I had heard a lot of things about dating sites in Nigeria, so I joined six of them for this article. Turns out that they’re alright.
All apps listed are LGBT friendly, but remember to stay safe.
Tinder is by far one of the most popular dating platforms not just in Nigeria, but in the world. Although Tinder is a dating app, it is also a good place to find friends.
Signing up is pretty easy. All you have to do is download the app and fill in everything they ask for. You need to upload at least 2 photographs.
When picking a name, think properly because you can’t change it. Either that or I just couldn’t figure out how to change my name.
There is this wonderful feature that basically makes you invisible to numbers you’ve blocked on your phone.
You swipe right on people you like and left on those you don’t. In case you don’t like swiping, there are icons at the bottom for yes and no. Swiping is more fun though.
If someone you swipe right on swipes right on you too, it’s a match.
One of you has to message the other person within 24 hours or Tinder automatically unmatches you. If you mistakenly swipe the wrong thing on someone, you can go back to correct it, but if and only if you’re using the paid version of this app.
There’s a section to see who likes you, but you can’t view them unless you’re using the paid version.
You can make your location and gender invisible, but only if you pay. It seems there a quite a number of things you can’t do if you don’t pay.
Some people have blue ticks to show that they’re verified. That means they’re real people. Tinder didn’t make me go through any process to make sure the picture I used was really me – it wasn’t.
If you’re not feeling a match anymore, you can unmatch them. If they turn out to be super creepy or something like that, you can unmatch and report.
You can always delete your Tinder profile if you’re tired of the app or if you’ve found someone. You also have the option to pause your profile. Pausing your profile means your profile becomes invisible to people that you’re not already matched with till you unpause it.
I know everyone has different experiences on Tinder, but the people I met were nice and respectful. After I told them I was just there for work, they didn’t mind because they were apparently on Tinder to make friends. Well, except the guy who understandably unmatched me shortly after.
Bumble is a super cool app. It is one of the dating sites in Nigeria, and I first heard about it from two of my friends. Women have to make the first move here. If you’re a man, you can’t start a conversation with a babe you matched with unless she texts you. If she doesn’t text you within 24 hours, sorry.
It also uses the swipe right for yes and left for no method. You can SuperSwipe to “make a bold first move” whatever that means. Bumble’s words, not mine.
You can’t change your name here either, so think carefully before picking a name. You can also delete and start over, but that seems like stress. Like Tinder, there’s a place for people who like you and you have to pay to see them.
Bumble allows you to send pictures, videos, GIFs, and voice notes which I think is nice. You can also do a voice call or a video call. You can link your Instagram and Spotify to your Bumble profile too if you feel like.
There’s this question game for women that don’t know what to say to break the ice. You can either select one of their questions or type yours in, and you’ll guess the answer while waiting for them to answer.
You have to verify yourself here so you can’t pretend to be someone else, or you’re not supposed to be able to do that. You’ll be asked to take a picture and it has to match with your profile picture.
I was using my friend’s picture (with her permission of course), so I saw that and thought “The jig is up”. My dears, the jig was not up at all. It’s either I’m The Many-Faced God or that process is a sham because I finally got through after about four tries. Mind you, we look nothing alike.
You can unmatch people here too if you’re not feeling them anymore. You can also block and report other users, and you’re free to delete your account whenever you want. Their version of pause is snooze.
Bumble gives you tips on dealing with rejection, safety tips, etc. I honestly didn’t open them, but I think it’s great that they’re there.
There’s this thing where you set your COVID preferences that I forgot to screenshot before deleting the app. They’ll ask you if you want your first meeting to be virtual or physical and things like that. You’ll have to go and check the rest yourself please.
All in all, it’s a pretty decent app and a good place to connect with people whether romantically or otherwise. They just need to get a more solid verification process.
I had known about this platform for years, but I had no idea it was a dating site until recently. Like the other dating apps, people are not just there for romance. Some people are there to make friends too.
Download the app, fill in what they ask for and you’re good to go. Badoo also uses the swipe right for yes and swipe left for no method. They have icons at the bottom too for people who would rather not swipe.
