Bumble: is the female-friendly dating app also a good choice for men? Putting Bumble to the test


(70/100 points)

Want to make new social contacts or score a quick date?
The dating app where women have the say
says Ben

The Bumble app lets you quickly and directly establish new contacts for dating, friendship and work. The idea of Bumble is that it’s more than ‘just’ a dating app.

Once you’re logged in to the app, you can decide what kind of contacts you’re looking for: flirt, friendship or business.

On Bumble, women always make the first move. This page explains why. In addition, it examines whether Bumble really works as a dating app in New Zealand.

Bumble in comparison

A popular NZ dating site for everyone

On b2 NZ you’ll surely find singles from all age groups and from all walks of life. There is something here for everyone.

Popular dating site for educated singles

Academic Singles is aimed at academics and educated NZ singles who are looking for a suitable life partner among like-minded people.

Dating site for singles over 50 with ambitions

Singles50 NZ is a dating service that focuses exclusively on singles in their prime. Women and men over 40 are looking for a life partner here.

Intelligent and thoughtful matchmaking

If you’re looking to find someone on your wavelength, EliteSingles is the dating service for you! With a detailed personality questionnaire and profile builder, being matched with someone who has similar qualities, values, and professional achievements is almost a guarantee.

The app with the intelligent matching algorithm

The Zoosk app sounds quite promising in its ads. After all, more than 40 million singles worldwide are said to be registered here. In addition, more than 3 million messages are sent daily. But can this dating site really convince New Zealand as well? Will a membership be worthwhile?

Bumble Pros

  • Registration is quick and easy

  • The app is completely free to use

  • Users can connect for different purposes (flirt, friendship and business)

  • A high number of female users, since women are in control of the first move

Bumble Cons

  • Fewer users in rural areas

  • The conversation has to start within 24 hours of matching. Users need to be quick!

  • Male users should be prepared to be a little patient.

What exactly is the Bumble (dating) app? Keep reading to find out!

Think the Bumble app is just another (dating) app in a crowded field? Think again!

The idea of Bumble as a dating app is only a partial truth.

Instead, the Bumble app is a location-based social search app intended for use by both women and men. In addition to dating, it gives users the option to connect in two additional ways:

Bumble Dating (Flirt)

Are you a member of the old school that thinks men should always make the first move?

If so, Bumble might surprise you!

With Bumble Dating, it’s women who are in the driving seat. Only women have the option to start a conversation with a match – not men.

Thanks to this woman-first concept, the app challenges traditional gender roles in dating and shakes up the online dating landscape.

The next section explains why this concept has significant advantages for both male and female users.

Bumble BFF (Friendship)

This function allows users to expand their circle of friends and contacts, e.g. if they’re new to a town or city and want to connect with like-minded people. Bumble BFF makes it possible to start conversations with different people in the local area.

Bumble BIZZ (Business)

Bumble BIZZ is all about generating new business contacts.

It’s intended to help users find potential business partners, clients and much more. BIZZ is for all types of professional networking.

That said, it’s the opportunity to connect with romantic dates that is by far Bumble’s most popular feature.

For this reason, we’re going to take a closer look at Bumble in this capacity.

Our recommendation: be2
A popular NZ dating site for everyone

On b2 NZ you’ll surely find singles from all age groups and from all walks of life. There is something here for everyone.

How exactly does the Bumble dating app work?

The basic structure of the app is similar to that of many other modern dating apps.

Just like Tinder, Lovoo or Badoo, the app suggests potential romantic contacts in your area. Swiping left on a potential contact means you’re not interested. Swiping right means: I’m interested, I wanted to know more.

If you like each other and both swipe right, this is a ‘match’. How Bumble DIFFERS from other apps is that once a match takes place, the woman has 24 hours to initiate a conversation with the man. If she does not do so, the connection expires. The man cannot start a conversation to prevent this happening.

