If you've never heard about Ashley Madison before, we'd like to kindly invite you to come out from the rock under which you've been living. AshleyMadison is one of the most popular online dating sites available today.

Ashley Madison (or The Ashley Madison Agency), was first launched in 2001 and they have ever since offered those looking for a discreet affair a safe and secure place to do so. Their slogan, "Life is short, Have an affair", sums up pretty succinctly what they are all about.

The site has had a data breach in 2015, but Ashley Madison has since made sure to implement a more robust online security framework. But more on their security later. We'll also cover the costs involved, standout features, and overall experience, including what you can expect to find here. So, without further ado, let's jump right into it!

Visit Site

Pros & Cons


  • Millions of monthly site visitors (even though there are twice as many men online, there are still more than enough women, too).
  • Simple and straightforward pricing (no hidden charges or confusing prices).
  • Extremely user-friendly website with no frills that is easy to navigate.
  • Completely free service for straight women to use.
  • Anonymity features (photo blur, masks, and panic button)
  • Assured discretion and increased security since 2015.


  • It can get rather expensive rather quickly (the credit system can make you forget how much you are actually spending).
  • You have to have a balance of coins before you can initiate communication with anyone online.
  • You can still come across fake accounts.
  • There is no option for trans people to create a profile.
ashley madison dating site homepage

What Type Of Dating Site Is Ashley Madison?

  • Casual sex and hookups
  • Discreet affairs
  • Chatting
  • Open and polygamous relationships
  • Sexually oriented friendships

Who Is AshleyMadison For?

  • Straight
  • Gay
  • Lesbian
  • Single or attached
  • Polyamorous couple

Ashley Madison has garnered so much popularity because, unlike other dating sites, it goes beyond traditional dating and caters mostly to the needs of couples and married people. Nevertheless, singles are also welcome to find a match here. Unfortunately, no accommodations are being made for trans people.

Stats & Infographics

Over the last three months, AshleyMadison has averaged over 6.8 million monthly site visits. With such a large member database, it is no wonder that they are ranked as the 10th most popular dating and relationship website in The United States. They are right up there with the likes of Match, Tinder, PlentyOfFish, and OkCupid.

Male - Female Ratio

ashley madison dating site stats and infographics male to female ratio

Age Demographics

ashley madison dating site stats and infographices age demographics

Country Distribution

ashley madison dating site stats and infographics country distribution

Registration Process

Registering on AshleyMadison is as quick and easy as you'd expect. There are no long and winded questionnaires, and it shouldn't take more than a few minutes to complete.

Simply go to www.Ashley and click on the "SEE YOUR MATCHES" button. Next, you will be asked to fill in a form that asks for the following pieces of information about you:

  • Your relationship status (Used to match you with the right kind of people)
  • A username for your profile (This will be used to log in, so make it memorable)
  • A password for your account
  • Your location (The country you live in)
  • Your zip/postal code
  • Date of birth
  • Your ethnicity
  • Email address (This is only for notifications)

Before clicking LOGIN NOW!, new members will need to tick that they have read and agree to what is stated in the Privacy Policy, Terms and Conditions, and personal information files. Optionally, you can also choose to receive communications involving promotions, offers, and other information from Ashley Madison.

ashley madison dating site registration process signup form

Next, you'll go through a few suggestions that will ask you to buy credits now, upload a profile photo, choose to automatically make your private photos available to those who share theirs with you, and also to add some detail to your profile. These are all optional for now, and you can click next if you'd rather do them later.

Of course, it is always good to fill in your profile at some point. The information that you provide will help you get matched with other like-minded members. It is especially important to add photos and an attention-grabbing description to entice someone else to make the first move.

ashley madison dating site registration process profile completion

App & Mobile Compatibility

Ashley Madison provides an easy-to-use platform where you can explore options outside of your current relationship. It is made even better with the availability of an equally user-friendly app. The Ashley Madison dating app has all the same great features that you will find on the desktop version. The site itself is also optimised for a great experience whether you log in via a laptop, tablet, or mobile browser.

ashley madison dating site mobile compatibility and app

The dating app can be downloaded from either the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store. Alternatively, there are links to both of these directly from Any members who do decide to sign up via the mobile app should be aware that the subscription will be via your selected mobile app store. This means that if you delete your account, this will not automatically result in the deletion of your subscription through Google Play, Apple's App Store, iTunes, or Apple ID. You will have to cancel that billing separately to stop the charges from going through.

