The ultimate guide to success with dating apps in New Zealand

Today, dating apps are a dime a dozen. But which one should you choose? And what’s the best way to secure a date quickly?

Our guide helps you figure out which app is right for you and gives tips to help you make the most of your experience.

Newbies to online dating often envision themselves downloading the app and heading off on their first date just a short while later.

But can it really be so simple?

For those who know what they’re doing, the answer is: yes. As a newcomer, however, you’ll save yourself a good deal of frustration by getting to know the rules of the game beforehand.

That’s where this article comes in. Once you’re finished, you’ll know everything there is to know to succeed as a newbie. We’ll cover both apps for sexual liaisons and apps and websites for singles seeking a serious partner.

Our recommendations

Test winner: Most NZ-women looking for sex

Discover the naughty world of fun from BeNaughty. This is where adults from New Zealand can find and arrange real sex dates and hookups.

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.

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?

Dating apps: pros, cons, opportunities and costs

While getting to know fellow singles via apps has a number of plus points, it’s not without its negatives. These can include:


  • Profile information and photos are often deliberately deceptive. It is quite common for a user’s age to be ‘corrected’ upwards or downwards, depending on who they want to attract.
  • Often, the ‘perfect body’ you see on the pictures has had a little help from Photoshop.
  • 10-year old pictures are presented as ‘current’.
  • Declarations about weight are generously rounded down.
  • Not everything is honest about what they are looking for. In general: the cheaper the platform is to use, the higher the proportion of users looking for a way to kill time (not a genuine connection).

To sum up: when looking for a partner on a dating app, you’ll often only understand who you’re dealing with after the first date. Reserve judgement until then!


  • If you make the effort to furnish your profile with a witty description and attractive pictures, you’ll almost always be rewarded with plenty of messages.
  • A thoughtfully written, accurate profile saves you wasting time with pointless dates. When might this apply? Well, think about what happens when two people meet and disagree over whether they want children. This fundamental difference often means that any relationship between the two is doomed.
  • Users are able to ‘meet’ many more people in a short space of time than they would at a party (for example). This increases the chances of a compatible match.
  • Users can get to know people they would never otherwise have met. This often leads to lifelong friendships – if nothing else!
  • Dating apps make flirting smoother and easier than ever before. Why? Well, the most important requirement is already in place: both people are interested. The only thing that remains to be seen is whether the ‘chemistry’ is there.

To sum up: Dating apps and websites should be seen as tools to help you achieve your goal more efficiently. Thus, you should first be clear about your goal, then select the right tool (i.e. the right app) and learn how to use it. If you carry out these steps, you’ll quickly find what you are looking for.

Nothing great comes for free

Dating apps also differ in terms of cost.

Officially speaking, some dating apps are ‘free’ and others are ‘paid-for’. However, nothing is completely without cost. If you don’t have to pay money to use the app, it’s your personal data that is the currency.

When it comes to paid-for apps, prices correspond roughly to the complexity of what users are looking for. Dating apps that specialise in finding love usually charge the most.

Women often pay less or receive special discount offers via email shortly after signing up. On the most popular NZ casual dating apps, women often don’t have to pay anything at all.

Think that’s unfair to men?

Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t. In reality, it’s just one of the ways in which dating apps seek to achieve a well-balanced ratio of women and men, enhancing the user experience for all.

Ultimately, this serves to speed up everyone’s search for a partner.

Our recommendation: BeNaughty
Test winner: Most NZ-women looking for sex

Discover the naughty world of fun from BeNaughty. This is where adults from New Zealand can find and arrange real sex dates and hookups.

Why are dating apps so popular right now in New Zealand?

Are you looking to meet new people, but are busy with work or don’t feel like going out to crowded clubs or bars?

If so, there could be few more obvious solutions than downloading a dating app, settling down on the couch and diving into the world of online dating.

However, this solution is not always all it seems. Before we go any further, it’s important to acknowledge that is not always the desire for human connection that drives people to dating apps like Tinder, Badoo, Lovoo, OkCupid, C-date and co.

Some single app users are just looking to kill time or boost their ego

Not all NZ singles who use dating apps are looking to meet new people in person.

So, what drives them to use dating apps?

In most cases, boredom. They may simply be looking for a casual flirtation that can be broken off at any time. Often, they are not interested in a match progressing further than that

Are you in the camp described above? Or are you keen to get to real-life meetings and prefer to keep the chat phase brief?

If the latter, it’s important to be sure to choose the right app (more on that later)

Are there alternatives to getting to know a partner via an app?

Well, of course. We always have choices in life – and dating is no exception.

Surveys show that a large number of singles in New Zealand still meet their partners at work, at group leisure activities and at private parties. However – a word of caution!

If you share a hobby or workplace and need to avoid each other after a break-up, this can be tricky for both parties. Here, dating apps have the edge. If you match with someone outside of your regular circle, it‘s much easier to part ways if things don’t work out.

