Free dating apps ❤️
The 10 best free dating apps in the UK

There are a lot of dating apps out there these days, and you probably already have your opinions about some of them. Over the years, dating apps have introduced new features to improve their product and make them more addictive. Some are ideal for long-term companionship, and others help people find less meaningful connections like hookups and flings. To help you decide which free dating app is right for you, we’ve done a deep dive into the most popular ones. 

Hopefully, after reading through these reviews, you’ll be able to choose the best one for your needs.

To present the best dating sites to you, we have tested more than 60 dating sites and apps based on the following criteria:

For each criterion, we assigned a rating between 0 and 5. A dating site receives a score of 5 stars only if it leaves nothing to be desired in that particular aspect.

Bad

Poor

Good

Excellent

Additionally, we provided an overall rating for each dating site, reflecting the average of the scores in the various criteria. Therefore, the overall rating considers all five parameters.

Learn more about how we score here.

Below is our overview of the 10 best free dating apps. The overall rating is available directly below the logo. If you want to learn more about the evaluation in a specific aspect, simply click “Read review.”

In addition to our own experiences with the respective dating site, our reviews also take into account the experiences of others. We also read reviews from external sources such as Trustpilot to provide a nuanced and credible picture of the user experience.

This article contains affiliate-links.

4.4/5

Target audience:

Everyone

Activity level:

Very high

Largest age group:

18-40 year olds

Massive member base in multiple countries

If you’re looking for more than a dating app, Lovoo not only connects you with other singles but also allows you to make friends and watch entertaining live videos. With a member base so massive that it has reached a whopping 70 million users, Lovoo produces 35 million matches per month. Most members are under the age of 35 and located in Germany, France, Italy, and the United Kingdom, and although the member base does have more men than women, that’s a fairly normal demographic for a free dating app of this nature.

Live videos, roulette-style matching, and much more

Lovoo Video Live was launched in 2017 after the app was acquired by the Meet Group. This feature allows members to stream live videos of themselves and earn Diamonds, which can either be exchanged for real cash or credits. If you want to match with other users, chat, and go on dates, you can utilise the roulette-style matching feature, which is similar to Tinder and Bumble.

Free to use but quite limited without a paying subscription

For standard non-paying members, one icebreaker message can be sent to another member each day. In comparison, paying members can send unlimited messages per day, see who added them to their favourites list and who visited their profile. Through the Discover feature, you can also search by location, age, and gender. However, some cities don’t allow you to change your location.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at Lovoo cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£8.99 / month£8.99
3 months£6.33 / month£18.99
6 months£4.50 / month£26.99
4.4/5

Target audience:

Everyone

Activity level:

Very high

Largest age group:

18-35 year olds

The go-to place for free casual dating

For a lot of people, Tinder was the introductory platform to the online dating world. When someone would get out of a relationship, the first place they’d go was Tinder. It’s a place to let the world know that you are single and ready to mingle. Popularised by its roulette-style matching system – aka swipe left or right, Tinder became an entertaining place to find dates or even just people to meet up with for casual drinks.

Tinder is as popular as ever

You might be happy to know that Tinder is still as popular as ever with over 57 million members throughout the world. It’s continued to attract a younger user base between the ages of 18 and 25, but there are also people in their late 20s and early 30s using the app. And while Tinder is commonly known as a hookup app, it also acts as a gateway to long-term relationships and even marriage.

Simple and superior to other free dating apps

The only way to make contact on Tinder is to mutually match with another member, which is done by both of you swiping right on each other. Once a match has been made, you can start conversing with one another. There is no cap on how many conversations you can have, which in itself makes Tinder one of the best free dating apps on the market.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at Tinder cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£4.99 / month£4.99
6 months£2.50 / month£15.00
12 months£1.92 / month£23.04
4.4/5

Target audience:

Everyone

Activity level:

High

Largest age group:

20-39 year olds

Tinder with a twist

Created by one of the co-founders of Tinder, Bumble began as a place for women to make the first move. This means that once a match has been made, women have 24 hours to make contact. If no message is sent, the match expires. Other than that, everything else about Bumble looks and feels very much like Tinder. You’re presented with one profile at a time, and you must swipe left or right on the featured profile.

