Dating sites and apps are numerous nowadays and asking someone about their favorite site will elicit a response as unique as the person themselves.
While some people might be searching for love and marriage, others may be looking for something more casual.
The best dating sites offer plenty of variety and privacy, among other features. This article aims to lay out the best dating site for each person’s unique situation and relationship goals.
- Best for serious relationships – Eharmony
- Best for working professionals – EliteSingles
- Best free dating site – Okcupid
- Best casual dating site – AdultFriendFinder
- Largest dating app – Tinder
- Best senior dating site – SilverSingles
- Best personality matching system – Hinge
- Best for christian singles – ChristianMingle
- Best married dating site – AshleyMadison
- Best dating app for women – Bumble
- More women than men – Seeking
- Serious dating site for under 30 – Zoosk
How The Best Dating Sites Were Evaluated:
User reviews – For each dating site we looked at app store reviews, forum discussions, and trustpilot reviews to find sites with the highest average rating in a given category.
Privacy and security – Everyone has heard horror stories of online dates gone sour or dangerous. The best dating sites feature built-in privacy features and even moderators to step in when a user is out of line or poses a risk to others.
Unique features – Some dating websites just offer straightforward meet-up options, whether through chat or video call. Others help people find their match with compatibility games, filtering options, and more. These additional features indicate a better chance at success.
15 Best Dating Sites for 2021
1. Eharmony – Best for serious relationships
Millions of couples have been connected by Eharmony—in reality, 400+ users marry someone they meet on the website every single day. The platform has even won awards as the best site for finding stable relationships.
Eharmony requires users to complete a lengthy survey upon signup, which functions as a “compatibility matching system.” The site then uses this information to present users with could-be successful dating choices.
This data-driven, selective methodology is the reason why Eharmony is an excellent alternative for anyone searching for a long-term relationship.
2. Elite Singles – Best for working professionals
Elite Singles’ membership is highly qualified, making it an excellent option if users are searching for stimulating conversations. Around 85 percent of the participants have a higher education degree, and 90 percent are above 30 years. These statistics bolster life experience into the dating equation.
The site matches users with other singles using an algorithm focused on their responses to a questionnaire. People mainly use it for seeking long-term partnerships, both domestically and abroad. It is currently active in 25 nations.
3. AdultFriendFinder – Best for hookups
This site is not intended for anyone seeking long-term relationships. It provides two primary options: flirting (on the app) or hooking up. That is it, and for some people, that is exactly what they want.
AFF, or Adult Friend Finder, includes a range of communication options, including messaging, video (“online dates“), live feeds, and community conversations.
Registering with this app is simple. Unlike other dating sites that require a questionnaire, AFF keeps it to a 30-second signup process. Users can then begin searching immediately.
4. SilverSingles – Best for singles over 50 years
SilverSingles has been around for 17 years and is one of the oldest dating apps for people over 50. The service manually verifies each profile, ensuring that its customers are genuine and safe.
Users fill out a detailed personality questionnaire that includes their life plans, priorities, attitude, and other details, so the website can filter the appropriate matches.
The platform is accessed through the website or a mobile application where basic memberships are free of charge.
5. Bumble – Great option for women
Bumble is unusual among dating applications in that it empowers women to initiate communication. Men cannot contact their female matches unless the woman makes contact first. This allows ladies to take the lead for once.
The platform focuses on immediate contact. Users have 24 hours to make contact, and after that, the match expires. This indicates that the site is geared towards spontaneous hookups, but it is also suitable for those that do not like to spend a lot of time browsing around.
The app integrates seamlessly with social networking platforms such as Facebook, Spotify, and Instagram, allowing users to showcase various aspects of their personality. Accounts are also verified to help avoid fake profiles from popping up frequently.
6. Hinge – Innovative dating app
The company relaunched Hinge in 2016, and it is one of the most frequently discussed dating apps in recent years, most likely due to its users’ success rates. Approximately 75 percent of Hinge users opt to go on a second date after meeting their matches.
Those with Hinge profiles can also leave reviews, which the Hinge software then uses to help refine their match algorithms in the future.
Hinge’s platform is interesting in that it prompts users to like or comment on a certain section of the other person’s profile. It provides a way for people to interact beyond the usual chat.
8. Seeking – For sugar daddies and sugar babies
Seeking is unique because it focuses on linking younger individuals (sugar babies) with older, wealthy sugar daddies. Apparently, it is more common than most believe, given the platform now has over 10 million subscribers. Each person can specify his/her terms before they connect, whether they want to travel, demand an allowance, or other specifications.
There is a high female-to-male ratio, which means the daddies have plenty of options to choose from, although it also indicates that competition could be fierce for the babies.
9. JDate – Jewish singles only
JDate is a dating service exclusively for Jewish singles. It was established in 1997 and is now accessible in over 100 countries, allowing users to communicate with Jewish singles in five different languages (English, Hebrew, French, German, and Spanish).
