In the late ’90s, a friend of mine was just starting to date his future wife when she called him in a panic. She’d wanted to book a flight for Portland, Oregon, but she’d ended up on a plane bound for Portland, Maine. Whoops! This was the young couple’s first mini-crisis, and it was a doozy to handle without internet. Lucky for them, she found herself in a friendly place where people bent over backwards to help her get where she wanted to go.
Portland is the largest city in Maine, but it doesn’t have the look-out-for-yourself, watch-where-you’re-going mentality of most big cities. A majority of Mainers are happy to lend a stranger a helping hand, so it’s easy to get to know people around town. If you find yourself alone and friendless in Portland, booking a one-way plane ticket out of there isn’t your only option — singles can find plenty of ways to kick-start their social lives and meet kind, attractive people.
Not sure where to start? You can read through our suggestions to help you get out there and meet someone special in Portland, Maine.
Portland Dating Sites
As singles go on bad date after bad date, it can feel like the dating pool is running dry. As more of their friends get married, active daters may doubt that there any fish left in the sea. Actually, there are thousands. Portland has over 15,000 unmarried residents between the ages of 20 and 34. Where are these people? Online, of course! Dating websites are the fastest way to meet thousands of available and eager date prospects near you. We highly recommend joining one of our top-reviewed dating websites for singles in Portland.
Best Singles Site
If you’re serious about dating, you need a serious dating site to help you. Match.com has proven its worth time and time again over the past two decades, and the platform has built a formidable reputation in the dating industry. The dating site’s personality-driven profiles and location-based searches help singles connect in meaningful ways online. An above-average percentage of Portland singles have created profiles on Match so you definitely won’t be on there alone.
Best Site for Professionals
The unemployment rate in Portland has stayed well beneath the national and state average. As of 2017, only 3% of Portland residents were without work. This is a city of career-oriented professionals, and so many daters have high expectations for their long-term partners. On Elite Singles, educated singles come together on a dating platform designed for the upper crust. If you want to build an adult relationship with a high-caliber person, Elite Singles is a safe bet.
Elite Singles is the premier dating site for educated professionals. Most members are upper-income with college degrees, and its impressive Fraud Detection system ensures no-nonsense dating. Full Review »
|Gender Ratio||M: 43% | F: 57%*|
Over 50 & Senior Site
Portland’s beautiful vistas, affordable homes, and peaceful atmosphere have made the waterfront city a popular place for retirees in North America. It can be lonely, of course, if you find yourself living there alone. Fortunately, senior dating websites introduce singles in their golden years to a growing network of people with similar values and experiences. OurTime provides user-friendly dating tools to make it easy for mature adults to connect with one another and find a date who views age as an asset.
For Black Men & Women Only
Over the past few decades, Maine has become a more diverse place, but white people still make up about 85% of Portland’s population, which leaves few options for singles attracted to black and biracial dates. However, BlackPeopleMeet gives thousands of African-American singles a place to find one another and flirt online. On this niche dating site, black singles are the majority, and they’re in high demand.
Hookup & Sex Site
Lobster dinners and long walks on the beach aren’t for everyone. Some daters just want to hook up. If you’re looking for no-strings-attached sex, Adult Friend Finder is the perfect wingman. This X-rated online community encourages hot men and women to follow their desires. Over 77 million profiles tempt daters around the world, and Portland residents can search by location to find a willing playmate in their neighborhoods.
Popular Dating Apps
When you feel run-down by today’s dating scene, just think about Portland’s motto, “I will rise again” and get back out there. Downloading a dating app can be a good way to refresh your experience and give you a new social network to explore. Dating apps send date prospects direct to your mobile device so you’re never far from a flirtatious chat and a promising connection. For your convenience, we’ve reviewed our favorite dating apps for Portland’s active daters. Resurgam!