The ranking in comparison

Which dating apps for what?

One frequently asked question by app users is: which dating app is ‘best’?

Of course, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. Rather, ‘the best app‘ will depend on your interests and what you are looking for.

So, how to choose?

To begin with, you should be clear about what you actually want: casual dating, flirty chat or a (potential) partner for life.

As a second step, it’s a good idea to select two to three apps to try. We recommend choosing those that come top in our NZ dating app comparisons.

Next, download your chosen apps, create profiles and test the apps extensively. It usually won’t take long to realise which you prefer and which are less suited to your needs.

NZ Dating apps for casual flirting and no-strings fun

Are you looking for super-charged fun, sensual dates and nights of no-strings-fun?

If so, here are a few things to consider:

  • Go for an app that permits you to upload intimate photos.
  • The uploading of face photos should always be optional. Alternatively, there should be an option to blur them. All of the ‘proper’ casual dating apps featured here (e.g. C-date, AshleyMadison, BeNaughty, etc.) offer this option. Try the one that appeals to you most.
  • Make sure the app you choose has a sufficiently high number of members. Note: all of the casual dating apps presented here fulfil that requirement.
  • Regarding photos: you can upload anything that will be a turn-on for potential partners, but be sure to do so in a tasteful way. This applies particularly for men!
  • Less is more: the opening message should be no more than five sentences long.

So – which app is best for sex in New Zealand?

Here, too, opinions vary depending on who you ask. Female users pay nothing or very little on most portals, so may have nothing to lose by trying several at once.

On the other hand, women are likely to have endure bad pick-up lines and poorly or non-filled out profiles. This is why an app comparison can help to save time.

Men, meanwhile, usually have to pay for casual dating apps. For men, in particular, it’s worth taking a closer look at the various apps and portals and what they can offer.

The best way to do this is to use our comparison and app recommendations.

Which dating apps are best for which age groups?

The distribution of age groups is usually quite similar across various dating apps. (Dating apps for those over 50 are a different story, of course!)

What does this mean in practice?

  • Among users looking for serious long-term partners, the average age is often around 40.
  • Among users looking for casual flirting and chat, the average age is lower – usually between 25 and 35.

However, the total number of members is usually more important than the average age.

Because of this, we recommend you stick to good-quality, reputable NZ dating apps that guarantee enough users for a good chance of a match.

Using an app to find a life partner

Had your fair share of fun? Tired of the single life and want to find a steady relationship?

If so, you should choose a dating app or website that’s designed for serious dating.

This leads us to perhaps the most-discussed question of all:

Which NZ dating app is best for men and women looking for a serious relationship (and eventually, marriage)?

EliteSinges, be2, AcademicSingles and eHarmony lead the pack in terms of user numbers in almost all English-speaking countries

Try out one of the big dating sites featured here and see if you like it. With these sites, you can feel confident that you’re not going to waste your time.

Most serious NZ dating apps and portals are subject to at least a moderate fee. This has both pros and cons.

Why is it bad? Because we all prefer to get things for free!

On the other hand, people who subscribe to an expensive dating service tend to be serious about finding someone. They’re not there to play games. They’re 100% committed to finding a match.

Even if you’re serious about finding your dream partner in the shortest time possible, it’s a good idea to take it steady.

Taking it slow reduces your risk of rejection. If a person is anxious about being alone and runs straight into the arms of whoever comes along, they tend to come across as anything but sexy. So:

Always maintain your self-respect!

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

Tips for greater success with dating apps

The information you provide in your profile will determine the level of interest you get from other singles and how often they reply to your messages. In other words:

Along with the right choice of dating app, a good profile is the most important factor for success in online dating.

What information is particularly important?

You might be surprised to realise that you can answer this question for yourself. Take a pen and a piece of paper and choose five profiles at random in any dating app.

Now, ask yourself a few simple questions:

Am I interested in the person behind the profile? Would I start a conversation with him/her? If so, why? Note down key words to answer these questions.

If you find you are not interested in the profiles you have picked, write down the reasons for this as well.

Once you’ve repeated this procedure for at least five profiles, think about whether you, yourself, represent the good points you value in other singles.

Et voilá – now you know what you need to do to improve yourself!

What write in your profile: no-gos, bad fits and attractive qualities


No-gos are characteristics or views that you view as complete deal-breakers. To save others the trouble of writing an initial message and yourself the trouble of rejecting them, no-gos should be part of any effective profile.

If you can't think of any no-gos, read through a few of the rejections you’ve received. You’ll probably find a few thoughts and ideas to transfer into your own profile.

