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How To Change Your Location in Bumble

Posted by Jamie on February 9, 2019

When people think of online dating, they typically default to one of two ideas. Perhaps they’re thinking of older dating sites from the 2000s, like OKCupid, eHarmony, or Plenty of Fish. Those still exist, but through the last decade, smartphones have given way to a whole new generation of dating apps. While Tinder may be the one that most people keep on their minds, Bumble is a close competitor, with many preferring the interface and the features of Bumble over Tinder. Bumble still uses the swiping interface made popular through Tinder, but adds a twist to your potential matches: in heterosexual matches, the woman has to start the conversation before the match begins.

Bumble also allows you to meet friends or even make business connections, making it an essential application for anyone with a smartphone. If you’re using Bumble for dating or to meet friends, you’re limited to matching with people in your local city. But what if you want to match with people from farther away? Well, officially Bumble won’t let you do that… but unofficially, there are at least a couple of ways. Let’s take a look at how you can fake your location within Bumble.

Official Methods

Though Bumble has a paid membership option called Bumble Boost, it’s very different than rival Tinder’s paid accounts, Tinder Plus and Tinder Gold. Both include a feature called Passport, allowing you to swipe between matches from different locations around the world. Perfect for prior to taking a vacation or moving to a new city, Passport is one of the most valuable premium features for Tinder, but unfortunately, Bumble doesn’t offer the same thing. Bumble Boost gives you some additional features, including the ability to see everyone who has right-swiped your profile, an extension of your matches before the conversation expires, and the ability to rematch with those expired connections, but a Passport-like feature is not included in Boost.

All this makes an official method for changing your location non-existent, a disappointing but unsurprising lack of options for Bumble users looking to preview possible matches in new locations. But you aren’t out of luck just yet. Depending on your phone, you might be able to modify your location data within your device, moving your Bumble account to an entire new location.

Spoofing Your GPS

Spoofing your GPS on your Android device isn’t something you’re necessarily going to want to do every day, but it is something that makes for some interesting ideas for apps like Bumble or Tinder. GPS spoofing allows you to change your location to somewhere brand-new in order to view dating profiles in that new area. It’s not ideal for actually meeting up with people—remember, you’re still hundreds of miles or more away from them—but if you’re trying to get an idea of what the dating scene is like in your next vacation spot or the place you plan on moving, it’s the perfect way to do just that.

Android

If you’re one of the billion or so people who own Android devices, you’re in luck. Spoofing your GPS on Android is really easy if you know where to look, and it doesn’t require rooting, modding, or any additional steps you can’t accomplish on your phone right now. Start by installing Fake GPS Location from the Play Store. Despite a dated icon, the app is far and away the best option for spoofing your GPS location on Android, thanks to its reliable connection. After you’ve installed the app from the Play Store, leave it alone for the time being and open up your device’s settings menu. Though we’re using a Pixel 2 XL running Android 9.0, the steps for enabling this setting will remain largely the same regardless of whichever application you choose for this step.

Basically, while your phone doesn’t need to be rooted or hacked in order to gain access to a spoofed GPS signal, you do need to enable “developer settings,” a hidden menu inside Android that offers a load of options and customization menus to choose from. There’s no downside to enabling developer settings in the menu system of your phone, outside of the fact that you’ll have an additional menu in your phone taking up space. Developer settings in Android are hidden by default because there are some options in there that, while reversible, can really bug up your phone, making it an easy option to avoid giving out to general consumers. That said, we’re only changing one setting, so enabling developer settings is easy to do and well worth it.

To enable developer options, open the settings menu on your phone and scroll all the way to the bottom, until you find the “About Phone” section of your menu. Some devices might call this “System” settings, or any other generic name for miscellaneous settings that don’t really go anywhere else in your device. Regardless, once you reach the “About Phone” section, you’ll likely see a bunch of information available to you. Your phone number, device name, and so on. What you’re looking for here, however, is the Build Number of your software, which you’ll find towards the bottom of this menu. Once you find this option, tap it and continue tapping it. You’ll see a small message appear on your device after a couple taps, reading “five steps away from being a developer,” and so on, counting down until you’ve tapped the Build Number enough. You’ll see a small message alert you that you’re now a developer, and you can return back to the main display of your settings menu.

You’ll now notice a new option available inside your settings menu. For some, the option will be hidden in the standard settings menu, ready to be clicked when it needs to be. For others, you’ll find the option in your own “About Phone” or “System” menu, which is where we found it on our Pixel 2 XL. This menu has a ton of available options you didn’t have on your phone before, all meant for developers who are working on creating apps for the Play Store, and for you to download at a later date. That’s where we’ll find the golden setting option we need for changing and editing your GPS location. Under the Debugging menu, you’ll find an option for “Select mock location app;” on older versions of Android, this option is a toggle entitled “Allow mock locations.” The former allows us to select a mock location app to utilize our GPS; the latter allows us to enable the option to use those apps in the first place. Regardless of which version appears on your device, you’ll need to select it from this menu.