You can send someone a crush to “stand out”.
You can chat with someone else even if you’re not a match. I discovered this because I saw a message icon on some profiles, and I clicked it for four profiles. I was asked for credits to talk to two of them, and I was asked to upgrade to talk to one. I managed to message the last person without doing any of those. I have no idea how they decide who you can talk to for free and who you need to upgrade to talk to.
Badoo also has a question game thing like Bumble, but you can only choose from the questions they provide. You can send pictures, voice notes, and make video calls. I don’t have screenshots because you apparently can’t screenshot chats.
There’s a section to see who likes you, but you have to pay like the rest.
Badoo makes you verify yourself and I managed to pass this process even though I used another friend’s picture. Don’t worry, he said it was okay. You people I got through immediately. I know I kind of look like a guy, but come on.
It’s like they don’t want you to leave their app because they asked me 734 things before I could finally delete my account. I understand them wanting to make sure you don’t delete your account by mistake, but these people are actually trying to keep you there.
Apart from the almost hostage situation and the fact that I scaled through their verification process very easily, it appears to be a good app to connect with other people.
This app wants you to sign up using your Facebook account, although it also provides an option for you to sign up using other methods like your email address and phone number.
Once you’re done signing up, you then start to create a profile. The app takes you through requests like your name, age, location, and quite a number of options for nonbinary users.
Also, just so nobody wastes your time, the app allows you to specify what you’re looking for. So, if you’re looking for hookups, friendships, short-term dating, long-term relationships, or even non-monogamous relationships, you’re good.
You’ll also be providing a short self-summary, after which you’ll take a short quiz. Don’t vex, it’s not like Zikoko’s quizzes, but it’ll help you find love.
Finding people you like is also quite simple. There’s a section called double take, which is pretty much like Tinder’s swipe-right-or-left page. You swipe left to pass, and you swipe right to show your interest. The main difference here is that you don’t have to pay to undo a left swipe like you would on Tinder.
Zoosk is another dating app that’s quite popular around the world, and it works in Nigeria too. Here’s how it works: When you first log onto the app, you can decide to create an account with your email address, your Facebook account, or your google account. Unlike other sites, the good thing about Zoosk is that they’re not stressing your life with JAMB questions right from the start. Instead, you’ll only be filling out the things that are standard dating app info: Your name, age, location, preferences, and so on. They also make you pick a username sha. If you don’t know what to use, or you’re coming up with usernames like “AdeTiger”, they’ll give you one.
Another good thing about Zoosk is the fact that it offers profile verification, allowing you to ensure that you’re chatting with a real authentic person and not a bot or a catfish. If a profile is verified, you can easily tell by looking at the person’s profile. You’ll see a green check mark that indicates that this person has been photo-verified.
This app is actually kind of old but only recently started attracting attention among young people in Nigeria. The app is free to download and use, at least to a certain point. There’s also a paid version that costs about $60 but that’s none of your business because like Ayra Star said, love don’t cost a dime.
The only place you’ll taste small wahala is in the profile-building process. They seem to take the process of finding love more seriously because they know laziness is probably one of the things that made you look for a dating app in the first place.
After the normal name, email, and location questions you start to build your profile. A barrage of questions then appears at this point. First, eharmony asks you how many children you have followed by your age and religious affiliation. They won’t let you choose “Agnostic” or “Atheist” though. Instead, what you get is “Neither religious nor spiritual”.
After this, you move to the essay portion where you answer questions like “What do you like to do in your leisure time?”, or “What are the three things you’re thankful for?”. The funny part is that you can’t move on to the next stage without providing answers to these questions.
Free users can only view members who the app deems them most compatible with. If you want access to a wider range of matches, you have to subscribe. The free version also limits you to “favourite” -ing profiles, sending “Icebreaker” multiple choice questions, and seeing if you have any “mutual favourites” (people you’ve expressed interest in who have also signalled they are into you). To actually communicate with anyone, you have to pay up, which the app prompts you to do whenever you hit a wall.