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The League Dating App Reviews - Worth The Wait? (2024)
Since you’re looking for The League dating app reviews, you’ve probably realized Tinder isn’t exactly overflowing with elite singles as ambitious, intelligent, and career-minded as you are.
And if that’s what you’re looking for in an ideal partner, you’re probably wondering if The League is the app for you.
You've come to the right place for advice. VIDA Select's team of dating experts have been representing clients on dating sites and apps since 2009, and we've been using The League since it launched back in 2015.
In this blog post, we'll share our insights and experience so you can decide if this exclusive app is worth the wait, or just a waste of your time.
League Review Table of Contents
Is The League Better Than Apps Like Tinder?
- Every member, even those paying the hefty $399/week subscription, are vetted. That means every single you’ll find is successful, intriguing, and intelligent.
- You’ll have the opportunity to attend exclusive singles and networking events hosted by the app.
- The app’s matching algorithm prioritizes users who log in every day, so checking the app regularly pays off. The League makes it easy to do by sending your matches at the same time every day.
- Your Facebook and LinkedIn connections are automatically filtered out, which could save you some potential awkwardness at the office.
- You can chat with singles about shared interests in League Groups, one of the social features of the app.
- As with any ultra-exclusive dating app, the user pool tends to be much smaller than more mainstream dating apps like Bumble or Tinder.
- You only get a limited number of matches a day, so if you’re not interested, you’ll have to wait for tomorrow to see more.
- Depending on what city you’re in, it could take a while - as in months and months - for your profile to be manually verified and accepted as a Guest (free) member. But joining as a paid member will shorten The League waiting list time significantly - it's 48 hours as a Member, and 24 hours as an Owner.
- Compared to Tinder, being successful on The League requires a time commitment on your part. The app’s algorithm penalizes inactive and unresponsive users, as well as people who log in sporadically or rarely “like” profiles. Eventually you’ll be kicked off the app, and have to pay a $25 re-admit fee to get back in.
The League Dating App Reviews Verdict
We've found The League members are some of the highest quality singles you’ll find on any dating app. If you live in or near a city where it's available, and you’re willing to jump through the hoops to get in, it’s likely worth it.
The League Dating App Cities
Right now you’ll find The League app is live in more than 160 major cities around the world, with more locations coming soon.
In the United States, The League is live in these locations:
Albany, Albuquerque/Santa Fe, Anchorage, Atlanta, Austin, Baton Rouge, Birmingham, Boise, Boston, Buffalo, Burlington, Cedar Rapids, Charleston, Charlotte, Charlottesville, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbia, Columbus, Dallas, DC, Denver, Detroit, Des Moines-Ames, El Paso, Fargo, Fayetteville, Fresno, Green Bay-Appleton, Hartford, Honolulu, Houston, Huntsville, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Kennewick, Knoxville, Las Vegas, Lexington, Little Rock, Los Angeles, Louisville, Madison, Memphis, Miami, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Mobile-Pensacola (Ft. Walton Beach), Nashville, New Orleans, New York City, Norfolk, Oklahoma City, Omaha, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, Portland, Providence, Raleigh, Richmond, Roanoke, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Savannah, Seattle, Spokane, Springfield, St. Louis, Syracuse, Tallahassee, Tampa, Tulsa, Vancouver and Wichita.
In Canada, The League is live in these cities:
Calgary, Edmonton, Kingston, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver.
In Europe, you'll find The League in:
Amsterdam, Athens, Barcelona, Birmingham, Brussels, Budapest, Copenhagen, Dublin, Edinburgh, Frankfurt, Istanbul, Lisbon, London, Lyon, Madrid, Manchester, Marseille, Milan, Moscow, Munich, Oslo, Oxford, Paris, Rome, Stockholm and Zurich.
