The dating world can be a bit of a jungle at times. Dating apps such as Tinder have made it easier when it comes to opening up more dating opportunities, however, this is not to say that online dating doesn’t come with its hurdles. Much like traditional or ‘offline’ dating, using dating apps comes with its etiquette or set of rules. Whether you are interested in a casual fling or a more serious encounter, knowing the do’s and don’ts of Tinder can help you to be more successful with securing potential matches.

Be mindful of Tinder etiquette

Tinder etiquette is a list of what you should and should not do while on the app. It explains what kind of behavior is acceptable and not, the etiquette when it comes to messaging your matches, as well as your photo and bio choice on Tinder. Following this Tinder etiquette is likely to get you more matches (and hopefully dates), whereas not observing these online dating rules is more likely to get you no matches, and even possibly get you reported by other users on the platform. 

Authenticity is Sexy

One of the biggest tips that could help you have more success on Tinder is to be original and authentic. So, you like food, traveling and hanging out with your friends. How very original [cue sarcasm]. While those aren’t necessarily negative qualities about yourself, many Tinder users will mention these same things in their bio. And unfortunately, most of your competitors will likely have the same interests, making you much less likely to stand out. 

Think about what makes you, you. What is something interesting about you? Make sure to write that down! Oh, and for goodness’ sake, don’t be a catfish. Include photos in your profile that are actually of you, that are recent, and ideally of you alone, not with a group of friends, as this could have your potential matches confused.

Pay Attention to Tinder Bios 

Keep in mind the kind of people that you would like to attract. With a 500-character limit, you will need to be creative about what to write in your bio because there’s just not a lot of space there! This applies to those who put the effort into writing a bio, as well as to those who take the time to read their potential matches’ bio. Speaking of bios, reading your potential matches’ bio may make for a great conversation starter, should you wish to message any of your matches directly. 

Don’t wait for someone to message

If you’re not the type of person who will message someone first, what is the point of matching with people if you do not intend to follow this up with a message? It does not matter if you’re a male, female, or anything in between – when it comes to Tinder, there’s no hard and fast rule about who should be sending the first message. There is, however, etiquette that comes with what you message people. The top tips here are to avoid opening your conversations with ‘hey’(seriously though) and to keep any inappropriate pictures to yourself. 

Steer clear of Ghosting

Last but not least, avoid ghosting. This is a complete and utter no-no when it comes to online dating. Please don’t be the kind of person who ghosts your matches. If you aren’t feeling the chemistry, be nice and tell them that you aren’t interested in taking things further with them. The above is a simplified and short guide on the dos and don’ts of Tinder. Online dating can be a great way of meeting new people and expanding your dating pool. Go forth, have fun, and good luck!

If you’re struggling with relationship issues and think that you can benefit from professional support, you can reach out here.

Pamela Borg is a counsellor who enjoys working therapeutically with adults experiencing various issues. These include general mental health and wellbeing, gender, sexuality, relationship issues.


Barrett, C. (2018). 17 Tinder Do’s and Don’ts (From an Expert).

Barnett, L. (2022). The Ultimate Tinder Etiquette: Dos & Don’ts and Beyond!

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