“What dating app/sites are the most popular in DC?”

Photo by PoPville flickr user Clif Burns

“Dear PoPville,

I’m relatively new to DC and am thinking about giving the online dating world a try. From my experience living in other cities, it seems certain dating apps/sites are more popular in some cities versus others. What app/sites are popular in DC?


67 Comment

  • General Grant Circle

    Hinge launched here (because of course, DC being THE networking city…)

    My favorite though? Sit down at the local bar and turn to the person next to you!

    Or if you dont want conversation and just looking to get down with it:
    Wonderland Ballroom after midnight

  • i’m a gay woman and also new to the area. apparently lesbian apps suck. LOL. as do going to bars.

    basically i hate dating. I should become a nun.

    • Things may have changed as I have been out of the lesbian dating scene for 2.5 years now, but I really liked OK Cupid!

      • There are lesbian apps? LOL
        Ymmv, but okcupid is ok. I have gotten dates and requests for pen pals. Friends have had success with match and found ladies more serious.
        There is actually a sort of speed dating/mix & mingle at phase 1 tomorrow night.

        • I had some fun dates [and a few awful ones!] on OKC. However, I made a good friend on there who introduced me to a ton of lesbians including my now wife!

          • Mission impossible: finding lesbian friends who have lesbian friends to increase my circle. Bumping to 2016 goals.

          • Anon Spock, consider trying softball! There’s a gay league w/ a women’s division. “caps softball”

          • Thanks. It’s such a quintessential lesbian sport, but I hate it. LOL But it did make me look up other leagues. I’m thinking about football.

      • Lolz. Lesbian here. Moved to DC right after college and I’m now pushing 40. Good luck! There are like 12 datable lesbians in DC, and I spent like 15 years waiting for one of those 12 ladies to break up and be single, or someone new to move to town. And wouldn’t you know…I’m recently engaged.
        Basically, go out like 4 nights and you will know everyone. And that will be SO depressing.

        • I find that a lot of lesbian women have only straight friends who never want to go to gay events. I know there is a secret enclave somewhere. LOL

    • There is a lesbian only app called HER. Not bad. I had more luck on tinder and hinge though.

    • General Grant Circle

      One of my single bi-sexual friends has started using Tinder to find girls but it hasnt been all that great. From the sounds of it she has met some terrifying people (she kicked one DAB out of her English Basement only to find out she went upstairs and spent the night upstairs and was waiting for her, to name one!)

    • Tinder is a fairly decent lesbian app, except there are A LOT of couples looking for a third. HER sucks. Also when it’s warm out there’s the Ladies Tea Dance.

      • Tea dance can be fun, but it’s the same ppl every month. If you’re new to town, give it a go, but I wouldn’t expect much.

  • The people in that pic might be on a date, but it’s not with each other 🙂

    • Nothing says “romance” more than a couple concentrating on their phones instead of each other.

      I’m sure at the table next to them is a family of 5 and all the kids are elbow deep in their electronic gadgets instead of interacting as a family.

      • justinbc

        The amazing thing about photographs is that they capture a brief second in time. You have no concept of the rest of this assumed date. Maybe they just arrived and are checking in to the business? Or not even on a date? Jeez, the judgeyness over what makes people happy is so high in this city.

      • There’s also nothing wrong with it not being 100% romance 100% of the time. Somehow my husband and I have managed to *gasp* look at our phones while at dinner/bars/etc. quite often for years and neither of us has stormed out in a rage over technology. There are a lot of times we look stuff up to show each other, to discuss further, etc.

  • Use a permanent marker to write your number on a guy’s hand. This will:
    1) Prevent him from getting numbers from other girls that night. Congrats — you marked your territory!
    2) Make him remember to call you the next day.
    3) Give you both a brief, intimate moment with actual physical contact.

  • Tinder, Bumble (Tinder, but only women can initiate conversation), J Swipe (Tinder, for Jews and those who want to date Jews), the aforementioned Hinge (based on Facebook connections), OKCupid

  • Joshua

    Grindr, so I’ve heard…

  • Hinge and Tinder are my most-used, Hinge is less skeevy than Tinder and Tinder is miles less skeevy than OkCupid, which I don’t use. I find Bumble stressful but it works well for some people!

    • Just curious – Tinder is a hook up app, not that there is anything wrong with that. But how is a hook up app more skeevy than OK Cupid.

      • MVT

        I met my current fiance on Tinder

      • I don’t use Tinder, but my understanding from people who do use it is that it’s not just a hook-up site anymore.

      • Tinder gives you what you want out of it. You have to search harder but there are good people on it. Definitely not just a hook up app.

      • I now am living together with my boyfriend who I met on Tinder.

        Tinder is amazing because it breaks down the DC dating caste system, where you only date those in your semi immediate circle. Tinder gives you an actual geographic circle to go off of instead of who works were.

