10 Best Craigslist Personals Alternatives for Casual Encounters

Last Updated on September 28, 2021

Are you still using Craigslist for dates? Maybe it was working 10 years ago, but certainly not anymore. Craigslist was never made for online dating and cannot even begin to compete with other professional sites.

There are plenty of better options out there to bring you true love or physical lust. All these sites have a proven track record in matching soulmates together.

From casual sex to marriage, everything has happened on these platforms. It is time to delete Craigslist and add these 10 best Craigslist alternatives instead.

10 Best Craigslist Personals Alternatives (2021 Update)

1. Bang Locals

Pros

  • Fast registration process
  • Geographical searches
  • Few ads

Cons

  • Profile display is not organized

As one of the fastest-growing dating sites, Bang Locals has plenty to bring to the table. Its famous location search is the most powerful among its competitors. It allows you to start the search radius by your block and locate girls that live on the same street. Matching and hooking up have never been easier.

Getting started on Bang Locals is also very simple. All you need is to answer several questions about you and your preference so the system can generate a list of possible matches for you. Your dating experience is further enhanced with few ads blocking your way. Many dating sites are often spammed with ads. This is something you will not find here.

However, the grid display on Bang Locals is too flashy at times. It confuses users to see so many profiles with so little information available. Users can only skim through the profiles and would miss out on good matches due to the unorganized display format.

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2. Adult FriendFinder

Pros

  • A lot of fun and interactive features
  • Community-style rather than individual-based
  • Excellent customer support

Cons

  • Fake profiles

Online dating can be so much more than chatting up girls. Adult FriendFinder offers a wide range of features including online forums and interest groups for users to build their own community of sex. You can discuss any topics related to sex or share some insights about picking up girls.

You can also create your friend lists with members you connect with. Its group video call is also one of its kind. You can group-call every member in a group to start a fun conversation. It also increases your chance to get matched when you talk to more people at the same time.

Its customer support is superb. Whatever problem or a technical issue you encounter, its support team will give you a prompt response and fix any bugs in the system. You can also have a chat with the support team to fully utilize every function to make your presence known in the community.

Indeed, Adult FriendFinder is more than an online dating site. It is an online community that members are proud to be a part of. As much as Adult FriendFinder is dreamy, it needs to tackle its fake profile issue firmly. There are quite a lot of fake profiles or multiple profiles of the same user.

The system should raise an alert when the profile registration does not pass the security check. This is an issue that concerns users sometimes. No one wants to spend hours talking to a dude thinking it’s the cougar he seeks.

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3. Ashley Madison

Pros

  • Perfect for affairs
  • Very welcoming towards different sexual preferences
  • Low profile layout

Cons

  • Ads

It is fine if you are stuck in a dying relationship. Some places will accept you without judgment and welcome you with love and lust. And Ashley Madison is one of them. Originally as a platform for committed lovers to seek affairs, Ashley Madison has transformed to be so much more.

In the beginning, the site often gets unjust attacks solely because of the purpose of the site. This modern dating site is not encouraging infidelity. Rather, it is pushing people to be true to their sexuality. People had no way to seek affairs before Ashley Madison took over the internet.

Branded as the number one adultery site, Ashley Madison has taken tight security measures to ensure the safety of its members. Every profile will be screened by the system and suspicious registration and will be flagged for manual examination.

The activity log of members is encrypted so you don’t have to worry about your wife hacking your account. Its low-profile design comes as its biggest advantage. You can easily be browsing and messaging girls in the office without anyone noticing.

Besides, Ashley Madison is incredibly welcoming towards people with different sexual preferences, including the LGBT+ community. Everyone is accepted and will find others sharing their interests. Be upfront about why you are here and just wait to be liked by other members.

One thing that is a drawback of this awesome site is the spammy ads. They appear very frequently and on some pages you will be seeing more ads than profiles.

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4. Plenty Of Fish (POF)

Pros

  • Caters to both hookups and long-term relationships
  • Large user base
  • The free version includes most of the features

Cons

  • Most users are men

POF has been around for a while and its sheer amount of users means you will for sure find someone, regardless of your location. Even if you are passing through a remote area, you will still find users nearby.

In contrast to most dating sites that either cater to hookups or long-term relationships, POF manages to strive for a balance between the two. You will get a clear image of what your date will be like with their detailed profile description.

From their hobbies to their future dreams, you can strike up a conversation about anything. Or if you want only something casual, it allows you to filter out users by your specific search goals such as physical traits. The combination of the two makes it a great platform for those indecisive about what they want.

That being said, users on POF are weighted towards men. So that will significantly drop your chance of getting hitches as there are that many fish in the pool as you would hope. Men often get ignored by their matches on POF since girls have a lot of freedom in choosing a date whereas men can only be looking in the smaller pool of girls available.

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5. eHarmony

Pros

  • For serious relationships
  • Accurate compatibility test
  • Have both desktop and app versions

Cons

  • No ID verification
  • A lack of communication methods

If you are looking for that soul connection, something deep that makes you feel the butterflies in the stomach, then eHarmony is the place to look. Upon registration, you will have to fill in your answers to some random questions that will help the system analyze your personalities.

The answers will be displayed on your profile and you will be shown profiles that score the highest in the compatibility test. Users have praised eHarmony for its accurate prediction system in bringing people together. Most people on the site are looking for serious relationships for that reason.

Also, eHarmony has both desktop and app versions, making it easier for members to have to get online anytime. Dating apps with a desktop version usually perform better than those without.

Although eHarmony is the place to look for your soulmate, the site offers no ID verification. Users do not even need an email to sign up. You are very likely to be catfished if you are talking to a fake profile.

