Best Free Messaging Dating Sites

Men's Dating

27 Best Free Messaging Dating Sites for 2021

Amber Brooks
Amber Brooks Updated:
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Subscription fees should not get in the way of romance, and the best free messaging dating sites ensure people don’t need a buy-in to find a love-in.

Free messaging features can be a great leveler in the online dating world. A free dating platform allows singles of all economic backgrounds to come together and take part in swiping, matching, and chatting online. Of course, some free messaging is limited or has mutual matching rules attached, so it’s important to do some research before creating a dating profile.

Our experts have ranked the top dating sites and apps that provide a lot of value without an exorbitant price tag. All these platforms are 100% free to join and offer free communication options that can prove useful to singles on a budget.

★★★★★
Match.com 4.8/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.8/5.0

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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Match has been an old standby in the online dating world since 1995. It is responsible for more relationships and marriages than any of its competitors. And it’s completely free to join the fun.

The free basic membership includes access to advanced search tools and personality-driven matchmaking. The dating website and app measure compatibility based on responses to lifestyle questions that cover everything from occupation to pets. Free members can message anyone in their Top Picks list. That means the most compatible matches can get in touch without paying a monthly fee.

★★★★★
EliteSingles.com 4.7/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.7/5.0

Relationships: Serious Relationships

Match System: Search, Receive Partner Suggestions

Our Experts Say: “EliteSingles 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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EliteSingles can raise the caliber of a person’s date prospects. This upscale dating platform caters to single professionals who are looking for a serious relationship. The online community discourages casual swiping and encourages members to invest in a heartfelt connection.

Approximately 80% of EliteSingles members have earned a college degree. The typical user is over 30 and has an established career in medicine, finance, law, or technology. These individuals can afford a paid membership, but they prefer to start with a free trial experience to get the lay of the land.

Over the last decade, EliteSingles has tweaked its messaging system to meet user demand for greater quality control. As a result, some communication tools are at the disposal of free members — you can send likes, photo requests, and icebreakers with one click — but only premium members can engage in live text conversations.

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eharmony 4.7/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.7/5.0

Relationships: Casual Dates, Deep Relationships

Match System: Personality test suggests matches

Our Experts Say: “Accounting for 2% of U.S. marriages, eharmony's compatibility-based system and commitment-minded user base are ideal for those seeking a serious relationship...” Full Review »

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In 2000, eharmony entered the online dating industry on a mission to support relationships that lead to marriage. Its smart algorithm uses psychology to ensure a single person can find the right match without playing swiping games. A recent study indicated that over 2 million couples in the U.S. originally met on eharmony.

Originally, eharmony members had to wait for a free communication weekend to enjoy free messaging on the dating platform. These weekends were so popular and successful that eharmony expanded it to a year-round thing. Free eharmony members can send virtual winks, icebreaker quizzes, and a limited number of messages to local singles, and they can complete the compatibility questionnaire to identify the qualities they’re looking for in a potential match.

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SilverSingles 4.6/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.6/5.0

Relationships: Friendship, Casual Dates, Serious Relationships

Match System: Search by age, location, height, education, ethnicity, and religion

Our Experts Say: “SilverSingles is a fast-growing, easy-to-use niche dating site exclusively for active daters over the age of 50...” Full Review »

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Online dating can be challenging or intimidating to mature singles in their 50s, 60s, and 70s. That’s why senior dating sites like SilverSingles worked behind the scenes to support accessible and user-friendly features, including free messaging and matching.

SilverSingles is a sister site to EliteSingles, and it uses a similarly sophisticated matchmaking formula based on individual dating preferences and browsing patterns.

A free membership on SilverSingles offers insight into how the dating site works and who it helps. Some free communication tools are available on the dating platform; however, premium members have the sole power to send the first message and spark a live conversation. So don’t rule out the possibility of an upgrade if you’re serious about meeting a senior partner.

5. Zoosk

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Zoosk 4.5/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.5/5.0

Relationships: Fun Dates, Serious Relationships

Match System: Search and get match recommendations

Our Experts Say: “Zoosk is integrated with social media sites, like Facebook and Google+, so it's very popular with singles on the go...” Full Review »

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In 2007, Zoosk launched with innovative tools to connect singles around the world. The dating website was designed by a Silicon Valley team interested in combining the best of online dating and social networking technology.

Zoosk is now available as a free dating app for Android and iOS. The app has been downloaded over 30 million times and ranks as one of the largest grossing dating platforms ever.