As a man, you need to be prepared to be patient – there is no chance for you to actively initiate contact. After a match, the woman can check the man’s profile and, if she likes what she sees, it’s up to her to start talking.

Sounds strange? Not at all!

Let’s look a little closer at the ‘woman-first’ concept:

Why does Bumble give women the chance to make the first move?

First and foremost, the app stands for equality and an enhanced dating experience. Women on dating apps tend be flooded with inappropriate, non-serious conversation starters from men who only want one thing.

When women make the first move, men are forced to make more effort with their profiles. On the plus side, they don’t need to worry what the first message should say.

Women, on the other hand, need to be courageous enough to craft a message and start the conversation. By reversing the roles in this way, the app creates greater balance between the sexes.

Whose idea was this?

Bumble co-founder Whitney Wolfe previously worked at Tinder, but quit the then-market leader due to sexual harassment. She and two colleagues launched Bumble to protect women and give them back the ‘control’ in the process of getting to know potential dates.

Does it actually work?

Yes, absolutely! Here’s why:

Women really like using Bumble. Compared to many other NZ dating platforms, the percentage of female users is impressively high! This is became women are in control of who they want to contact and when.

If the number of potential female matches is high, men are happy, too. The Bumble dating format also offers men a number of additional advantages:

They don’t need to send countless messages to women in the aim of increasing their chances of success – nor do they need to steel themselves for numerous rejections when these women don’t reply. Men who are contacted proactively by women can feel confident that the woman is genuinely interested.

Sounds more than fair, right? Experience shows that both men and women can look forward to saved time and more successful dates.

Can I arrange dates via Bumble for free in New Zealand?

Quite simply:

If you thought that Bumble has to cost money, you’re mistaken.

There is well-functioning version of the app available for free!

The basic version of the app can be used completely free of charge: that is, you don’t need to take out a subscription. The basic version lets you create a profile, upload pictures and start swiping through potential contacts in your area.

Most importantly:

If you get a match, you can also correspond with your potential date for free.

But that’s not the whole story…

The makers of the app have to make money – which is why there are a range of additional (premium) features that can only be activated against payment.

Below is an overview of current prices for additional features on the Bumble App.

Bumble Boost

Bumble Boost is a premium feature that allows you to see who has already ‘liked’ you on the app. This means you don’t have to keep swiping until you find a match. Bumble Boost can also be used to rematch with expired matches or send a reply to a timed-out conversation.

Bumble Boost is priced as follows:

  • One week: NZ$ 15
  • One month: NZ$ 42
  • Three months: NZ$ 85
  • Bumble Boost Lifetime (forever): NZ$ 240

Bumble Coins

Bumble Coins let you unlock two more premium features to make your profile even more visible.

With ‘Spotlight’ (price: 2 coins), you can bring your profile to the top of the profile stack, ensuring that it’s seen by as many men (and/or) women as possible. This temporary gives your profile higher visibility.

Coins can also be used to gain access to the ‘SuperSwipe’ function. Like ‘Spotlight’, this costs two coins and is similar to ‘SuperLike’ on competitor platform Tinder. A ‘SuperSwipe’ can be used to show that you’re particularly interested in a profile or contact.

Bumble Coins are offered in a range of packages. These are priced as follows:

  • 5 Bumble Coins for NZ$ 14
  • 15 Bumble Coins for NZ$ 36
  • 30 Bumble Coins for NZ$ 60

Another highlight of the app is the chance to earn ‘VIBee’ status, a VIP status that grants users access to an exclusive VIP area. However, this can’t be purchased: it needs to be earnt by using the app.

VIBee status on Bumble

If you are consistently respectful and friendly with your connections and are an active and regular user, it won’t take long for you to become eligible for VIBee status.

As previously mentioned, this is not a status you can buy with cash. Instead, you need to ‘be nice’ and follow the rules of the app. VIBee is a special status reserved for regular and respective users of the app.

