Most people would say to just download it and try it out for yourself simply because it’s free. It’s a good argument, but ignores some of the nuance of the question.

For instance, can you actually find someone compatible for a long term relationship? Is the app really only for hookups? Is it as trashy as most people say it is?

As a short summary to the rest of the article, Tinder has many, many people on it that use the app in many different ways. Some want only hookups. Others only relationships. Others are undecided and would like both. In quite a few cases, you’re likely to find couples who just want to spice up their own love lives.

To really get the most out of Tinder, you’ll need to be patient and give yourself some time to figure it out.

Also, the Tinder experience is different between the two genders.

In any case, if you’d like to know whether Tinder is worth spending time on, take your test below as a starting point.

The rest of the article covers important things you should know about Tinder, as well as relevant stories from readers that talked about their own experiences.

(Guy test) Should I download Tinder?

The Tinder test for guys

(Woman test) Should I download Tinder?

Is Tinder worth it? - Girl version

What to expect when using Tinder

Many repetitive profiles and openers

Spend long enough time on Tinder and you’ll notice that many repetitive patterns emerge. For instance, you’ll see an unusual amount of people professing their love of the TV series “The Office”. Other times, you’ll see an unusual amount of guys posting pictures holding a fish they’ve probably just caught.

There are many other such patterns you’ll likely come across, and it’s ultimately something you’ll have to get used to.

Lots of bland dudes with pictures of dogs, fish, and bios about how much they like The Office. But I did meet my fiancee on there so eh.

– Tinder user’s story

I swear most men have a fish fetish. Almost half the men on Tinder seem to have a photo of them holding a fish.

– Tinder user’s story

Some people lie on their profiles

As ridiculous as it may sound, some Tinder users lie on their profiles with things that really become obvious if you happen to go out on a date.

For instance, some people use older photos of themselves when they were still in shape and younger looking. What you get on the date is someone who’s put on a few pounds and has some wrinkles.

Other more ridiculous things people lie about is their height and age, even by noticeable margins (think 3-4 inches or 7-10 years).

Tinder (and other dating apps), have an option to filter out people based on how old they are. To bypass this, many users simply lie about their age when completing their profile so they can appear in more searches.

I once matched with two guys in one night, one was 42 and the other  44. After chatting with them,  it turned out the 42 guy was actually 46, 44 was 50.

– Tinder user’s story

I’ve had more than a handful of dates that were dead on arrival simply because the woman was carrying somewhere between 20-50 extra pounds than what she portrayed. I’d like to think I’ve gotten better at spotting the telltale signs, but sometimes it’s just people straight up using old photos from when they were more fit.

– Tinder user’s story

People do actually find love on Tinder

Tinder does have a bad reputation as being a place mostly focused around hookups and short term relationships.

That being said, a significant minority is on it looking for something more serious. Marriages that started out as Tinder matches are so common, Tinder (the company) doesn’t really bother to count them anymore.

When I did use Tinder, I matched only with 3 girls.

One ended up going no where.

Another one ended up with an almost date. We’re still acquaintances who talk once in a while

I’ve been dating the third match for the past 2 years and have plans to get married.

– Tinder user’s story

As a straight girl on Tinder, I had lots of matches. Many maintained solid conversations, many tried for hookups. I went on multiple dates with several different guys, one of whom I’ve been dating for 9 months and actually live with now. 🙂 I consider that a success for myself! I was never in it for hookups.

– Tinder user’s story

I totally suck at Tinder. Met a girl for a one night stand. Four months later, we’re getting on a plane to go on holiday together. I’m such an amateur.

– Tinder user’s story

Women are much more selective than men

Men swipe right far, far more when compared to women. This is something every Tinder user could tell you, and is also backed up by studies on the subject.

According to the same study, women usually match with 10% of the men they swipe right on. By comparison, men match on average with only 0.6% of the women they like.

As a result, men have a much harder time getting matches on Tinder.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the figures mentioned above are averages. Poor photos or badly set up profiles can drag that match rate much lower.

I’m a guy, and I’ve had Tinder for 16 months and have still yet to get a message. Not even from spam bots.

– Tinder user’s story

Tinder does often lead to hookups

Tinder is perhaps the best app to use for hookups, even though it isn’t an app designed expressly for hookups.

It has the most users of any dating app. It also doesn’t separate the hookup folk from the relationship folks, as other more “serious” dating apps do by way of personality tests.

Add in the casual nature of swiping and the sensation of “human catalog” and it’s easy to see why Tinder is a good place to look for if you’re into hookups.

I went to a bar with a friend once, and after we got our drinks he goes “A girl I went on a Tinder date with is here with another guy…”

So I look, and there is a cute girl at the bar, clearly on another date. I ask “Are you sure it’s her?” (the bar was a little dark).

He says “Yup, she’s still wearing the same clothes as when she left this morning.”


Couples looking to spice up their lives

Spend long enough time on Tinder and chances are high you’ll come across couples looking to spice up their romantic lives with someone outside the relationship.

This can happen to both men and women. There’s even a term for women who will accept being part of a romantic triangle, but without expecting serious emotional commitment: “unicorn”.

People that don’t reply to messages

Another bad side of Tinder is how many people don’t bother to message back. For the most part, this is a complaint both men and women have.

Even if they do reply, many conversations turn stale very quickly and one person will simply ghost the conversation.

This happens for a variety of reasons, but probably the most common one is that some users get so many matches they get overwhelmed, so they decide to focus only on the people they find more interesting.

To be fair, I engage quite a bit with matches when I’m going through a dry spell, but when they are rolling in (5+ in a day) then I just stop caring after a certain point. Tinder is very poor at distributing my profile evenly.

– Tinder user’s story

I wouldn’t say I have lots of matches but I have about 200 in a few months which is probably average for a decent looking guy.

I find that I really limit myself to my most attractive matches and end up not speaking to the rest. Either that or I lose interest after a few messages. This may be why I’ve had barely any dates.

– Tinder user’s story

I get matches but I hardly get replies and the conversations go nowhere. This is happening quite a bit recently, reinforces the idea that many people use online dating for attention and to waste time.

– Tinder user’s story

People who use the app as an ego boost

Many Tinder users are on the app only for a quick ego boost and nothing more. For these users, matches are simply a form of validation, a sign that they are still attractive and desirable.

As a result, they rarely (if ever) bother to actually start conversations with their matches, or reply to messages they send.

I honestly sort of use it as a small ego boost as a guy. It’s nowhere close to how girls get matches left and right, but even just swiping when bored at night and getting a match or two is a nice feeling.

– Tinder user’s story

Good dating apps don’t want you as a long-term user

This may seem paradoxical, but if you’re looking for a more solid relationship, then you should look over at dating apps that don’t keep users for long.

This can mean that the user quickly finds a compatible partner on the app, after which they leave the app.