Free members have a lot of search and communication options to help them find and win over the perfect match. Zoosk unlocks certain conversation windows and invites users to send free replies to premium members. It’s also possible to earn Zoosk coins to get access to premium perks without paying any money.

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ChristianMingle 4.4/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.4/5.0

Relationships: Dates and Serious Relationships

Match System: Search by gender, age, education, more

Our Experts Say: “ChristianMingle is among the largest dating sites in the industry that only caters to single Christian men and women, and the site has some of the best search filters and safety features...” Full Review »

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ChristianMingle offers a helping hand to Christian singles who are looking for a God-centered relationship and marriage. The dating site and app allow people of every religious faith and belief to sign up; however, the vast majority of members (about 90%) identify as followers of Jesus Christ.

Over 15 million people have trusted ChristianMingle with their love life since 2001, and they have been rewarded with free communication and faith-driven matchmaking features. This Christian network supports moral dating practices and strong family values. According to an American survey, ChristianMingle is responsible for more Christian marriages than any other dating site or app.

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OurTime.com 4.3/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.3/5.0

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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OurTime is a senior dating site dedicated to helping mature daters come together. It requires a valid email address, username, and password to create a free account. Uploading a profile picture is optional but highly recommended. OurTime users with profile pictures receive 10 times as much messages and likes as users without photos.

It costs a grand total of $0 to browse OurTime and send likes and replies to potential dates. The free membership gives senior singles a basic starter kit to learn the ins and outs of online dating.

Paying for a premium membership on OurTime can increase a single person’s odds of turning an online match into a text conversation that leads to a senior relationship.

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BlackPeopleMeet 4.1/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.1/5.0

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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BlackPeopleMeet promotes a culture of diversity and inclusion in the online dating scene. The niche dating platform launched in 2002 to empower Black singles, biracial singles, and multiracial singles to find common ground with a person who shares a similar background and upbringing.

As of today, BlackPeopleMeet has established the largest community of Black singles in the U.S. and Canada. Millions of people — of all races — have joined this distinctive dating pool to meet a date with long-term potential.

The free features on BlackPeopleMeet include unlimited profile views and free replies to premium users.

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AFF.com 3.5/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

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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Adult Friend Finder has over 107 million members worldwide and is easily one of the most popular sex dating sites on the market. The AFF community welcomes sex-driven singles and couples from all walks of life. All members must certify that they are over 18 years old to partake in the adult content.

The free features on AFF are too plentiful to name. The website offers free browsing of profiles, groups, blogs, and video live streams as well as interactive options to spark mutual interest and facilitate flirtatious activity. Free communication is part of the AFF dating experience, but it isn’t unlimited.

Adult Friend Finder keeps spammers and scammers at bay by implementing strict messaging guidelines that ensure real people have the opportunity to form real connections.

10. BeNaughty

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BeNaughty 3.9/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

3.9/5.0

Relationships: Hookups, Chats

Match System: Search by encounter, location, and more

Our Experts Say: “BeNaughty is a premier hookup app where you can feel comfortable expressing your desires. Plus, it's free to join, browse, and flirt...” Full Review »

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As a popular free hookup site, BeNaughty has curated a hot list of sexy singles. Free members can swipe through profile pictures or use search filters based on appearance and location to identify their perfect match.

BeNaughty has affordably priced features to suit budget-conscious singles who are feeling bored, lonely, or horny. The basic membership allows users to save their money while exploring the local sex scene.

BeNaughty is definitely among the top sexting sites available. Its free messaging allows local singles to practice their pickup lines and find compatible dates in no time.

★★★★
AshleyMadison.com 4/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.0/5.0

Relationships: Hookups, Casual Dates, Affairs

Match System: Search by age, location, appearance, and more

Our Experts Say: “With its massive user base and advanced privacy features, Ashley Madison is the #1 site for discreet hookups, dates, or relationships...” Full Review »

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If you’re looking for a casual encounter, Ashley Madison will have your back and keep your secrets. This affair dating site launched in 2001 under the controversial premise that single people aren’t the only ones who want to date online. Ashley Madison’s membership base includes people who are married and in a relationship.

Our experts rank Ashley Madison among the best free messaging dating sites because all members have some free chat tools upon signup. Single women have the upper hand in this system and enjoy unlimited free communication. Meanwhile single men have to deal with some restraints on their inboxes and can only send a certain number of free messages on the dating platform before encountering a paywall.