Men Vs Women

Overall the Ashley Madison dating site functions the same for just about anyone who signs up to use it. Everyone is expected to go through the same signup process and has access to use all the same great features on offer.

The only difference, and this is quite a big one, is that women get to use the site for free. To be a bit more specific, only women who are looking for men get the free service and won't need to buy any credits, ever. Everyone else (men looking for women, men looking for men, and women looking for women, etc.) are required to purchase credits to communicate with others and enjoy the site's features.

With the large difference in the ratio of men to women on AshleyMadison, this is a rather great way to make it even more appealing for women to sign up. A win-win for all.



Private Key

ashley madison dating site private key feature

On Ashley Madison, discretion is everything. And to this end, members are able to create a private photo gallery that will not be visible to just anyone that creates a free account. The private key is your way of deciding who gets access to your most private photos. What you decide to put in your gallery is completely up to you. You also have a public photo gallery, so be sure not to get the two mixed up by accident.

Once you've met someone that you want to open up to, maybe in more ways than one, then you can send them a key to your private photos. To do this, you can go to their profile and click the 'key' icon. Alternatively, you can do so while in conversation with someone by clicking the 'key' icon next to the message box and selecting 'Send Private Key'. Requesting someone's private key works in the same way. Requesting someone's private key is not free and will cost some credits.

Keep in mind that you might have the 'Automatic Private Key Exchange' active, which will automatically send your Private Key to any member who shares their key with you. Private Keys will be revoked automatically if you block a member or if they block you.


ashley madison dating site search feature

The search filter is a great way to pinpoint the exact type of woman you are looking for. You can search Ashley Madison users and find someone based on a few basic parameters, or go even more in-depth to find someone who fits your tastes more exactly.

A basic search filter includes such things as their:

  • Age range
  • Specific location
  • Distance range from that location
  • Last login
  • Relationship status

You can also choose to only see members that have private photos, public photos, or are new members.

The more in-depth search parameters are based on their body type, height, ethnic background, languages spoken, and limits.

Winks & Favourites

ashley madison dating site winks and favourites feature

While scrolling through your discovery page or while doing a few searches, you are very likely to come across a few profiles that will catch your eye. If you want to remember the ones you like but still want to keep scrolling through, you can add them to your favourites. Simply click on the 'heart' icon by their profile picture to do so.

Favouriting someone is completely anonymous, and they will not know that they made your list until you decide to initiate contact in some way. If you, however, click on and view their profile, then they will be able to see who's viewed them. Just something to keep in mind if you want to stay mysterious at first. Ashley Madison has an extra feature where you can choose to be notified when one of your favourites logs in, so you never have to miss each other.

A great way to initiate contact is with a cheeky wink. As with adding someone to your favourites, winks are completely free to do. When someone receives a wink, they will get a notification, and hopefully, the sparks will start to fly right after. A wink can be sent by going into their profile and clicking on the 'wink emoji' by their profile picture.

Member Initiated Contact

The Member Initiated Contact (MIC) feature is one of the only things on Ashley Mad that works on a subscription. This is an optional monthly subscription add-on offered to profiles of males seeking females. MIC allows those members to read and respond to female-initiated contact without spending any credits. This basically means that if she messages you first, you won't need credits to stay in touch.

Members who choose to use this feature should be aware that this won't apply if a male has initiated contact. This includes anything from sending a message, exchanging private photo keys, or even sending a wink or adding the female member to his favourites. So men who want to get the best value from MIC should put more effort into attracting a woman's attention and be careful not to be too eager to wink and favourite everyone.

Offers, Prices & Costs

Instead of a subscription model, Ashley Madison works on a credit system. Anyone besides women who are seeking men needs to pay for credits that are then used to interact with other members.

Credit Package

Credits can be purchased as one of three packages; the Basic, Classic, or Elite plan. You can get the best value for your money per credit based on how large the package you purchase is. The Elite plan comes with access to "Ashley Madison Premium" and the "Priority Man" status. Premium status gives you 24 hours of free chat, while the Priority Man badge puts your profile higher up on other members' searches and highlights your profile for 30 days.

