We Tried 5 of the Best NYC Dating Apps to Save You Time

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If you’re lost looking for love in the Big Apple, you’re not alone. In such a fast-paced city, expecting to find love at work, in a bar, or just randomly in the streets doesn’t cut it. But good news! We didn’t just show up with doom and gloom today. In this article, we’re going to show you the best dating apps for NYC singles with the most high-quality members, the best technology, and the best proven success rates of helping New York City singles find love—without being a drain on your time.

eharmony is best for NYC singles looking for love

eHarmony dating app screenshot with NYC in the background

Just because you live in the fast-paced world of NYC where so many people seem to be career-focused doesn’t mean that you can’t have dreams of a happy marriage, family, and all the great things that come with that. If you’re a marriage-minded single or you’re just looking for something that could turn into something serious, eHarmony is hands-down the best option for you. This dating app boasts helping over 2 million people find love, and there is no reason they can’t make it 2 million plus two (we mean you and the person out there looking for you, by the way).

The two major drawbacks to eHarmony for singles in NYC are that it does require more upfront time to set things up (like your profile), and it is not ideal for anyone who isn’t serious about the process. If you’re not okay putting in a little extra time to get the ball rolling or you’re not ready to commit and invest in the process, stay away from eHarmony.

But, correct me if I’m wrong, people from New York aren’t scared to invest and put in a little time to get the results you want. If that sounds like you, then eHarmony is easily the number one dating app for you in New York City.

If you want trendy, hip, and chic…go with The League

The League Screenshot

NYC is filled with single men and women who love class, success, and being up with the hottest trends. Heck, it’s often referred to by many as one of the fashion capitals of the world! And for people that live that high life and like the finer things, The League dating app might be the best fit.

Launched in NYC in 2015, the League is an online dating app designed to cater to New York’s elite. It’s a no B.S., no games community filled with the highest quality singles in the city as determined by a complex algorithm, looking at things like your LinkedIn profile, and an internal voting system shrouded in a bit of secrecy. What’s also a neat feature that could be important to New Yorkers is that you can click a button and block all your business contacts from ever seeing you on the platform (or you seeing them). HR is a big fan of that one.

The Leagues LinkedIn policy

As you might expect, there are some things to be aware of that you may not like but are necessary evils to keep the quality up. You can expect to pay higher prices, get ready to have to wait on a waiting list, and understand that somewhere less than 15%-20% of people even get accepted.

But—it truly is the most elite dating app in NYC.

Career-focused New Yorkers gravitate to Elite Singles

Elite Singles dating app screenshot with NYC in the background

If there is one thing NYC isn’t short of, it’s smart, hard-working, and driven men and women. If you’re looking for singles that match that Modus Operandi (MO), you’re going to want to check out Elite Singles. While the name may come across a little pretentious, that’s certainly not the vibe of this app. It’s more about “people who understand and value goals and success” and way less about elite status (which would be more The League).

One of the biggest brags about Elite Singles is that over 85% of their members are highly educated. We’d venture to guess that percentage might be higher in a city like NYC, but that’s purely anecdotal.

Screenshot of education claims on elite singles

Depending on what type of person you’re looking for, the overall theme of the dating app may or may not be a drawback. If you’re looking for “Susie Homemaker” or someone who couldn’t care less about careers and success, it’s a drawback because those types of people probably aren’t as attracted to this marketing message. But if you want someone who values education, success, and “getting after life”, you’ll probably love Elite Singles.

With 4,000 Christian churches in the city, this dating app is right at home

Higher Bond Homepage

While New York might not be one of the most religious states in the US (43rd in a recent study), that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of singles looking for faith-based love. According to The New York Times, there are over 6,000 churches in the five boroughs, 4,000 of which are Christian churches—which means a lot of singles.

This is why Higher Bond makes our list. This brand new Christian dating app leverages complex algorithms and behind-the-scenes processes to offer a better experience for faith-focused singles. If you’re looking for a more wholesome, more Christ-centered online dating experience, this is where you want to be.