Zoosk is the number one app for finding dates, and if you sync up your Google+ or Facebook account, you can have a profile in seconds. The app has 38 million members and will deliver matches to your inbox on a daily basis based on your behavior such as who you search for, like or don't like, and message. The Carousel is another section for matching (tap the heart if it's a yes and the X if it's a no).
|Gender Ratio||M: 48% | F: 52%*|
|Available On||iOS, Android|
Available via the App Store and Google Play, Match is a fantastic app for dates and relationships. With a user base of 30 million singles, Match is where you'll have a high chance of success. It's free to download, create a profile, search for and receive matches around the corner and across the world, find missed connections, "like" people, as well as send and receive winks.
|Gender Ratio||M: 49% | F: 51%*|
|Available On||iOS, Android|
Commitment-minded, professional daters will feel at home with Elite Singles, which can be downloaded for free in the App Store or Google Play. Not only is everyone looking for a long-term partner, but 80% of members hold a bachelor's, master's, or doctorate degree. Elite Singles sees 210,000 visitors and 2,500 users finding love every month, so it's one of the fastest growing and most reputable apps.
|Gender Ratio||M: 43% | F: 57%*|
|Available On||iOS, Android|
Portland Singles Bars
Portland certainly has no shortage of bars. There’s a drinking establishment for every 1,000 residents and one microbrewery for every 4,000 residents. In 2015, SmartAsset named Portland the number one city in the US for beer drinkers. If flirting with a date over a cold beer appeals to you, pull up a stool because Portland’s bars are filled with singles enjoying a night on the town. Below you’ll find the seven most beloved haunts of Portlanders on the hunt for a date and drink.
1Novare Res Bier Cafe
If you like beer, you'll love Novare Res Bier Cafe. The taproom and beer garden offer a rotating list of drafts and bottles from around the world. At this dive bar, you can drink a pint in peace and make a new acquaintance as the evening unfolds. The family-owned establishment maintains a friendly atmosphere where people feel comfortable kicking back and relaxing. Novare Res means to start a revolution, and that's what this lively local favorite aims to do by delivering the goods seven days a week.
2Allagash Brewing Company
Hundreds of Belgian-inspired beers line the walls at the Allagash Brewing Company. In the summer of 1995, one enthusiastic Portland brewer sold his first batch of specialty crafted beer and created a taste sensation that has since spread to 17 states. The independent brewery ferments and serves creative flavor combinations for local beer lovers. From the tasting room to the novelty shop, Portland's famed brewery delights visitors seeking to unwind. On your visit, you've got to try Allagash's award-winning flagship beer, Allagash White, a wheat beer incorporating oats, malted wheat, and Curaçao orange peel.
3Urban Farm Fermentory
At the Urban Farm Fermentory, daters can mingle in a crowd with selective tastes. Whether you're craving a strong mead or an authentic kombucha, you can sample a homegrown concoction specially made in the urban farm. The tasting room features 22 rotating taps with seasonal selections. All beers and ciders are made on property so you can trust the quality in every sip. Plus, the Fermentory's foraging missions are great opportunities for singles to roll up their sleeves and meet people who share a passion for fresh ingredients and outdoor activities.
Yes, this list heavily favors breweries. No, I'm not sorry for that. Portland is known for its rich beer-guzzling culture. Beer is what the locals love, so breweries are where you'll find the most date prospects. Bissell Brothers is a popular stop-off for anyone in need of a cold one. Since 2013, an enthusiastic team of brewers has served dark ales, wheat malts, and rich beers in 5-ounce or 10-ounce pours. The team began as a crew of three and now operates the largest single-room tap room in Maine. From the arcade games to the tasting events, the Bissell Brothers Brewing Company brings the fun to the Portland scene.
If you're more of a wine connoisseur than a beer drinker, you can go to North Point to savor over 20 wines by the glass or bottle. The bar features superior flavors in every vintage — plus a menu of cocktails and 10 brews on tap. Facilitating laughter and conversation, the upscale ambiance at this old-fashioned establishment makes it stand out in the downtown scene. Singles can order a pitcher of sangria, a plate of soft cheeses, or a sweet crepe to split with someone special at the North Point bar.
6Rí Rá Irish Pub
The Rí Rá Irish Pub gets its name from a Gaelic phrase that translates (roughly) as bedlam and good fun, especially when alcohol and good food are involved. This traditional Irish pub pours top-notch Guinness beers in a cozy Victorian-style lounge and firelit upstairs bar. You can look out over the water as you mix and mingle at this classic bar in the heart of Portland.
