An exclusive, invite-only dating app that was best described by The New York Times as ‘Illuminati Tinder,’ Raya is miles away from your average dating app. 

The app first came into the public eye when a Tiktoker revealed she matched with Ben Affleck and he slid into her DM’s.

Since then the internet when into a frenzy about the elusive dating app:

What is Raya?

Officially launched in 2015, Raya is billed as an “online membership-based community for dating, networking and making new friends.” It’s designed for people in ‘creative industries’ which in Raya language translates to ‘hot people,’ aka influencers, artists, A- through C-list celebrities, sportspeople and all those in the public eye.


Much like the VIP list of a hot club, the backbone of Raya is its promise of secrecy. Members of the app are forbidden to name-drop who they’ve spotted on the platform. If any user attempts to screenshot a match, they’ll instantly be threatened with a warning titled: “suspension and/or removal of your membership.” 

It also provides a feature that conventional dating apps such as Tinder and Bumble do not offer. According to their very minimal website, Raya claims it has “created a hide feature and encourage members to utilise it at any time if they aren’t comfortable for any reason.” Doing so will preserve conversations with other members while also preventing any new members from seeing their profile.

In true Raya fashion, the international dating app has never been advertised and only thrives on word-of-mouth promotion, honouring its commitment to confidentiality.

Entering the world of Raya

As you might have guessed, the application procedure for Raya is quite extensive as the app boasts an acceptance rate lower than Harvard. First, you have to be invited by an existing member, following which interested users are required to fill out a form. Upon review, prospective members are either accepted, rejected or put on the waiting list. According to Raya, applications are “assessed based on algorithmic values” and scrutinised by a committee of members worldwide before approval, which could last days, weeks or months.


The app also has a very rigid set of guidelines, even for celebrities. Aside from their vow of secrecy, outward displays of wealth are strictly prohibited on the app. Misbehaviour of any kind isn’t tolerated and results in the applicant being booted out with a tacit response: “Our decision is final.”

The official guidelines read: “Every member is expected to follow our simple rules of respect, trust, and privacy. Raya removes former members who don’t share these same community ideals. Furthermore, we reserve the right to suspend or remove any membership we no longer feel strengthens our community.”

Bollywood celebrities on Raya

After acquiring international acclaim, Raya made its way to India. The Raya clientele now includes some of the biggest Bollywood names. 

According to a report by The Indian Express, Bollywood celebrities like Janhvi Kapoor, Neha Sharma, Vaani Kapoor, Sonal Chauhan, Anushka Ranjan and Lisa Mishra are all patrons of the app.

Other fans of the app include Matthew Perry, Demi Lovato, Lizzo, Tom Holland, Cara Delevingne, Ruby Rose and Sharon Stone to name a few. Simone Biles met her boyfriend, an N.F.L. player, on the app. Amy Schumer is also famously rumoured to have met her husband through Raya.