Bumble has earned a reputation as the more female-friendly alternative to Tinder.
Originally founded by an ex-employee of the Tinder company, Bumble was always marketed as the best of the modern feminist dating apps. Today, over 55 million users in over 150 countries use Bumble to find dates.
And as many people know by now, Bumble’s approach is “women make the first move.”
But how does the Bumble App compare to other dating apps?
Is it more comfortable for all genders to use? Do these online matches lead to any dates in the real world?
In this review, we will enter the hive mind of Bumble and explore its best features.
First Thoughts About The Bumble App
Bumble App Pros
- Women make the first move
- LGBTQ+ friendly
- Date, make friends, or network
- Detailed profiles with robust interest options
- Conversation starters and prompts
- Send compliments to people you like
- No unsolicited attention
Bumble App Cons
- Notifications can be annoying
- Limited time to make contact
Bumble App Special Promotions
- Bee Key—QR access code for select Bumble special events
- New users can try premium membership for a discounted price
- Overall Score: 4.5 out of 5
- Excellent attention to detail on the profiles
- We loved all the interest choices
- Don’t be a chicken, do the video call!
- We loved how LGBTQ-inclusive the site is
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Bumble App Review: Is This App The Bee’s Knees?
Bumble’s experience was humbling, as I realized there are so many people out there, (single and married, looking for dates and looking for friends) and everyone has an interesting story to tell.
The only way you can use Bumble efficiently is to spend more time on your profile since that’s what gets more interest from other users.
So, how did the “women write first” twist turn out?
Well, If you’re a straight man you have to wait a bit until someone makes first contact. But hey, you can use that time to tweak your profile, instead of making up cheesy one-liners to get the convo going.
As for the ladies, they can pick and choose who they want to chat with, as long as they match with someone, duh-doy. Plus, no more unwanted schlong picks and dopey messages to annoy you.
Now, before we get to the nitty-gritty details, let’s start from the beginning.
Signing Up on The Bumble App
Get started by choosing either a cell phone number, a Facebook account, or your Apple ID.
You need at least two photos to start with, though you can upload up to six photos. According to Bumble’s pop-up tips, you should have at least three photos for a 43% better chance of finding a match.
Now, I liked those odds so naturally I added a few neutral snaps.
You can add photos from your linked Facebook/Instagram account or upload them from your local files and camera.
Gender Options and Identities
There was a minor issue when I tried changing the account gender to non-binary, instead of cis male. This was the default option from my somewhat ancient Bumble account from years ago.
After stating my case to the app’s support team, all I had to do was submit a form of photo verification to prove to the system I wasn’t a catfish. So I did.
And poof, I was free to choose my gender.
The good news is that I got to check out all of the gender options that new users can start with. Depending on whether you choose Man, Woman, or Non-binary, the list will expand with robust choices for each category.
You can also choose whether to show your gender on your online dating profile or keep it private for now.
Three Kinds of Swiping
The Bumble app is unique because you can swipe for matches in different categories.
You can match with people for dates, use BumbleBFF to find platonic friends, or use Bumble Bizz to connect with other professionals for networking purposes.
Before you start swiping, just know that you can change parameters anytime when entering Settings. There, you can change between Online Dating, BumbleBFF, or Bizz Connect.
While you can change modes later on, you can only search for people who are in the same mode.
You can’t find friendship matches (or business associates) while actively dating, and vice versa.
I decided to try the BFF and the Bizz modes after I am done with Bumble Dates. But for now, I only wanted to find a date.
Choosing Interests and Parameters
Bumble also lets you choose who sees your profile. You can include specific genders or just state that you’re “open to dating everyone.”
Obviously, your profile is only shown to others who are looking to date your gender.
So there’s no worry that you’re accidentally going to be matched with toxic bigots, who get triggered easily. With the heavy moderation, they often get flagged and bounced off the app.
You can also define what you’re looking for in a match, whether a relationship, casual encounter, “I’m not sure yet” or “I prefer not to say.”
Identify your ethnicity and follow up by choosing five specific interests.
Most hobbies are covered here, from creative endeavors to physical activities.
Bumble Premium, Dating Boosts, and Prices
You can sign up on Bumble for totally free, snooze your profile (temporarily remove it from active users) whenever you want, and chat with others on no dime.
But many of Bumble’s coolest features are for paying members only.