To be selected for this VIP status, however, you need to actively request it. When you do so, an algorithm will calculate how active you’ve been in recent months. If you’ve done enough to achieve the status, you’ll be permitted to mingle with other VIPs on the app with immediate effect.

But is it even worth it?

The answer: for sure!

With VIBee status, you’ll get access to the ‘best’ NZ Bumble users and will be automatically granted a level of trust based on your previous respectful behaviour. Because of this, Bumble VIBee access can bring real rewards for your dating life!

Do I need the premium features to have success on the app?

What’s the deal with premium features? Are they worth the money, or is a normal profile enough to establish successful connections?

Our honest opinion:

If your aim is not solely to win as dates as possible as quickly as possible, and if you enjoy occasionally swiping and chatting with interesting contacts, you don’t need Bumble’s premium features.

However, if you want to establish as many new contacts as quickly as possible and find what you’re looking for in minimal time, premium features can be very useful.

It’s up to you to decide the speed you want to go at.

Our advice, for what it’s worth, is to try out the free version first. It won’t take long to get an idea of whether or not it meets your needs.

Our expert says
I recommend to have a look at be2. In all tests the results were very positive and also the user feedback was outstanding.

Scammers and fakes: how safe is Bumble in New Zealand?

When it comes to dating apps, this is a question that crops up again and again. Are there fake profiles? What about other scammers?

The simple truth is: no-one should go into dating apps with their eyes closed!

A certain number of fakes and scammers are an inevitability in any (free) dating app. On paid dating platforms, this is usually much less of an issue – but that’s another subject entirely.

The simplest and most common type of scam is simply ‘fake profiles’.

Users who are aware of this and act accordingly should be able to recognise fake profiles before getting too involved in a conversation.

Below are a few tips for identifying fake profiles and other attempted scams:

Use Google

If you have the feeling that the person you’re taking to is not real, the first thing to do is check their picture. Carry out a reverse image search on Google to find out if the picture has been uploaded onto other platforms and if the information matches what your Bumble match has told you.
This method will enable you to identify the vast majority of fake profiles in a relatively short space of time. Once you have done so, you can report the profile to customer service or block them in the app. If you have the real name of your match, you can also briefly google it and compare the information with what you have been told.

Check social media

Social media can also be used to check the authenticity of a profile. Such a check is simple to perform and often reveals a number of interesting insights. Nowadays, it is very rare that there are no traces of a person online. If your match’s profile appears ‘not right’, e.g. due to unusual activity, proceed with the conversation with caution.

Ask about your match’s employer

If you’re a naturally forthright and direct kind of character, you could also ask your match about their current job. They might tell you which company they work for, which will enable you to find the employer’s website or LinkedIn page (you might also be able to find your contact on LinkedIn.).

Arrange a meeting in person

Scammers typically want to remain incognito, so will rarely agree to a real-life date. They often act as though they are willing to commit to a date, but cancel or postpone it shortly before it’s due to take place.

Stay on the safe side by arranging any meet-ups in a public place. If your conversation partner agrees to meet and actually turns up, this is a good sign.

Bumble verification

The Bumble app also offers users the option to have their profiles verified. If you come across a profile that seems strange, check if you can see a ‘Verified’ sign.

Of course, you can also consider having your own profile verified. Experience shows that this likely increases your probability of success.

How does it work?

  • Find the ‘Verification’ button in your profile.
  • You’ll be asked to take a selfie of yourself. Bumble will stipulate a gesture that must be performed in the selfie, e.g. a wave.
  • Perform the gesture as requested by Bumble.
  • Once you have sent the selfie, the Bumble team will check the photo for authenticity.
  • Within a few minutes, you’ll receive a confirmation (or rejection!) of the verification process.

In summary

There is no specific ‘Bumble scam’. Rather, scammers and fakes follow the same pattern as on other online portals, which makes them easier to weed them out. Some are more inventive than others. If in doubt, it’s a good idea to listen to your gut feeling. If it’s telling you something’s not right, it’s probably correct.

