Sitcoms like “How I Met Your Mother” and “Friends” play up the issue, but it really is difficult to date in New York City. New Yorkers sound off on the issues pretty regularly, throwing out more than a few theories about why. New York singles face a lot of choice, which is a big part of the problem, especially when it comes to online dating platforms. Thankfully, New York dating apps and sites help singles in the crowded dating scene narrow their focus and cut down on the noise. 

These dating apps and sites can help find the potential partner of your dreams, whether you’re looking for a serious relationship, a one-night stand, or anything in between.

Best Overall New York Dating Sites & Apps

Singles in New York City who want to date rather than hook up have several solid options when it comes to romance. These dating sites and apps help you narrow down the field to people who are truly compatible with you, rather than swiping constantly or trying to get lucky at a bar or club. 

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★★★★★ 4.9/5.0
  • Match is the world’s longest running dating site
  • The Discover section has search filters by interests, looks, lifestyle, and more
  • Match is available in 50 countries and 15 languages

Match isn’t exclusive to New York, but the dating site and dating app that goes with it both provide a lot of value for busy singles in the big city. It isn’t as easy as finding a Tinder date, but the majority of Match users are looking for something more serious. Set up your profile for free, and make sure to include all your personal information: age, location, orientation, education, religion, and so on.

Match members can get as detailed as they wish in their dating profile bio. That personal information will help the algorithm find the right kinds of single people on the online dating app and site. Premium members even get access to a virtual dating coach to help them improve the odds of attracting the right match.

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★★★★★ 4.9/5.0
  • Over 2 million monthly users
  • Premium members receive 20 wildcard matches a day
  • Search features include age, height, education, ethnicity, and lifestyle habits

While not every single in the New York dating scene is highly educated, the city that hosts a major stock exchange and multiple bank and publishing headquarters has more than its fair share of ambitious daters. Elite Singles brings together high-value single people from multiple major cities from San Francisco and Los Angeles to Paris and London and of course New York City.

Instead of leaving you to swipe through everyone and anyone in your city, Elite Singles serves up qualified matches daily, from the pre-vetted Elite Single membership.

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★★★★★ 4.7/5.0
  • Over 2 million people have found love here
  • Users can filter their match recommendations by age or city
  • Compatibility Quiz identifies common interests, lifestyles, and goals

The online dating site eharmony is all about happily ever after, whether you’re in New York City or Kansas City. The dating site launched in 2000 in the hopes of strengthening long-term relationships, many of which led to marriages. Approximately 2 million couples in the U.S. have met on eharmony.

New York singles can benefit from the serious approach the eharmony dating platform takes to connect people based on deep compatibility. The free membership offers some limited communication and can be valuable for initial exploration and introspection.

While eharmony may not be the best dating site for every single person, the dating platform has proven useful for those seeking quality over quantity. The smart algorithm helps identify compatible people who share a similar lifestyle, outlook, goals, ambitions, and interests. That’s the secret sauce to long-term relationship happiness, according to seasoned psychologists

4. happn

Bridging the gap between the digital world and real life is not always easy, but dating apps like happn bring things just a little closer to reality. The popular dating app brings some spontaneity into your dating experience by serving up matches based on where you go and the kinds of activities you do. You set up your happn profile, and the app runs in the background on your phone, cataloging the other members whose paths you cross throughout your day. The app is especially popular with Gen Z singles, who like to keep their digital and real lives in sync.

5. OkCupid

OkCupid is part of the Match Group, but the math nerds behind the online dating app and site have taken steps to keep things free, clear, and based on math. One of the key advantages of OkCupid over other dating sites and apps is that you can do everything you need to find a new partner without paying a penny. Communication is free, without any need for a premium subscription.

Best New York Dating Apps for LGBTQ+ Singles

While New York City is one of the friendliest cities in the world for LGBTQ+ people, that doesn’t always make it easier to find love. Too many choices and too little time mean that queer singles need dating apps that help them get straight to the point, and connect with the communities in the city that are the best fit.

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★★★★ 3.8/5.0
  • One of the largest gay hookup sites in the world
  • Search filters for age, location, physical attributes, and more
  • Available in 12 languages and counting

MenNation boasts the largest men-only community of hookup seekers in the world and welcomes men of all sexual orientations. If you’re straight and curious, a gay couple looking for a third (or fourth, or fifth), MenNation wants to help you find the right men. For gay men in New York, the platform provides not just hookups but a community to talk and figure out what you’re looking for. 

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★★★ 3.4/5.0
  • Social networking for gay, bi, trans, and queer men
  • Location-based matches spark instant chemistry
  • Grindr Equality advocates for LGBTQ+ interests on the global stage

Grindr is a classic app for gay men, providing a social atmosphere to chat as well as to find hookups in any city. While most people know Grindr as a hookup app, the platform is much more than that. The team behind Grindr dedicates a lot of time to causes, like Grindr for Justice and the Black Lives Matter movement. Beyond that, the platform hosts conversations among same-sex attracted men, whether gay, bisexual, transgender or any other man. You can join a tribe, get advice, and find your next hot hookup all on the same platform.

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★★★★ 3.5/5.0
  • A quirky and unapologetic womxn-only dating community
  • Queer events get users connecting IRL
  • The constantly updated Feed facilitates social networking

For women-loving women in the big city, finding the right fit can be tough. HER is all about finding community as well as a partner, whether you want a hookup, friends, or true love. HER bills itself as the best dating app for queer women and femmes, and it’s hard to argue with 10+ million queer people active on the platform.

