9 Highly Popular Dating Apps in Korea – Best of 2020

Wildly popular dating app Tinder has been able to break into the Korean market. It took a while because Tinder was not a huge hit when they first entered the Korean market back in 2015. The Korean online dating service industry is valued at over $75 million. It is estimated that 2/3 Korean men aged 21-39 use or have used dating apps in Korea. However, most Koreans prefer to use dating apps in Korea created by Korean companies rather than Tinder. This is because many Koreans have a distrust of foreign apps and feel Korean apps provide more security. Still, the online dating scene in Korea continues to grow year after year. Now online dating and dating apps in Korea are one of the most popular ways to meet new partners in South Korea.

Until recently, Koreans found their partners through traditional matchmaking to finding a partner at work. Koreans have been slow to find a partner online due to the fact that you need to be open-minded which is hard for a society that has traditionally been conservative. However, the dating app industry has started to grow in the past few years.

Here are 9 Popular Dating Apps in Korea to Try

Tinder Korea

Tinder KoreaTinder is by far the world’s most popular dating app. They came to Korea a few years ago (2015) and took some time to catch on. The company has switched its strategy in Korea and made Tinder more of a social discovery app than a dating app. Therefore the app is designed to match users with similar habits and job interests. Their first major ad campaign was “Find Friends on Tinder.” Now Tinder is one of the most successful lifestyle apps in Korea. It has grossed the most in terms of revenue from subscribers besides mobile gaming apps. Most of the users on Tinder Korea can speak some level of English. In addition, most of the foreigners living in Korea use Tinder as their dating app.

“When we look at the South Korean users’ profile on Tinder, the word such as friends, movie, and sports are the most common. This is the background we focus on in such an approach,” said Tinder’s marketing lead in East Asia, Lyla Seo.

Amanda (NextMatch)

Korean Dating App AmandaAmanda is the most popular dating app in Korea. Korean tech startup NextMatch is the operator of Amanda which ranks at the top in terms of sales. In addition, Amanda has over 5 million users. What makes Amanda popular is its member scoring system. Users who want to join must first pass a screen test by 20 random existing members on Amanda. They must obtain a score of 3.0 or higher. If you get a lower score than 3.0 you can always try again by uploading a better picture.

It has gotten some criticism for judging users solely based on their looks. However, users do not only upload their photos but also their profile which includes their hobbies, religious views, career, and etc.  Once on the app, it works very similar to Tinder. Users must like each other’s profiles in order to message each other. For those that are not fluent in Korean will find this app difficult to use. The app is all in Korean so it will be difficult to navigate for foreigners in Korea.

“Our vision is to change the Korean dating culture. To do this, we offer a wide variety of dating services to give our customers real romance,” said CEO of NextMatch, Shin Sang-hoon.

Noondate (Mozzet)

Dating apps in Korea NoondateNoondate is one of the more innovative dating apps in Korea. The creators of Noondate is from Korean tech startup Mozzet Co.Ltd. Their concept is to match two people every day at noon based on their location.  Two profile cards will arrive every day at noon. The user selects one profile card to see the person’s detail if they like their profile they can express their interest. If that person likes you back, then it will be a match. Once matched a chatroom will open up so you can message each other. Noondate uses an algorithm to select the best possible match for you. They also have over 5 million users and continues to grow each month.

There is a review process that can take up to 24 hours. If there is any misleading information in regards to photos or bios, users will be permanently banned from the app. Noondate is also available online. For those that would like an algorithm to find the best match for them, this is the dating app to use in Korea.

DangYeonSi

dangyeonsiKorean startup BNK Lab is the developer of DangYeonSi a dating app with over 1.7 million users. The app is for Koreans as their functions are all in Korean. Users input their personal information including their name, age, occupation, location, and even blood type. There is a tournament function where users can pick their most ideal type among 16 potential matches. Therefore if you are a foreigner in Korea that can understand Korean, this is a very fun and entertaining app. Think of it as a kind of “Bachelor” reality show program. Liking a profile is free but in order to chat with their matches, users will need to purchase a ticket on the app.

GLAM

Glam Dating apps in KoreaKorean dating app GLAM was created by Korean tech startup Cupist Inc. It won the 2017 Google Play Awards for Best Social App in Korea. GLAM curates potential matches based on the user’s profile TIER. Users will be placed in a TIER after users on GLAM have checked out your profile. Users can improve their TIER by improving their profile. GLAM uses an algorithm to curate potential matches based on similar tastes within their TIER. GLAM offers users to appeal their TIER through GLAM’s APPEAL section. Very similar to Amanda except you don’t get an actual score but rather put into a tier.

The GLAM app allows users to upload their daily life from working at their job or the weekend going out. In addition, they have a “Block People You Know” feature to block Facebook friends on contacts on your phone.

Between

Korean dating App BetweenKorean mobile tech startup VCNC is the developer of Between a mobile app for couples. Between is different from the apps listed above because it is designed for couples to create, share, and remember all their special moments together. It works as a messenger for you and your partner. The apps couples to store their photos, videos, and messages easily. In addition, couples can use the app as a calendar and save their special days and upcoming schedules. It even has a countdown function for these special days.

Between offers upgrade options to access their special features which include colorful themes, longer videos and voice messages, and ad blockers. They offer a one-time payment option for those not interested in a monthly subscription. Therefore Between is not really a dating app but more of a relationship app for couples.

Sky People

Korean Dating App Sky PeopleSky People is one of the more controversial dating apps in Korea. The app named “SKY PEOPLE” only accepts male users in Korea who have attended prestigious Universities, works for major conglomerates, or is lawyers or doctors. Women are accepted as long as they are aged between 20-39. A potential male user must send documents to prove their qualifications. For example, a graduation certificate from one of Korea’s “top” three universities (SKY); Seoul National University, Yonsei University, and Korea University. The app has over 160,000 users. It is ranked #1 in the dating category at the Google Playstore Top Revenue Rank (In Korea).

1km

Dating apps in Korea 1km

1km is one of the more popular dating apps in Korea for those that are into joining culture clubs. There are clubs for movies, climbing, studying, and even bicycling. Users can even create their own clubs. The app matches users with those that are located 1 kilometer away from your mobile phone. While it is not necessarily a dating app it has been used to meet potential partners through their favorite hobbies. Therefore for those looking for an alternative to dating apps in Korea, try 1km to find a friend with the same interests and take it from there.

BALLOOMING

Ballooming KoreaBALLOOMING is a social network based on users with the same birthday. Their concept is that people born on the same date have a high likelihood of being soulmates. Koreans care a lot about not only a person’s blood type but their signs as well. Therefore this concept has a good chance of working in Korea. They have not yet launched their platform however they are taking registrations. So far, they have gotten over 10,000 people to sign up.