“Life is short. Have an affair.”
Okay, I know that a site where people are looking to have affairs won't be where
to find that special someone, but it could be fun! Armed with curiosity and an
open mind, I decided to look closely at what Ashley Madison had to offer. Let me
first explain how legit this site is, then give you the tldr;
Is Ashley Madison Legit?
Before delving into the nitty-gritty, addressing the elephant in the virtual
room is essential - is Ashley Madison legit? To be honest, its reputation
precedes it. Founded in 2001, the site experienced a significant security breach
in 2015, exposing millions of users' personal information. Since then, the
platform has undergone significant changes to bolster its security and regain
trust. While the past cannot be erased, Ashley Madison has learned from its
mistakes and tried to provide a more secure and discreet environment for its
Of course, like any dating app, it's possible to meet people who may not be who
they say they are. If you find an account too good to be true, it may be! Always
ask a person to verify that they are who they are, and please, please, never
give away private information to a person you don't know.
📝The TLDR; on Ashley Madison
For those hurrying, here's a brief rundown of Ashley Madison:
- It’s a hookup app focusing on having affairs. However, many also use it for
- It’s free to use, but requires you to pay for credits if you wish to talk to
- It’s available as an app or as a desktop website.
Setting up an account on Ashley Madison: This is a really
straightforward process and I was pleasantly surprised! I’ll discuss this more
in the next section, but it’s essentially frictionless with only an email addy,
username and password required.
How to delete Ashley Madison account: If you no longer want to
use Ashley Madison, it’s pretty easy to delete your account. Deleting an account
will remove your profile from search results, the site, your messages, usage
history, personal info, photos and forfeit any remaining credit
balances ← This was a big one, as there’s no refund as of right now. On desktop
and iOS, you’ll go to your account then click “full deletion.” Unfortunately on
Android you’ll have to email them, as you can’t delete it from the app. 😬
Temporarily deactivating your account: This is an enticing
option if you want to put pause on your hookup search without deleting your
account and forfeiting credits.
Hiding and Unhiding profile: This is a pretty cool feature that
not all dating sites or dating apps let you do. If you’re not comfortable being
found in the search results (either because you’re being stealthy, or because
you’d rather not have everyone contacting you first) you can hide your profile
and continue to use the site’s basic features.
What is an AM Pass on Ashley Madison? Unfortunately, this
feature has been discontinued, but the AM pass allowed you to verify your
identity and prove you were a real person – and this would be displayed on
accounts once approved. Not having this takes the trust/safety factor down a
bit, and it’s unclear why they removed it.
Now, let me talk about signing up for this bad boy.
What’s the Sign Up & Registration Process for Ashley Madison?
Curiosity got the better of me, and I eagerly jumped into the sign-up process.
Upon landing on the homepage, I was greeted with a sleek design and a
straightforward registration form. Creating an account was surprisingly quick
and didn't require extensive personal information like some other dating sites.
All I needed was an email address, username, and password.
Once signed up, Ashley Madison encourages users to complete their profiles,
providing details about their preferences, interests, and relationship status.
While it's not mandatory, having a complete profile can lead to you meeting the
hookup of your dreams. I'm not saying you need to bloviate about your life story
(it's an affair website, after all). However, having sexy pictures and a
tantalizing bio beyond the vanilla and cliche “likes walks on the beach” line
can get you the guy or gal you’re wild about, especially in the search results.
Is There an Ashley Madison App?
Yup! Unlike some other websites, the Ashley Madison app can be used on both iOS
and Android – making it the perfect “on the go” hookup platform. In fact, there
are certain features like “Traveling Man/Woman” and “Stealth Mode” that make it
worth installing the app for discreet affairs.
🕵️Search Capabilities for Ashley Madison
After setting up my profile, it was time to explore the site's search
capabilities. Like any website, Ashley Madison lets you search a person’s age,
sex, location, and other basic features. But Ashley Madison's advanced search
filters allow users to refine their searches based on attributes such as:
- Physical attributes
- Ethnic background
- Relationship status
- Whether their photos are public are private
- And much more!
As someone looking for a potential partner or hookup, this
customization level was intriguing and daunting.
It meant I could find someone with the desired traits, but it also highlighted
the site's focus on physical appearance, which may not be everyone's cup of tea.
Of course, it IS an affair app, and many who seek to have an affair aren't
looking for a life partner to be there when looks fade. Of course, having an
extensive list of potential connections for casual affairs comes at a price.
Is Ashley Madison Free?
One burning question on my mind was whether Ashley Madison offered free
services. The app is just like any other modern dating website: it's free to
use, but is it really free? Let me explain.
While the site allows users to sign up and create a profile without spending a
dime, the free tier is relatively limited in functionality. Communication
options are restricted for free users, and to engage in meaningful
conversations, a paid subscription is required. So if you want to go anywhere
here, you need to pay up. Let's compare both tiers.
