Tired of Tinder? The 11 Best Free Alternative Dating Apps
Tinder is one of the most popular apps in the world, let alone one of the biggest dating apps. However, it’s not uncommon to get tired of Tinder. Perhaps you’re bored seeing the same people, getting no matches, or the push to pay for a subscription.
Happily, there are lots of alternative dating apps to Tinder. We’ve rounded up these free Tinder alternatives. You never know, your true love might be waiting for you.
Why You Should Stop Using Tinder
Since its launch in 2012, Tinder has become one of the most popular online dating apps. Its simplicity has been part of what makes it so attractive.
Using geolocation, the app shows users profiles of their preferred gender and age-range within a set geographical area. You then swipe right on people you like, or swipe left on those you don’t. You can only exchange messages if you both swipe right, creating a match.
However, many online daters have some issues with Tinder’s approach to romance. The focus that Tinder places on appearances has meant that the app has gained a reputation for being a hook-up app. Also, Tinder’s messaging system is far from advanced and the majority of its users are college students.
At first, one of Tinder’s biggest draws was that everything was free. However, it then intro paid membership plans called Tinder Plus, Tinder Gold, and Tinder Platinum. These give you access to features like unlimited likes, location changing, super likes, and more.
These memberships are expensive and it’s no secret that you will get more matches by paying. In fact, lots of users noticed that their number of matches decreased when Tinder introduced its paid membership.
Because of this, and some other reasons besides, you might want to delete your Tinder account completely and try out another dating app. So, with that in mind, here are the best free alternatives to Tinder.
Bumble was created by an employee of Tinder after she left the company, with an intent to discourage gender issues in online dating.
Bumble includes almost all the same features as Tinder, but has two key differences: on heterosexual matches, women are the only ones who can message a match first, and men have 24 hours to respond before the match disappears.
It also offers the ability to have voice and video calls within the app. These functions have made it incredibly popular with women, as women’s experiences with online dating are often quite different from those of men.
Download: Bumble for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
Hinge stands out from other dating apps because it brands itself as “the dating app designed to be deleted”.
Hinge asks you to fill out a detailed profile about yourself. Not only are pictures important, but so are the answers to a variety of fun questions. You then like a specific part of someone’s profile, rather than the entire thing, and your chat can spark from there.
Hinge claims that three out of four members want to go on a second date after meeting. The app even follows-up to ask you how the date went.
Download: Hinge for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
3. Plenty of Fish
Plenty of Fish offers a lot of different features. You browse matches through a variety of different algorithms and filters (based on appearance, preferences, and interests), and can choose to view their profiles, send messages, or hit a non-committal “meet them” button.
These features provide you with many options when deciding how to interact with others online, and with tens of millions of registered users then you should indeed find that fish in the sea.
Download: Plenty of Fish for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
OkCupid has changed a lot over the years and its algorithms now make it one of the best online dating platforms. In addition to this, OkCupid has a nice streamlined design, while still offering more options for connecting with potential matches than Tinder does.
OkCupid helps you find matches based upon shared interests (like if you both mention dogs in your profile) and your answers to quick and fun questions (is a sense of humor important?). From your list of matches, you can browse profiles and send messages to the people that interest you.
Download: OkCupid for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
Badoo functions like Tinder, but offers filters so you can get swiping on people who are more likely to appeal to you. There’s a handy verification process so you know you’re matching with a real person, and it lets you chat via text and video.
One additional feature of Badoo is that it automatically censors explicit features and warns you before you open them—great if you’ve ever been on the receiving end of an unwanted snap.
Download: Badoo for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
Happn walks the line between really cool and really creepy.
It shows you the profile of other users of the app that you’ve crossed paths with during your everyday life. You can then see their profile and the rough area that you were in. If you both like each other, it’s a “crush” and you can get chatting.
These features make Happn a really great way to know whether the cute barista that served you is also into you, but do bear in mind the security repercussions.
Download: Happn for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
Her is different from most other dating apps because it’s targeted at lesbian, bisexual, and queer people—and it was built by people in those groups too.
It’s designed as an empowering and safe space for the LGBTQ+ community; the service often hosts real-life meet-ups for you to mingle and has small community groups that you can chat in. Whereas Tinder can feel throwaway and vapid, Her aims to offer a positive dating app experience.
Download: Her for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
8. Coffee Meets Bagel
Coffee Meets Bagel was created as the antithesis to Tinder.
Rather than focusing on endless swiping through pictures, Coffee Meets Bagel presents you with a selection of matches every day at noon. You can then choose to chat to any of these through text or video. To help you out, each chat offers a prompt from the other person as to what you could talk about.
Download: Coffee Meets Bagel for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
9. Facebook Dating
Facebook Dating is only available in certain countries (including the US, Canada, Mexico, and Singapore), but it’s a great choice if you’re already a Facebook user because you don’t need to download another app. It’s also one of the best dating apps for seniors.
Don’t worry, though, it won’t broadcast that you’re using it, nor will it suggest any of your friends as matches.
Facebook Dating generates your profile from your standard Facebook one, which you can then tweak, and sends you suggested matches which you can pair up with to begin chatting.
Download: Facebook for Android | iOS (Free)
Hily’s name comes from “Hey, I Like You”, which reflects the more casual and young-minded slant of the app.
It uses machine learning and personality quizzes to connect people based on interests, mutual likes, and conversation style. You can also use the filters to adjust your search criteria further.
Hily also boasts stories, much like Snapchat or Instagram, for you to share and view short videos with others. You can even broadcast and watch livestreams—though whether you really want that from a dating app is debatable.
Download: Hily for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
Match has existed as an online dating service since the mid-90s, though of course there wasn’t an app back then. Nowadays, Match remains a great choice for meeting other people, but its user base does skew older than apps like Hinge or Bumble.
The more you populate your profile with your interests and preferences, the easier it is for Match’s algorithm to pair you with someone suitable. From there, you can text or video chat, or even attend Match’s in-person events (like a cooking class or wine tasting.)
Download: Match for Android | iOS (Free, subscription available)
The Perfect Online Dating Profile
Your next date could be waiting for you on one of these online dating apps. And because these Tinder alternatives are all free, you’ve got nothing to lose by giving them a try.
If you want to give yourself the best shot at finding a date, be sure to take the time to make your profile stand out. Take the best photos, write interesting bios, and don’t take it too seriously.