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Best Free Dating Apps for Hooking Up and Relationships

Tinder, OKCupid, and the other best free dating and hookup apps of 2018 can help you finally meet your match.

Apps in this Guide

Meeting people is easy, but meeting the right person is more challenging. There are a lot of dating apps that promise to help -- so many, in fact, that you might need a matchmaker to help you find themore

Meeting people is easy, but meeting the right person is more challenging. There are a lot of dating apps that promise to help -- so many, in fact, that you might need a matchmaker to help you find the right app to help you find the right person.

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(Credit: DuxX, Shutterstock / DuxX)

If you're finding too many Ms. or Mr. Wrongs, then you probably haven't met the right app yet. So let us make the proper introduction for you. We've screened the hottest dating apps and have selected our top 10 to help you hook up with that special someone -- for romance or right now.

Best Dating Apps

Tinder

Tinder

Tinder is the dating app for the casual browser. Zip through Tinder users in your area -- swipe right if you like someone, left if you don't. The app shows your interest only if there's a match. Tinder's unique Moment feature lets you snap a photo and share it with all your admirers at once. Pay for Tinder Plus ($9.99) so you can use unlimited likes, chat with singles anywhere, rewind and redo erroneous swipes, enjoy one free profile boost a month (so your profile is seen by more people), and gain additional Super Likes, so prospective matches can see you like them -- even before they like you. Tinder Gold ($14.99) offers all this and more, including the Likes You feature, so you know who likes you each day when you log on without having to swipe first.

OKCupid

OKCupid

Using a trademark algorithm, OKCupid Dating targets appropriate matches based on criteria that are most important to you. The app also offers a lot of options, such as browsing nearby matches and the swiping Quickmatch feature that Tinder popularized. Most important, OKCupid profiles tell you more about your prospective mate, so you can see if they're in for a quick date or the long haul. Become an A-list member ($9.99 per month to $39.99 per year) for added features, such as invisible browsing, seeing who likes you, and message-read notices.

Match.com

Match.com

If you're looking for a lasting relationship, then Match.com is for you. Why else would you pay for a plan that runs from $21.99 to $129.99? This beautifully designed app features robust profiles, and if you pay extra in-app for Top Spot, you rise to the top of the list to get noticed faster.

Bumble

Bumble

Remember those Sadie Hawkins dances, where women invited men? Bumble is the dating app equivalent, where women make the first move and men have 24 hours to respond. But there are two other modes worth noting: Bumble BFF helps you find friends, and Bumble Bizz facilitates new career opportunities. Bumble Boost ($7.99 per month) promises three extra features: BeeLine, which notifies you when someone right-swipes on you before you swipe on them, Rematch to re-explore expired matches, and BusyBee, the ability to take as long as you like before contacting potential matches.

What's more, for all of you concerned with Facebook's privacy practices, Bumble now offers Facebook-free registration. Just sign up with your phone number.

​Coffee Meets Bagel

​Coffee Meets Bagel

Coffee Meets Bagel emphasizes perfect matches that pair together as perfectly as your morning cup of joe and that delectable bagel that's chewy on the outside and soft on the inside, filled with savory cream cheese and the freshest lox. But I digress...That's why you'll get preselected matches every day at noon based on your physical criteria, interests, and more. Once you're matched, you'll get put in a private chat room and fed conversation starters. A premium subscription ($34.99 per month to $179.99 per year) provides insights into your matches' response rate, shows when your messages are read, and includes more than $50 worth of in-app items, which Coffee Meets Bagel promises expedites connections.

Hinge

Hinge

Hinge leverages the power of mutual connections and tagging to introduce you to friends' friends. The app offers more than photos with ages and locations, digging into more substantial info like school, work, and hobbies. Once you find a match, Hinge can make introductions, so you can avoid awkward silences. Subscriptions cost from $4.99 for six months to $12.99 for a month.

Tastebuds

Tastebuds

Download

Have you ever gone home with someone only to run out screaming when you see hear their distasteful Spotify playlists? Tastebuds makes sure that never happens by encouraging you to add your favorite artists and then matching you with prospective dates based on similar music tastes. Then just browse your matches and send them a song that they're sure to like as a conversation starter.

Grindr

Grindr

Grindr is the original location-based dating app, enabling men to view bare-bones profiles of other men in the area and send a message. Because you can like or message someone without them reciprocating, be prepared for some rejection. Upgrade to Grindr Extra (subscriptions starting at $11.99 per month) to remove ads; view more men; filter by body type, ethnicity, and relationship status; get unlimited favoriting and blocking; and more.

Her

Her

Don't let the name fool you: The app Her is nothing like Spike Jonze's 2013 movie of the same name about a lonely introvert who falls in love with his digital voice assistant. Her is a supportive environment for women looking to date other women. All accounts must be verified by Facebook or Instagram first to ensure that users are all female, which cuts down on the potential for creeps and bots. Once in, you can scan profiles and like individuals to express interest and chat. A community-oriented app that's about more than hookups, Her also provides the opportunity to make new friends, attend LGBT events, and read relevant news. Her's subscription options start at $9.99 per month.

Hater

Hater

Download

Be a lover, not a hater. No, be both with the Hater app. Hater will serve you loathsome items, and you swipe right to like and left to hate. Then Hater will match you with others who abhor them as much as you do. If you also hate making the first move, you'll love the fact that Hater helps spark conversations with Hater cards that you can play together.

Badoo

Badoo

Badoo is a popular dating app, boasting 390 million users from all over the world. You can either see all of your prospective matches at once or swipe potential matches near you Tinder-style.

Badoo also instituted several safety measures, including phone number and photo verification and live video chat, to ensure that you are who you say you are. No other dating app currently offers live video chat.