★★★
FriendFinder-X 3.4/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

3.4/5.0

Relationships: Hookups Only

Match System: Search by location, interest, more

Our Experts Say: “A hookup site specializing in casual encounters, secret affairs, live chats, and member videos, FriendFinder-X skips the awkward "dating" stage of a relationship and fast-forwards straight to the sex...”

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Local singles and swingers can let go of their inhibitions on FriendFinder-X because this hookup site provides tons of X-rated content and an active chat room to stimulate romantic interest. Anyone with a valid email address can set up an anonymous account and start browsing for an attractive date or f*ck buddy.

FriendFinder-X doesn’t put pressure on online daters to make a big commitment right away. It’s absolutely free to view dating profiles, join kinky discussion groups, read erotic blogs, and explore the sexually charged community. Free messaging is a women-only privilege on this sex site, but the paid membership costs less than $1 a day, so men don’t have to bust their budget to make moves here.

13. Flirt.com

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Flirt.com 3.5/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

3.5/5.0

Relationships: Hookups, Casual Dating, Chats

Match System: Search by age, location, gender, orientation, and other factors

Our Experts Say: “Flirt.com frees singles to chat with attractive locals and pick up dates on the spot. This hookup site is always open to horny and sexy people seeking one-night stands, casual dating, threesomes, and other sexual encounters...”

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Flirt.com welcomes casual daters who love to flirt and attract sexual partners. The online dating site provides instant access to millions of profiles and photos. Users do not need to form a mutual match to say hello and create a new love connection instantaneously.

All female users can communicate for free on Flirt.com. No paid membership or fees necessary. The free messaging system has no strings attached for single women, and it sets reasonable rules for single men. That creates an exciting environment for casual hookups.

Flirt.com has over 70 million members in North America, Europe, and Australia, and it is rapidly growing in major cities throughout the world.

14. MenNation

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MenNation 4/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.0/5.0

Relationships: Daters & Hookups

Match System: Search by age, zip code, more

Our Experts Say: “MenNation is a well-established gay dating and hookup brand, having been founded in 1996. It's totally free to join, view profiles, receive matches, and flirt...”

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MenNation is an online dating site for men only. Gay men, bisexual men, and queer men have flocked to this sexy community to flirt, match, and sext in a judgment-free space. Any single man seeking a casual hookup with a man will find plenty of attractive options in his inbox.

Gay guys can play around on MenNation for as long as they fancy. The free membership never expires, and it includes access to a raunchy photo gallery, fetish groups, local search tools, and other X-rated content. Free messaging is not guaranteed on MenNation, but the free dating site has been known to unlock certain messages or gay texting tools to help stimulate interest between local singles.

★★★★
LesbianPersonals 4/5.0

Our expert ratings are based on factors such as popularity, usability, value, and success rate of each site.

4.0/5.0

Relationships: Hookups Only

Match System: Search by location, interest, more

Our Experts Say: “LesbianPersonals provides a fun, quick, and easy experience for gay and bisexual women looking for sex online. Join for free, and you'll be able to search and communicate immediately...”

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LesbianPersonals can instigate a lesbian dating adventure and liberate sex-driven people to go after the women of their dreams. The dating platform entertains a diverse crowd of single women, lesbian couples, and bi-curious straight couples — all without charging for the basics.

The free online dating experience starts when a new user creates a lesbian personal ad and then searches for a like-minded partner. LesbianPersonals has local search tools based on appearance and kinks. An erotic blog and members-only chat room also stimulate sexy and anonymous interactions. However, the private messaging and livestream video chat features are off limits to free users. It’ll cost users a monthly payment to enjoy every corner of this female-friendly scene.

16. Tinder

Tinder is the dating app that pioneered swipe-based matchmaking, so it deserves a spot on our list of the best free messaging dating sites. Even if it’s technically an online dating app, not a site.

All users have to do to open the lines of communication on Tinder is create a mutual match. Chatting on the dating app is completely free, and the only limit is on the number of swipes and likes a person can make per day.

Screenshot of Tinder

Tinder has been downloaded over 430 million times in the last decade.

Most Tinder users don’t pay to use the app and are perfectly content, but some want to get a leg up on their competition or expand their online dating net. Tinder Plus and Tinder Gold are optional subscription plans that include perks such as the Passport feature, which allows Tinder users to swipe outside their local area.

Since 2012, Tinder has created over 60 billion matches in 190 countries, and it has particularly dominated the dating activities of young American singles. About half of Tinder users are Gen Z, and they identify across the sexuality spectrum.