The ranking in comparison

Our experiences with Bumble NZ: who actually uses the app, and what’s the secret to success?

Still unsure as to whether Bumble is the right dating app for you?

Here, we’re going to take a closer look at our own and others’ experiences on the Bumble dating app in New Zealand. Based on this, you can decide for yourself whether you think Bumble is the right fit for you.

Registering on the Bumble app is completely free of charge. It’s also very quick to do: you’ll be signed up and ready to go within a few minutes.

The design of the app is very effective. The logo is reminiscent of a beehive – perhaps because here, as in the world of bees, the woman is the queen.

There are a few other things worth mentioning. These are:

Bumble is an app for all types of contact

As previously mentioned, Bumble is designed to facilitate connections for different purposes – not only for romance, but for friendship and business (if so desired).

Essentially, Bumble aims to be the first port of call for users seeking to form new connections in every area of their lives.

Women have control; men have to wait for a message

When it comes to initiating contact, women have complete control: they decide who has permission to write to them. Logically, this has advantages not only for women, but also for men.

Men are spared the effort of crafting the initial message and only receive messages from women who are genuinely interested. Experience shows that this division of roles saves male and female users a great deal of time.

The first message on a dating platform is famously tricky. Many men find it hard to find the right words. Bumble eliminates this hurdle with its woman-goes-first concept.

It’s not the best for country types

We’ve nothing against those who live in the country – but our experience with Bumble shows that the app is most used in cities, towns and surrounding urban areas. Rural areas have far fewer users, and Bumble can feel like a waste of time.

While the number of rural users is increasing every month (and there may be a decent user base in the future), the rate of increase is currently quite slow. If you live in the country, we recommend you choose the dating apps and sites that have significantly more active users in your region.

Bumble – an app for those who are prepared to move quickly

To be successful on Bumble, you need to be quick. This is because the matches and the time window for replying to an opening message expire after 24 hours. If you miss the time window for replying to the first message, the match disappears.

As such, checking the app occasionally and ‘maybe’ getting around to writing won’t bring results. If you choose to start using Bumble, you should also stay active.

5.1 Who actually uses the app?

Bumble is now used in a number of countries around the world. It started in the USA, where most users are still located. However, Bumble is steadily gaining popularity in New Zealand. Big cities have a considerable number of users, while the app’s user base in rural areas is still quite small.

Most New Zealand singles who use Bumble are between 18 and 35 and live in big cities like Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

Summing up our experiences with Bumble

If you’re not solely looking to add numbers to your phone book and are open to finding a serious relationship, Bumble is definitely worth a try. It can also be effective for establishing other types of contacts (friendship, business). Do you value fast-paced chats and respectful interaction? Bumble might be what you’re looking for!

While the number of users in New Zealand has some room for improvement, trying the app for free means you don’t have much to lose. And if it’s not important to you that your romantic connections contacts are in the immediate area, Bumble could be lots of fun indeed.

5.2 Improving your success on Bumble

Have you registered on Bumble and are ready to get started?

Then let‘s get going! It’s time to throw yourself into the flirting fun. Before you do so, check our 6 tips below for success on Bumble. These tips apply whether you‘re looking for interesting romantic connections, new friends or business contacts.

a) Make your profile stand out

Take a minute to look at your profile and ask yourself honestly: would you reply to you? A complete, well thought-out profile can significantly improve what you get out of the app. In reality, it’s the profile that separates the wheat from the chaff.

So what should you include? Well, alongside general facts about yourself, try to incorporate something creative that helps to describe your character.

Struggling to get creative?

If you're not feeling creative or need help with your profile, just ask the Bumble app – or rather, let the app ask you! You can use ready-made text templates or answer simple questions that then appear in your profile, such as “My secret talent is...” or “What is your favourite series?”

You should also ensure that you have a good mix of photos. Your potential matches should be able to see you from different angles to get an accurate impression of what you look like. Casual photos leave just as good an impression as more serious images. Test out a few poses and choose photos in both ‘business’ and ‘casual’ mode.

