Tinder is launching a $500-per-month subscription service. What does it get you? (Hint: No guarantees)

Erika Ettin, Tribune News Service on

Published in Women

I’ve seen my fair share of head-turning headlines when it comes to news in the online dating world, but this one definitely caught my attention. First reported by Bloomberg with the title “Tinder Offers $500-a-Month Subscription to Its Most Active Users,” the new service from the popular dating app is called “Tinder Select” and is only being offered to 1% of users (or you can apply).

I checked my calendar and it’s not April 1, but it’s still hard to believe anyone would be interested in such a hefty investment in a singular dating pool.

“We know that there is a subset of highly engaged and active users who prioritize more effective and efficient ways to find connections, and so we engaged in extensive tests and feedback with this audience over the past several months to develop a completely new offering," said Tinder’s Chief Product Officer Mark Van Ryswyk in a statement.

At $6,000 per year, what does a Tinder Select membership offer?

According to the app itself, users will get the ability to message someone they haven’t matched with, a prioritized position on Likes You grids, early access to new features, a “VIP experience” and a special badge indicating their Tinder Select status.

Notice what’s not included?

Any guarantees of a genuine connection.

That’s because no amount of money can replace good old-fashioned work. And that’s what dating — online or otherwise — often entails. You need to put effort into your profile, photos and searching to make dating on apps or websites worthwhile … and even with preferred placement and VIP touches, if you don’t want to make the effort, you’ll still have a hard time finding a match.

That’s not to say it’s never worth investing in dating apps and websites.


According to a study by Pew Research, those who have paid to use dating sites or apps report more positive experiences than those who have never paid. Roughly 6-in-10 paid users (58%) report positive experiences with dating sites or apps compared to only half of the users who have never paid for a service.

The most obvious advantage is that paying for a dating platform often rules out matches who aren’t serious about finding a committed relationship. Who hasn’t messaged with someone who seemed great only to find out that they had no intention of ever meeting in person?

Sometimes paying for a premium subscription can save you time by filtering out people who won’t be a match. For example, if you definitely want children, there’s no point scrolling through hundreds of people who know they don’t.

If you have $6,000 per year to invest in your dating pursuits, I’d suggest that rather than paying for a Tinder Selects subscription, where you’re only choosing from one pool of candidates, you might want to think about using that money in another way.

Maybe look into the lower-priced options across a number of sites, so you can expand the number of potential matches.

You could also benefit from a dating expert’s coaching to help you in specific areas where you’re struggling, whether that’s navigating the transition from texting to a face-to-face date or giving your profile a makeover.

Even if you never enter your credit card number into a dating app, you still have a great chance of finding love online. No matter the amount of money, there are no guarantees when it comes to dating — just chances and opportunities with the right attitude and amount of effort.

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