What are popular hook-up and dating apps and websites in China?

China’s a big country (we appreciate that’s not the most controversial statement) and if they’re not careful, it’s easy for newcomers to find themselves trapped in the same small social circles. Which, of course, is not always conducive to a happy love life.

Thankfully, there are plenty of websites and location-based apps aimed at bringing together men and women (see here for a list of Chinese gay and lesbian social networking apps), whether for one-night stands or – especially in the case of the website – finding something a little more meaningful. 


App: Momo 

Momo is promoted as a general socializing app that lets users find and contact nearby people to break the ice start up new friendships. Predictably, however, it became very popular with folks who were interested in hook-ups but were too sky to approach strangers. By all means give it a go, but don’t assume everyone you talk to wants anything more than a conversation! At the time of writing, it is only available in Chinese, but the official website says that an English-language version is coming soon, so you can expect a wider user-base soon… 

Compatibility: Android, iOS, Windows.

Price: Free.


App: Skout 

Skout is a location-based social networking app that has millions of users around the world and is commonly used for hook-ups. Once you’ve set up an account, it gives you access to nearby public profiles and lets you send chat messages. It’s also multi-lingual, with English, Chinese, Japanese, Italian, German, French and Thai among the many languages. Both Chinese people and expats in China use the app, but it is not as popular among Chinese as Momo or WeChat, making it easier to spot expats. 

Compatibility: Android, iOS, Windows.

Price: Free.


App: Tantan 

Tantan is a Chinese-made clone of Western hook-up app Tinder, right down to the interface, which lets users ‘swipe’ through prospective partners’ pictures and (limited) profiles. If you like them – and they like you – the app will automatically put you two in touch so you can chat and (if you like) meet up. Of course, this makes it easier to break the ice between you, and avoids the awkwardness of random messages. It’s location-based, as are many such apps, supports both Chinese and English-language users, easy enough to set up. 

Compatibility: Android, iOS.

Price: Free.


App: WeChat (aka Weixin)

WeChat, the English version of popular messaging app Weixin (it’s kind of like a Chinese WhatsApp), has a “Shake” feature that automatically connects everyone who shakes their phones at the same time. Ostensibly it was just supposed to be an easier way to swap contact info with people you already just met but of course the function is also used to meet new people in the first place. There is also a function that shows all nearby users. The huge user base includes many, many expats, but not everyone will be looking to hook up, hang out or talk to strangers so don’t come on too strong!

Compatibility: Android, iOS, Windows.

Price: Free.


Website: Baihe 

Baihe is a website that connects people who are considering a long-term relationship or marriage. It claims to be the largest such website based on its user base and active user population, with 70 million users looking for their life partners there. The website also insists that its users give their real names online, which adds an air of honesty to the process. There is also an app version so you can look for ‘the one’ at any time; the app is free, and compatible with Android, iOS, and Windows systems. As might be expected, it has a majority Chinese user base.

Website: www.baihe.com

Price: Registration is free for new users, but there are subscription charges to use certain functions on the website such as sending and reading mails, detailed searching, real-time messaging and so on.

Price: Membership fee is 99 yuan for three months, 168 yuan for six months or 268 yuan for 12 months.


Website: Zhenai 

Like Baihe, Zhenai is a website focused on bringing together men and women who are interested in long-term relationships, allowing them to register their own profiles and then browse through possible matches. Unlike Baihe, the membership fee is crazy high – 2,999 yuan for six months – and so aimed at a more affluent market. Consequently, there are some who offer to perform third-party match-making through the site for around 100 yuan, and while some do indeed give the service, it’s obviously a risk. Zhenai also has a free app version for Android, iOS, and Windows systems.

Website: www.zhenai.com

Price: In order to contact matches, users must pay a membership fee of 2,999 yuan for six months; the website also offers a tailored match-making service hosted by a member of Zhenai’s staff. 


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