The one thing you have to be aware of, though, is that Higher Bond just launched late last year. While this is exciting, it does mean that there is going to be a smaller number of people on the app. Reports show the app is growing quickly, though, so that may be a short-lived issue.

For Christians in NYC, Higher Bond is built for you.

Some NYC want casual dating. Zoosk delivers.

Zoosk dating app screenshot with NYC, NY in the background

We probably don’t have to tell you that living in New York City is expensive. Transit, housing, food—it’s all up there. If you’re looking for an affordable dating site in NYC that still has plenty of quality singles looking for love, serious dating, or casual dating, then you’re going to want to check out Zoosk.

With over 3 million messages sent daily on the site, it’s no wonder that it’s a favorite of people all over the United States and in New York City. And since we led off talking about how expensive things in the city are, we wanted to share a bit of good news. The cost of Zoosk is something to get excited about starting at $12.50 per month. This is especially true when you compare it with the quality you get in return.

Drawbacks? Well, this one is a bit of an opinion, but one we think holds true. Yes, Zoosk offers service to singles in NYC looking for serious relationships. However, we just don’t think it’s the ideal platform for those types of relationships. If you want something serious in NYC, go with eHarmony or basically any other dating app on this list. If you’re not sure what you want or prefer to keep it more on the casual side of things, you’ll enjoy Zoosk.

Reasons These Are the Top Dating Apps in NYC

Before you choose to invest your time in any of these options, it’s probably best that we share why we chose these NYC dating apps and sites to top our list. Here are four reasons why!

Plenty of high quality, active NYC singles

NYC is a big place with a lot of interest in online dating. But with literally thousands of dating apps to choose from, not all of them are going to have a lot of singles from the NYC area. Our team makes sure to run test searches and pours through available data to ensure we’re recommending the best options with the most singles from within any of the boroughs of NYC as well as the surrounding suburbs.

Cutting edge technology and matching algorithms to help in your search

Time is one of the most precious commodities to New Yorkers because most of you live very active and busy lives. Because of that, it’s imperative that your dating app has the ability to “keep up” and deliver results without a huge need to dominate your schedule. Often, this is accomplished by high-powered, behind-the-scenes algorithms that drive better matches in a more effective and efficient manner.

Affordable pricing and plenty of value for your investment

In the spirit of New York being the investment capital of the world, we wanted to make sure we were recommending dating websites and apps that are offering supreme value for the price of a membership. Often, this doesn’t mean the least expensive option, but the option that gives you the best features and the best shot at finding love for an affordable price. It’s a tough comparison of value to price, but our team has mastered it and you’ll see that reflected in our listings.

Access to singles in the city and also in the suburbs (ability to sort by distance)

As we already touched on, a great NYC dating app isn’t just for the folks in the heart of the city. NYC itself is over 300 square miles, and that doesn’t include a lot of the suburbs that would still be interested in singles from the city. For this reason, top NYC dating apps have singles from in and outside the city, and more importantly, the ability to sort by distance and not just the name of the city. That way, if you live just on the edge of the city, you’ll still see people who are close by but outside the city limits.

How Do I Meet Singles in NYC?

Meeting people in NYC is not as easy as many might think it is. If you watch Sex and the City or any other NYC-based dating show or movie, you’d think single men and single women are growing on trees! Unfortunately, that’s just not the case. But that doesn’t mean you should just throw in the towel and give up!

Here are some great places to meet singles in NYC.

