Best Jewish Dating Sites

Judaism says, “Love is the ultimate goal to which a human can aspire.” Finding love and being loved by someone who shares the same faith, beliefs, and goals is the greatest blessing.

As our sages say, finding a soulmate is as difficult as the splitting of the Red Sea. But in this new era of cyberspace, finding your bashert is just a click away. Online Jewish Dating Websites and Apps serve as digital Shadchan (the Jewish matchmaker) and overcome the geographic barrier to find a mate who not only shares your religious values, culture, and traditions but also shares compatibility and interests.

We understand how as a Jew, dating for you is a vehicle to find someone you can have a spiritual connection and meaningful relationship with. That’s why we have listed various niche and mainstream dating sites that can help you find everlasting love within your culture and faith.

Go ahead, explore the sites given below, find someone special with whom you can spend Shabbat, celebrate festivals, fulfill your mitzvah, and bring joy to yourself and your family.

Top 10 Jewish Dating Websites

Relationships: Dating, friendship, romance, long-term relationship
All Jewish singles*
Gender Ratio:
43% male and 57% female*
User Base:
200,000 visits/month*
User Rating: 4.1/5.0*

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JDate is a perfect amalgamation of religion and romance. It is one of the oldest and largest online dating sites for Jewish and non-Jewish singles looking for a Jewish partner. No matter where you stand on the spectrum of faith and religious observance, the site is respectful and welcoming of all.

This premier Jewish dating website is available globally in five different languages to connect Jewish people. The site is free and easy to join for anyone seeking friendship, casual dating, or a long-term relationship with a religiously compatible Jew.

Special features

  • Secret admirer is a fun feature that lets the users mark a profile they liked and find out if the inclination is mutual.
  • Kibitz corner facilitates conversation between members based on their answers to the daily questions.
  • JDate organizes online and offline events for its like-minded members to meet and mingle in a casual, relaxed setting.
  • JLife, the site's online magazine, offers dating and relationship advice and publishes heart-warming successful love stories of couples.
  • The site offers 12 faith-based profile options like culturally Jewish, conservative, conservadox, secular, etc.

With comprehensive profiles, numerous search filters, communication options, and a user-friendly app and site interface, JDate offers a delightful experience to members. Don't wait up! Go and find your Jewish match on JDate. Read Full Review of JDate.

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eHarmony Dating Site

Relationships: Long term, serious and deep relationships
Profile: All singles*
Gender Ratio: 51% male and 49% female*
User Base: 4.2 million visits/month*
Popularity: Over 9 million active users worldwide*
User Rating:  4.8/5.0*

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eHarmony is one of the most well-known sites on the online dating platform. Its ethnically, racially, and religiously diverse member pool strives to match like-minded people desiring a meaningful long-term relationship.

eHarmony is not a traditional Jewish dating website. Still, the site's patented compatibility matching system helps you find a special someone who shares your faith and beliefs and also shares true emotional, mental, and physical compatibility.

Special features

  • The users can avail dating advice and valuable guidance from renowned love experts, psychologists, and relationship counselors.
  • The scientific algorithm suggests the ten most compatible matches based on your personality and preferences.
  • ‘What if’ game provides a chance to connect with 30 more profiles.
  • The users can hide their identity while viewing member profiles with the site's incognito feature.
  • The site's 3-day trial lets you cancel your account and refunds the subscription amount if you do not like the site.
  • Premium users of the site get an ultimate guarantee of 12 months extended subscription if they don't find their perfect match by the end of their plan.

An effortless sign-up through a Facebook account, guided and independent communication tools, and a safe and secure dating environment on the site leads to find a compatible match with whom you can have a happy and harmonious relationship.

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Relationships: Dating, romance, relationship
Profile: All Jewish singles*
Popularity: 3,600+ members got married through this*

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Going by the name based on the sacred text of The Midrash in Judaism, SawYouAtSinai is a site designed especially for Jewish singles seeking their bashert. It's the all-inclusive site for all the single, widowed, or divorced Jews with diverse backgrounds, cultures, religious practices, personalities, and interests.

The site adopts a customized approach by blending the technology and tradition of the Shadchan to help members find their destined soulmate. The site prides itself on being the only site providing personal attention and one-to-one interaction in the online dating world.

Special features

  • Member profiles are detailed to the core; including information about their religious practices, values, beliefs, family, interest, lifestyle, and two references, one of which is from a Rabbi.
  • The site hosts Shabbat dinner, DineNMeet, weekday events, and weekend getaways for members.
  • The Jewish dating blog on the site has various enlightening articles on relationships and dating.
  • Every member is assigned two proficient and zealous matchmakers to search, screen, and recommend seven matches every week based on their profile and questionnaire.
  • The contact details are shared only when both matches mutually accept the match.

The site boasts a well-organized user interface, identity verification, and unbridled support and guidance from the matchmaker. With a distinct wedding vibe, thoughtful and personalized matchmaking, the site is a perfect place to find a compatible partner who is committed to Judaism like you.