All of the core features on HER are absolutely free, meaning you can start chats, talk to people, join communities, and browse user profiles without paying anything. The inclusive atmosphere and the targeted content moderation provides a safe space where nonbinary femmes and queer women can explore who they are, what they want, and find other people who feel the same way.

Best New York Dating Sites for Casual Hookups

New Yorkers like casual hookups just as much as anyone else, and not everyone is a fan of the bar scene. These platforms help users get to the point about what they’re looking for and go straight to arranging the hookup instead of going in blind. 

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★★★★ 4.2/5.0

Ashley Madison may be best known for making the married dating experience easier and more discreet, but anyone looking for discreet relationships can benefit, especially in a major city like New York.

Security features, like locked photo galleries and blurred profile pictures, along with a panic button to navigate you to a neutral site, all help you keep your dating life on the down low. While you’ll have to be willing to date a married person, you can find single people on this popular dating platform as well. 

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★★★★ 4.1/5.0

BeNaughty puts it all out there from the beginning, making it easy to find a hookup without having to filter out the people looking for something more complicated. The fun, free-wheeling environment puts adult content up front and encourages users to explore their fantasies without shame.

The hookup dating platform doesn’t shy away from X-rated content but also lets you blur photos to keep a little mystery if you want to. Communication options are a little limited for free members, but the Premium Dater provides unlimited messages and security bonuses to help you keep all casual hookups discreet.

FAQs: Are There Any Dating Apps Designed for New Yorkers?

New York singles and couples alike can have a lot of issues navigating the city’s dense social scene, but fortunately, there are a lot of apps and sites out there to help.

Fourplay is a double-dating app geared at helping people put together double dates. Instead of swiping by yourself, Fourplay lets you build an unlimited number of “teams” consisting of you and another friend. You and your friend co-star in a shared profile, and find other teams with whom to build a double date. It’s a great way to stay safe and guarantee a good night.

Cobble helps couples and groups decide what to do faster. Enter your mood and the amount of effort you’re willing to put in on the app, and Cobble suggests local activities that match up. Whether that’s dinner at Pasquale Jones or drinks at a bar you’ve never heard of, there’s something for everyone. The team behind the app, helmed by CEO Jordan Scott, also provides guides to types of activity and constantly updates the app with new activities. Right now it’s still exclusive to New York, but Cobble’s team plans to expand to other major cities like New Orleans and Miami. 

Lox Club founder and CEO Austin Kevitch started the online dating platform to help “down-to-earth and ambitious people meet each other.” The dating app is more of an exclusive, members-only club for Jewish singles looking for long-term relationships. While Lox Club is technically available to any Jewish single anywhere, the biggest populations of app users are in New York City, Miami, and Los Angeles.

Does Tinder Work in New York City?

Tinder is successful in New York City because a lot of singles in the city have the app and use it, so you’ll probably never run out of options for swiping. In fact, that’s sort of the problem: Mainstream dating apps like Tinder or the dating app Bumble provide almost too many choices for the average single person to take in all at once.

Ultimately, it matters what you’re looking for. If you just want to meet new people and keep things casual, an app like Tinder or Bumble (or even Bumble BFF) can be useful. But you’re more likely to be plagued by always-a-better-choice-itis compared to dating platforms that are more selective and provide more curated matches. 

If you’re looking for something more serious than the standard Tinder date, our experts agree that it’s a better idea to choose dating sites like Match or eharmony, where your potential match numbers may be lower, but you have a better opportunity to find exactly the kind of person you want, not just whoever is out there. 

Where Can I Go to Meet New York Professionals?

Ambitious New York professionals don’t have time to waste on vetting the new people they find on dating sites and apps, so it’s a good thing that there are several options to choose from that will do some of the research and legwork for you.

The League is for discerning singles who want to find a match that meets them where they are in terms of ambition as well as romance. Verified profiles through Facebook and/or LinkedIn provide a high level of authenticity to users, and the app uses the information to suggest matches based on careers, cultural backgrounds, and other factors that make for a truly compatible couple.

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★★★★ 4.3/5.0

Christian Mingle is all about faith-based dating, but also about finding that happily ever after so many singles hope for. The Christian dating site helps users all over the world navigate their local dating scene, offering potential matches with shared values and beliefs. Christian Mingle users aren’t all Christian, but all members on the site want to find someone with that background.

Finally, Facebook Dating may be a smaller platform in terms of membership, but for New York professionals it can be a better option based on how it operates. The dating platform uses your social media details to provide you with potential matches based not just on shared interests but on your social proximity. While it won’t post to your Facebook page, Facebook Dating offers up local dating prospects from among friends of friends, meaning you’ll have a social connection of some kind right away.

Any Single Person Can Make It on a New York Dating Site

New York dating apps can help the average New Yorker to find love, friends, or a casual hookup. Online dating has tools to whittle down the choices of single people in the dating pool, and that becomes especially important in a big city with literally millions of people.

Whether you’re in the Bronx or the East Village, Brooklyn or Queens, you don’t have to hit the clubs or bars to meet new people, you can do some quick swiping and chatting online and invite a person to get dumplings in Chinatown or hang out in Central Park. Or even join you for a video date.

Of course, no online dating app or site can promise you’ll find your perfect match instantly. But the dating networks on this list have proven to be popular gathering places for New Yorkers to see what’s out there and maybe throw out a “how you doin’?” to potential dates.

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