  1. Online dating apps – As you surely already have guessed, our top recommendation for where to meet singles in NYC is online. It does wonders to cut through the noise and fast-paced-ness of the city to help you make real and lasting connections.
  2. Public transportation – A huge percentage of people (including singles) in New York City use the subway and other forms of public transportation to get to and from the places they go. This could be an ideal opportunity to strike up a conversation with someone you see on your way around the city. Yes, this is going to take some courage and you may run into some people who are taken or not interested, but you could also stumble upon someone special.
  3. Happy hours – While you can meet singles out on the town at bars and clubs, we often advise against it if you’re looking for something meaningful. It’s not that it can’t happen; it’s just that you tend to find people looking for something casual. The one caveat to this are happy hours. They’re great because they attract people who aren’t “party animals” and who potentially have their priorities in line. We’re not saying that going out dancing, drinking, or clubbing means you don’t have it together; we’re just saying that you may have better luck at happy hours which are quite popular in NYC.
  4. Friends and family – One of the best ways to slow down a city like New York City and meet quality singles is through your friends and family. Everyone knows a ton of people, and chances are that some of those people are single! Politely let your friends and family know you’re looking and ask them to keep an eye out for anyone that they think might be a great match for you.
  5. Gyms and fitness classes – Physical fitness is a big part of a lot of peoples lives in NYC. And if that fits with your lifestyle, start looking around at the gym or in group fitness classes.

One of the coolest ways to visualize data is by digging into a service known as Google Trends. The program allows you to see the interest for certain search terms in a certain area over a certain time. Below, we see the popularity of dating apps search terms in New York City! As you can see, the popularity has been pretty consistent over time, with a few spikes in interest. Interestingly enough, those spikes tend to come around June or July every year. So, it’s safe to say that the heat of summer gets people in the Big Apple interested in finding someone special!

NYC Dating Trends from Google

The data also shows us other topics of importance to singles in the NYC area. Sadly, the number one other topic of interest in the area is ghosting. Ghosting is the practice of talking to someone you are interested in for a while and then unexpectedly cutting off all contact and disappearing—like a ghost. Sadly, this is not a trend we’re excited about when it comes to dating apps in NYC, but the data never lies.

While we’re on the topic of online dating popularity in New York City, let’s answer a few more common questions that we get from time to time.

Yes, Bumble is quite popular in NYC. We have a few reservations about the way matchmaking takes place (that may or may not be pros or cons for you), but the app is certainly popular in the area. If you’d like to learn more about the app, check out our Bumble review now.

Is Tinder popular in NYC

Much like Bumble, Tinder is also quite popular in NYC. We see this quite often in cities where people are pressed for time and you see a lot of tourism. If you’re looking for a meaningful relationship, it’s probably not the best app for you. But if you’re looking for casual relationships, it could be worth a try. Check out our Tinder review for more information now.

If you’re using more casual dating apps, yes, you’ll see a lot of tourists on there. This is especially true on dating apps where matches are created based on proximity to your current location (like Tinder). If you want to get away from the people just in town for the weekend looking for a tour guide, stick to dating apps catering more towards serious relationships.

Matt Seymour

Written By: Matthew J. Seymour, MSF

Matthew J. Seymour is a dating industry expert with over a decade of experience coaching singles, reviewing dating apps, and analyzing trends within the industry. Matt is a published author with his most recent work “Get More Dates: How to Master Online Dating Apps” that hit shelves in 2023. With a Masters of Science in Finance (MSF) degree from the University of Florida and extensive knowledge of the innerworkings of the online dating industry, Matt frequently serves in an advisory role to some of the largest dating apps on the market. In Matt’s current role with Healthy Framework, he leads the interview team that regularly interviews key dating industry leaders, and leverages his financial knowledge and dating app experience to review and share what singles need to know to get the most out of dating online.

Rychel Johnson, LCPC

Reviewed By: Rychel Johnson, M.S., LCPC

Rychel Johnson, M.S., LCPC has extensive experience in the mental health and personal empowerment fields. With a Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology from the University of Kansas and over a decade of experience in private practice serving adults and teens, her expertise in dealing with dating and romantic relationships is extensive. Rychel is a licenses clinical professional counselor in Kansas and has started a a local therapist collective in Kansas to help establish community and mutual support. In addition to all of this, Rychel is an integral part of the Healthy Framework team ensuring articles and knowledge around dating and dating apps are accurate, safe, and helpful.