Other major cities around the world include:
Ahmedabad, Auckland, Bangkok, Beijing, Bengaluru, Bogotá, Brisbane, Bucharest, Buenos Aires, Cape Town, Chennai, Dubai, Hong Kong, Hyderabad, Jakarta, Johannesburg, Kolkata, Kuala Lumpur, Lima, Manila, Melbourne, Mexico City, Mumbai, Nairobi, New Delhi, Perth, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago, São Paulo, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Sydney, Taipei, Tehran, Tel Aviv and Tokyo.
The League Dating App Requirements
According to its founder and CEO Amanda Bradford, The League was designed specifically for successful people who value traits like ambition and intelligence above everything else.
Or as one of The League’s ads puts it, people seeking drive, not double D’s.
Most of the app’s users are in consulting, finance, or tech, with some other fields like the fashion industry growing in number. The key to entry is being successful at what you do. The League is all about making power couples.
Other factors taken into consideration include your education and background. Reviewers will scrutinize your LinkedIn profile, which is also where the app will ultimately pull info for your profile from. If you pass the manual screening process, you’re in.
According to Bradford, The League acceptance rate hovers around 20-30% depending on the city.
Want to know how to get off The League wait list faster?
Bradford revealed a few tips in an interview:
As Bradford explained,
You can really tell, honestly, by what kind of effort people put into the application. We actually can see how long people spend on it… There’s a lot of signals in the data that tells you if someone’s really looking for a relationship and really wants to be there.
How Much Does The League Cost?
The League dating app is free to download and use. As a “Guest”, you’ll get up to 3 potential matches every day at 5:00 pm (aka "Happy Hour").
There are three options for upgrading your League membership:
Becoming A League Member
Joining The League as a Member costs $99 for a 1-week subscription. A single month costs $299, and it's $399 for 3 months.
As a Member, you'll get these benefits:
- Same-day profile review, so you skip the League waitlist
- 5 "Prospects" each day (potential matches)
- Message read receipts
- Up to 5 video dates each week
- Review your past “likes”
- Ability to edit your Job & Education info, or keep it private
- Unlock your profile stats
- Hide your age
- Search for matches in multiple cities
- Filter matches by family plans
- Automatically send an intro note with every match
- Get 5 extra Prospects upon membership purchase
Becoming A League Owner
League Ownership costs $399.99 for 1 month ($99 per week).
League Owners get these additional perks:
- 6 daily Prospects
- Unlimited Power Moves (this makes your profile the first one a Prospect sees in their daily batch)
- Up to 6 video dates each week
- Rematch with prospects
- See if a Prospect “liked” your profile (called “X-Ray Vision”)
- Undo a pass
- Member features
Becoming A League Investor
Joining The League as an Investor costs $399.99 for 1 week.
These additional features are included with your Investor membership:
- 7 daily Prospects
- See a full list of everyone who has “liked” you and instantly match with all of them
- Get a new match when anyone likes you (10x Your Matches)
- Up to 7 video dates each week
- Preview your video dates and pre-reject if you want
- Free “Power Move” notes
- Reveal your profile only to Prospects you “like”
- Member & Owner features
According to the app, subscribing members are seen by 40% more people, and have 2-5x the match rate of free users in their same demographic.
If you want to take advantage of premium features without a paid subscription, you can purchase League Tickets to use them on an ala carte basis to do things like get more Prospects, send a message before you match and rematch with expired matches.
How To Join The League
But don’t worry, you won’t stumble across any coworkers in your match queue. The app automatically screens out anyone who currently works for the same company that you do.
Much of your personal info is auto-populated via LinkedIn, including your employment and education information. If you want to edit or hide it, you'll have to upgrade.
You’ll still need to enter some basic personal information, choose your 6 photos, and complete a short “About Me” section.
Choosing Your Photos
The League pulls your photos from Facebook, and allows you to arrange them in the order you prefer. Keep in mind your primary photo will be automatically shown in black and white, so selecting an image with high contrast will probably look best:
In fact, the image above comes from a group of neuroscientists who decided to definitively answer the question, “What makes the perfect Tinder photo?” Their findings will serve you well on The League, and on any other dating sites and apps you use as well.
