Should you pay for a dating app? This is increasingly the eternal question of online dating, especially if you feel like you’re not having much luck with a free version.
But on top of Spotify, Netflix, and a serious Starbucks habit, do you really need another subscription you can’t afford? And it gets more complicated still when dating apps introduce a range of subscription tiers.
And that’s what Hinge has recently done, removing Hinge Preferred and breaking it down into Hinge+ and HingeX. What do you get and are they worth it?
Hinge is another app owned by Match Group, and they’re working hard to normalize elite paid subscriptions for dating apps. With rumors of a Tinder Vault around the corner, the price tag attached to HingeX could look like small change pretty soon.
Whether you’re subscribing or not, you need to know how Hinge works to get the most bang for your buck (or the most bang for your lack of buck, if you’re a free user).
So let’s take the plunge into Hinge+, HingeX, and leave Hinge Preferred behind. Here’s a complete guide to Hinge’s paid memberships.
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What happened to Hinge Preferred?
If you’ve been using Hinge for a while, you’ll remember Hinge’s premium upgrade as Hinge Preferred membership. Well, Hinge Preferred is no longer favored, in fact, it doesn’t exist at all.
So what happened to Hinge Preferred? Hinge removed their Premium membership called Hinge Preferred in 2023 and replaced it with two new payment tiers, Hinge+ and HingeX.
This brings Hinge’s premium tiers into line with other popular dating apps lke Tinder and Bumble, which each offer extra features on a number of tiers.
Tinder offers Tinder Plus as well as Gold and Platinum subscriptions, while Bumble offers Bumble Boost and Bumble Premium.
On the one hand, this offers an affordable lower tier to users who might not want to fork out for every upgrade when all they need is unlimited likes.
But it also allows these apps to brand one tier as ultra-premium and attach a price tag accordingly — and HingeX certainly comes with a pretty eye-watering cost attached. So let’s take a look.
Hinge+ Vs HingeX: Comparison
Now Hinge has split their premium membership into two tiers, you have to make a call. Does Hinge Plus have everything you need, or should you go X-rated? Here’s Hinge+ and HingeX side to side.
Hinge+ Vs HingeX Features
Hinge+ Vs HingeX Cost
|3 months||$59.99 ($19.99/month)||$99.99 ($33.33/month)|
|6 months||$89.99 ($14.99/month)||$149.99 ($24.99/month)|
What is Hinge+?
Dating apps are constantly adding new features and renaming old ones, trying to keep the spice alive, I guess! If you’re feeling nonplussed about Hinge Plus, then you need to know what’s going on.
So what is Hinge+? Hinge+ (or Hinge Plus) is Hinge’s cheapest premium membership. You get handy features like unlimited likes and the ability to see everyone who has liked you, at a more affordable price tag.
I think it’s pretty helpful that the apps are now breaking up their features into two or three tiers. It means you can choose what matters to you, and if you’re looking for a cheap upgrade to give you better functionality, you’ve got it.
So let’s take a look at what’s included with Hinge+.
What does Hinge+ get you?
Here are the Hinge+ features.
Send unlimited likes
This is the classic premium feature, because every dating app limits your likes. But some do so more than others, and Hinge only offers users around 8 likes per day with the free version. If you’re a swipe-aholic then this one’s for you.
See everyone who likes you
While Hinge lets you see your most recent like in the “Likes You” tab, free users have to like or pass that person before they can see the next one. It’s always a tough call, and I find that the likes inevitably build up.
This feature lets you make an informed decision on every match!
Sort through likes easily
This isn’t something that everyone has to worry about, but if you’ve just turned up in a new city you might get an overwhelming amount of likes in a short time. This lets you filter all the users that have liked you based on certain factors:
- Your type
- Last active
Getting Hinge to filter out everyone who doesn’t match your preferences is a great shortcut to seeing the users that really matter to you.
Fine-tune your preferences
Free users can filter their dating preferences by distance, age and a few other factors such as religion and ethnicity But upgrading to Hinge+ gives you more to choose from, such as:
- Family plans
- Alcohol, smoking and drugs
- Education level
So if you’re searching for the special someone, and there is really is only one, this lets you find them faster.
Browse by location, activity and more
This feature lets you filter your Discover feed based on who has been recently active, or who’s closer to you. It’s pretty helpful as it gives you the reassurance you’re only swiping on active profiles.
There are quite a few useful features in Hinge+, especially for serial swipers. Let’s take a look at the price tag attached.
So how much does Hinge+ cost? A month is around $29.99, while paying for six months gets you a big discount, coming in at $89.99 or $14/month. As always, you can expect the price to vary based on location as well as other factors.
Given that Hinge+ costs as much as some apps’ top premium tier, it’s surprisingly pricey. But then again, Hinge itself markets itself to serious daters and an older audience, so they expect their users to have a bit more disposable income.
Either way, if you’re considering upgrading, you’ll have one big question…
Is Hinge+ Worth It?
Compared to other apps cheapest paid tier, Hinge+ is actually not that cheap. While you might splash out on Bumble Boost or Tinder Plus on a whim, there are plenty of life-enhancing ways to spend $30 (and if you don’t know the value of a good bath towel, I pity you).