Besides Incognito (hide your profile from others) and Travel (connect on vacation), paid features include seeing which users liked you on a swipe as well as advanced search filters.
Premium users also get special features like Super-Swipe (to let someone know you’re their favorite), Backtrack (in case you accidentally swipe left on someone you liked), and Spotlight.
The pricing for the premiums are:
- 1 Week: $14.99
- 1 Month: $8.16 a week
- 3 Months: $5.44 a week
- 6 Months: $3.89 a week
- Lifetime: $179.99
If you don’t want to pay for the whole membership, you can simply pay for the individual features you want. For example, Spotlight is $1.67 and Superswipe is $1.17.
When you are given the option to buy Superswipes or Spotlight On Your Profile, you are buying a Bumble Coin. You may buy 20 Bumble coins for $24.99, or take advantage of a 12-hour temporary sale for new users that sometimes pops up.
As for how you can get the perks, the Bumble app connects to Google Wallet if you use an Android OS, or an Apple Wallet if you use Apple OS.
This way any purchase can be done with the same verification method from your preferred online wallet.
Creating Your Online Dating Profile
A complete profile is what stands out here so make sure to populate your profile with information before you start swiping.
After uploading your best photos (and dragging your favorite to the #1 position) you can edit your interests, write a biography, and enter more specific information about your lifestyle and personality.
Updating your covid-19 dating style is also smart. Let everyone know your preferences and status regarding vaccines.
Verification is not too difficult. You simply copy one of Bumble’s suggested poses and then take a photo.
It may help to write more details about yourself, your chosen pronouns, languages you know, political and religious beliefs, and connected Instagram or Spotify accounts.
Many studies show that users respond favorably to linked Facebook accounts on online dating apps since this establishes a little bit of trust.
Let’s face it, many people in online dating have no idea what to say…, and when they try and come up with something it doesn’t go too well.
So Bumble’s Profile Prompts is one of the better features, since it feeds you a line and you can expand upon it for your possible matches.
Prompts include unfinished phrases like:
- If I could have a superpower it’d be…
- A fun fact I’m obsessed with…
- Favorite quality in a person…
- A review by a friend…
- My most useless skill is…
- The world would be a better place with more…
- I quote too much from…
These statements then get posted on your profile, so potential matches can use them as conversation starters and psychological prompts to get them swiping right.
Swiping for the First Time
Profiles start with one photo, as well as the person’s name, age, how miles away, pronoun, job title, and education level.
As you scroll down you can see their profile description, demographics and body details, interests, profile prompt answers, and additional photos.
To match, swipe right if you like the person, and swipe left if you wanna pass.
Other on-screen options include a hyperlink to recommend the profile to a friend, a heart to send a compliment (in addition to a like) and a star that lets you “super-like” the match.
After The Match
When two users match, (meaning someone likes your profile and you also liked theirs) a match is made and Bumble notifies you.
Some people do find Bumble’s constant notifications a bit tiresome, but overall, I didn’t mind it. After all, I get notifications from YouTube and Whisper, and those are twice as annoying!
As most of us know by now, just from Bumble’s opening page, women make the first move. She has 24 hours to make first contact if she’s interested. If you’re a woman who matches with another woman, either of you can make the first move.
Now just to let you know, you will get notifications that someone matched with you.
But expect some matches to go unanswered. Bumble is often criticized for the 24-hour response time, which is sometimes just not enough time to get back to someone if you’re living an active life.
Let’s Start the Countdown
If and when someone right-swipes you, you can start to chat right away.
Once you match with someone and start to text chat, you can take the conversation to video or phone, with two respective icons located in the top right-hand corner of your screen.
Instead of a text reply, a woman has the option to phone or video call someone who’s currently online and that would count as “the first move.”
Of course, the Bumble App is not made to extend conversations indefinitely. You can chat with each other for about a day since new matches get an automatic “Extend” chat.
Naturally, if you click with someone you will arrange to take things offline and in person.
Nobody is particularly interested in years and years of chatting…or if they were, they’d take things over to Telegram, Viber, WhatsApp, Signal, Skype, or heaven forbid, Facebook Messenger.
“I’ll Be There For You” with Bumble BFF
BumbleBFF requires new members to add new information to their profile, including tags that suggest “shared experiences”, from which to build a good friendship.