For inspiration, see the no-gos below. You can add to them as they occur to you:

Drugs; people who only communicate using smileys; S&M practices or vice versa (no ‘vanilla sex’); people below or above certain age limits; flings; uneducated people; people who don’t maintain their bodies; desire to have children (or not); right-wing attitudes

Bad fits

Bad fits are characteristics and/or views that you’d accept as ‘quirks’ in your dream partner, but do not correspond to your ideal.

Examples could include:

Couch potatoes, sports geeks, nerds, people interested in esotericism, negative people, people with or without a desire for a relationship, heavy make-up, unhealthy lifestyles, vegans or vegetarians, smokers, etc.

Quite sexy

Finally, you should give a few examples of things you find appealing. However, be careful not to be too superficial.


Let‘s assume you write that you’re looking for a ‘blonde woman’ or a ‘blonde man’. Already, you’ve excluded Natalie Portman and Tom Hardy! 😉

In fact, even blonde people might find this annoying, since it gives the impression that you would take anyone if the hair fits.

Examples of things you might find sexy:

Humour, honesty, authenticity, self-confidence, motorbikes, athleticism, a fondness for cosy nights at home, a talent for cooking, good dressing, a fondness for the outdoors, kissing, optimism, sexy profile pictures, etc.

Using these steps, it won’t take you long to create a meaningful profile that gives each potential match a good impression of who you are and what you like. There – that wasn't so hard, was it?! 😉

A word of advice: be sure to do things in the right order!

When signing up to a dating app or website, many people make the same mistake over and over. Initially, they fill out their profile very sparsely. Only when success fails to materialise do they begin to make improvements.

Why do we advise against this approach?

By doing this, you leave a trail of ‘scorched earth’.

Imagine applying for 10 different jobs. Instead of sending an individual application to each employer, you simply write the following sentence to each:

“I want the job. Please choose me. More information available on request.”

Do you really think this would work?

Well, at least you’d give the HR department a good laugh!

Online and app dating presents a similar hurdle. If you mess up the first impression with a sloppy approach, you’ll have a hard time convincing someone to give you a second chance.

But that’s not all!

On swipe-based dating apps like Tinder, it’s not possible for other users to give you a second chance, even if they wanted to. Why?

These apps don’t allow users to browse other users at leisure. One left swipe, and a profile is rejected forever. There is no option to contact other users or revisit their profiles. Messaging only becomes possible once a match is created. Bad luck for all those whose profiles don’t have anything to say!

Dating app pros proceed as follows:

  1. Prepare three really good photos
  2. Write a profile text
  3. Register
  4. Fill in the profile
  5. Start searching/swiping

Keep the opening message short and sweet

Newcomers and shy individuals often despair when it comes to crafting a first message – some so much that they don‘t even try. What‘s the trick?

The trick is to remember that the first message should be short and sweet.

“Hi stranger! I really liked your profile. So I hope you won’t mind if I ask you this straight out. What do you think about brunch this coming Saturday at 11?”

The end.

Is there really no need to write more? In our view: no. Only when your counterpart replies with an expression of curiosity can you begin to write at greater length.

Are there exceptions to this rule?

Of course. Sometimes, members use their profiles to state clear questions for potential matches. You should always make sure to answer them.

This also lets you show that you have actually read what they have written – which always brings plus points. 😉

In (almost) all other cases, however, you should go by the rule: brevity is the spice of life.

The amount of time it takes to get a date depends on you.

Your success level – and the amount of time it takes to get a date – depends on all the factors mentioned above. These include which NZ dating app you chose, what your profile looks like and how you communicate with others.

If you do everything right, you might be able to expect your first date in 1-2 days. If you are a bit more relaxed (or realistic), a week is reasonable.

And if a date doesn’t immediately materialise?

Don’t lose your nerve if things don’t work out immediately. Just like you have to learn how to approach someone at a party, you also have to learn how to date online. The difference is that online dating can be practised from the comfort of your sofa! 😉

Are dating apps safe?

While the servers used by operators of NZ online dating apps can be attacked and hacked, the biggest security risk is usually yourself.

Most fraud attempts are not aimed at your dating app account, but at you or your wallet.

What does this mean?

Well, even if the controls on serious dating apps work effectively, no dating portal can completely eliminate the presence of scammers.

What are scammers?

Scammers are individuals who create dating profiles with fraudulent intent or to offer prohibited services. Their activity includes (but is not limited to) the following prohibited actions:

  • Distributing malware
  • Requesting money for apparently ‘needy relatives’ abroad
  • Making job offers
  • Offering paid sex services
  • Advertising with photos of children
  • Attempting to obtain personal data in large amounts in order to misuse it

To protect yourself from scammers, you should stay vigilant and never give out personal information (such as your last name or address) before the first date.

Never agree to a first date in an isolated location and make sure to drink alcohol only in moderation.

Our recommendations

Test winner: Most NZ-women looking for sex

  • A high number of female users, which significantly increases your chances
  • A very active dating community
  • Serious provider
  • Members interested in real dates - not chatting only
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
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