A word of caution: new-fangled, unrealistic filters won’t necessarily do you any favours! Classic and simple is good as a general rule.

b) Increasing your number of Bumble matches

The most important rule here is: activity, activity, activity!

It’s only by actively looking that new matches can be found. Try to be active and ‘swiping’ for a couple of minutes a day. Waiting at the bus stop? Why not open Bumble and spend 5 minutes finding your next date?

When you first start swiping, try not to be too picky. If a person doesn’t look like your ‘perfect partner’, give him or her a chance. Who knows – you might be a perfect match in terms of personality (in which case, looks are a lot less important)!

c) The first message

The initial message usually determines whether things will progress to a genuine conversation. Boring, run-of-the-mill questions like “How are you?” or “Where are you from?” tend to be ignored. If you rely too heavily on such questions, you shouldn’t be surprised if flirtatious exchanges and dates don’t arise.

What’s the right way to do it?

Study your match’s profile carefully! Try to pick out something that could be used as a hook for a conversation starter.

Does your Bumble dream girl have holiday pictures in her profile? Ask an interesting question about them. Even better: perhaps you’ve taken a similar trip in the past and already have something in common. In this case, starting a conversation couldn’t be easier!

(Shared) hobbies in your match’s profile are also a good starting point.

d) The not-so-easy part: keeping the conversation going

Have you managed to get chatting to a match?

Great! Any conversation has the potential to turn into a memorable story.

At this point, your focus should be on keeping the conversation going. In many cases, it can be surprisingly tricky to chat to someone you don’t really know.

How can you achieve a flowing conversation with a (virtual) stranger?

The secret is: open questions.

Ask your match questions that can’t be answered with a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

Of course, you should also be prepared to reveal something of yourself. Tell your chat partner about an unusual experience you had in the last week or what made you laugh today – despite it being a Monday! Above all, stay positive – there’ll be plenty of time to address sensitive or tricky issues in the future. In the beginning, it's about getting to know each other in a light-hearted way.

It’s also vital that you remain authentic. Don’t try to present yourself as anything other than what you are. Being fake is never the answer! If you make it to the date stage, your partner will know immediately that you’re not the real deal – if they haven’t figured it out already!

e) A first date from Bumble

Do you like your conversation partner and want to take things to the next stage?

If so, don’t stay in the virtual bubble for too long. A date takes the getting-to-know-you process to a new level.

Not sure how to transition from chat to date?

It’s not as tricky as it might seem! It often helps to talk about ‘meeting up’ or ‘having a drink’ rather than ‘going on a date’.

You can also lead with a venue suggestion rather than a request for the date itself.


Let’s say you know that your date is a big fan of Indian food. Tell him/her that you know of an amazing Indian restaurant in the neighbourhood, and invite them for a bite to eat so you can ‘chat uninterrupted’.

It really can be that easy!

f) How to ensure your Bumble date is a success

The all-important rule for a successful date is to be relaxed!

Of course, this is easier said than done!

To ensure your date has a positive conclusion, try to be yourself 100% of the time.

Another way to score points is with self-confidence. Projecting a self-confident, authentic impression is almost guaranteed to generate romantic attraction. People who come across as self-confident and natural are always received positively by others (note: self-confident, not arrogant!).

At the same time, however, you should be careful that you don’t try to be someone you are not. Women, in particular, have a good sense for fake behaviour and are quick to sniff out a lack of authenticity.

Not sure what to talk about?

Afraid of long gaps in the conversation?

Before you leave the house, think of a couple of things you want to talk about or to share with your date. These could be funny anecdotes, interesting facts or special experiences. If there is a break in the conversation, you’ll have a new and interesting topic at your fingertips.

In addition, spend some time thinking about the topics that have no place on a first date. Potentially controversial topics such as politics, religion or ex-partners should be struck off your mental list, as should negative topics and any talk of feeling sorry for your (single) self.