There is also the optional MIC (Member Initiated Contact) subscription. This feature allows males seeking female profiles to read and respond to other members without needing to use any of your credits for 30 days. The first 30 days of MIC are completely free, after which time it will automatically renew at its normal price of $31.49 per month.

Prices & Costs

  • Basic Plan: $69 for 100 Credits ($0.69 per credit)
  • Classic Plan: $199 for 500 Credits ($0.40 per credit)
  • Elite Plan: $329 for 1000 Credits ($0.33 per credit)

Perks Included

  • Initiate contact with a female member: 9 credits
  • Send a priority highlighted message: 14 credits
  • Open collect messages: 5 credits
  • Send virtual gifts: 20 - 50 credits
  • See who has viewed your profile


AshleyMaddison offers you the choice to automatically top up your credits when they run low. This will happen when you have 12 or fewer credits available, at which time your account will automatically get topped up with a set amount of credits. The amount of credits being topped up depends on the selected credit package that you purchased and are charged at a comparable price. You'll have to tick the 'Top up your credits' box during checkout if you would like to have this auto-top-up feature activated.

When you purchase your first credit package, you will also be offered an additional amount of credits at a discounted cost.

Prices & Costs

  • Basic package top-up: 200 credits at $79
  • Classic package top-up: 500 credits at $199
  • Elite package top-up: 1000 credits at $329

Perks Included

You'll never have to check your credit balance or worry about running out of coins. You get to continue communicating with anyone on the site.

Safety & Security

Personal Information

With the 2015 data breach still all too fresh in peoples' minds, you might wonder if it really could be all that safe to sign up to AshleyMadison. But you can rest easy knowing that ever since that incident, there have not been any issues, and they have ensured that security takes top priority. They are all about discretion, after all.

Your personal data will never be sold but will be used to ensure that you are provided with the services promised. Your data may also be shared with third-party companies to deliver targeted advertising. This is done at the highest level of relevance, and you will rarely get pestered by a slew of unwanted ads.

At present, it looks like the biggest risk for misuse of your personal information would be other members. Unfortunately, not everyone joins a dating site for purely admirable reasons. Due to that, it is always good to be careful with what you post online and to always act with caution when communicating with strangers on any platform.

For more details on exactly how your data is used and what security measures are in place, you can always read through the site's Terms and Privacy Policy. We suggest you have a large coffee ready because it's quite a long read, but the most important parts are conveniently highlighted and tabulated.

Third-Party Involvement

From what we could find in our extensive research, there was nothing that stood out as worrisome at all. The site's use of third parties is as good as it seems to get with online dating sites. Ashley Madison only uses trusted third parties who abide by their same level of security and protection. The information shared with third parties is also extremely limited to the absolute minimum necessary for their purpose.

There are also third-party cookies placed on your device if you use AshleyMadison, but these are automated devices and applications such as Google Analytics, AppsFlyer, and Dynatrace. These are all used to evaluate the use of the platform and the services provided, not to mention you can opt out of these at any time.

If you have any further questions about their policies and practices concerning the use of personal information by third-party service providers, you are able to contact them directly at as well.

Fake Profiles

Ashley Madison has really beefed up their security over the years to protect your personal information, but they still do not do any background checks on its members. It is not common for dating sites to do so, and therefore, the possibility of fake accounts will never be zero. This is a fact, no matter what dating site you log on to. However, during our time on Ashley Madison, we did not come across any clearly fake accounts, which is a pretty good sign.

This may also be due to the site concentrating so much on its members' security and discretion. They also strongly recommend that everyone make themselves familiar with their security and privacy tips BEFORE using the service. In this document, they describe how to:

  • Protect your account and personal information.
  • Use the incognito browser.
  • Spot suspicious profiles.
  • Report suspicious and offensive behaviour.

Reporting suspicious profiles is also an easy task. Simply go to the member's profile, click on the three dots in the top right-hand corner, and click on 'Report'.


If you've tried it for yourself or just read this far, you will understand why we agree with what so many other Ashley Madison reviews say too. The verdict is simple! If you are looking for an online dating site where you can find a discreet affair with someone like-minded, then Ashley Madison is perfect for you. Welcome to discreet hookup heaven. If there were only some accommodations being made for trans people, they might have gotten a perfect 5-star review.

