At this point, you’d pretty much have to be living under a rock to have never heard of online hookup sites such as Tinder, Ashley Madison, Seeking, or AdultFriendFinder.

Since they’ve gotten so popular and have a pretty heavy presence in online advertising and in mainstream culture, it would seem like they must be working for some people, right?

At the same time, more and more online hookup sites and apps have popped up to try to capitalize on this trend. Unfortunately, not all of them are legit.

So, do online hookup sites actually work in 2022? Yes and no. It comes down to the type of site, how you use it, what you’re looking for, and what your expectations are.

Read on to learn more!

Hookup sites 101

If you landed on this article, you likely have at least a vague idea of what a hookup site is.

Nonetheless, we’re going to give you a quick breakdown. (So, feel free to skip to the next section if you’re already well versed in the topic).

Quite simply, hookup sites are websites and/or apps that allow people to meet each other for casual encounters. This is also known as hooking up. And the popular sites actually work.

On most sites, you can write a short bio to let people know a bit about you. We recommend listing here what it is that you’re looking for. If you hope to find something serious, say so; if you just want a casual hookup, then put that. This way there will be less time wasting.

There are all kinds of different hookup sites, including ones that have more of a reputation for casual hookups and ones that are more like “dating” apps that people go to for more serious relationships. So, you should try to find one or two platforms that work well for you based on what it is you’re looking for.

What hookup sites actually work?

What hookup sites really work? Let’s be clear—there’s no single site or app that can guarantee success. If that’s what you’re looking for, that’s prostitution, not a hookup app.

In general, it never hurts to consider the apps and sites that have large member bases. It’s simple mathematics—the more people, the more likely you are to find a good match. This is especially true if you live in an area without a lot of people.

So, to help you out, we’re going to do a quick overview of seven solid hookup site options that you can try out.

Tinder

Tinder was really the first hookup app to really take off in the era of the smartphone. As such, it has a massive user base. It’s easy to use and ushered in the infamous “swipe” to either say “yes” or “no” to potential matches.

Nowadays, Tinder costs a bit of money to actually use it effectively, so that makes it slightly less appealing. It’s also very much focused on appearances, which may be a good thing or less ideal for you.

AdultFriendFinder

If you’re really after casual hookups only, AdultFriendFinder is a good option to consider. It’s really targeted toward casual sex and so the people there won’t be wasting your time if that’s what you’re after.

By the same token, AFF won’t likely be a good option for you if you hope to find a serious, long-lasting relationship. But hey, you never know. AFF works differently from Tinder, meaning you have to put in a bit more work to find matches, but it’s probably worth it in the long run as it’s more likely you’ll be more compatible that way.

Seeking

Seeking started out as SeekingArrangement and really focused on “sugar” relationships (usually when a wealthy older guy spoils an attractive younger woman). They’ve tried to go more mainstream in recent times, however, so you might consider giving it a try even if you’re not dead-set on a sugar relationship.

Just be aware that many people on Seeking may be looking for a sugar arrangement, meaning that you’ll need some cash to burn if you’re an older guy. If that’s you, though, Seeking may be your best bet.

Ashley Madison

Ashley Madison has made a name for itself by really throwing morality out the window with its motto “Life is short. Have an affair.” If you are really after a casual hookup, Ashley Madison could be a great option for you as most of the people there have the same thing in mind.

It can get pricey if you’re a man, so keep that in mind. Nonetheless there’s a lot of potential value here and it can also be a great site for people who are often on the go and looking for casual and spontaneous encounters.

Reddit

The best thing about using Reddit to try to find casual hookups is that it’s 100% free. You can simply go to a subreddit like r/R4R and browse around. If you like, you can make a post that details what you’re looking for and a bit about you.

While you may not find as much success as easily on Reddit, it’s also pretty low-risk and not necessarily a big time commitment as you can throw a post out there in a few minutes and see what happens.

Bumble

Bumble is unique in that it’s very much oriented toward women. This makes it a safer platform for them and so there may be a higher woman-to-man ratio than on other sites. On Bumble, it’s the women who must initiate contact, which can honestly be quite refreshing as a man since we’re used to having to make the first move, so to speak.

Apart from that, Bumble is relatively run-of-the-mill when it comes to current dating apps. It’s easy to use, has the swiping feature, and also has a video chat function. All in all, it’s a great option, just keep in mind that some people may be looking for more serious relationships.

Hinge

Hinge is yet another dating app that you can try out for casual hookups. That said, it has a bit more of a focus on more serious relationships. This means it probably shouldn’t be your first choice when looking for something casual.

Nonetheless, Hinge is well designed and is arguably better at finding good matches than some of the other big names out there. Since it’s more so for people looking for serious relationships, the profile is much more important (whereas on apps like Tinder many people don’t even bother).

Tips for using hookup sites

If you’re going to use a hookup site, it’s always important to keep in mind safety. With a little bit of common sense and our tips, you should be in good shape.

  • Be transparent – In order to avoid wasting time, be upfront about your intentions. If you’re just trying to hook up, then say so; and if you want something serious, let them know. This way you’ll avoid hurt feelings and lost time.
  • Meet in public the first time – And do so ideally in a place that’s well-lit and with other people around
  • Let a friend know where you are – This is another easy safety measure just in case
  • Do a phone call or video chat before meeting up – This allows you to have a better sense for the person. If you get a bad vibe, call it off.
  • Watch your drinks being made – If at all possible, order at the bar and watch your drink being made.
  • Discuss preferences and limits when it comes to hooking up – This will help keep things fun and safe.
  • Don’t introduce a hookup to your friends – At least not off the bat, because they might share some information you’d prefer be kept private.

Do hookup sites cost money?

Generally speaking, yes, hookup sites cost money. If you’re a woman, you may be able to use them for free, however. You won’t be so lucky if you’re a man, though.

Many of them will run you about $5-15 per month depending on the plan you subscribe to. That said, there are some that will cost more and some that are free, though those ones are few and far between nowadays. 

Wrapping Up

Hookup sites and apps have become totally mainstream. This is both a good and bad thing. There are a whole bunch that have popped up that are a waste of time or even scams. But if you stick to the ones reviewed above, you should be in good shape.

Just remember to stay safe out there and follow the tips section above. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!