s good for. Plenty of singles have swiped their way into a new person’s heart and created a committed relationship as a result. You can, in fact, Tinder your way into a relationship if you play your cards right.

17. OkCupid

Four Harvard math majors launched OkCupid in 2004 with the intention of using big data to find love. The free online dating site asked a lot of its users — literally, there are thousands of optional match questions — and used their responses to calculate long-term compatibility.

OkCupid creates over 91 million matches every year, and it inspires approximately 50,000 first dates (yes, a video date counts) every week.

Screenshot of OkCupid

OkCupid has in-depth dating profiles where you can showcase your personality.

After years of trial and error, OkCupid has perfected its matchmaking system to focus on what matters most to modern singles. OkCupid’s questionnaire inquires into your every habit, opinion, and personality trait, and the algorithm makes educated guesses about the type of romantic partner you need.

It’s free to message anyone on OkCupid, and all mutual matches can engage in an interesting conversation without having to worry about time limits or a paid membership.

18. Plenty of Fish

Plenty of Fish is a dynamic place to pick up a date. The online dating app has a variety of tools that allow singles to be clear about their dating expectations and refine their searches for an ideal match.

Once you’ve completed your online dating profile, you have the option to text, call, or leave a voice message for POF members in your city or a neighboring city. The dating service organizes potential matches by ZIP code and can extend its search radius for hundreds of miles.

Screenshot of POF

Plenty of Fish has a lot of free chat tools and boasts being the best dating app for conversations.

The POF dating pool has over 150 million members spread across 20 countries — and there are no barriers keeping users from mixing and matching in the search of an online relationship. All communication is completely free for everyone at all times with no strings attached.

19. Grindr

Since 2009, Grindr has become the go-to wingman for gay, bisexual, trans, and queer men seeking LGBTQ+ dates. The gay dating app made a name for itself in the U.S. by using a smartphone’s geolocation data to create matches — and now its matchmaking game has grown on an international scale.

Grindr currently has over 27 million members all over the world, and the Explore feature can help well-traveled singles flirt while in different cities and countries.

Screenshot of Grindr's homepage

A gay man can use Grindr to encounter local and international date options.

Free Grindr users can swipe, match, and chat with hundreds of local guys on the online dating app. However, the global chat feature is only available to Grindr Xtra users who pay for the privilege of long-distance dating. The paid membership also unlocks more swiping options, search filters, and chat perks.

20. Bumble

Feminists everywhere have applauded Bumble for putting women first and fostering a safe, respectful dating environment. The female-driven app is known for its unique matching system, which empowers a single woman to make the first move by sending the first message to a man.

As of 2020, Bumble has surpassed 100 million users in 150 countries worldwide. App users can go into Travel Mode whenever they want to swipe on dates in another city or country.

Screenshot of Bumble

Bumble launched with the remarkable idea of putting women first in every online relationship.

Bumble is a serious dating app where singles are looking to build common ground with an eye toward the future. In a survey, over 85% of Bumble users said they’re looking for a committed relationship, and less than 4% said they only want a short-term hookup.

21. Hinge

Designed to be deleted. That’s the promise Hinge makes to online daters everywhere. This online dating app is serious about helping singles find viable dates, engage in interesting conversations, and create meaningful relationships.

The Hinge matchmaking process requires singles to take more time to craft their dating profile and send a message that is tailored to the individual.

The Hinge logo

Hinge automatically sets broad distance parameters when searching for a potential partner.

Hinge offers a paid membership with perks that include seeing who has liked your dating profile and sending an unlimited number of likes per day. However, it’s possible to meet a new person and build a relationship on Hinge without paying for the membership. In 2019, I used my free Hinge membership to meet my current boyfriend (who was also a free member), and we deleted our profiles within a week of our first date.

22. HER

We have to give props to HER for maintaining a respectful, friendly, and empowering space for LGBTQ+ women. This dating app is owned and operated by a lesbian woman, and its team stands behind the motto “We are her.”

HER provides networking tools for women seeking new friends and genuine relationships. Women can get to know each other by exploring the private chat tools, photo galleries, and events page.

Screenshot from HER

The HER dating app welcomes all single people who identify as female.

The HER founding story began with one woman handing out flyers in London, and now it is an internally acclaimed dating app that reaches 50 countries.

“What’s unique to our community is there’s a social level that a lot of women are looking for,” said HER Founder Robyn Exton. “A lot of [our users] are looking to make friends and meet other women in the community, and that’s the value we can add.”

23. Coffee Meets Bagel

Three sisters in Silicon Valley founded Coffee Meets Bagel (CMB) out of a desire to support authentic singles seeking a committed relationship. The online dating app puts quality before quantity and actually caps the number of profiles a person can view and like in a day.

For nearly a decade now, Coffee Meets Bagel has distinguished itself as a serious dating app for online daters who are tired of endless swiping and dead-end dates.

Screenshot of CoffeeMeetsBagel

Coffee Meets Bagel allows users to change their location to broaden their search for a date.

Coffee Meets Bagel has created over 50 million matches in the U.S. and abroad. Many a success story has come out of the CMB app and given hope to singles looking for a long distance relationship.

“I was fed up with the L.A. dating scene and thought to myself, what do I have to lose?” recalled Tamara, who met her partner Jon on CMB. “Two years later I am still with this amazing man.”

24. Badoo

Badoo keeps a running tally of its membership numbers, and it currently stands at an impressive 487 million users. The dating app started in Russia in 2006 and now it is available in 47 languages and 190 countries.