The Thirsty Pig pairs succulent house-made sausages with top-quality local brews. People come here for unbelievably delicious specialty hot dogs, including a crispy cheddar-cheese wrapped hot dog known as the Shermanator. From blueberry chicken to vegan chili, the varied menu has imaginative flavor combinations that are fun to try with someone special. At least three times a week, the Thirsty Pig hosts live musical performances to encourage Mainers to come out and enjoy themselves at the bar.
Portland Speed Dating
I hear a lot of people say they’ve lost patience with dating. It takes too long for them to meet someone worthwhile, and the slow buildup of traditional dating is frustrating to people who just want to stay in and cuddle with someone. I get that. Slow and steady may win the race, but it sure isn’t fun. That’s why speed dating events can be invaluable to time-conscious singles ready to skip over the bad dates and establish a genuine connection in the course of one evening. After a dozen or so mini-dates, speed daters come away with a few mutual matches who are well worth their time.
Portland Singles Events
Don’t let the small-town vibes fool you — Portland is the largest metro city in Maine and has a thriving social scene. All you have to do is search online to find a lively event happening near you. Whether you’re most comfortable in a jam-packed party or a local bowling alley, singles events give you the opportunity to have a fun experience while introducing yourself to potential dates. Meetup offers tons of opportunities to meet new Portland singles over brunch, at the beach, or in a bar.
Portland Singles Clubs
My friend always says she feels the most alive when she’s dancing to the beat of her favorite song. If clubbing were a sport, she’d definitely be a pro. I swear, she can get a date on the dance floor faster than Olympian Galen Rupp can run a long-distance sprint. The clubs are prime dating locales for singles, like my friend, who love the nightlife. As the music gets everyone’s heart rate up, you can sidle up close to someone special and let your dance moves do all the talking for you.
Portland Chat Rooms
Starting a conversation from scratch can be intimidating in the middle of a bar or club, but it’s easy when you’re online. You don’t need a charming smile or a suave pick-up line. Simply typing “a/s/l” is enough to get the ball rolling. A chat room is a low-pressure space for daters to chat each other up and make a good first impression. A lot of locals use chat rooms to build confidence in the dating world and say what they want without embarrassment. In adult chat rooms, the conversation often gets explicit as singles enjoy the freedom to be themselves and own their desires.
In the days before computers, singles would put up advertisements on bulletin boards and in newspapers when they were seeking a date. In 1895, one Maine farmer described himself as having “good teeth” and boasted of “owning nine sheep” in a newspaper ad seeking a wife. It sounds silly now, but that was the best way to reach the most people around town. Nowadays, of course, the internet works much better than a short column in the personals section. Online dating personals give singles a chance to advertise and search for a date without leaving home. You can create a dating profile for free on any of the following websites.
Be a Sport & Get Involved in Local Games
Whether you’re a player or a fan, sports bring people together in a common cause: to win! Portland residents love turning out for game days; over 400,000 fans come to Hadlock Field each summer to root on the Portland Sea Dogs. You can add your voice to the crowd and start a lively discussion about the nuances of the game by buying tickets to the ballpark.
Portland fans crowd into sports bars to watch the latest soccer game, rugby match, hockey tournament, baseball game, or basketball lineup. Binga’s Stadium is a huge sports bar known for its jumbo chicken wings and homemade sauces.
At Binga’s Stadium, over 40 television sets and five projectors ensure you always have a front-row seat to your favorite match-up. You can come here on a weekend to spend a day watching the games, munching on wings, and bonding with your fellow fans. Go Sea Dogs!
Land a Date With the Right Person in Maine's Forest City
Whether you end up in Portland by design or by accident, Maine’s beautiful coast and amiable people are sure to make a positive impression. My friend’s misadventure in the Northeast became a funny story to tell at parties and a reason to triple-check their plane tickets. Today, the family of four only ever ends up in Portland when they have planned the visit.
People may confuse Maine’s Portland with a city across the country, but this coastal paradise has its fair share of attractions and charm. Portland is a beautiful city sandwiched between the Adirondack mountain range and the Casco Bay. Locals can head to a bar or sign up to a social site to make new friends without breaking a sweat. Hopefully, our nine ways to meet singles have given you the inspiration to take a chance on the dating scene and make a love connection with someone in your area. Good luck!