Online Dating

9 Best Free Dating Sites (No Hidden Fees)

Amber Brooks • 1/10/18 •
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My high school economics teacher loved the saying “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.” It was her go-to response when students asked for pretty much anything. Can I go get a drink from the water fountain? Can I borrow a textbook? Could you give us a hint about when the pop quiz will be?

She’d make a wry smile and say “There’s no such thing as a free lunch” to mean “I don’t have to give you anything. You need to earn it.” If you could cogently explain how it was in her best interest to let you do whatever it is you wanted to do, you could take as many trips to the water fountain as you wanted.

Dating sites don’t have to offer free services, but many do because it benefits them to allow singles to see how the site works so, hopefully, they’ll decide it’s worth it to stick around and upgrade their memberships. If you’re looking for a free and reliable dating site with no hidden fees, you should definitely check out the following upstanding and low-cost platforms that are all 100% free to join. Enjoy!

1. Match

Putting Match.com at the top of our list is a no-brainer. This dating site is the best of the best and has been connecting relationship-minded singles since 1995. Anyone can joined Match for free and explore the advanced search features, sending winks to users who catch your eye.

Match.com is a well-known and trusted dating site, having led to more dates, marriages, and relationships than any other site. Full Review »

Overall Rating ★★★★★ 4.9/5.0
Gender Ratio M: 49% | F: 51%*
Popularity 13.5 Million*

You are under no obligation to upgrade your free membership on Match, but, if you do, you’ll be able to see who’s viewed your profile, read and respond to your messages, and browse local Match Events. What’s not to love!

2. Elite Singles

Something Elite Singles does better than any other dating site or app is target the upper crust of the dating world. The upscale dating site comes with no hidden fees — only quality members and simple features.

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 »

Overall Rating ★★★★★ 4.9/5.0
Gender Ratio M: 43% | F: 57%*
Popularity 290,000*

If you’re looking to get the most bang for your buck, an upgraded membership on Elite Singles might be for you. “I was impressed with the quality of my partner suggestions,” Mark, a user in Boston, said in a testimonial. “I have to admit I have been pleasantly surprised.”

3. Zoosk

Zoosk has become the number one grossing dating app in the Apple App Store because so many singles have decided the platform is a worthwhile place to spend their time and money. While it’s totally free to join and browse for an unlimited period of time, you can always upgrade to get extra features, including premium messaging.

Zoosk's integration with social networks and its popular smartphone app make it one of the fastest-growing dating sites for casual and serious daters. Full Review »

Overall Rating ★★★★★ 4.6/5.0
Gender Ratio M: 48% | F: 52%*
Popularity 3.8 Million*

With its global membership, Zoosk has satisfied daters of all ages and backgrounds. Over 40 million singles have joined so far, and these friendly members send over 3 million messages per day.

4. eHarmony

On eHarmony, single men and women can benefit from the 29-dimension matching system free of charge. The site’s famous match algorithm is rooted in psychological principles and has proven successful for the past few decades. You can review all the profiles of your matches for free.

Accounting for 4% of U.S. marriages, eHarmony's compatibility-based system and commitment-minded user base are ideal for those seeking a serious relationship. Full Review »

Overall Rating ★★★★ 4.3/5.0
Gender Ratio M: 48% | F: 52%*
Popularity 4.1 Million*

What singles on a budget enjoy most about eHarmony is how it involves free members in the flirtatious fun by offering Free Communication Weekends throughout the year.

5. OurTime

General dating sites often don’t suit more mature daters who tire of swiping through date prospects half their age. That’s why OurTime launched. The seniors-oriented dating network is ideal for daters of a certain age.

OurTime is quickly gaining popularity amongst older singles, featuring an easy profile search and interface. OurTime is exclusively for ages 50+. Full Review »

Overall Rating ★★★★ 4.4/5.0
Gender Ratio M: 48% | F: 52%*
Popularity 1.4 Million*

Things that are free on OurTime: Signing up, adding photos, searching for a date, downloading the app, and having a good time. It takes less than two minutes to join, and many new users are so wowed by the user-friendly interface that they take the plunge to full-fledged membership.

