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Anna and I recently discussed the pros and cons of Bumble and Tinder over on Earn Spend Live’s YouTube channel, going head to head with the two most popular dating apps. This time, however, we decided to rope in a few friends of differing sexual orientations to give a more broad assessment of the apps. The clear winner is Bumble IMO, but there are good and bad sides to both. If you can’t decide which one to use, or if you want to use both to reap the benefits each has to offer, here’s a breakdown from some swiping experts on the biggest aspects of each dating app.
How Do You Feel About Girls Having to Make the First Move?
On Bumble, if there’s a match, the girl has to make the first move — and only has 24 hours to do so. Once that message is sent, the guy has 24 hours to respond. There’s also an option to get another 24-hour extension. You only get one daily extend to use per day, but either side of the match can choose to extend.
Bri, 22, Straight
I’m pretty bold. I love making moves and flirting, so Bumble is a perfect outlet for me. Plus, because Bumble literally requires the girl to make the first move, I know the guy I’m reaching out to will expect my forward, direct attitude. This is a total win in my book. Also, I find it DEFINITELY cuts down the amount of creepy or harassing dudes blowing up my DMs. That’s an even better win.
Anna, 19, Straight
I like being forward but not necessarily all the time. When I started using dating apps, having to make the first move was especially frightening. We all doubt ourselves every once in awhile, and I personally like the fact that guys can message first on Tinder because it always makes me feel better to swipe right a few times, sit back, and be told how pretty I am. While that might sound bad, I think most of us will secretly agree that it’s true.
Morgan, 24, Gay
Some friends told me about Bumble and how girls message first so I assumed it was a heteronormative app and shied away. You can use Bumble BFF for making new friends and networking apparently, but I haven’t used it for that.
Brooke, 23, Bisexual
I haven’t used Bumble (or any other dating app) to match with guys. Anyone can make the first move in Bumble for girls, so it’s just another app and I haven’t seen as many girls on it where I live right now.
The 24-Hour Time Limit: Love it or Hate It?
I like the deadline of 24 hours to message. How many matches do you have sitting in Tinder that could be promising but no one ever says anything? When you have less than 24 hours to make a move, it’s now or never.
However, because I’m a busy person and also I just like doing things other than wasting time on my phone, I often go awhile without paying much attention to it. This isn’t the best trait when you’re on a deadline. It doesn’t help that I have notifications turned off. The daily extends are helpful (and a bit of a compliment when someone uses one on you), but I still miss matches just because I’m not dedicated to keeping up with them.
I see the point of having 24 hours to make the first move, but I don’t like it personally because I don’t use the app every day. The biggest thing for me is the fact that they have to reply back to you within 24 hours too. That doesn’t make sense because you obviously matched for a reason; it’s not like they need that to respond. Even with the daily extension I’ve often lost multiple matches because I didn’t get on for multiple days at a time.
If I do use Bumble I don’t check it often because there aren’t many girls. Then my matches are usually expired anyway, and I kick myself for missing the opportunity to meet a cute girl.
Other Pros or Cons of Bumble?
There’s a couple things Bumble has that make it reign supreme. One of my favorites is backtrack. When you’re swiping left like it’s your job it can be easy to miss someone you actually wanted to check out. If you do that on Bumble, you just shake your phone and can go back to them. You can do this up to three times a day.
Bumble tries to make the app safer for its users with photo verification. Along with having to put your job or school information (which makes someone more reliable) they also verify that the photos by having you submit a pic and verifying it against your profile ones. Yay to no catfishing!
Dating apps are essential in my dating life because of my type. Instead of embarrassing myself by hitting on a straight girl, I can seek out someone with confidence who’s also into girls, so that’s a pro for any dating app, really.
Does it Really Have the Most Users?
The biggest win of Tinder is supposedly that it has more users, but if you’re swiping in a major city, this problem tends to dissipate. So I think this varies on location.
There’s nothing worse than running out of people to swipe on a dating app — it’s just annoying and totally ruins my swiping sprees. I’ve literally never had this problem on Tinder. More people use Tinder than Bumble, so for me I love the fact that there’s a seemingly endless pool of people to match with.
Between HER (an app I’ve used in competition with Tinder) and Tinder, Tinder has more users. I’ve had the most interactions there.
Tinder for sure has the most users. Also, I didn’t think girls would be down for hookups but I’ve been able to just hook up with girls from Tinder. So it’s definitely good for that if that’s what you’re looking for.
Awkward or Offensive Encounters Tend to Be the Norm, Agree?
I could write an entire article on my awful encounters on Tinder — which includes guys whose first line is something like “My bed is broken, can I use yours?”. (Yes, true story. Yes, there has been worse, but I don’t want to write that on the web.) Or the ever exciting and witty “hey.” This is why I prefer Bumble: when I control the first move, it’s going to be exciting and witty — not to mention harassment-free. In my personal hypothesis, the element of the girl having the first move is what weeds out the creeps.
I’ve had guys message me over and over again — sometimes even getting mad at me for not replying — more times than I’d like to admit. This is not only unattractive but just downright annoying. I think that a lot of this is avoided with Bumble because the girl always messages first.
By far my most memorable experience with a Tinder creep was when I was housesitting for a family and got a message from a guy who said “My teddy bear just died, can I come sleep with you tonight?” The words alone definitely weren’t uncommon but the fact that he was less than a mile away from me was… and did I mention it was 1 a.m.?
There’s some genuine first connections and then there are those that I just have to laugh at. Anywhere from “Hey, what’s up?” to “Scissor me Tinder!” followed by a “Sorry, that was my friend.” Riggghhhht. It’s a bit weird at first just getting the feel for it, but then you realize that these people are swiping away too. So if they don’t pique your interest, just move on.
There are no obligations to message back or swipe a certain way. Everyone using the app knows that as well. I can’t say I’ve had much harassment, although one individual seemed perturbed by the fact that had no interest in pursuing a steady relationship even though we had never met.
I haven’t found any girls to be aggressive or harassing on either app. Maybe it’s a difference in sexes.
So many couples are looking for a third on Tinder, so you really have to read the bios. You see a cute girl and get excited, but then they say they’re only there as part of a couple.
Other Pros or Cons of Tinder?
One thing that I like about Tinder is group swiping. I’ve been in groups more for fun than anything else; to meet other groups when you’re out, or to be like oh he’s totally Stacy’s type. If you get used to swiping up for pics and bios on Bumble, then switch to Tinder and swipe up, you begin super-liking randos. Speaking from experience. Ugh.
One thing that Tinder has that Bumble doesn’t is a group options where you and your friends can basically swipe and meet up with another group of people (in my case it would be guys). This is great for going out to the bars on the weekend and wanting to meet some new people. Although this can be hit and miss I’ve always had good experiences using it.
I’ve matched with several of my friends on Tinder, but I mean it was kind of intentional. Using Tinder honestly felt less embarrassing the more of my friends I saw on the app.
I enjoy group swiping because it’s a great way to make nightly plans. Especially if you’re visiting a new place, you can meet a group to show you the ropes of the city.