In addition to choosing an image with high contrast, you’ll also want to use a primary photo where:
- You’re the only person in the frame
- The upper 2/3rds of your body is visible (i.e. a mid-range closeup)
- You’re making eye contact with the camera
For even more expert photo advice, check out this article.
Writing Your Bio
At 190 characters or less, The League “About Me” bio is even shorter than a Tinder one. But don’t be tempted to skip it - The League’s reviewers want to know you’re serious about finding someone, so putting in the effort is practically mandatory.
The app’s core value centers around exclusive dating - matching people who are successful, ambitious, intelligent and seeking the same, so make sure your bio hits those notes.
League Bio Pro Tip:
When every character counts, emojis can be your new best friend. These colorful symbols are not only eye-catching, but they pack a lot of punch. Here’s a League profile example that illustrates why you’re a catch, in less than 190 characters:
Want more profile tips? Check out these League profile examples for guys!
Next, you’ll set your “perfect match” criteria, including gender, age range, height range, distance away, ethnicity, education, and religion.
League users also have the option of including a 10-second video profile. Doing this can give you an edge over your competition because users who include a video profile get prioritized by the matching algorithm. Of course, it's only an advantage if you knock it out of the park.
Here are 3 League video profile tips:
#1: Highlight a few interests that also hint at your personality.
10 seconds will go by in a snap, so you need everything you mention to pack as much of a punch as possible. Mention a couple of hobbies that strategically showcase a range of attractive qualities, like intelligence, physical fitness, a sense of adventure, etc.
#2: Practice - but don't memorize.
You want to seem approachable, genuine and interesting in your video profile - not stiff, rehearsed and nervous. Run through what you want to say a few times, but not to the point where it sounds like you're reciting. That's also why reading your profile isn't ideal - you want to look at the camera and make a connection via strong eye contact.
#3: Pay attention to the lighting & background.
Few things are more distracting in a video than terrible lighting - and it won't do you any favors in the looks department either. You also want everything that's visible in the background to elevate the impression she's forming of you as she watches it, so choose your surroundings carefully.
Once you’ve completed your profile, you’ll be placed on The League’s wait list for your city.
How To Get Off The League Waitlist
Wondering how to get off the League waitlist? Purchasing a full membership will guarantee you an expedited review - within 48 hours (Monday through Friday). You can also refer 2 friends for guaranteed entry.
You can also get an expedited review on The League by doing things like referring a friend to sign up or tweaking your profile, but that same 48-hour timeline doesn't apply.
Free users who complete all of the following tasks will be reviewed before users who don't:
- Add your phone
- Upload 3 photos minimum
- Connect Instagram & LinkedIn
- Complete your profile
- Let them know how you heard about the app
The League app rejection process is pretty simple, you’ll get a notification that your profile didn’t make the cut. To avoid getting rejected by The League, check out these tips!
Matching On The League
When you are accepted, you’ll receive 3-15 prospective matches, called “prospects”, every day at 5 pm. The number of matches depends on your membership level.
When you like one of your daily “5 at 5” prospective matches and they’ve already liked your profile, you’ll get a “Home Run” notification.
According to the app, the person who gets the Home Run notification should send the first message. But that’s only a suggestion - not a rule.
You can swipe left or right, and if the interest is mutual the messaging platform opens. The League also has a video chat feature.
Time Limits On The League
Either half of a match can start messaging first on The League, but if it doesn’t happen within 21 days the match will expire.
Matches will also expire if the conversation stalls for longer than 14 days. It is possible to rematch with expired matches on The League at a later date.
If you are no longer interested in someone, you can unmatch people on The League by clicking the X in the top right corner and selecting “Expire.”
Your League Score
Be selective about doing this, though - as it can make your League Score go from “Not Flaky” to “Semi-Flaky” or “Flaky” if you do it too often.