Free vs. Paid Subscriptions for Ashley Madison
While there are a number of intricacies between the free vs. paid accounts on
Ashleymadison.com, here’s the quick and dirty on the difference and what to
Free Tier for Ashley Madison
As a curious explorer, I tried out the free tier. While it was nice to browse
profiles and get a feel for the site's interface, I quickly realized that my
interactions would be limited without a paid subscription.
Free users can send winks and add others to their favorites list similar to
sites like Heated Affairs, but a paid membership is essential to initiate
meaningful conversations or access advanced features. So you can let ‘em know
there’s potential, but can’t actually take it any further.
To summarize, free tier offers:
- A chance to browse user profiles
- Send winks to others
The paid tiers provide:
- Users a chance to initiate conversations
- Advanced features
Overall, if you want to get your feet wet, I suggest trying this and then seeing
if it’s right for you.
Paid Tier for Ashley Madison
Ashley Madison has three premium tiers:
Basic Package: $59 for 100 Credits
The Basic package, priced at $59, is an excellent starting point for first-time
users who wish to test the waters and get a feel for the site's features. With
100 credits at your disposal, you can dip your toes into the Ashley Madison
experience. These credits can be used to initiate conversations, send messages,
engage in chats, or even exchange virtual gifts with potential connections.
While it may not be sufficient for extensive interactions, the Basic package
allows you to explore the site's functionality and decide if it aligns with your
Classic Package: $169 for 500 Credits
The Classic package, priced at $169, is the most popular option among Ashley
Madison users. With 500 credits to play with, you have ample opportunities to
engage in meaningful conversations and explore potential connections more
extensively. This package allows you to initiate multiple conversations, chat
with several individuals, and even exchange contact information with those you
find intriguing. If you're serious about finding a compatible match on Ashley
Madison, the Classic package offers a more immersive experience.
Elite Package: $289 for 1,000 Credits
For those fully committed to their pursuit of meaningful connections on Ashley
Madison, the Elite package is the ultimate choice. Priced at $289, this package
grants you a substantial 1,000 credits, empowering you to communicate with
numerous users and explore the site's premium features. With this robust credit
bank, you can take your conversations to a deeper level and increase your
chances of making authentic connections. Additionally, the Elite package unlocks
an exclusive perk - the "Ashley Madison Premium" that provides 24 hours of free
chat and grants you "Priority Man" status, enhancing your profile's visibility
in search results.
The “Traveling Man/Woman” Feature
It also unlocked the innovative 'Travelling Man/Woman' feature, allowing me to
connect with potential partners in different cities, a helpful tool for frequent
travelers like myself.
Amid the sea of dating sites, Ashley Madison does boast a unique feature that
sets it apart - discreet photos. Users can choose to share private pictures with
others, but they have the power to grant access only to specific individuals.
This added privacy layer could appeal to those seeking discretion in
extramarital affairs. After all, you don’t want to expose yourself to your
friend who is also looking for an affair.
This site does offer a bit more to protect users, which is also why many seek
out Ashley Madison for their affairs. This extra bit of peace of mind can help
The Ashley Madison “Prime” Credit Package
This feature is available through iOS and the web. With it, you can receive more
messages and have your profile highlighted. When you have competition, this
isn’t a bad purchase depending on your commitment.
What Sets Ashley Madison Apart?
While there’s quite a few features that sets Ashley Madison apart, these stood
out to me.
If you have the iOS app, Stealth Mode hides the app icon from the menu. This app
is one that you may not want wandering eyes to see, so I do think this is a nice
You can make your profile invisible without deleting it. This works well if
certain people are suspicious that you have a profile, and you can unhide it
once the heat is off.
One aspect that genuinely differentiates Ashley Madison is its niche audience.
The site unapologetically caters to those seeking affairs and open
relationships, and its search filters reflect this focus. This specificity can
be a strength and a weakness, depending on what one seeks in a potential
partner. While it offers a more targeted approach, it might not be the best fit
for individuals seeking traditional monogamous relationships.
So what are my final thoughts?
Ashley Madison is undoubtedly a unique player in the online dating arena,
despite (or in spite of) its past. It wears its intentions on its sleeve,
catering to a specific audience with a particular purpose. While the site has
undergone changes and improvements since its infamous security breach, some
users may hesitate to join the platform for safety reasons, which is totally
understandable and why I had hesitation at first.
For those open to exploring unconventional relationships, Ashley Madison's
search capabilities and discreet photo-sharing feature provide ample
opportunities to connect with like-minded individuals. However, it's essential
to approach this site with caution and a clear understanding of its intentions.
Remember, honesty and open communication are crucial whether you're seeking a
traditional romance or an unconventional adventure.