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OkCupid Review – Does It Really Work? (Updated 2020)

OkCupid review

OkCupid attracts a huge variety of interesting singles – it’s kind of like hanging out at a funky bar in a college town.

You’ll see everything from artsy, edgy & creative to attractive, ambitious young professionals.

It’s one of the best free online dating sites, but does that make it the best choice for you? This OkCupid review has all the info you need, including when paying for an A-List Premium subscription makes sense!

Got a specific question? Just click on the topic below to head straight there:

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Pros And Cons Of OkCupid

PROS:

  • Searching for matches and sending/receiving messages doesn’t require a subscription, making OkCupid one of the best free dating sites out there.
  • Has two levels of paid membership that are packed with useful premium features.
  • With 20+ sexual orientations and 12 gender identities to choose from, OkCupid is literally the dating site for everyone.
  • Founded by Christian Rudder, Chris Coyne, Sam Yagan, and Max Krohn way back in 2004, plenty of R&D has gone into making OkCupid one of 2020's most popular dating sites.

CONS:

  • The site’s algorithm uses an attractiveness rating to match users. Upgrading to A-List Premium is the only way to see and be seen by singles deemed more attractive than you are.
  • Since anyone can create a profile and send messages for free, some people on the site aren’t serious about actually meeting someone.
  • Although you can find singles searching for a long-term relationship, overall OkCupid has a more casual vibe compared to a site like Match.com. If you’re 30+ and looking for someone to meet the parents, it might not be the best option for you.

VERDICT:

Does OkCupid work? Yes. Since you can create a profile, search for matches, and message people for free, you have nothing to lose by giving OkCupid a try. OkCupid is especially popular with singles in their 20s to early 30s, so if you’re serious about finding high-quality matches in that age bracket, upgrading to a premium membership could be a good investment.

OkCupid Reviews From Around The Web

On SiteJabber, the majority of reviewers gave OkCupid a 5-star rating. The posted reviews ranged from the usual complaints that plague any free dating site like “Tired of the scammers and fake people” to glowing praise like “Found the love of my life!

The bloggers over at The Dating Gurus gave OkCupid a solid A rating, sharing our opinion that it's one of the best free sites out there. AskMen agreed, calling it an “industry leader in online dating.

There are over 100 OkCupid complaints filed with the Better Business Bureau, with many of them describing poor customer service.

Some users were upset that their accounts were suspended for various – or unknown – reasons, leaving them no way to opt out of the auto-renewal for the A-List subscription, and emails to customer service went unanswered.

Others were upset that their accounts were terminated after being “reported” by another user, but OkCupid refused to explain which message or behavior violated the site’s guidelines, at least without a “valid subpoena, search warrant, or court order directed to OkCupid.”

But in the grand scheme of things, a hundred or so complaints isn’t a bad track record considering OkCupid has over 10 million registered users.

OkCupid DTF

OkCupid’s progressive “DTF” ad campaign also received media attention, and has been reviewed around the web.

Instead of the acronym’s traditional meaning, OkCupid created slogans like “DTFall Head Over Heels.”

As OkCupid’s CMO Melissa Hobley told AdWeek:

The insight driving this campaign was that this phrase, DTF, is one that is typically used as a label on young women, one that they have no say or no voice in. Certainly this campaign was birthed in the era of ‘Me Too’ and in a year that’s really important for women.

But some intended outlets found the ads more offensive than empowering, with organizations like the Chicago Transit Authority and New York Subway refusing to display some (or all) of the ads.

OkCupid Price Tag & Features

One of the reasons for OkCupid’s popularity is the fact that it’s a fully functioning free dating site – you can create a profile, read/send messages, and search for matches without paying a dime..

But if you want useful perks like being able to see which local singles “liked” your profile, you’ll have to pay for a subscription. There are two premium membership levels available – “A-List Basic” and “A-List Premium.”

A-List Basic includes:

AList Basic cost and features

A-List Premium includes all of the A-List Basic features plus:

AList Premium cost and features

Not sure if paying for OkCupid is a good idea? See if upgrading is worth the investment for a guy in your particular situation, but for now here’s a quick overview:

Consider A-List Premium if:

  • You’re in your early 20s to early 30s.
  • You’re in a more populated area.
  • You’re serious about starting a relationship.

Consider A-List Basic if:

  • You’re budget conscious, but you want to boost your response rate with features like seeing who “likes” you.
  • You’re in a more populated area.

Don’t bother upgrading if:

  • You’re in a remote location with a smaller dating pool.
  • You don’t check your online dating accounts very often.

Want to meet more attractive women on OkCupid? Check out these tips and tricks to make sure all those extra features pay off!

Setting Up An OkCupid Profile

You can create an OkCupid account from the online dating site, or download the dating app for iOS or Android.

Navigating the OkCupid sign up process is incredibly easy. First you choose your sexual orientation from 12 options, including straight, gay, demisexual, pansexual, and questioning.

Choosing your gender is equally inclusive, with over 20 options ranging from woman or man to androgynous, genderqueer, intersex, transgender, etc. You can also display which pronouns you use on your profile.

Next up is your birthdate, country, zip code, email, and password – and then boom, you’re a member.

Then you'll be prompted to choose what type of relationship you're looking for, whether or not you're open to non-monogamy, and what your ideal partner's age range is.

Gone are the days of photo-less profiles on OkCupid – now you have to upload at least one to make it past the profile setup process.

