How to Find & Search for Someone on Tinder

While Tinder has a reputation for being little more than a “hookup app” for millennials, people of all ages are finding love (and even marriage) with a simple swipe of the screen.  The app is designed to help you meet new people, but what if you’re looking for someone specific? 

Running a Tinder search for a specific user isn’t an easy task.  Tinder will tell you quite bluntly that you can’t do it unless you’re already connected to that person.  You can tweak your own settings through trial and error to see if you can make that person show up in your searches, but it’s not a foolproof method.  If you want to see if someone specific has a Tinder profile, you’ll usually need a third-party tool to do the job.

If you’re one of the millions of dating app users, these tips can help you find what (or rather who) you’re looking for and make a lasting connection that may lead to something more serious.

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Searching People on Tinder Directly

The more you know about a person, the easier it will be to find their Tinder profile — if they do indeed have an account—through the site’s normal discovery process.  The amount of information you have at your disposal will vary, depending on the circumstances.

If you’re trying to find out whether the person you’re already dating has a “hookup” profile on the side for cheating purposes, you’re well equipped to search.  On the other hand, if you’re looking for a former classmate or coworker you hope to connect with, you might have to resign yourself to a lot more attempts.  

One option is to test a few potential usernames by entering them directly into the search bar.  Type in[username], and see if that works.  If not, try a few variations for the person’s name.  A lot of people use the same information across multiple sites, so this is always worth a shot.

Another strategy is to tweak your settings and preferences so the person you’re looking for will hopefully turn up as a potential match.  Here’s how to tweak your settings appropriately:

  • Set your gender preference to match their gender.
  • Set your age preference to match the person’s age, if you know it. If you don’t know it, make a guess and then adjust it by a year after every unsuccessful search.
  • Change your own settings to match the location of the person you’re interested in, so they’ll be considered “local” to you. 
  • Run your search, and swipe your way through the results until you find a Tinder profile for the person you’re interested in. If you don’t find them, tweak the age and location settings, and try again.

These methods aren’t foolproof because Tinder’s algorithm can sometimes be hard to crack.  It’s difficult to know whether you’re failing to find a person because they don’t have an account, or because the app just isn’t matching you with the right people.  This is why it’s sometimes better to use a third-party tool.

Tinder Search With Third-Party Tools

There are two kinds of third-party tools you can use to run Tinder searches for a specific person.  The first is Tinder-specific apps that attempt to extract the information from a Tinder profile, if the person you’re searching for has one.  These apps vary in quality but typically charge by the search.  That can get expensive in a hurry, especially if you’re using trial and error to find the person you’re looking for.

Often, it’s a better option is to use people search tools.  Spokeo allows you to search for whatever information you actually have — a name, a phone number, an address or email — and will provide you with as much additional information as it can find from public sources.  This often includes social media or dating-site accounts associated with a given email address, so your search might be successful right from the start.

How to Use Spokeo to Perform a Tinder Search:

  1. Start by selecting the right search tool based on the information you already have about the person. If you only have their name, type it into the search bar and press “Search.”
  2. Then, scroll through the results to find the person you are looking for. If they have a common name, you may need to look for other identifying factors like location or age. 
  3. Once you locate their Spokeo profile, select “see results”
  4. Browse through the results page to discover information that may help you narrow in on their Tinder username, or more accurately set your profile parameters to encourage Tinder to show them to you organically.

Even if you don’t turn up a Tinder profile by going this route, you should compile enough additional information to search more effectively using Tinder’s own tools.

Discover more ways to find out if someone has an online dating profile. 

Why Should You Learn More About Your Match?

The simple, unfortunate truth is that dating (or just plain hooking up) requires making yourself vulnerable at some level.  Like other dating sites, the hazards of being on Tinder include both catfish and romance scammers, serial cheaters, and people with unsavory backgrounds.  Even if you’re the one who’s looking, doing some basic background checks is just plain common sense.

People search tools can tell you who you’re really dealing with, bringing up everything from their marital status (yep, some married people secretly use Tinder) to criminal history and more. Knowing for certain you’re not dealing with a scammer, a cheater or someone who’s downright dangerous can give you some needed peace of mind before you take things to the next level.


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