Different modes for different purposes

Besides women having to make the first move, the biggest differences between Bumble and Tinder are the BFF mode and the Bizz mode, which lets you use Bumble for different purposes. Switching to BFF mode allows you to meet people in new places, dates as well as friends, where Bizz mode is made for professionals to network and make more contacts. But whatever you do, just be careful that you don’t turn off Dating mode. Otherwise, there’s a risk of losing all your matches and chats.

Lots of free features to offer

Bumble allows you to match, text, audio chat, and video chat free of charge. With Bumble’s Premium service, you can also view who swiped right on you, extend your initial chat window, rematch with expired matches, swipe unlimitedly, and “Spotlight” your profile. For guides and everything Bumble-related, also check out its blog called the BeeHive.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at Bumble cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£20.99 / month£20.99
3 months£14.00 / month£41.99
6 months£11.99 / month£71.94
4.6/5

Target audience:

Serious singles

Activity level:

Very high

Largest age group:

24-32 year olds

Free dating app that isn’t meant for casual hookups

Hinge works like most dating apps allowing you to like or pass on other users appearing on your feed. However, Hinge differs from other dating apps by letting you like specific aspects of someone’s profile instead of the entire thing. To begin with, you provide all the standard information, including your name, email, date of birth, and location. But after that, you can also answer questions relating to your height, religion, political beliefs, and so on.

Individualistic profiles letting you stand out more

Hinge also gives you prompts that show up on every user’s profile — these are a major part of the Hinge experience. You need to fill out a minimum of 3 prompts to use the app. With so many to choose from, it’s rare to see two people with the same set, let alone the same answers. You can answer about your feelings towards the beach or a number of other subjects.

Swipe-based dating with more to offer

Like Tinder and other roulette-style matching systems, Hinge shows you one user at a time. Simply scroll through their photos and prompts, and then like or reject them by tapping the heart or X icon. If you only like a photo or prompt, you can like that piece instead of the entire profile — this shows the user that you actually looked at their profile instead of just rejecting them at first sight.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at Hinge cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£19.99 / month£19.99
3 months£13.33 / month£39.99
6 months£10.00 / month£59.99
4.2/5

Target audience:

Everyone

Activity level:

Medium

Largest age group:

24-35 year olds

Connect with singles you’ve crossed paths with

Have you ever thought about all the people you’ve crossed paths with that could have turned out to be your soulmate? With Happn, you’re presented with potential matches appearing in a vertical scrolling timeline as you pass by them in real life. You can even see the general area where you crossed paths on a little map in the app. In this way, you never miss a potential connection again, granted they have the app and have mutually liked you.

The only way to sign up is through Facebook

There is no option to sign up with your email or phone number, and so you’ll need to link your Facebook account to become a member. But don’t worry, Happn doesn’t ever post anything to your Facebook page. The app will take photos from your Facebook profile, but you can also choose to change those to more appropriate dating site photos.

Find potential matches near you without trying

Once you’re out and about, people will start popping up on your feed, but just as on similar dating apps, you’ll have to match, or “Crush”, with someone before you can make contact. Each profile provides you with some photos, a bio, and a small map to see where you crossed paths. If you want more out of the app, the premium service gets you 10 “Hi’s” per day, a list of everyone that has hearted you, the ability to go incognito, and no advertisements.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at Happn cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£19.99 / month£19.99
4.2/5

Target audience:

Gay men

Activity level:

Very high

Largest age group:

18-34 year olds

Quick hookups for gay, bi, trans, and queer people

If you’ve heard of Grindr, you probably know that it’s one of the largest social networking apps for gay, bi, trans, and queer people. Since 2009, Grindr has grown to over 27 million users throughout the world. Most of Grindr’s users are under the age of 35 and come from the United States and the United Kingdom, and its main purpose is to find quick hookups or short-term relationships.

