There have always been reasons for long-distance relationships – people being separated due to work commitments, study requirements, holiday romances and so on – but the advent of social media has increased this significantly.

Singles joining dating services to pursue an online relationships could just as easily find themselves flirting with someone from a different country as their own neighborhood. So if you do happen to get involved, here are six tips to ensure everything runs smoothly.

Timetable your communication effectively

The key to making your long-distance relationship work is to maintain regimented communication. It might seem counter-intuitive to make rigid plans for the occasions when you will have informal chats, but it is essential to do so if you want to keep in touch across any distance, particularly different timezone.

So try and agree on a timetable when you will touch base, deciding in advance whose turn it is going to be to initiate the contact. If for any reason either one of you isn’t going to be able to participate in the agreed phone call or video chat, ensure you inform your partner well in advance.

Participate in joint events

As a couple, you will undoubtedly have shared interests in movies or TV box sets. Rather than postponing your viewing until the time you are eventually reunited, you should persist with your favorite shows, independently. So continue to watch episodes of the programmes you always enjoy together.

When you do get in touch, you will be able to chat about what you have been watching, laughing at funny incidents, or discussing dramatic plot twists. It is far better to maintain levels of empathy, rather than having to place aspects of your lives on hold.

Limit your connections

While it is certainly important to maintain a lot of contact, don’t be tempted to overdo this. If you spend too much time trying to keep in touch with someone who is at the mercy of job responsibilities, or iffy Internet connections, you will place undue pressure on them to try and find the time to reciprocate your degree of interest.

A long-distance relationship actually requires breathing space. Focus on the old adage – absence makes the heart grow fonder and try limiting your contact to the quality rather than the quantity of your connections.

Always stay faithful

Never give your distant partner any reason to feel jealous or insecure. If you’ve been invited to a social function, let them know about it. If you choose to hide some gathering, only for them to find out anyway, they’ll wonder why you choose to conceal the truth.

If an attractive co-worker flirts with you, never think about taking them up on any offer which is going to cross a line. Assuming you’re serious about the person who isn’t in the picture at the moment, if you were to be unfaithful, consider how devastating the fallout will be when they find out.

Factor in a possible rendezvous

It’s one thing to keep in touch by phone or email, video chat or text. But nothing beats the thought of a physical reunion. It will give you both something to focus on, maintaining the excitement fuelling your relationship. With cheap flight offers, it shouldn’t be that difficult to organize a get-together.