10 Ways to Meet Singles in Cincinnati, OH (Dating Guide)

Cincinnati, OH

10 Ways to Meet Singles in Cincinnati, OH (Dating Guide)

Amber Brooks Amber Brooks
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In 1854, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow dubbed Cincinnati “the Queen of the West” in a lilting poem about enjoying a glass of wine while soaking in the natural splendor of the world.

“For richest and best is the wine of the West,” he proclaimed, “that grows by the Beautiful River whose sweet perfume fills all the room.”

The poem pains an idyllic picture, but the beauty of the city may be lost on you if you don’t have anyone sipping wine beside you. While many singles would rather breathe in the sweet perfumes of a date than river, in the real world, it’s hard to find romance. So we’ve put together some practical resources to help modern daters embark on a dating experience rooted in reality, not poetry.

1

Cincinnati Dating Sites

There was a time when I would’ve laughed at anyone who suggested online dating was the best way to meet singles. But times have changed, and so must we. Dating sites and apps no longer carry the same stigma they once did — in fact, 59% of Americans agree that online dating is a good way to meet people. Ten years ago, only 44% of Americans said the same. As attitudes about online dating evolve, today’s singles enjoy greater opportunities to meet worthwhile dates of all ages and backgrounds.

Want to give it a go? Then keep reading to get our take on the best dating sites for Cincinnati singles looking for friendship, love, or romance.

Best Singles Site

Match is the king of all dating sites. It is basically online dating royalty. Why? Because it’s been around forever and set the industry standards for how a successful dating site operates. Its match algorithm uses a combination of factors to recommend compatible dates. Since 1995, Match has successfully paired up more couples than any other dating site.

★★★★★
4.9/5.0

Relationships: Friends, Dates, and Relationships

Match System: Browse by zip, age, appearance, more

Our Experts Say: “Match has facilitated the most dates and relationships of any dating site, and its large audience and high success rate make it our top review...” Full Review »

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Best Site for Professionals

Cincinnati has the seventh largest economy in the Midwestern United States, so the city attracts many young professionals looking to grow their careers. EliteSingles can introduce these ambitious singles to one another on an easy-to-use platform. This high-caliber dating site can make it easier to find a date who is as educated, driven, and serious as you are.

★★★★★
4.6/5.0

Relationships: Serious Relationships

Match System: Search, Receive Partner Suggestions

Our Experts Say: “Elite Singles is a leading dating site just for busy, single professionals. More than 80% of members have earned a college degree, and most are looking for a serious commitment...” Full Review »

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Over 50 & Senior Sites

After a day of swiping on a general dating site, some older singles throw up their hands and declare that online dating is a young person’s game. But that’s just not the case. OurTime has created a senior-friendly online dating environment where singles over 50 can feel comfortable matching with and messaging one another.

★★★★
4.4/5.0

Relationships: Dates and Relationships

Match System: Search by profiles by zip and more

Our Experts Say: “OurTime is well-known in the over-50 dating crowd, particularly because it has a ton of helpful search features and an easy layout...” Full Review »

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For Black Men & Women Only

Cincinnati has been a refuge for African-Americans dating back to the days of the Underground Railroad. The city’s placement on the Ohio River enabled it to provide safe harbor to fugitive slaves from Kentucky and other Southern states. Harriet Beecher Stowe even lived here for a time. Today, nearly half the population (44%) identify as black. If you want to find a date in the local black community, you can join BlackPeopleMeet and mingle with people who share similar backgrounds, values, and perspectives.

★★★★
4.0/5.0

Relationships: Deep Relationships or Just Casual Dates

Match System: Search by location, age, more

Our Experts Say: “BlackPeopleMeet.com is the one of the largest and most popular dating sites for black and biracial singles, and the site is used by more than 5 million people a month...” Full Review »

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Hookup & Sex Site

Adult Friend Finder isn’t a dating site for just anybody. It has proudly maintained a sex-oriented community where singles don’t have to censor themselves. If you want a hookup, you can come right out and say so. AFF is a judgment-free zone. Cincinnati singles don’t have to worry about stepping on anyone’s sensibilities here.

★★★★
3.5/5.0

Relationships: Hookups Only

Match System: Search by location, interest, more

Our Experts Say: “Make no mistake: this site isn't about making friends, it's about short-term "hookups" and affairs only. Note that a basic account costs $14.95/month, but it's well worth it if casual sex is your goal...”

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2

Popular Dating Apps

At this point, dating sites can feel a bit old-fashioned. Modern singles expect there to be an app for everything, so many popular dating sites have revamped to create fully functional dating apps. These apps put a national network of singles at your fingertips. All you have to do is start swiping and messaging to build a romantic connection. Below, we’ve ranked our favorite dating apps to give you an idea of what’s out there.