Different ways of showing your affection

The members of Grindr are very active and send lots of taps, photos, and messages. You can show your interest in others in three different ways by sending them a “Looking”, “Friendly”, or “Hot” by tapping the associated icon. You can even personalise your messages by downloading the Gaymoji keyboard and sending LGBT-themed stickers. And the best part is probably that sending and receiving messages is totally free.

Modern and convenient layout for people on the go

Grindr is available through a laptop or desktop browser, but the most popular use of the platform is via the iOS or Android app. That’s because most of its members use the app while on the go, and its modern layout is convenient and easy to use. Both the browser and app versions allow you to access Grindr’s popular features including your favourites, matches, messages, and explore. You can also pay for Grindr Xtra, which gets you unlimited features and no advertisements.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at Grindr cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£8.49 / month£8.49
3 months£7.33 / month£21.99
6 months£5.00 / month£30.00
4.2/5

Target audience:

Lesbians

Activity level:

High

Largest age group:

20-30 year olds

Social media and dating platform for the LGBTQ+ community

Said to be the world’s most loved LGBTQ+ dating and community app, HER is an ever-growing platform that’s been around since 2013 when it was first called Dattch. Changed to HER in 2015, the app serves as both a dating and social media platform, which means that members can post what they want and comment on other people’s posts as well. Members can also add friends to grow their social circle, and, of course, find matches and potential dates.

Only female LGBTQ+ people allowed

While most members are based in the US, HER does have a large user base located in the UK as well. No matter what you classify as, it’s a place exclusively for female members (lesbians, bisexual females, queers, etc.). When you sign up through your Facebook or Instagram account, HER verifies your identity and sex to ensure that only women sign up. On the negative side of things, HER’s verification process has caused a stir among “masculine-looking” females trying to sign up and getting rejected.

Find friends or dates quick and easy

Much like other dating apps, HER only allows you to message people that you matched or are friends with. Like on other dating apps, the way to find friends or matches is through a roulette-style swiping function. If you’d like to see who liked you before deciding to swipe right on them, you can upgrade to the premium service, which also gets you unlimited messaging.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at HER cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£13.99 / month£13.99
6 months£11.67 / month£69.99
12 months£7.33 / month£87.99
3.8/5

Target audience:

Everyone

Activity level:

High

Largest age group:

25-34 year olds

Inventors of dating on the go

Started in 2004 by four Harvard friends, OkCupid was the first free online dating site. OkCupid also became the first major dating app in 2012, creating a world where singles could meet online while on the go. Their progressive nature continued in 2014 when the company introduced 13 orientations and 22 gender options. These milestones are all well and good, but how does OkCupid stack up nowadays compared to all these free dating apps?

Answer as many questions as you would like

Currently, OkCupid is the only dating app asking its users thousands of questions in order to match them with like-minded singles. The app matches you based on everything that matters to you, including important things like climate change to trivial opinions like your thoughts on cilantro. If this sounds time-consuming and exhaustive, don’t worry — you can skip questions and only answer as many as you’d like.

The more answers you give the algorithm, the better your matches will be

The best part about OkCupid is that you’re given a match percentage with each potential date based on how compatible you are with each other. The more questions you answer, the better the algorithm can match you with the right person. On average, members typically answer 50 or more questions. However, you’re only required to answer 15. Usually, the app should be able to match you with other members in the 80-100 range.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at OkCupid cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£5.60 / month£5.60
3 months£4.48 / month£13.44
6 months£2.78 / month£16.68
4.4/5

Target audience:

Serious singles

Activity level:

High

Largest age group:

30-49 year olds

Going against the popular swiping trend

The San Francisco-based dating and social networking service Coffee Meets Bagel was started by three sisters back in 2012. The point of the app is to connect singles and form meaningful relationships. In fact, it’s estimated that 90% of CMB’s users are looking for long-term companionship. Basically, the idea is to end the countless swiping that other apps like Tinder and Bumble popularised and instead connect you with like-minded singles.