From the appealing and user-friendly platform, secure privacy protocols, straightforward credit system, and abundance of active users, Ashley Madison is a clear standout in its niche. It is by far one of the very best online hookup sites that we've had the pleasure to try out and review.

As with any dating platform that requires some form of payment to use, the overall experience will depend somewhat on your budget. Unless you are lucky enough to be a straight woman, of course. But with a budget-friendly pricing system where men only pay for the very first message, why not at least give it a shot? All in all, we rate it as one of the very few sites that we would add to our short list of sites to at least try out once in your life. Who knows, maybe your Ashley Madison success story will be the next to be added to the multitudes that already exist.

Visit Site


  • Beware of scammers. This goes for any dating site where money is involved. If something seems too perfect, it probably is.
  • Set yourself a budget and keep an eye on your credits. It's easy to get lost in the excitement of things and lose track of how much you are actually spending.
  • Be generous with adding photos. You can add masks or blurs to preserve your identity, but empty profiles don't get a lot of attention.
  • Get creative with your initial messages. You have a limit of 64 characters to catch someone's attention, so make sure that every one of them counts.
  • Put honesty at the top of your priorities. It may be good to be a bit vague with personal details to stay discreet, but be open about your expectations and preferences to avoid any disappointments.


What Is Ashley Madison?

AshleyMadison is an online dating site that is primarily focused on open-minded and discreet relationships, where members can search for and connect with other like-minded individuals.

Is Ashley Madison Worth It?

Yes! AshelyMadison is right for you if you are an open-minded individual, not bound by the shackles of fidelity, and looking for a bit of discreet adult fun.

Is Ashley Madison Legit?

Completely! Ashley Madison is an entirely legitimate dating site. But as with any dating site or social network, the same can't always be said of its members. Fake accounts of people only pretending to be women with the intention of scamming others may still pop up. Thanks to the site's improved security protocols, the occurrence of these has drastically decreased.

Is Ashley Madison Free To Use?

For women seeking men, the site is completely free. Anyone else can sign up for a free Guest Membership to check the site out. Guest memberships have limited functionality, but you can browse, search, add favourites, and wink at other members.

Does Ashley Madison Work?

It can! Unfortunately, neither we nor the site can make any concrete promises or claims of an ensured successful outcome. At the end of the day, that will be up to you! But the site does give you the perfect platform to do so, and if used correctly, it has been seen to result in multiple success stories.

Is Ashley Madison Safe To Use Now?

After the hack of 2015, Ashley Madison has more than just beefed up their security procedures. To ensure history never repeats itself, the site offers its members a far greater level of anonymity and security.

How Much Does Ashley Madison Cost To Use?

For women seeking men, the site is completely free. Anyone else can sign up for a free Guest Membership to check the site out. When guests are ready to communicate, there are a variety of credit and subscription packages available. How active you decide to be and which package you choose will affect the overall cost of your experience.

Is There An Ashley Madison App Available?

Yes, there is. It can be easily downloaded directly from either the Google Play Store or Apple App Store. Alternatively, there are links on the www Ashley landing page that will conveniently direct you to download the app.

Does AshleyMadison Offer Private Payment Options?

Ashly Madison takes various methods of payment, all of which are done discreetly. When you pay with a credit card, the transaction is encrypted and securely transmitted to the payment processors. Only a discreet, non-description charge will appear on your account statement.

Can Single People Use Ashley Madison Too?

Yes. The main intent of the site is to connect married people while giving them a discreet place to do so. But you are more than welcome to join as a single person and have just as much fun with Ashley Madison. What's more important is that you are able to respect other people's need for discretion.

Can I Delete My Personal Data From Ashley Madison?

You can. Your personal data only gets held by the site for as long as it is needed to provide you with the service promised. Therefore if you wish to have it all removed, you will have to delete your profile to do so.

How Do I Delete My Ashley Maddison Profile?

To delete your profile and all your personal data:

  1. Go to the Settings tab under your profile
  2. At the very bottom of your account settings page, you'll find a 'Delete Account' option
  3. Follow the prompts to delete your profile

If you are using the mobile app, you will have to manually unsubscribe from any subscriptions. Be aware that any credits will also expire. Alternatively, you can choose to only deactivate your account, which keeps your data and coins but just removes your profile from search results.