Badoo has the distinction of being the most downloaded dating app in France, Italy, Spain, Brazil, and many other countries. This popular dating platform sees over 350 million messages sent per day.

The Badoo logo

Badoo fosters social discovery and romantic relations in an active flirting zone.

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, Badoo has adapted to the new normal by encouraging users to use the video feature to get to know someone online and build a romantic relationship without having to meet in person.

25. SCRUFF

The SCRUFF dating app can be the best friend and wingman to a gay man seeking romance. More than 15 million guys have downloaded this app and used it to drum up dates in the LGBTQ+ community.

Traveling singles can use the SCRUFF Venture feature to get in contact with locals in different cities and countries. A gay man can publish his travel agenda on his dating profile, so any potential matches will know when to expect him in their area.

Screenshot of SCRUFF

The SCRUFF community is open to men of all ages and sexual orientations.

SCRUFF uses social media to verify that all its users are real men, and the app will automatically delete an inactive or fake profile.

As an international dating app, SCRUFF promotes networking opportunities in major cities throughout the world. The SCRUFF Events page typically includes festivals, parades, parties, and other GBTQ gatherings. However, during the coronavirus pandemic, gay singles are more likely to post virtual meetups and social distancing events on this page.

What Does “Long-Distance Dating” Mean?

Long-distance dating means a person is willing to go outside his or her hometown to meet a potential partner. We’ve heard stories of long-distance couples driving to another city, flying to another state, and even visiting another country to see each other, and it’s heartwarming to see how technology can help singles stay connected even over vast distances.

A couple in a long-distance relationship (or LDR) will usually take turns visiting one another, but they can always arrange video dates through Facetime, Zoom, or Skype when they’re not able to travel for an in-person date.

Of course, during the coronavirus pandemic, long-distance dating has become more difficult due to travel restrictions, health concerns, and social distancing guidelines. But that just means a couple may have to spend more quality time online than in person until the pandemic is over.

How Do Long-Distance Dating Sites Work?

Long-distance dating sites and apps effectively expand the romantic reach of the average single individual.  These platforms offer a virtual social scene where adults from all walks of life can match, chat, and build close relationships.

Typically, all you will need is a valid email address, phone number, or Facebook login to create an online dating profile. You may also be required to provide a profile picture where your face is clearly visible.

Photo of a dating app

Online dating sites have matching tools to inspire long-distance relationships.

Some online dating profiles stick to basic personal information (age, gender, orientation, etc.) and leave it at that, while others provide a more in-depth personality test with unique prompts regarding your interests, habits, goals, and ideals.

Once you’ve completed your dating profile, you can start browsing profiles and swiping on matches. You may also be able to use targeted search tools regarding age, location, gender, and other important factors in a potential date. Not all dating sites and apps support 100% free communication, so be sure to read the fine print of a payment plan to get the most bang for your buck.

How Do I Go About Choosing a Long-Distance Dating Site?

The most successful dating sites use a variety of search and matching tools to target specific types of daters, so you need to really think about what you want before deciding which dating service is your best bet.

You’ll get a slightly different online dating experience depending on which platform you join. A hookup site like Adult Friend Finder tends to be more fast-paced and looks-oriented, while a serious dating site like Match.com will provide more substantive matching and interesting conversations.

If you’re not really sure what you’re looking for or you’re open to just about anything, then an open-ended and free dating app like OkCupid is a great place to start exploring new friendships and see where they take you.

Is It Really Safe to Use Long-Distance Dating Sites?

Yes, online dating sites are safe as long as users exercise good judgment. It can be tempting to get caught up in the moment and make believe that an online match is your soulmate, but you do not really know what that person is like until you’ve met in person — or at least chatted in a video call.

An online scammer will sometimes pose as an international businessman, a foreign model, or an overseas military serviceman to get in an online dater’s good graces. That’s why it’s important to ask follow-up questions, do background research, and pay attention to red flags that come up in your conversation.

Safety should always come first online. Do not agree to anything that makes you feel uncomfortable. Do not go on a first date in a private location. And do not hesitate to block and report any dating profile that seems suspicious or inappropriate.

Photo of a computer keyboard

Online daters should keep in mind that an online relationship isn’t real until you meet in person.

If an online love interest is speaking in broken English, avoiding plans to meet in person, and asking for favors or money, that person is not a legitimate dating partner. A real long-distance love should be willing to at least hop on a phone call or video chat to prove he or she is authentic.

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent lockdowns, many dating sites and apps have implemented more social distancing features to help singles get to know each other virtually before they take the risk of meeting in person.

For instance, the Hinge team has launched a video chat feature that allows mutual matches to make video calls within the dating app.

Can You Search by Location on Dating Sites?

Yes, almost all dating sites and apps will have some sort of location-based filters to help singles find common ground. Sometimes you’ll have to go into your settings to adjust the automatic mile-radius search, and sometimes you can change your location parameters in the search tab.

Conduct a Long-Distance Affair on an Online Dating Site

Online dating can have some pretty amazing benefits for singles who are willing to go outside their comfort zone (and their hometown) to meet a new person.

You never know who you’ll encounter when you join a popular dating site or app, and that’s what makes it so exciting. Mobile technology can connect you with potential dates in another city, state, or country, and sometimes those online romances can blossom into real-life relationships.

The best long-distance dating sites provide advanced search filters, safety tools, and match suggestions that support individuals as they cross the border from friendship to love. Happy travels!

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