6. ChristianMingle

Since it launched in 2004, ChristianMingle has gathered a loyal following of singles throughout the world. Sparks Network, a highly regarded dating network, designed the site to serve singles of faith with a streamlined matching process. Today, it has more than 16 million members.

The largest dating site exclusively for devout Christians. Offers easy sign-up and matching for $14.99 per month. Full Review »

Overall Rating ★★★★ 4.4/5.0
Gender Ratio M: 44% | F: 56%*
Popularity 2.4 Million*

Anyone can sign up to ChristianMingle using a valid email address or a Facebook account. It’s free to get started, and you won’t find any hidden fees standing between you and thousands of attractive Christian singles.

7. BlackPeopleMeet

Without a doubt, BlackPeopleMeet is among the best free dating platforms for black singles in the US. It boasts having the largest online community for African American and biracial singles seeking love and friendship.

BlackPeopleMeet.com is the largest online dating site for black and biracial daters of all backgrounds, and is used by 1.4 million daters each month. Full Review »

Overall Rating ★★★★ 4.0/5.0
Gender Ratio M: 47% | F: 53%*
Popularity 1.4 Million*

Over the years, BlackPeopleMeet has introduced countless singles to short-term and long-term dates. Oftentimes, singles find upgrading and engaging with people on the site is well worth it.

“Thanks so much for the ease and flexibility of the BlackPeopleMeet site,” wrote an anonymous user in Pittsburgh. “I met a wonderful man named Eric on this site only a few days after subscribing to this service.”

8. SeniorPeopleMeet

SeniorPeopleMeet uses a tried-and-true network to bring together daters over 50. Sometimes it’s hard for senior singles to meet one another, but not on this niche dating site.

SeniorPeopleMeet.com is the most popular dating site exclusively for those 55 and older. Safe and easy to use, with a free trial to view profiles. Full Review »

Overall Rating ★★★★ 3.6/5.0
Gender Ratio M: 41% | F: 59%*
Popularity 2.4 Million*

As with every site on our list, joining SeniorPeopleMeet is 100% free. There’s no rush to upgrade and no need to pay for any feature on the site. You can create a profile and browse for matches without paying a cent. Sounds like a great deal to me.

9. BeNaughty

Sometimes sex-oriented dating sites can feel shady, but BeNaughty makes an effort to put everything above board. From the free signup process to the customized nudity filters, the platform empowers all members to have a fun, safe, and easy dating experience. You can let go of your inhibitions in this growing community of naughty singles.

BeNaughty is a popular "hookup" site that drops all the pretenses of dating and just gets down to the nitty-gritty of hooking up. Browse profiles in any town for free. Full Review »

Overall Rating ★★★★ 3.5/5.0
Gender Ratio M: 48% | F: 52%*
Popularity 13.3 Million*

Want extra security, all-inclusive app access, unlimited chatting and a host of premium features? Then BeNaughty’s Extra Security, Premium Dater, or Chataholic packages will sate your appetites for online connection.

Feel Free to Explore These Affordable Dating Websites

Whenever I hear about free services, I think about my economics teacher and start wondering what the catch is. No profitable business can give 100% completely free services for nothing — except on the internet. Here, websites compete for your attention and often offer free communication weekends or free browsing, for example, to entice singles to become active online members.

As a result, singles have a lot of free tools at their disposal. Your best bet is to sign up for as many free reputable dating sites as you can find and see which ones fit your preferences and desires. We hope our list has made your choice a little easier. Good luck!

About The Author

Amber Brooks is a Contributing Editor at DatingAdvice.com. When she was growing up, her family teased her for being "boy crazy," but she preferred to think of herself as a budding dating expert. As an English major in college, Amber honed her communication skills to write clearly, knowledgeably, and passionately about topics that interest her. Now with a background in writing, Amber brings her tireless wit and relatable experiences to DatingAdvice.com.