When it comes to online Jewish weddings, JDate is responsible for matching over 50 percent of those couples.
Users can contact anyone with a free or paid membership. Customer service checks each profile to ensure that it is created by genuine customers.
10. ChristianMingle – Best Christian dating site
ChristianMingle assists users within the christian community with finding their forever love. It boasts over 1 million users, and the site explicitly encourages “faith-based dating” for long-term potential.
There is a free account option or a monthly membership for $29.95. The latter comes with a guarantee, where a user can receive six months for free after their initial six-month membership is over if they do not find some suitable.
11. Zoosk – Large international community
Zoosk boasts one of the largest platforms on an international scale, with over 40 million members worldwide. Each day, these users submit more than 3 million messages in 25 different languages. Zoosk operates in over 80 nations.
The website employs something called “behavioral matchmaking technology” to help singles find compatible individuals that might equate to a match made in heaven.
After a free trial period, a Zoosk membership costs $29.99 per month.
12. Reddit R4R – Best for Reddit users
R4R, or Redditor for Redditor, is a subreddit dedicated to connecting users. The platform does not use a matching scheme, instead, it is a massive venue of personal ads.
A user’s search criteria brings up their preferred results. Reddit consumers use it to find activities, friends, parties, hookups, and even long-term relationships.
Even though it is a generalized forum, there are still rules relating to age, privacy, legality, and conduct. For example, NSFW posts are allowed but must be labeled as such so users can decide if they want to view the post or not.
13. OkCupid – Free and popular
OkCupid is one of the most well-known dating sites and features comprehensive profiles that other members can thoroughly scan before connecting. It is available in both a desktop and mobile version, with loads of details that users can fill in for the best results.
The site is very inclusive, with over 20 gender and sexual orientation choices.
14. Ashley Madison – Best married dating site
Ashley Madison is one of a kind, made for married individuals looking to have private affairs. It is not connected to social media accounts for this reason.
There are other privacy restrictions and features to help users stay anonymous if they are afraid of getting caught. Additionally, Ashley Madison has a travel option where members can search their upcoming location in advance.
Match.com – Match has been around since 1995 and offers a virtual dating mentor program to assist participants in matchmaking and dating ideas.
Tinder – This dating app is widely popular and comes with credibility. Most people use it for hookups, given its massive user base and location-driven algorithms.
BlackPeopleMeet – For over 18 years, BlackPeopleMeet has been connecting African American singles seeking love. The site’s 100,000+ members can flirt, email, and see who views their profile.
Grindr – Grindr is exclusively for LGBTQA+ individuals. It is location-based, and users primarily use it for hooking up, though longer-term matches are also possible.
Plenty of Fish – This dating website is Canadian-based, but allows users to communicate with people from all around the world.
Why Do People Use Online Dating Sites?
Dating sites expose people to a far larger pool of individuals than a single person would have the chance to meet in real life. This is especially the case for users that have a limited social group, are new to town, or otherwise.
Using these sites can also allow users to be more selective based on criteria that are important to them: shared values, hobbies, or the type of relationship they want.
Are Dating Apps Safe?
Generally, yes, dating apps are safe, but it does still require discernment and caution. Apps have privacy features in place to help members out, such as profile verification. Certain websites also scan participants manually, adding an extra layer of security to the process.
Individuals should never provide personal information before meeting someone in real life, such as their surname, address, or even their neighborhood. It is also smart to arrange a first date in a public space. Contacting a friend beforehand and letting them know they are going on a date with a stranger is also not a bad idea.
How to Ensure Your Safety While Online Dating?
Never provide personal information to someone online, especially before meeting in person. This information includes the surname, employer, address, and even neighborhood.
When encountering anyone online, arrange for the first few dates to take place in public places. This may be a café, a hotel, a theatre, or some other public space. Avoid isolated areas such as beaches, and never allow strangers into the house.
Finally, contact a buddy before the date to inform them of the whereabouts and anticipated return time. Notify them when it’s time to leave for home. To provide an extra layer of protection, request that they call or text during the date to ensure maximum safety.
First Date Suggestions
Dating for the first time can be overwhelming! To ensure optimal safety and to meet the match in person, follow these tips:
Maintain an open mind. Individuals may look very different in person than they do online, so be prepared for the preferences to change.
Avoid being too formal. Establishing a social meeting, such as a lunch date, allows the users to get to know one another without feeling obligated to spend hours together.
Review the conversations before going on a date. Re-read the person’s profile and review what was discussed, and schedule general discussion topics.
Is It Possible to Develop a Serious Relationship When Dating Online?
Yes, it is possible! If two people meet, are compatible, and chemistry is present, the relationship could turn into something stable and secure. It happens every day, thanks to sites like Eharmony.
Online Dating Sites in Conclusion
The trick to online dating is for the individual to know what they want and need in a relationship beforehand. Based on the list above, there are many types of relationships to be found on these sites.
Maintain caution but an open mind when using a dating site. Each site here has something to offer, depending on what the user desires.
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