17. Bumble

Bumble has been dubbed the world’s first feminist dating app because it prioritizes the mental health and safety of single women. In doing so, the free app has created a friendly networking space where mutual respect leads to real relationships.

As of 2020, Bumble has surpassed 100 million members worldwide. Over 85% of Bumble members said they’re looking for a long-term commitment, and fewer than 4% said they just want casual sex.

Screenshot of Bumble

Bumble is a mobile app with female-driven messaging features.

A free Bumble membership includes chatting capabilities — as long as single women take the lead in matches with men. The app empowers women to make the first move by sending the first message, and male users cannot contact a woman in the Hive unless she says hello first.

18. PlentyOfFish

PlentyOfFish is a free chat app where adult singles have full control over their matches and chats. The free messaging system is fueled by user preferences. A POF user can send a message to any profile they fancy online. The only limitation is that users can only send 50 first messages per day.

Screenshot of POF

PlentyOfFish engages users by offering completely free chatting without mutual matches.

The POF community has reached 20 countries, including the U.S. and the U.K., and it has over 150 million profiles in its database. Over 3 million singles log on to PlentyOfFish on a daily basis in search of friendship and love.

“I got on POF, and I met this wonderful super fantastic amazing man,” said Lainitia, who married her POF match in 2018, in an online testimonial. “We knew without a shadow of doubt that we were meant to be together, we were meant to meet one another, and are meant to be married to one another, and we could and would not have been able to do it had it not been for the creation of POF.”

19. Grindr

In 2009, Grindr became the first gay dating app to use geolocation technology to pair up local men. The app is free to download and provides free chat options to all members who form a mutual match.

Grindr sees nearly 4 million daily active visitors on average, and many of them remain free members throughout their online dating experience.

Screenshot of Grindr

Once they join the Grindr swipe list, single guys can meet LGBTQ+ dates for free.

Grindr Xtra is a premium membership option for guys who are willing to pay for extra swipes, filters, and matches. It unlocks Explore More, which means users can view profiles outside their city, state, or country. The paid plan also eliminates ads from the app. It is not necessary to upgrade to Grindr Xtra to meet a hot guy on Grindr — but it certainly can help a shy dude make a big splash in the gay dating scene.

20. Hinge

Hinge operates under the slogan “designed to be deleted” because its founding mission is to get singles off the swiping carousel and into a real relationship. The free dating app provides potential match suggestions based on similarities in lifestyle and interests, and its in-depth dating profiles help individuals get to know one another on a deeper level.

Screenshot of Hinge

Hinge boasts having a high success rate when it comes to turn first dates into second dates.

It is 100% free to download Hinge and start sending likes and messages to compatibile profiles within a certain mile radius. The free membership allows users to send up to 10 likes per day and one Rose per week. The paid membership offers unlimited likes, five Roses, and the ability to see who has liked your dating profile.

Hinge has solicited post-date feedback from users to measure how successful its online matches are in the real world. Over 90% of Hinge users who answered the survey said they enjoyed their first date, and 72% said they would go out with the same person again.

21. OkCupid

A team of Harvard math nerds launched OkCupid in 2004 with a promise to find the formula for true love and keep its dating services forever free. The dating platform has been tremendously successful by building on those two foundational blocks.

OkCupid offers absolutely free chatting upon registration, and it uses a highly complex algorithm to calculate relationship compatibility.

Screenshot of OkCupid

OkCupid adds extra personality and flexibility to the online dating process.

OkCupid creates over 91 million matches every year, and its success stories range from new friendships to happy marriages.

“Met a guy on OKCupid in 2011. Married in 2015,” said a woman on Reddit. “I was his first date on the site. He was my millionth. He’s my absolute favorite person!”

22. HER

HER is a lesbian dating app that upholds a strong and independent society of LGBTQ+ women. Since 2013, the network has expanded to encompass more than 5 million dating profiles, all of which have been verified as authentic.

HER operates under a strict no-boys-allowed policy. The app uses Facebook to check a new person’s gender identity information and profile pictures.

Screenshot from HER

A lesbian woman founded HER in 2013 to uphold the interests of single women seeking women online.

Setting up a HER account is free and provides access to a personal newsfeed, events calendar, and match suggestions. HER members can give a thumbs up, comment on a photo, or RSVP to a local queer event to build connections in the community.