That can really torpedo your match rate, especially with people looking for a long-term relationship. (Other factors that affect your League Score include how complete your profile is, how active you are on the app, and if you’ve been reported by other users.)
The League strictly adheres to the criteria you set for your ideal partner. So if your preferences are uber specific, you may get few (or no) matches.
If you’re not getting many matches, you can spend 5 League Tickets to “Boost” your profile. Each boost shows it to an additional 50 people who fit your preferences. Otherwise, your profile is shown to only 3-5 other users.
How The League’s Algorithm Works
While the exact workings are a closely held secret, The League isn’t shy about letting members know what behaviors will boost (or hurt) your rating:
- Members who log in daily are rewarded with a 10% higher match rate, and users who don’t are demoted. In the words of The League’s concierge, “We play favorites, and we’re proud of it.”
- Members deemed “Flaky”, i.e. who match but don’t message, or don’t respond to messages they receive, will also be penalized by The League’s algorithm.
- If you’re a “Guest” (free) member, The League’s “kick-out algorithm” will kick in and boot you off the app if you don’t log in for 30 days.
- Guests will also be kicked out of The League for consistently failing to respond to first messages. If you’re a Guest removed for either flakiness or inactivity, the only way back in is upgrading to a Member subscription.
Video Dating With League Live
League Live is a feature that allows singles to participate in 3-minute video dates. It happens twice a week, on Sundays and Wednesdays at 9 pm in select cities.
If you opt-in and are selected, each Sunday and Wednesday evening at 9 you can have a 3-minute conversation with 3 different potential matches, chosen by the app based on your preferences and location.
At the start of each video date, you’ll both be shown an icebreaker to get the conversation started. You can tap the “heart” to “like” the person at any time during your date, or afterward.
If there’s mutual opt-in, you’ll match and the messaging platform opens up.
The feature is available to both paid and free users, although League Members will get preference during the matching process. League Live is free, for now. But a low League Score will keep you from being able to access it.
According to Bradford, video dates are a way to help guarantee authenticity as well as a way to get to know a potential match before investing time on a first date.
"2020 is the year of authenticity, which is why we built League Live, the only functionality in any dating app that emulates meeting randomly in real life, but within a protected environment with verified users."
PRO TIP: How To Prep For Your League Live Date
Speed dating is all about making a good impression. The fact that you’re doing it via a screen instead of in person means you need to do a little prep work.
The whole point of League Live is to turn a potential match into an actual match - and hopefully speed up the process of them wanting to meet you in person.
Here are 3 League Live dating tips:
#1: Consider the lighting.
Natural light is generally the most flattering, but that’s usually lacking at 9 pm. Make sure the room you’re in is well-lit, and that your light source isn’t fluorescent. Position yourself and your camera where you aren’t cast in shadow - the whole point is for your match to get a good look at the “real” you.
#2: Go to your quiet place.
Everyone knows how frustrating (not to mention annoying) it is to be on the phone with someone whose kids or dogs are going nuts in the background, or their TV is blaring. Try your best to keep the background noise to a minimum for the 6 minutes you’ll be video dating.
#3: Look your best.
Unlike a Bumble video call, League video dates are a scheduled event - so don’t look like it caught you by surprise. Make sure you’re as presentable to your potential matches as you would be if you were meeting for drinks.
For more expert advice on how to prepare for your video date, check out these video chatting tips!
Meet The Best Singles On The League - Without Spending A Ton Of Time
The League is jam-packed with the kind of high-quality matches you’re looking to meet, which makes it one of the best dating apps for professionals. But keep in mind your competition is just as successful and ambitious as you are. If they weren’t, they wouldn’t have gotten past those metaphorical velvet ropes, right?
You’re up against the best of the best, so that means you need to bring your A-game at every level, from your profile to your photos to your messages. And remember, you get penalized for not checking the app on the daily… so better set that reminder now.
Wishing there was a way to meet the most attractive, intriguing people The League has to offer without devoting a ton of time you don’t have to the app?
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