These might include whether you’re new in town, visiting, or just married, as well as other demographic data about education, career, home life, lifestyles, family life, and personal objectives.
Add a little bit about your interests and specify what kind of relationship you’re in, so no one is caught off guard.
Once you find a match, the chat sessions start the same way just as they do in Date Mode.
Connecting Like a Boss
Bumble Bizz for professional networking requires you to add a “headline” to show others what kind of networking you’re looking for.
If you’re associated with a company, looking for more work, or looking for business associates, it’s all good.
You can also add more photos or choose from your dating photos, if appropriate.
Some of your previous demographic data is retained from Date Mode. Besides that, be prepared to add work and education information, which could be passed along from VIPs looking for your expertise.
Bumble is the Buzz of the Online Dating World
In conclusion, Bumble did connect me with several people who liked my photos and profile.
But it wasn’t a quick experience. I had to use Bumble for a few days to get some quality matches and then I had to wait twice as long to get an actual conversation going.
I will admit that Bumble did help me find one “real date” from a chat, but there were also some disappointing experiences. Like being ghosted, being “put on hold”, or being completely forgotten…that’s just part of online dating.
You can’t take it personally.
And at least you know, that with Bumble’s 50/50 split between cisgender men and women, it’s as “real” as you’re going to get, with a much higher caliber of dating pool than Tinder.
The BFF and Bizz modes, while not that interesting at first, do allow you at least one cool option.
You can date whenever you have the time and “turn off” your profile from dating by choosing BFF or Bizz and keeping things platonic and professional.
You know, until you get the urge and want to start “pollinating” again, or what have you?
How Does Bumble App Compare?
How Does Bumble Compare to Adult Friend Finder?
- Bumble costs much less than AFF
- Bumble has more profile details than AFF
- Adult Friend Finder has more of a social community than Bumble
- Bumble has video and audio chat
- AdultFriendFinder has live stream feeds from models and local members
- AFF has many more erotic features – blogs, stories, forums, etc.
RELATED READING: Adult Friend Finder Review
How Does Bumble Compare to Ashley Madison?
- Bumble costs much less than Ashley Madison.
- Bumble can be used for work or friendship.
- Ashley Madison favors anonymous chat, Bumble wants honesty
- Ashley Madison encourages cheaters, poly, and open marriages
- Bumble has more genders to choose from
- Ashley Madison has a masking feature for photos
How Does Bumble Compare to Alt.com?
- Alt.com is primarily BDSM related
- Bumble is “vanilla” dating with networking & platonic matching too
- Bumble’s “women first” policy is safer & more polite than Alt.com
- Alt.com is pricey in comparison
- Alt.com has streaming cams as well as video chat
- Alt.com has forums and member social feeds
Is Bumble or Tinder Better?
Bumble is the more female-friendly and LGBTQ-friendly option.
Tinder may have slightly more members, but it also comes with fake profiles, escort listings, and tons of rude or boring guys.
Bumble’s “women make first contact” policy protects its female and trans members from unsolicited messages.
Can I Use Bumble for Free?
Bumble does offer a Basic Membership for free. However, you don’t get access to special features, like Travel or Incognito Mode, and must take it easy with swiping.
If you swipe too many times in one day, you will be suspended for 24 hours.
Your chats are also limited. The more you want to chat, the more “Extends” you need.
Is Bumble Good for Dating?
Bumble is a great app for dating, whether you want something casual, experimental, or even a serious relationship.
There are plenty of people looking for a new family, and just as many looking for a fun night.
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Is Bumble a Safe App?
Bumble is safer than other dating apps like Tinder, which have no real protection against spam, fake profiles, or intellectually challenged users.
Bumble has women make first contact, which means men cannot bombard whoever they see with personal messages. You must mutually match first before the chat can begin.
Bumble App Review Verdict: Bumble Makes Dating Fun Again
Overall, the Bumble App creates a very friendly and welcoming environment – as long as you don’t mind following the rules.
Men may initially be put off by their lack of ability to start a conversation with women, but in many ways, it’s a far better approach for men.
Women have to start the conversation, meaning it’s their job to make a call or throw their match an icebreaker text.
What men can do to stand out is put more time and effort into finishing a 100% completed profile, with prompts, exciting descriptions, and quality photos.
Why not “boost” your online dating with the new and improved Bumble App?
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