So is Hinge+ worth it? If you’re constantly running out of Likes or have deal-breaker preferences, then Hinge+ might be worth the money. But it’s pretty pricey and it mostly changes how you can interact with the app, not how other users interact with your profile. Think twice before you buy!
In my opinion, the features of Hinge+ don’t quite justify the price tag. With other apps, paying for premium opens up that “who likes you folder” which is super valuable for an ego boost as well as limiting your swiping.
But on Hinge, you get this for free, albeit one at a time.
If you really need those unlimited likes or tailored preferences, then don’t let me stop you. But I’d suggest slowing down on the app, dishing out your likes more carefully alongside the best prompt answers you can think of, and maybe rethinking those dealbreakers.
You never know, maybe the one for you might just be a little taller, more of a drinker, and a little less liberal than you expect. Wait, I’m describing Ted Nugent, but you know what I mean.
What is HingeX?
If you thought for a second that Elon Musk had bought Hinge, don’t panic. The X here probably stands for exclusive. Or extremely serious about finding a relationship.
So what is HingeX? It’s Hinge’s top-tier membership, giving you access to every feature the app offers. As well as unlimited likes and filtered browsing you also get prioritized in other Hinge user’s feeds and bumped to the top of other users’ likes.
Fortunately, Musk hasn’t branched out into dating apps, yet. Can you imagine what online dating would be like without the block feature? Yikes!
What Does HingeX Get You?
HingeX features everything that’s included in Hinge Plus:
- Send unlimited likes.
- See everyone who likes you.
- Sort through likes easily.
- Fine-tune your preferences.
- Browse by location, activity and more.
Alongside these, you also get some juicy features that give you more control, bump your Hinge profile, and more or less guarantee you more matches. This is where it gets interesting.
Enhanced recommendations has the algorithm working overtime to find you compatible matches. It means that everyone at the top of your Discover feed has been chosen especially for you
Don’t get this confused with Hinge Standouts, which are found in a separate tab. Standouts are profiles Hinge thinks you’ll like, but you can only send them Roses. HingeX subscribers find their enhanced recommendations in the regular feed, and you can like them as usual.
Skip the line and get recommended sooner
HingeX users are promoted faster and harder than other users, and will appear higher in other users Discover feeds. While paying for a Boost gives you a 24-hour bump, “skipping the line” works like a constant mini-Boost.
This is a pretty important feature, and it means that HingeX subscribers will have their profiles seen more often. That translates to more likes.
Priority likes — stay at the top of their list
As mentioned, free Hinge users can only see the most recent like they have received. That means you’re likely to get buried below a pile of average users in your potential matches “Likes You tab. But not for HingeX members.
Priority likes puts you at the top of your potential match’s Likes list (or near to it). If your prompt answers are straight fire, then this means they’ll see it sooner and you’ll get a like back.
HingeX is not cheap. In fact, it caused a bit of a stir when it was first released due to the hefty price tag. But dating apps know they’ve worked their way into the fabric of our lives, and, like Tinder Vault, HingeX is just another modern-day elite service for getting real-life dates.
So how much does HingeX cost? A single month of HingeX will cost between $50 and $60, depending on location. If you sign up for longer it becomes cheaper, costing around $149.99 or $24.99/month if you pay for six months.
I’m not going to sit around here and pretend that spending hundreds of dollars a year on a dating app is for everyone, but if you’re on Hinge for serious dating then you have to consider if it’s worth it.
Is HingeX Worth It?
HingeX offers some serious features that are guaranteed to get you more matches. Not only is your profile boosted in other users’ feeds, but anyone you like will see you at the top of their potential matches.
In my opinion, HingeX is totally worth it if you’re committed to finding a partner in the near future, and you’re willing to put the effort into online dating. Priority likes and “skipping the line” will get you more high-quality matches on Hinge.
But you can’t simply splash the cash and expect to get results: you still need a top-tier profile with great Hinge pictures and prompt responses to get matches.
And no amount of premium features will turn those matches into real-life dates unless you’re having interesting Hinge conversations.
Everything about Hinge, from its UX design to its algorithm, is designed to help you find meaningful matches with people you genuinely connect with. Hinge X’s advanced features are another offering from the dating app designed to be deleted to get you into a real relationship.
Hinge is one of the best dating apps for finding serious relationships and they’ve put a lot of work into their UX and extra features to help you find what you’re looking for.
Personally, I think Hinge+ is a bit light on features, but the way HingeX boosts your profile to be more visible will lead to more potential dates. If you can handle the price tag.
Still, a free account on Hinge is still a great way to meet partners, whether that’s something you want to be casual or serious. And in fact, Hinge still gives away the number one thing other apps make you pay for: seeing who liked you.
Sure, on free Hinge you can only see one at a time. But by simply swiping left or right on your likes you can work your way through the list. So if money is tight right now, there’s no need to upgrade to premium Hinge.
And here’s another way to get more matches without spending a cent: my 6-Step Tinder Tune-Up will give you a profile upgrade and it’s totally free! It says Tinder in the title, but it works just as well for Hinge and helps you fix your pictures and perfect your prompts.