Besides, there is a lack of choices when it comes to communication methods. You are restricted to the plain old chatbox and there is nothing new and exciting about it. While eHarmony can bring your future wife, it can be a pretty boring journey to get there.

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6. OkCupid

Pros

  • Search results are based on compatibility
  • 50 million users
  • Detailed profile templates are available
  • Both desktop and app versions are available

Cons

  • Members are not very diverse

Another dating platform that will bring you your true love. OkCupid has a mission to pull together love birds that are compatible in every way. Its unique analysis will dictate the profiles shown on your searches to ensure the best quality of matches for you.

With over 50 million users, you will be thrown more profiles than you can handle. To bring out your A-game, follow their profile templates and personalize one that speaks your best characteristics. Its extensive sections can include your interests, hobbies, relationships goals, etc. OkCupid also comes with desktop and app versions.

Despite having a large user base, members on OkCupid are not very diverse. Users are predominantly young men in their 20s to early 30s. Over 60% of members are males.

This imbalance makes the dating scene rather dull for those who do not fall into this age group. Even if you do belong to this age group, you have to compete with more men to win over a girl.

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7. Tinder

Pros

  • Large user base
  • Clean and smooth interface
  • Simple registration

Cons

  • Does not encourage deeper bonding

Tinder is one of the most well-known dating apps. It has millions of users around the world with most of them being in the US. Tinder quickly gained traction for its clean and interactive interface. Its signature red theme with the swiping feature paved the way for other dating apps that followed.

The registration process is simple. All you need is a few photos and an email. You will be sent off to Tinderland in less than 10 minutes. Many users keep swiping on every profile to increase their chances of getting a match, which works effectively most of the time.

From the structure, it is clear that Tinder does not care much about building long-lasting relationships. Most of the matches are for hookups only. There is very little information that users will see on each profile. You can only see the user’s photos, age, and occupation.

Users usually do not put a lot in their own profile as well. So your matches will likely be based on physical appearance rather than the soul connection.

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8. Coffee Meets Bagel (CMB)

Pros

  • Users are very diverse
  • For long-term relationships
  • Search results are generated from your Facebook friends’ friends

Cons

  • Very limited matches for free users

Just when you are frustrated as most other dating apps primarily focus on young adults, CMB enters and changes the game. Users on CMB are very diverse and are not limited to a certain age group. You will find plenty of mature men and women on the hunt.

Singles ready to mingle gather on CMB for a ‘forever’ love. CMB peels off the artificial layer and takes members deep to the soul-bonding level. Members are usually looking for a serious relationship or marriage.

CMB is successful in generating the list of matches that can be your future wife because it draws matches from your Facebook friends. It retrieves your friends’ friends that you might be compatible with. After all, you like your friends for a reason so you are also more likely to get along well with their friends.

This method has been well-adored by members. That’s why CMB is one of the cleanest dating apps when it comes to spam and fake profiles. However, free members are highly limited in the features available. You only get a small account of matches and searches available every day. And you may not be able to message members if you have used all your credits.

CMB is rather stingy with its free version, forcing members for an upgrade. If you are not a paying member, sometimes you cannot message others. If the profile you like is a free one too, you will end up in a situation where both of you cannot message each other.

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9. Bumble

Pros

  • Female-friendly, hence a lot of female users
  • User-friendly interface
  • Options to report fake profiles and keep the community safe

Cons

  • A 24-hour limit in connecting with a match
  • Men can only reply if women message them first

Created by a former Tinder employee, Bumble surely shares a lot of similarities with the app that initially inspired the development. Its interface is smooth and friendly. You get to like or pass a profile upon the first glimpse. Its yellow theme is also very soothing to the eyes, making Bumble an easily recognizable brand.

On Bumble, users can actively report any suspicious profiles to clean up the spam and bots. The platform takes safety very seriously so your report will be reviewed very quickly. Besides, branded as the dating app for females, Bumble does draw a lot of female members. Its gender ratio is fairly balanced although it is still pretty youth-centric.

The only difference, or the only difference that matters, between Bumble and Tinder, is, on Bumble, women are the boss. Aimed to keep the community safe for women, once a match is made, you can only reply if the girl messages you first. For men, this may not sound very appealing as they are placed second on this platform.

Besides, there is a 24-hour time limit. If nothing is exchanged within a day of the match, it automatically expires. If you are always busy and can’t tend to the app daily, you will have to start over every time you log in.

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10. Badoo

Pros

  • ID verification
  • Members are very active
  • Precise location search

Cons

  • The majority of users are young adults
  • Mostly for hookups

Verifying users’ IDs has been a big topic in the online dating world. In this aspect, Badoo is leading the game. Every registration has to be verified by linking to a user’s social media platform. Verified users will have a blue mark on their profile. This reduces the risk of running into a scammer.

Members are also very active on the platform. You are very likely to get new matches every day. Its precise location search allows you to find matches in your city or surrounding areas.

As much as it sounds, Badoo is not the perfect platform for you if you are not a young adult looking for a hookup. Since Badoo attracts mostly late teens and young adults, the site is heavily skewed towards them. You stand no chance if you are not one of them.

Also, Badoo focuses on casual sex so you are unlikely to find your soulmate here. Users are looking to have fun and not talk about love.

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Final Thoughts

Craigslist was never the king of the online dating world. Now, with all these 10 platforms that can easily win against this advertising site, it is time to stop wasting time on Craigslist.

All these 10 dating sites have their merits and limitations. Understanding your needs and finding the ones that are suitable for you will help your dating life.

Regardless of your dating goals, you will definitely find these Craigslist alternatives very useful. Sign up on them and start getting matches today.

John Santana

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