23. Coffee Meets Bagel

Since 2012, Coffee Meets Bagel has made a name for itself as a free dating app for sincere conversations and lasting relationships. It has created over 50 million matches by carefully measuring profile compatibility and attraction scores. The online dating experience is completely free from start to finish.

Screenshot of Coffee Meets Bagel

Coffee Meets Bagel powers free communication windows between mutual matches.

Coffee Meets Bagel delivers curated matches once daily and invites users to send a like to their favorite standouts. The dating app prioritizes quality over quantity, so it imposes limits on the number of profiles a person can view within a 24-hour period.

All CMB users can send private messages to the profiles in their mutual match list. However, chat windows will expire if members are no longer actively sending each other messages. It is possible to reopen an expired chat by spending Beans, which are the digital currency used on the app.

24. Happn

The big city life doesn’t always translate to a thriving dating life, so Happn has established a free dating network to help singles take advantage of the romantic possibilities in their everyday surroundings. The app provides match suggestions based on location data and pinpoints where users have crossed paths in real life. Maybe they frequent the same coffee shop or movie theater, and that could be a great locale for their first date.

Screenshot of Happn

Happn is a local dating app that finds common ground for potential dates.

Happn members can match and chat for free for as long as they wish. Some ambitious singles choose to upgrade to a premium subscription to gain access to more swiping options, privacy features and video call flexibility.

Happn does not reveal a person’s real-time location, and users can opt out of the geolocation data gathering by going into their settings.

25. Badoo

Badoo is a cross between a dating site and a social network. And it’s totally free to use. The company earns revenue from ads, so it doesn’t need high-priced subscriptions to turn a profit.

The free dating app provides video features and messaging options to keep singles engaged in building new friendships and relationships.

The Badoo logo

Badoo started in Russia in 2006, and it has become a global phenomenon.

In terms of popularity, Badoo comes out on top. The dating platform has over 500 million followers, and it sees more than 29.3 million monthly active members. According to internal stats, the Badoo platform facilitates the exchange of about 350 million messages every month.

26. The League

The League is a dating service that appeals to an elite crowd of single professionals. It is home to doctors, CEOs, entrepreneurs, and other ambitious individuals in search of a romantic relationship on equal footing.

The League offers membership tiers with extra perks, including video chats and profile boosts, but the basic membership has free messaging, so an upgrade may not be necessary.

All new users have the option to verify their identity through LinkedIn and/or Facebook. If they connect to these social networks, The League will automatically hide their dating profile from their LinkedIn business contacts and Facebook friends.

Screenshot of The League

The League screens new members and removes fake profiles and gold diggers upon detection.

The League does not accept all applicants to the app. A member must be financially stable, attractive, and respectful to retain a place in this high-end club. The moderators actively patrol the site and ensure it lives up to the highest standards in online dating.

“Yes, we are selective,” said The League CEO Amanda Bradford in her mission statement. “If as a founder I can point to even a small increase in the number of equal partnerships that result from the curated community we’re building, then I’m okay being labeled an elitist.”

27. Facebook Dating

In 2018, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the launch of a new dating service called Facebook Dating. And expectations were high. Perhaps too high. Facebook Dating has positioned itself as a challenger to mainstream dating sites and swiping apps — but its free messaging and AI-driven matching have yet to pose a significant threat to today’s established dating companies.

Screenshots of Facebook Dating

Facebook Dating delivers free messaging between matches and secret crushes.

The biggest pro for Facebook Dating is that all swiping and chatting features are free to everyone at all times. No subscriptions are necessary. As long as a single person has downloaded the Facebook app, the dating services are easily accessible at no cost.

Our Facebook Dating review goes into greater detail about how the dating service works and what users can expect along the way.

How Do Free Messaging Dating Sites Actually Work?

The easiest way to explain how online dating works is to split it into three steps. The first step is the registration process. That’s where singles describe themselves, set dating parameters for their ideal match, and upload photos or videos to appear on their profile. There may also be a relationship questionnaire or some personal prompts regarding a single person’s interests, beliefs, and lifestyle.

Photo of a man on his phone

Free online dating apps provide chat features to help singles get to know each other.

The next step is searching for dates online. That typically means either swiping on randomly generated profiles or setting search parameters based on age, location, appearance, and background. Some apps have AI-driven matchmaking games, while others give singles the tools to explore potential matches on their own.

