4. Coffee Meets Bagel
CMB encourages users to make real connections by limiting the number of profiles they can like to five per day. Users have only seven days after matching to meet up in real life, putting a stop to ghosting, or having someone disappear completely or stop responding to messages. Coffee Meets Bagel says it handpicks suggested profiles for viewing each day based on its algorithm, which uses nine parameters to come up with curated matches. Like most of the dating apps, it’s free to download and use the basic services, but premium upgrades like additional matches and profile boosting come with a cost. Coffee Meets Bagel uses “beans” to purchase profile upgrades, and depending on any promotions or sales, the starting cost for additional beans is as little as $1.99 for 100. Earn free beans for inviting people or following people. There are mini packages or premium packages ranging from $9 to $20.
A classic, trusted dating site for users of all ages where, according to eHarmony’s website, someone finds love every 14 minutes. The sign-up process is lengthy, according to a review from Mashable, with lots of personality questions to fill out, but it helps find good matches and those who are interested in long-term relationships. The least expensive plan starts at $7.95 per month for 12 months, but costs depend on length of sign-up and whether the site is running a promotion. Some say you can spend as much as $200 for one year. The price comes with a guarantee: Find someone you love in three months or get another three months free of charge. eHarmony also has a subsite that says it’s specifically for older adults.
6. Facebook Dating
With Facebook Dating, you needn’t worry that all of your friends will see you looking for love. Facebook Dating doesn’t display on your personal Facebook page, and you create an entirely separate profile for the dating experience. But to make things easier, the platform mocks up a suggested profile by pulling photos and information from your personal page and highlights users who have groups and events in common with your own. It also tells you if you have contacts in common on Facebook, a useful feature if you’d like to ask a real-life friend about someone, though it doesn’t reveal more than two of these by name. As with Bumble, when you like someone, you’re matched if they like you back, but there’s no swiping involved. Just tap the “heart,” or the “X” button if you want to skip someone. Once you’re matched you’ll be notified, and either person can send the first message. Be aware that Facebook Dating is only offered through the app and has no desktop version. And keep in mind that Facebook Dating may appeal to older daters more than some other apps, since 36 percent of Facebook users are over 45, according to consumer data company Statista. For now at least, Facebook Dating is free and doesn’t have ads, either.
Facebook also offers interest-based dating groups (Jordy has joined several over the years, including one for vegetarians and another for mindful living). Other dating groups on Facebook include those for people who are recently divorced or for meeting other singles in their 50s, 60s and 70s. Users can join these dating groups for free using their personal Facebook profiles and post, comment and interact.
Interests and hobbies are central to Hinge, which aims to go beyond looks when matching people. Personality questions and likes and dislikes help users choose whom to connect with. Michele Herrmann, a former Match.com profile consultant, has used Hinge and likes the app’s question format, which asks users about their interests and displays that information prominently. Instead of swiping, Hinge also features an “x” or “skip” button at the bottom of each profile, making accidental profile rejections less likely. Hinge’s motto, “Designed to be deleted,” makes it clear that it’s aiming for those who are seeking a relationship rather than a hookup. The app notes that 3 out of 4 of its users want to go on a second date, and in 2017 it was the most-mentioned dating app in The New York Times wedding section. Hinge costs $34.99 per month, $64.99 for three months ($21.66 per month) and $99 for six months ($16.66 per month) for Preferred, which allows users to send unlimited likes, to see everyone who likes them and to set extra preferences.
This granddaddy of dating services is turning 28 years old this year. But it’s not considered outdated and also has a downloadable app along with a browser-based platform. And Match comes with a guarantee: The company promises that those with a paid subscription who don’t find a serious relationship within six months will get an additional six months of service for free. Once a user fills out a personality and interest questionnaire, Match will suggest curated potential partners. Most of the communication features, like seeing who your likes and matches are, require a paid subscription, and plans start at $22.99 per month for six months. You can connect Match to your Instagram so users can see your Instagram photos, though your Instagram handle, comments and any personal information will not appear.
OkCupid was created in 2004 by a group of friends from Harvard University. The app features options for users to choose from many gender options (including noncomforming, gender fluid, intersex and transgender) and several orientation options (like heteroflexible, queer and questioning), making it LGBTQ+ friendly. Users are shown curated matches based on a questionnaire about personality and interests, which takes less than five minutes. One new feature is asking if you’d like to add a “Pro-choice” badge to your profile. OkCupid says it makes 90 million matches each year. The basic services are free to use, and upgraded features start at $22.50 per month for six months.
One of the most popular dating apps, Tinder was once known as a hookup app for people not looking for long-term commitment. But for many people over 50, Tinder has become a more traditional way to meet and connect. Tinder is swipe-based, like a lot of other apps, meaning you swipe right on a person’s profile when you like how they look and to connect. Some additional profile details like age, gender and a short bio may help you decide as well. While Tinder is used by people of all ages and many users will be younger, the app allows users to set an age range to help focus searches. While it’s free to download and get started, be aware that Tinder has a tiered payment system that costs more for adults over age 30, and profile upgrades and additional features also come with additional charges. Tinder Plus, which gives users unlimited likes and rewinds on last swipe, allows them to control searches by age and distance from where they live as well as only showing users to people they have liked and more, costs $7.99 per month for those over age 30.