Tinder Review – Reasons Not to Join?

Fact Checked by: John Stringfellow, CEH

With more than 75 million active users (as of a few years ago), you won’t find anyone who doesn’t agree that Tinder is one of the most popular dating apps on the planet. But popularity doesn’t always equate to quality. And, frankly, Tinder has found itself in the proverbial hot seat of harsh criticism more than a time or two.

But just because some people complain about things like fake accounts and sexually explicit communications, doesn’t necessarily mean than Tinder isn’t the right dating app for you. 75 million people can’t be that wrong, right?

That’s what we’re here to get to the bottom of today. In our Tinder reviews, we’re going to take a non-biased look at the app and share the truth about the reasons you might want to join, reasons you might not want to join, and whether this is the place for your dating needs (and what alternatives exist in case it’s not).

If you’re ready, let’s get our swiping fingers ready, prepare our super likes, and dive into our Tinder review once and for all.

Tinder Homepage

Your age bracket and relationship goals mean everything.

Let’s lay it all out there upfront and then get into the detailed reviews in a minute.

If you are a young single (18-30 years old) and you’re looking primarily for hookups or casual romance, then yes, Tinder is basically built for you. However, if you’re wanting a serious relationship, are a single over the age of 30, prefer compatibility-based matching, or don’t want a higher chance of exposure to unsolicited risque photos from matches—Tinder is definitely not the app for you.

While this might sound oversimplified, it’s really what it comes down to. For casual dating and random hookups, Tinder checks all the boxes and far surpasses almost all of the competition by miles. They have the most members, the best technology, and understand how to get people excited (sometimes addicted) to finding their next match.

Again, these benefits and major pros only matter if you’re looking for a hookup or casual dating. If your relationship goals are literally anything else or even a degree more serious, Tinder isn’t going to be right for you at all.

Intuitive design and heavily incentivized paid options lead the pros and cons

When it comes to the pros and cons of using the Tinder APP, a lot of it is heavily dependent on your relationship goals. If you fall into one of the categories of users it’s best for, you’ll find a lot to like. However, if it’s not your speed—not a lot to get excited about.

Tinder Pros

  • Intuitive design and simplistic user controls
  • The genuine leader in casual relationships
  • Some functionality is available for free

Tinder Cons

  • Free member perks have limitations
  • The app does not work well for serious relationships
  • The app heavily incentivizes paid subscriptions
  • There have been reports of people abusing the technology in ways that may impact your experience.
  1. It can be a bit of an “adult” environment sometimes. What we mean is that a lot of users are on the Tinder app to find random hookups and “spread their sexual wings” (that’s the nicest way we could think to say “sending d*ck picks”). If that’s not your speed, that’s a great reason not to join.
  2. People have learned to abuse the algorithm. The idea that a conversation only starts when two people swipe that they’re interested showing mutual interest is amazing. However, some people have learned to just rapidly swipe yes on 100% of people and look to see if they’re actually interested later. This really defeats the purpose of the app and can get your hopes up about a match you really like only to see them quickly unmatch a few minutes later.
  3. We’re not kidding about it not being great for committed relationships. Yes, we sound like a broken record but for good reason. The Tinder app is awful for serious relationships, but that’s not a knock on them as it’s really not what their platform is designed for.
  1. There’s nothing wrong with casual dating. If you’re young and looking to date casually, that’s okay! And if that’s the case, there really aren’t many platforms with as many options as there are on Tinder.
  2. Initial time investment is low. Unlike some other top dating sites that have robust user profiles, Tinder keeps it short and sweet. All you have to do is upload a few pictures and a couple sentences about yourself and you’re in the game.
  3. The proximity matching feature is pretty neat. We’ll take a bit more in a minute about exactly how Tinder works, but in the meantime, we want to touch on this. Matches are created based on where you are at the exact moment you’re looking for someone. This is a unique feature that you don’t really see on any other major apps making it a fun and interesting reason to join to at least try it out.