Get a glimpse of a person’s personality before showing interest

To ensure that the app is indeed finding ideal matches, Coffee Meets Bagel employs a comprehensive algorithm that takes everyone’s information and connects people with similar lifestyles, interests, and preferences. Also, the in-depth data you provide is visible on your profile for others to see, which means that you can get a better idea of someone’s personality before showing interest. Each day at noon, you’ll be given a list of matches that CMB found for you.

Focusing on singles connected to your social circle

Unfortunately for non-Facebook users, the only way to register at Coffee Meets Bagel is through your Facebook account. This is because CMB’s matching strategy is to try and match you with friends of your Facebook friends. The idea behind this approach is that these people are already in close proximity to your social circles, and those are typically the type of people you would normally date without using a dating app.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at CoffeeMeetsBagel cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£33.99 / month£33.99
6 months£18.50 / month£110.99
4.4/5

Target audience:

Serious singles

Activity level:

High

Largest age group:

25-35 year olds

Matchmaking in accordance with your emotional profile

The idea behind Once is that the app gives you one match per day selected by the platform’s special algorithm that “gets to truly know you.” Once claims to be the first app to create an emotional profile for each and every one of its members, which means that you can be defined as introverted, extroverted, independent, fusional, intuitive, factual, cerebral, carnal, and so on. Your profile also includes the things you love in life such as camping, dogs, movies, yoga, or whatever else you’re into.

Saying no to machine learning and algorithms

With over 10 million members, Once is quickly becoming a popular dating app. The app was created in Switzerland by Jean Meyer as a “slow dating app” that relies on quality over quantity. Instead of using machine learning or an algorithm, the team at Once actually matches singles manually based on the information they have provided. In the world of online dating, this is a major game changer. For every match made, you have 24 hours to make contact unless it expires.

Old-school dating service demanding a bit of patience

If you’re looking for a dating app that allows you to search through a large database of singles, this is not the app for you. With Once, you only get the one match per day, and if you don’t like it, you have to wait another 24 hours. In a way, Once is counting on you to trust them with their matchmaking skills. If you have some patience and you’re serious about finding something long-term, it should pay off.

Pros

Cons

How much does a membership at Once cost?

DurationPriceTotal
1 month£19.99 / month£19.99

Free Dating Apps FAQ

Are all of these apps completely free?

All the apps reviewed here offer freemium plans that allow you to match, message, and go on dates. Although they might limit the amount of matches or messages sent, they still provide enough features that help you go on dates. If you would like more features such as unlimited matches and messaging, you will have to upgrade to a premium subscription plan. 

Is there a stigma around using dating apps?

Online dating has come a long way over the years. 15 years ago some people might have rolled their eyes at the idea of finding dates online. Today, over 15% of the UK population uses dating apps to find romance and friendship, according to Statistica. In 2022, dating apps are a necessary way to meet other singles and find companionship. 

How long does it take to find a partner on dating apps?

We know you’re looking for a more specific answer than “it depends,” but it really does. For better results, you should be optimistic but realistic at the same time. You’ll also need to be patient and open to going on dates with multiple people. Make sure that you put your best foot forward by creating a profile with plenty of photos and information about yourself. It’s also best to be honest about your intentions upfront. 

Are dating apps safe to use?

When meeting someone online, caution should always be used. While these apps do everything in their power to create a safe environment to meet other singles, it’s up to you to use your best judgement. That means not handing out private or sensitive information, and meeting in a public place with lots of people around. Once you’re comfortable with someone, you can then meet in more private settings. When in doubt, always use your intuition. 

How soon should I go on a date with someone?

While it might seem like a better idea to know someone well before you meet in person, it’s actually better to meet as soon as possible. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be safe about it—you can hop on a video call before meeting up. But it’s always better to go on dates sooner than later so you’re not wasting your time chatting with someone you don’t get along with or aren’t attracted to. It’s extremely difficult to know how you click together without face-to-face interaction.