Now, jump back to Fake GPS Location and make sure all options are enabled before you start using the app. You’ll need to grant the app permission in order to properly use your location, and you can begin using the app at will to select your location. Using Fake GPS Location, you’ll need to position the crosshairs over your target location. Once you’ve done that, you’ll click the small Play icon in the bottom-right hand corner to activate the GPS spoof (occasionally, you may need to watch an ad before the app activates). Once running, you can either use the joystick to control your GPS movement, or disable the joystick and simply let the app run in the background. There’s all sorts of options here for messing with as well, including the ability to create a path, to remove ads, set favorite locations, and more. Most of these apps will have their own feature sets for users to mess around with, so make sure to explore the app you chose to see what options are available.

To check whether it’s working, force close Bumble from your device by swiping it away from your recent apps list, then reload into the app. Check the location of your first match and compare it to your actual location. For example, when we loaded our fake GPS location as Washington DC, we immediately began to see matches in Virginia, making it a success in our book. Occasionally, Bumble may notice that you’ve changed your location and attempt to put you back in a place that matches your IP address, so you may also want to consider using a VPN to match your locations together. However, generally speaking, the app should reset your location to your spoofed address every time you reset the app, so if you run into any major issues, try resetting the app.

If it still isn’t working, don’t despair. Check the app again and try to make sure your spoofing has been enabled. Past that point, you can also try out using different apps to see if the first app you chose isn’t working properly on your phone. Also make sure to check to see if your device’s GPS signal is on, which it needs to be in order for GPS spoofing to work properly. Ultimately, GPS spoofing can be a bit touchy, so it’s important to make sure that you keep troubleshooting the device if you run into any major issues.

iOS

As you might imagine, spoofing your location on an iOS device is much harder than it is on an Android device. Thanks to the limitations and the security measures placed in iOS by Apple, accessing the necessary developer settings within iOS nigh-impossible. There’s some small shred of hope, though for many users, the steps necessary to take advantage of GPS spoofing on iOS will likely outweigh the benefits of faking your Bumble location. If fact, if faking your location within Bumble is a priority for you, it might even be cheaper and easy to buy a cheap Android phone, or an Amazon Fire Tablet, in order to run the app without having to jump through hoops involved with spoofing your location in iOS.

Still, there is one method we’d recommend. iTools makes a piece of software that allows you to spoof your GPS location on iOS, though the trial period is limited and you’ll need to pay to use the app regularly. Plus, you’ll need to be around your computer to properly control your phone’s GPS. iTools’ software is the only app we know of that properly works with iOS 12, so unless you have a massively out-of-date iPhone, you’re probably out of luck on iOS.

***

Fooling your friends into thinking you’re somewhere you aren’t, checking into locations you haven’t been, looking at dating profiles in all-new areas—it shouldn’t be a surprise that there’s plenty of options for configuring and changing your GPS settings depending on what you need out of the app. While we wouldn’t recommend spoofing your location all day, it’s a handy tool that’s good to keep in your app drawer, just in case you ever need to check out a dating profile in an upcoming location days before you actually get there.

6 thoughts on “How To Change Your Location in Bumble”

Carrie says:
I just need to know how to change my username and if I must pay to see my matches?
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Nana says:
I don’t want him to see that I am 4.3 miles away. Can’t he just keep driving until the bumble app tells him .5 miles, case out the houses in that area, and then stalk me? That is NOT safe at all for women.
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Kate says:
You say this more than once “Turn off geolocation within the app” but I don’t see where/how to do it. Can you please explain? I’m using Express VPN and my location still shows up as my ACTUAL location.
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William Sattelberg says:
Hi Kate! You’ll wanna make sure you turn off GPS on your phone in order to turn off geolocation within the app. By disabling your GPS, you force your device to look for your location using the internet, instead of satellites. This isn’t foolproof, like the article says, and so we’ll try to clear up the guide in the next week or so with better wording and an updated method!
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Todd says:
I find the “automatic” location extremely annoying. I have a small radius set for matching (I live in a congested city, where traveling 10 miles could take an hour. I’m also a grown-up and I’m not likely to move). People commuting through or visiting my city show up as matches–then I find they live impossibly far away.

This “feature” could potentially be DANGEROUS. Say you contact someone who turns out to be a stalker type; they can monitor your location. “You said you live in Beverly Hills, but the last three nights Bumble says you were in Santa Monica–WHO ARE YOU BANGING IN SANTA MONICA????”

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MK says:
Bumble goes on about it’s safety for women but I just experienced a jarring situation where a match knew exactly where I was. I felt creeped and almost stalked because he was monitoring where I was using the distance display. One should have to option to turn off real time location and just list your hometown.
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Kinzy says:
Were you able to figure out how to enable just your home town? I need that ability as well.
Rich says:
Bumble is ridiculous in how it detects your location. I want to find matches near my home town. I sont care about matches while I am on vacation200 miles away! Stupid!
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Amanda says:
Thanks for info … could you tell me how to reset since when I got on for the first time I swiped left on the people close and now have no local matches … tried reinstalling app and reinstalling on Facebook with no significant change. Do I have to let it expire and then start again in a few weeks? Thanks
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