How Does Bumble Work? A Beginner’s Guide

All online dating apps are the same, right? Eh, not so fast. There’s a new player on the field, and the rules of the game have changed. Enter, Bumble—2020’s hottest new dating app. 

Bumble dating app is created by the ex co-founder of Tinder Whitney Wolfe Herd. She sued Tinder for verbal abuse and sexual harassment, but later Whitney settled her case against the Tinder for just over $1Millions. To say the least, Bumble and Tinder are now at the forefront of the mainstream online dating scene.

How Does Bumble Work?

Bumble uses popular swipe technology where right swipe means you dig; a left swipe means you’re not interested. However, at Bumble, women make the first move. In heterosexual matches, the woman has 24 hours to make the first move and the man has 24 hours to respond. In same-sex matches, either person has 24 hours to make the first move, while the other individual has 24 hours to respond, or else, the connection expires.

Swiping up on a profile picture will give you more information about the potential match, including his or her location. That way, you can make an informed decision based on something other than physical appearance (ahem). 

How do Bumble Profiles work?

If Bumble’s really that different from other online dating apps, then just exactly how do you use it. Good question…let’s dig in! 

Signing up

To create an account on Bumble, you have two basic options. You can sign in with Facebook, or you can enter your phone number, and the app will send you a verification code. 

Uploading Pictures

setting up bumble account

Setting up your profile on Bumble is pretty simple too. The first step is to add a photo. Bumble recommends you add one that is of just you—no exes, bros, family members, etc. You have three different options here. You can take a selfie (if you’ve got your game face on), add a photo from your camera, or upload a pic from Facebook. Done and done. 

After you add that first picture, you have the option to add five others if you wish. If not, just click “Continue.” You can always come back and add later. 

After the photo sesh, the app will then prompt you to introduce yourself. You’ll need to enter the following tidbits of info: 

  • Gender
  • Date of Birth
  • First Name

Next, you’ll be asked to enter an email address for recovery purposes—you know, for when you forget your password. Speaking of passwords, you’ll create one of those in the next step. Try to remember it!

About Me & Basic Information

To create a full Bumble profile (which we recommend to get the most out of this online dating app), you’ll need to divulge some more information. You should definitely fill out the “About Me” section, but make it count because you have a 300-character limit.

PRO TIP: You’ll also want to add your work and education information because—well, no one likes a freeloader!

After that, the rest is a no-brainer. Just answer some simple questions that they ask.

You can skip any or all of these questions. However, Bumble itself says the more information (and photos!) you put on the app, the more likely you are to find matches, though, so don’t neglect this step in the process of setting up your Bumble account. You can thank us later!

Inside Scoop: Best Bumble Bios For Guys & Girls

Connecting Accounts on Bumble

In addition to connecting your Facebook account (if you wish), you’ll also have the option to connect your Instagram and Spotify accounts to Bumble. Doing so is simple. Just click, enter your password, and verify. 

Bumble Switching Modes

how to use bumble

When you set up your profile, you’ll be asked how you want to use Bumble. There are three options: dating, finding friends, or networking.

We assume you’ll be dating if you’re reading this, so tap that option. 

How Messaging on Bumble Works?

how does bumble work for women

Women Rule the World (At Least on Bumble)

How you proceed after that depends on whether you identify as a man or a woman. If you’re a woman, then you can feel free to swipe away and message anyone on the app that catches your interest at any time.

The ball is yours, and the court is open!

So, How Does Bumble Work For Guys?

On the other hand, if you’re a man, you’ll need to be patient.

You can swipe to your heart’s content, but you have to wait to be messaged. Yes, that’s right. The app won’t let you send the first message if you’re a dude. This is what makes Bumble different from other online dating apps—women are in control of the game! 

It’s important to note that these messaging rules don’t apply to same-sex matches. In these cases, either user can make the first move. 

Inside Scoop: How to Respond to “Hey” on Bumble

Bumble's Time Limit

bumble match expiry time

Conversations are also a little different on Bumble. Women can initiate a convo by sending that all-important first message, but then it’s up to the guy. If he doesn’t respond within 24 hours, the conversation is deleted (presumably forever!).

This is Bumble’s attempt to end ghosting, which is admittedly super annoying. 

What's Backtracking in Bumble?

Another unique feature of Bumble is the ability to backtrack when you make a mistake or change your mind. If you accidentally swipe right when you meant to swipe left, for instance, you can just shake your phone for an instant redo.

If only we could have real-life backtracks as well, right?! You only get 3 backtracks at a time, so use them sparingly.

What's Bumble Boost?


Bumble Boost is Bumble’s premium service and it offers users some buzz-worthy advantages. Some of these include: 

  • The ability to view users who have already swiped right on your profile
  • The capability of renewing expired connections
  • The privilege of extended matches for an additional 24 hours

There are several ways to pay for Bumble Boost, including a lifetime subscription for about $140! The most popular payment schedule is the weekly one for $8.99, though. 

Inside scoop: Lean more about Bumble Boost.

Bumble Coins, Spotlight, and Superswipe

Another premium option is Bumble Coins, which is basically in-app currency. You can buy 30 coins for around $35 and use them to buy app advantages such as the Spotlight feature, which will show your profile to more users. Specifically, two coins will buy 30 minutes of premium profile placement.

You can also use Bumble coins to purchase a Superswipe, which lets another user know you’re “super” interested! A Superswipe will cost you a single Bumble Coin.

Inside Scoop: Learn more about Bumble SuperSwipe.

Bumble—Go Ahead, Try It! 

Bumble is certainly an interesting take on the online dating experience. We highly recommend you give it a try. If you’re female, you’ll probably like the added control of being the only one able to initiate the conversation. Plus, you’re also a lot less likely to be harassed or creeped on than if you make a match on Tinder. Happy bumbling!

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