The final step is to get in touch with a person who seems attractive or interesting. Free dating sites handle online communication a few different ways. The most common is through a mutual matching system, which means both users have to take action to like each other’s profile before they can send a message. Some apps allow free messaging without a match. For quality control purposes, some apps have set a time limit on matches or put a cap on the number of free messages sent in online conversation. So don’t hem and haw before asking someone on a date.

Which is Better: Free or Paid Dating Sites?

Free dating sites and paid dating sites are both great tools, and which one you prefer basically depends on your core values and your pocketbook.

When I was a poor college student, there was no question in my mind that free dating sites were the best option. Because they were the only option I could afford. However, now that I’m a single professional with disposable income, I see the online dating world differently, and I recognize the value of paying for a higher quality experience.

Singles who are frustrated by the swiping options on a free app may want to consider upgrading to a premium subscription on a paid dating site. But they can always start with a free trial to make sure it’s worth the cash.

Paid sites do cost money eventually, but they may not charge anything upfront. It will likely be free to set up a dating profile, browse photos and profiles, and send some form of expression of interest (likes, winks, icebreakers, quizzes, etc.) on the platform. However, at some point, a paywall will appear, and singles will have to decide how much they’re willing to invest in their romantic futures.

How Do I Know How to Choose the Best Messaging Dating Site?

Online dating sites and apps come in all different shapes and sizes — just like single people do — so any person can find a good match based on their interests, background, and relationship goals. Our definitive list of dating sites separated the most popular platforms into categories to help make the choices clear for individuals with particular expectations and values.

For example, Jewish singles may feel more comfortable and find more promising matches on a Jewish dating site like JDate. All members on JDate have expressed a willingness to date within the Jewish faith, so that can be a good starting point for a new relationship.

Screenshot of JDate

JDate can steer Jewish singles toward matches with true relationship potential.

Of course, niche dating sites aren’t always the best solution because they feature a smaller dating pool and therefore can offer fewer match opportunities. Niche platforms appeal primarily to singles who care more about quality than quantity — and are willing to wait for the right match.

Our recommendation would be to create a free dating profile on a niche dating site and join a mainstream dating app with free messaging (i.e. Tinder, Bumble, or OkCupid). That way, singles can diversify and cover more online dating ground. Creating multiple dating profiles is also a great strategy if you’re not exactly sure what you want or which platform will work best for you.

Which Dating Sites or Apps Offer Free Video Chat?

Video chat technology has been around for decades, but it’s only recently become widespread on free dating platforms. During the COVID-19 pandemic, video chat exploded in popularity and became the go-to substitute for a traditional first date at a coffee shop or bar.

Dating apps like Hinge and Tinder adapted to the new normal by providing in-app video chat tools for free members who have formed a mutual match. This allows singles to progress their online relationship while staying within social distancing rules. Dating experts have predicted that video chat will remain integral to online dating, even in the post-COVID world.

Are Messaging Dating Sites Safe to Use?

Free dating sites can sometimes get a bad reputation because they fail to identify and remove fake profiles or scam accounts from the database. However, as AI technology has advanced, the top platforms have gotten smarter about how they tackle this problem and keep online daters safe.

First of all, users can expect some identification questions and photo requirements upon signing up to an online dating service. Many free dating apps provide seamless profile verification through Facebook. Some also authenticate the profile through a phone number or email address. Our experts have even seen platforms verify occupations and income in an effort to build trust in an online forum.

Photo of a video date

Arranging a video date is a good way to verify a potential match’s identity.

Another great safety feature is the block button. Online daters can always block communication from any person who gives them a bad feeling. If they are concerned about that user’s intentions or authenticity, they can report the problem to the platform’s moderators for review. A legit dating site should be transparent with how it handles online harassment claims and swiftly remove dating profiles that cause problems.

So yes, online dating is perfectly safe as long as a person keeps an eye out for red flags and uses good judgment when contacting someone new.

Send a Positive Message & Start a New Love Connection

Free messaging can be a great asset in the online dating world. But app users have to be strategic about how they approach new matches and love interests. Some singles take a less-is-more attitude and show restraint online by sending first messages to compatible and desirable profiles. Other singles fall on the more-is-more side and try to start as many conversations as possible at once.

We would just caution online daters to make sure their first message sends the right message. A generic greeting isn’t enough to catch attention in the competitive swiping scene, so be sure to show some personality and originality — or at least ask good questions — when connecting with someone new.

The best free messaging dating sites can help singles communicate and flirt whenever they like without overburdening their bank statements. So up your conversational game and jump on board!

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