Zoosk

★★★★★
4.9/5.0
Zoosk

Available on: iOS, Android

  • Relationships: Casual Dates, Relationships
  • Match System: Search for and receive matches
  • About the App: 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).
  • Browse Free: View Profiles Now

Match.com

★★★★★
4.9/5.0
Match.com

Available on: iOS, Android

  • Relationships: Fun Dates, Serious Relationships
  • Match System: Browse by location, age, interest, and more
  • About the App: 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.
  • Browse Free: View Profiles Now

Elite Singles

★★★★★
4.9/5.0
Elite Singles

Available on: iOS, Android

  • Relationships: Deep Relationships
  • Match System: Search by education, lifestyle habits, age
  • About the App: 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.
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3

Cincinnati Singles Bars

Literature may immortalize Cincinnati as the Queen City, but many locals know it simply as Nasty Nati, a place of revelry, debauchery, and mischief. The downtown area perfectly captures the city’s fun-loving, free-spirited vibe. Locals spend many happy hours in the bars, clubs, and lounges scattered about town, and every drinking establishment serves as an opportunity for singles to put themselves out there and meet new people. You can up your dating game by heading to a local pub, brewery, speakeasy, barcade, or watering hole.

1

Knockback Nats Neighborhood Bar

★★★★★ 4.9/5.0
10 W 7th St • Cincinnati, OH 45202 (513) 621-1000 Visit Website
Knockback Nats Neighborhood Bar

Knockback Nats is at the top of our list for one very good reason: Its wings. Seriously, people can't get enough of those savory, spicy, juicy wings. You may come for the cheap drinks and the free popcorn, but you'll stay for the smoked wings and special sauces. This neighborhood bar serves up delicious dinner plates and refreshing alcoholic beverages to wash it all down. Locals come here to chow down and enjoy the camaraderie of a hot spot. Grab a seat at the bar and join them.

2

16-Bit Bar+Arcade

★★★★★ 4.9/5.0
1331 Walnut St • Cincinnati, OH 45202 (614) 222-1616 Visit Website
16-Bit Bar+Arcade

It's easy to spend hours playing games, drinking, and joking around at 16-Bit Bar+Arcade. This barcade has over 50 classic games on the floor. And the best news is you can play for free. That's right, you can spend hours working your way up the leaderboard at Duck Hunt, Tapper, or Galaga for no charge. Its drinks menu is full of nerdy and nostalgic references to heroes of the 1980s and 1990s, including the Dude, Bill Nye, Molly Ringwald, Carrie Fisher, Courtney Love, David Hasselhoff, and, of course, Kevin Bacon (a maple bourbon drink with bacon jerky). You can unleash your inner child by hanging out on the action-packed floor of the 16-Bit Bar+Arcade.

3

Dive Bar

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0
2608 Vine St • Cincinnati, OH 45219 (513) 221-0931 Visit Website
Dive Bar

Dive Bar doesn't put on airs or claim to be anything other than what it is. This isn't a home-grown hipster brewing company, and the owners don't employ snooty cocktail mixologists. It's just a bar that serves beer, wine, and spirits. Straight up. Many locals appreciate Dive Bar's authenticity and cheap drinks. You'll often find college students hanging out here enjoying vodka slushies or a game of pool. Dive Bar stays open until 2:30 a.m. every day except Sunday, so it's a perfect spot for singles to settle in for the night.

4

Sundry and Vice

★★★★★ 4.6/5.0
Edit 18 W 13th St • Cincinnati, OH 45202 (513) 721-8423 Visit Website
Sundry and Vice

Sundry and Vice used to be an old apothecary, and it pays homage to that history with its quirky mix of cocktails. If you're looking for a great, unique drink, try one of the bar's house cocktails. They aren't cheap, but they sure do pack a punch in terms of flavor. Where else can you find a drink with marigold-infused tequila or egg white and brown sugar in it? You can keep things simple and order an Old Fashioned or try something new and treat yourself to a smoky glass of Amber Penicillin.

5

Taft's Ale House

★★★★★ 4.6/5.0
Edit 1429 Race St • Cincinnati, OH 45202 (513) 334-1393 Visit Website
Taft's Ale House

Taft's Ale House is known for its artisanal beers made with love. This presidential brewing company chose a spacious church on Race Street as its home and William Howard Taft, the 27th president of the United States, as its namesake. As you can probably tell, the owners have quite a sense of humor, but they're serious about beer. Taft's Ale House has dozens of tasty beers on tap plus a menu of classic American fare, including its famous tri-tip steak.

6

Rook OTR

★★★★★ 4.5/5.0
1115 Vine St • Cincinnati, OH 45202 (513) 954-8191 Visit Website
Rook OTR

The Rook OTR is Cincinnati's first board game parlor, and it's mad popular with local gamers. The walls are lined with classic games like Monopoly, party games like Apples to Apples, and word games like Scrabble. We're talking over 1,000 games organized by category. The rowdy, competitive, and friendly atmosphere is great for active daters because you are surrounded by opportunities to make friends and get to know people. Plus, the drinks stay on theme from the Pretty Pretty Princess with a candy bracelet on the glass to the Capri Against Humanity. Looking for a night of nostalgia and fun? The Rook OTR is your place.