If women are worried about finding a partner, they sometimes make the mistake of speaking earnestly about their desire to have children. Wanting to have children is all well and good – and might be a desire that shared by the match – but as a general rule, the first date is too early to talk about such far-reaching decisions.

Our recommendations

A popular NZ dating site for everyone

  • A good number of contact suggestions
  • Search across borders function
  • A balanced gender ratio
  • A clear and easy interface design
  • Several different ways of initiating contact with users
Popular dating site for educated singles

  • High success rate: 41%
  • Easy to use: Focus on what's important
  • Balanced women/men ratio of 49% to 51%
  • No fake profiles were discovered during the test
  • Matching algorithms suggest suitable partners based on the psychological test
  • Profile photos can be unlocked individually
Dating site for singles over 50 with ambitions

  • Easy-to-use platform, straightforward
  • Photos can be unlocked individually
  • Wide range of options for profile design
  • Verified profile photos
  • App for Android and Apple users available
  • Fair prices
Intelligent and thoughtful matchmaking

  • The detailed personality test makes it highly likely you will be matched with someone similar
  • EliteSingles has within its site a range of good safety measures.
  • Relationship experts offer video tutorials and blogs offering advice as to how users can optimize their EliteSingles experience.
The app with the intelligent matching algorithm

  • The profile can be easily be set up within a few minutes
  • Extensive search functions with numerous parameters
  • The Zoosk app offers the same range of features as an online portal
  • Subscriptions and additional options can be cancelled quickly and hassle free

FAQ - Bumble

User ratings and user feedback

Average User Rating
Average: 6.7 (9 votes)


12/17/2020 - 04:00

Hi guys, its me. I can recommend bumble a lot. Reason why is, that there is pressure. It can also be about making friends. So the people you message ar much more natural.

User rating
Average: 9 (1 vote)
12/18/2020 - 03:19

Bumble is worth nothing in southern NZ. It's basically empty. Maybe in Auckland or Wellington worth a try but nothing for me.

User rating
Average: 1 (1 vote)
12/19/2020 - 01:45

Hi guys, I live in Christchurch and am quite happy with this service. Quite a lot people and at last an app without those nasty fake profiles. I really can recommend this.

User rating
Average: 10 (1 vote)
03/05/2021 - 01:05

I have already tried several apps and am finally I now use bumble. I'm tired of Tinder. Only a few matches on Tinder, even though I swipe right a lot. And when I do have a match, the women don't reply. On Bumble, on the other hand, the response rate is much higher.In general, Bumble seems to have fewer members in New Zealand than Tinder, but women I've matched have mostly replied. What I also like about Bumble is that I don't have to do anything after a match except wait for a woman to write. If she writes, then I know she really wants to write with me.

User rating
Average: 8 (1 vote)
03/05/2021 - 05:10

From a female perspective, I can also confirm that I prefer using the Bumble app much more than tinder.I simply feel safer here. There are no stupid pick-up lines from men, because I decide which guy I write to.

User rating
Average: 9 (1 vote)
03/26/2021 - 03:46

The idea is good, but the female users are too arrogant. They're all women's libbers here who think they're something better. I used bumble for a few days and just wanted to leave quickly.

User rating
Average: 4 (1 vote)
03/29/2021 - 05:17

I have to say I like the idea that women have to make the first step. I've seen it on tinder where I've texted 10 women and none of them have responded. Here I just wait for the message from the woman and then I'm sure a conversation will happen. There are also plenty of attractive women on Bumble. You can really have fun with the app.

User rating
Average: 9 (1 vote)
04/01/2021 - 02:34

Super app. As a woman, I have full control over who I want to write with. So I can save myself all those meaningless messages from random guys. I can definitely recommend bumble from a female perspective.

User rating
Average: 9 (1 vote)
04/01/2021 - 05:04

nothing but really bad experiences !!! stay away from this app !!!

User rating
Average: 1 (1 vote)