OkCupid photos

Photos are arguably the most important piece of your OkCupid profile, so choose a range of 3-7 where you look equally attractive. It’s almost impossible to look equally good in 8+ photos.

It only takes one bad photo to someone off. At the same time, using at least 3 is important because it’s hard to look like a well-rounded, interesting person in just 1 or 2 pictures.

For essential advice on choosing an attention getting photo lineup for OkCupid, check these research-based dating photo tips!

OkCupid’s profiles are a bit different than what you’ll find on sites like Match.com and Plenty of Fish.

You’ll first be asked to introduce yourself:

You'll need to put something here to get through the set-up process, but you can always change it later.

Next, you’ll get the opportunity to answer multiple-choice questions to help determine who your compatible matches will be. You answer the question for yourself, and then for your ideal match. You can also specify how important it is for you to share the same answer, and add additional details in a text box.

For instance:

OkCupid question

If you're using the mobile app, you can link your Instagram account your OkCupid profile:

  1. Tap the “Profile” icon on the menu bar.
  2. Select “my profile.”
  3. Scroll all the way to the bottom of the screen, past the Topics & Questions sections.
  4. Under Instagram, tap “connect” and provide your IG credentials.

Connect Instagram To OkCupid

From that point you can start checking out your matches, but to get the best results on OkCupid you'll want to finish your profile first. Potential matches have to “like” your profile in order to exchange messages with you, so consider it mandatory to put some effort in.

Overall, your OkCupid profile consists of 9 different sections, with the capability to add more topics if you’d like. For each topic, you can choose which prompt you’d like to answer from a simple pull-down menu of 5 or 6 choices:

OkCupid Profile Questions

You don’t have to fill out any more of the prompts, but you never know what might spark an attraction so it's a good idea to complete at least a few more sections.

The first two prompts you answer will be visible on your profile, and she’ll have the option of clicking “+more” to see the rest of it.

Your answers should instantly capture her curiosity and make her want to know more about you. Highlighting a few irresistible traits is sure-fire way to boost your attractiveness. If she likes what she sees, she’ll keep reading.

Use one of these OkCupid profile examples for guys as inspiration!

Remember, when she’s reading these sections she’s going to imagine what it’s like to spend time with you so describe yourself and your hobbies in an interesting way.

bad okcupid profile

Instead of a boring list of adjectives or nouns like “I’m adventurous, funny, and ambitious, and I like skiing and travel” tell her a story that illustrates those qualities. Showing rather than telling is way more attractive.

Here's another example of a good OkCupid self summary answer:

good OkCupid profile example for guys

Once you've completed your profile, you can answer more of the Match Questions if you want.

Answering the additional questions is worth your time, because the more you answer, the higher your match percentage with other compatible users can be.

OkCupid tip

Resist the urge to check the “any of the above” box – that basically takes your answer out of the equation.

Finding Matches On OkCupid

You can find singles in Double Take and Discover who match the criteria you specified in the “Looking For” section of your profile.

OkCupid match preferences

OkCupid no longer has a traditional search like Match does, so the matches you see will be determined by the preferences you specify there. And it pays to fill out your own profile completely because that will unlock more of the preference categories. 

OkCupid Double Take presents compatible matches chosen for you by the site’s algorithm. Your matches are sorted into 7 different categories, or as OkCupid calls them: Stacks.

OkCupid Stacks

As OkCupid CEO Ariel Charytan explained to CNET:

“We know that daters are looking for different things at different times, and we want to empower people on OkCupid to choose their own preferences as they match on what matters to them.”

These OkCupid Stacks are free to look at:

  • Recommended
  • Online
  • Match %
  • Question Pros
  • Nearby

But the Popular and New People Stacks both cost $.99 to access for 7 days.

OkCupid Popular Stack

The Questions Pros Stack on OkCupid shows you which matches have answered a higher-percentage of the match questions. According to OkCupid, these singles are “higher-intent” daters – as they appear to be more invested in the process of finding a relationship.

In the Discover section, you’ll find a match feed filled with profiles of singles who may be of interest to you based on what you’ve both chosen to include in your profiles. 

You can also do things like a keyword search, or filter for matches who answered a question in a certain way:

OkCupid Discover

Once you've “liked” a profile, you have the option to send an “Intro” to them. If your match responds to your intro, or likes your profile back, then you and your match can exchange messages. Your Intro is essentially an icebreaker, so you'll want to ask an engaging question that's fun to think about and easy to answer. Check out these icebreaker ideas for inspiration!

The Fastest Way To Meet Great Matches On OkCupid

OkCupid is a great place to meet high-quality singles, but as with anything worth doing it takes time to do it right. Crafting a compelling profile, choosing attractive photos, writing messages she’ll want to respond to – these things take practice.

If you want to skip the whole “trial and error” stage and jump straight to the dates with amazing people, consider hiring a virtual dating assistant. We’ve been finding high-quality dates for singles just like you since 2009, and you don’t have to do any of the work!

All you do is show up for the dates. Intrigued? Click here to find out how to meet the partner of your dreams!

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About VIDA

VIDA Select takes all the frustration, hard work and hassle out of modern dating! From a dedicated personal matchmaker to a crew of professional writers, everything will be handled for you. Wouldn't it be nice to finally stop swiping and start dating higher quality matches so you can meet someone special? Thousands of singles have trusted VIDA Select with this incredibly important mission, and we're ready to make you our next success story. To see if you qualify, answer a few quick questions now.

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