7

The Overlook Lodge

★★★★ 4.4/5.0
6083 Montgomery Rd • Cincinnati, OH 45213 (513) 351-0035 Visit Website
The Overlook Lodge

The Overlook Lodge is a rustic watering hole inspired by the hotel in Stephen King's "The Shining." And if that doesn't pique your interest, the drinks menu sure will. The lodge-style bar serves simple yet exotic cocktails, including the Writer's Block (bourbon and apple-berry sweet tea) and Jack's Grin (vodka, lemon, fig, thyme, and orange simple syrup). You can order twin shots to share with your crush at the bar. I'd recommend the Irish, which is a creamy delight that'll satisfy any palate. You can also get trail mix by the scoop here, and that's just plain fun.

4

Cincinnati Speed Dating

Cincinnati Speed Dating

Busy singles don’t always have time to scour the online and offline dating scene for a date. After going on bad date after bad date, it’s easy to lose your patience and feel like it’s going to take forever to find that special someone. However, you need not fret because there is a better way, and it’s speed dating. At a speed dating event, you’ll go on dozens of mini-dates in a single evening and can more efficiently weed out the bad candidates and focus on the dates you want to pursue. Pre-Dating hosts monthly speed dating events in Cincinnati and can offer busy professionals a way to date more efficiently.

5

Cincinnati Singles Events

Cincinnati Singles Events

Singles events offer a happy middle ground between online dating and the bar scene. You get all the benefits of a targeted audience of singles while also having the chance to assess chemistry face to face. It’s an all-around good way to familiarize yourself with the local dating scene without going too far outside your comfort zone. You can meet viable date prospects in Cincinnati at a party hosted by LockAndKeyEvents.com, which themes its events to help singles break the ice.

6

Cincinnati Singles Clubs

Cincinnati Singles Clubs

You can dance your way into someone’s heart at a popular nightclub in Cincinnati. Forget starting a conversation — you can start a slow dance with your crush and create instant chemistry without having to say much more than, “Wanna dance?” Under the strobe lights, dozens of people jump, laugh, and move to the beat. Some are there with friends, while others are riding solo. It’s a great mix of locals, and a terrific place to get in your groove in the dating scene.

7

Cincinnati Chat Rooms

Singles with the gift of gab often prefer meeting new people online because that medium allows them to use their words (rather than their looks) to win people over. Chat rooms welcome people of all backgrounds, allowing singles to mix with a diverse and lively crowd. If you don’t like where the discussion in this virtual is headed, you can always exit out of it and move on to a different chat room. This safe space can help shy singles gain their footing in the dating world and make friends without having to leave home.

8

Cincinnati Personals

You don’t have to take out an ad in the Cincinnati Enquirer to get the attention of the singles community — just create a profile on a trustworthy personals site. Dating personals have become popular ways for singles to find a fast date. These free platforms offer a straight-up profile setup where singles state their age, orientation, location, and dating goals. Most profiles keep it short and sweet and leave no room for guesswork about their intentions. You can seek a date or a hookup by using the following personals websites.

9

Cut out the Drama & Join the Theater

You can steal the spotlight and become someone’s new leading man or leading woman by joining a theater troupe. The stage attracts some big personalities, so you’ll have an entertaining backdrop to make some magic happen onstage or offstage.

The Mariemont Players is a beloved community theater company in Cincinnati. Since 1936, this group has been entertaining the masses by organizing comedies, musicals, mysteries, and other dramatic shows. This all-volunteer organization always welcomes newcomers and gives them plenty to do. Look online to find out about open casting calls and upcoming auditions.

The Mariemont Players logo

Mariemont Players Inc. is the oldest volunteer-run community theater in Cincinnati.

Even if acting isn’t your forte, you can still have fun collecting props, painting sets, or ushering for a play. It takes a lot of people to put together a memorable show, and volunteering with a theater troupe can help you set the stage for romance. Break a leg!

10

Head to a Popular Festival to Mix Things Up

Cincinnati is a well-known cultural hub in Ohio, so it’s no wonder that the city often hosts massive gatherings of foodies, music lovers, and other fans. Thousands of people turn out to attend festivals and have a great time.

The May Festival is one of the most popular festivals in Cincinnati. This two-week musical extravaganza (which takes place in May, in case you hadn’t guessed) traces its roots to the 1840s when Saengerfest, or singer festivals, brought American singer groups to the shores of the Ohio River to compete with one another.

Today, the festival includes an impressive repertoire of musical talent. May Festival Chorus members work hard all year to hone their sound and uphold the reputation of this time-honored event. You can listen to dozens of astounding vocal performances and maybe serenade a sweetheart of your own while you’re at it.

Dating Opportunities Surround You in the City of Seven Hills

The true beauty of Cincinnati isn’t in its rivers, trees, and wine, but in the kindness of its people. Members of this diverse community lift each other up and make sure all voices are heard.

You don’t need a poet to tell you how to savor your days and create fond memories here. You have many opportunities to cultivate a budding romance in the Queen of the West. Whether you’re mingling online or at an event, you can turn strangers into friends in the span of a single conversation.

Hopefully, our list of the 10 best ways to meet singles in Cincinnati has helped you brainstorm dating strategies that work for you. As long as you go in with a positive attitude, you’ll knock it out of the park. Good luck!