How Does Tinder Work?

Let’s break down the jargon-filled answer we gave you above to show you exactly how Tinder works.

  1. Single men and women download the Tinder app and create an account.
  2. New members, like you, upload photos and a short bio about yourself.
  3. You are then shown singles of your preferred gender that are physically located within a certain number of miles of your current location. It doesn’t matter where you live, but it’s only based on where you physically are at the time of using the app.
  4. When you see members, you are able to swipe left or swipe right to indicate if you’re interested or not.
    1. Swipe left means you’re not interested.
    2. Swipe right means you’re interested.
  5. While this is happening, your photos and profile are also being shown to other singles in the same area. These singles have the same option of swiping left or right to indicate interest.
  6. If you indicate interest on someone and they indicate interest on you, you’re both notified of a match!
  7. A chat is automatically opened for both of you to begin chatting.

There are additional features that augment the experience, but this is the gist of how Tinder works. It helps look for people who are mutually interested that are physically located in the same area. While other dating apps use your location

Does Tinder Show Other People I Swiped Right and Liked Them?

Singles are only notified that someone is interested in them if they indicate interest in you. That way if there isn’t a mutual interest, no one feels embarrassed.

Tinder Plus, Gold, and Platinum Features

Tinder Features - Mobile Screenshots

The base version of Tinder isn’t particularly flush with features. In fact, the majority of the app consists of swiping left or right on pictures until you find someone you like who likes you too. However, Tinder does offer some additional features for those who purchase paid memberships. Here’s what we found during our Tinder reviews. 

Tinder Plus Features

Tinder plus is the first level of paid Tinder subscription. It adds a few benefits to your account like removing the limit on swiping right and taking away ads. There are also a few added features you may really enjoy. 

  • Rewind – Lets you undo your last swipe if you accidentally swiped the wrong direction.
  • 5 Super Likes – Super likes are a way of telling a user you are very interested in them. With Plus, you get 5 free super likes per day.
  • 1 Monthly Boost – Boost allows your profile to be at the top of people’s lists for 30 minutes.
  • Passport – Allows you to look at and interact with accounts from around the world. 

Tinder Gold Features

Tinder Gold is the 2nd highest membership plan. It offers all the perks of Tinder Plus along with the following additional perks:

  • New Top Picks – Get more top picks each day, which are users that you are likely to be interested in.
  • Visible Likes – See which accounts like you before you like them.

Tinder Platinum Features

Tinder Platinum is the top-tier version of Tinder. It has all the features of Plus and Gold, but also includes these extra features:

  • Message Before Matching – Other users can only message users that like them, but with Platinum you can message whoever you like.
  • Priority Likes – Your likes take priority over the likes of other tiered users.
  • Weekly Like Recap – See who likes you over the last 7 days. 

Pricing is interesting with some free and some pay options.

One thing that’s nice for Tinder users looking to get a leg up on the competition by upgrading their account is that the pricing is quite reasonable. Yes, it’s a lot of nickel and diming with different features (which can add up), but it also allows you to only have to pay for exactly what you want.

In the past, Tinder actually charged a different set of prices for users who were over the age of 30. Thankfully (for our readers in that age bracket), the company did away with the practice after taking some pretty swift backlash. Now, all users will see the same pricing as other users in their country.

Here are the most recent prices we’ve seen. If you’d like to see a more in depth breakdown of pricing for memberships as well as a la carte premium upgrades, check out our Tinder cost and pricing guide now.

PlanWeekly PriceMonthly Price6 Months Price
Tinder Gold$18.99$39.99$139.99
Tinder Platinum$24.99$49.99$179.99

Customer support is run of the mill, which is fine.

Tinder is pretty par for the course in terms of not having a standard, live customer service option. However, we do like that their support request form is easy to find and let’s you be very specific in selecting your problem and desired resolution. This gives us hope that these messages are actually making it to a person who can resolve issues quickly.

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Author: Matt 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.