        • well… kinda. I met my BF because he was in DC for work and we matched when he was within a few miles of me. But in reality, he lives in Baltimore. However, I agree that it breaks down barriers otherwise… though the first handful of questions usually is “what do you do? where’d you go to college?”

        • You dated only people whom you were connected to via work??

  • justinbc

    I had a lot of success with OKCupid. DC used to be their most active market (not sure if this study has been updated):
    A lot of the newer apps weren’t really around when I was single though.

    • +1. I talked to many people on Tinder and met a few, but the people I’ve gone on more than a couple dates with were all through OkCupid.

    • justinbc

      Also, after having read through so many messages that my girl friends have shown me they get inundated with on OKC I can totally understand why many women hate it.

  • I know more people use Tinder now, but I met my boyfriend on OkCupid and we just moved in together! I did have to go on some pretty terrible but now-hilarious dates before I met him, though. Also, maybe try Bumble? Good luck!

  • This is just from my own personal experience (as a mid-20’s single lady) so take it with a grain of salt!

    OK Cupid seems pretty popular by way of volume of people and it’s fairly easy to send a couple messages and meet up for drinks. However, because it’s free it boils down to quality vs quantity. You can get a whole bunch of messages in a day but only 2 or so are someone who might be a good fit for you and has actually read your profile. There’s apparently a lot of flakey people on it too? I’ve only ever been stood up once (it sucked and was super embarrassing) but I have friends who have had no shows on dates multiple times.

    Tinder isn’t just for hookups, but people generally don’t send or respond to messages as frequently as other apps. Expect a lot of late night matches and messages, especially on weekends. Hinge is okay? It’s obviously better if you have a vast number of Facebook friends, but if you keep your social network on the smaller side it’s not the most helpful. I think it’s a little weird to have someone you maybe went to middle school or high school with and possibly haven’t spoken to in over a decade be your common denominator with this stranger, so keep that in mind.

    I paid for Match for a few months and while the people I encountered seemed to be the most sane and well-adjusted of the bunch, most of them didn’t really seem like they were interested in a committed relationship. Lots of guys who were looking to hook up with someone on a regular basis, but not necessarily with the perks or definition of a significant other. Prepare yourself to maybe pay for disappointment. I’ve never used Bumble, but other friends have told me that it’s the exact same guys you encounter on OKC and Match.

    • Your comment about Guys not really being interested in committed relationships struck a chord. I think that is honestly one of the things about the DC dating scene that is tough. A lot of people are transient here. I think that makes committing to anything long term tough.

      • General Grant Circle

        As someone born and raised in this city I have the same criticism but turned the OTHER way! All the girls I meet are just here for internships or school or some political gig that only lasts a few months!

    • justinbc

      I thought women got to be on Match for free? Or is that eHarmony? I know some guys who pay for either/both, I wouldn’t recommend them as options to my single girl friends… DC’s a pretty wealthy city, so whatever it costs to be on those paid sites isn’t much of a deterrent for the dating site creeper.

    • Agree with you to a certain extent regarding OKCupid. I met my husband ~3.5 years ago from OKCupid. We both happened to be looking for something serious, indicated that on our profiles, and hit it off from the beginning! Lots of profiles/users, though it was difficult to gauge how active people were on the site. I took some time to interact with guys I was interested in, rather than waiting for them to come to me. That seemed to return more quality responses. I had some serious duds of dates, which is fine, and I was never stood up.

  • Another vote for Hinge! Met my BF of 1.5 years on it – most connections are 3rd degree but still interesting to see how connected you are through facebook. Also have heard good things about Bumble although never used it. Is Happn in DC yet?

  • I used OkCupid pretty much exclusively for years. Met a lot of duds, but also met my last three serious boyfriends (a one year, six month, and the current one at nearly two years) on OkCupid.

  • FWIW, I met my husband on OKCupid, although that was back in the dark ages of 2007. Even back then there was a pretty high signal-to-noise ratio, but it worked out for me.

  • I met my BF on Adam4Adam.

  • I’ve been online dating on and off in DC for a few years and I can assure you that most straight people who are looking to meet others in this city are on multiple apps (Tinder, OKCupid, Hinge and Bumble) and you will come across the very same profiles on different platforms. So I wouldn’t worry too much about which one to pick. It’s what you make of it, as others have mentioned.

  • Hinge is what seems to be most popular with the “young professional” crowd (mid 20s – mid 30s, college educated). I’ve had some luck there – because they do lots of 3rd degree connections it isn’t necessarily a friend of a friend, typically it’s “a friend of a friend of a friend.” Still less skeevy than Tinder, though I’ve had occasional good experiences with Tinder.

    Never tried OK Cupid or any of the dating sites where you have a much fuller profile. I have used “Coffee Meets Bagel” but while I’ve had a couple good dates from there, I’ve mostly been disappointed with the quality of guys on that app. I haven’t heard of that many people using Coffee Meets Bagel here, so I’m not sure what it’s like for straight dudes or gay/lesbian.

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