Relationships: Date, romance, serious relationship
Profile: All  Jewish singles*
Specialty: Free 3 weeks trial*

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JewishCafe is a virtual neighborhood coffee-shop-themed dating site for a meaningful relationship between like-minded and religiously compatible Jews. The site's vibe is relaxed, warm, romantic, and inviting, making it popular amongst orthodox to liberal Jews.

Based on, this niche site has proved its worth in English-speaking countries around the world. It has a global network of value-driven religious and cultural Jewish singles seeking a friend, a date, or a soulmate.

Special features

  • Newbies joining JewishCafe get a 3-week trial period with complete access to the site's premium features, allowing them to experience before investing in the membership.
  • The advanced search tool enables the users to find a match using specific criteria like religious beliefs, ethics, values, backgrounds, and more.
  • The membership plans are named after different types of coffees, making the experience fun and exciting.
  • Quick Match pairs up compatible members based on their profiles.
  • News informs the members about the events such as European tours, lecture tours, kosher safari, and others sponsored by the site.

An easy and free sign-up, supportive customer care, dating safety feature, various communication tools, and an active member pool makes this privacy-conscious site the best place to find exciting matches from the thriving Jewish community.


Relationships: Serious committed relationships
Profile: All singles*
Gender ratio: 43% male and 57% female*
User Base: 2 million visits/month*
Popularity: 82% members are university educated*
User Rating:  4.7/5.0*

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A mainstream dating site for ambitious and professional singles, Elite Singles helps you find love amidst your hectic schedule. The site isn't designed to be a niche Jewish dating site; it is still one of the best dating sites to look for a long-lasting relationship with an educated and career-oriented Jew.

The users can search, screen, and select the matches based on their religious affiliation and observance. Elite Singles serves as a digital matchmaker to connect you with people who share your history, heritage, faith, and compatibility.

Special features

  • An extensive and unique 5-factor personality test identifies your key personality traits to match you with users who would value these traits.
  • The intelligent matchmaking algorithm suggests the most compatible 3-7 daily matches based on your personality, interest, background, and preference.
  • “Have you met” allows the paid members to browse through user profiles other than the recommended daily matches
  • The “wildcard matches” recommend 20 extra matches that share some commonality with you, ensuring a viable match.
  • The website and the mobile app (Android and iOS) have a very straightforward interface ensuring optimal convenience to the busy bees desiring love.
  • The dating blog on the site offers dating advice and tips from relationship experts and psychologists.

With its high success rate, outstanding safety features, and excellent customer support, this serious dating site earned a reputation to find earnest matches for meaningful connections.


Relationships: Love, romance, relationship
Profile: All Jewish singles*

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A popular international Jewish dating app, JSwipe, is known as the Jewish Tinder app. JSwipe matches the swiping feature of Tinder, but it's not a casual hook-up app. JSwipe is the perfect place for the millennials in the Jewish community to find true love, romance, and a meaningful relationship.

A modern interface, unique layout with religious symbols and pop-up animation, and customizable geo-location features provide a convenient dating experience to its users. JSwipe outshines with its refined approach to Judaism by giving the users denominations to choose their Jewish religious background, beliefs, and faith practices.

Special features

  • Signing up on JSwipe is a piece of cake. One can download the app on Google Play or the Apple app store for free, and you can register only through your Facebook account.
  • Explore lets you surf and browse through numerous profiles without swiping right or left.
  • The premium feature SuperNote lets you send a message to someone you like, even when they haven't right-swiped you.
  • Boost feature magnifies your profile's visibility and exposure in your location.
  • The site organizes JSwipe events like summer parties, Halloween parties, Passover ball, happy hours at cafes for its members to meet and mingle.
  • Most eligible adds your profile to the segment of most right-swiped men and women.

With its contemporary features like Instagram linking, Photo optimization, passport, and SuperSwipe, JSwipe strives to unite single young Jews who share and praise Jewish tradition. Go ahead, swipe right on JSwipe to find your love partner.

JMatch /

Relationships: Date, Love, serious relationship
Profile: All marriage-minded Jewish singles*

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JMatch/ is a closely integrated congregation of like-minded Jews from across the world on a digital platform. This oldest and longest-running Jewish dating website has many success tales to tell. Mrs. Devora Alouf, the founder of this site, and her team of incredible matchmakers put in their heart and soul to build Jewish homes and families by uniting thousands of Jewish singles across all nationalities.

This distinct dating site is not just click and swipe, instead it is committed to helping marriage-minded single Jews to find their bashert. Hashem has created a soulmate for everyone; JMatch enables you to find and connect with them on earth.

Special features

  • The site has a unique matchmaking approach developed by blending technology and old-school matchmaking ways. Users can opt for personalized expert assistance or independently find matches through in-depth advanced search tools.
  • The user profiles are detailed and verified, providing information about the Jewish background, ancestry, commitment to Judaism.
  • The site's most distinct feature is its commitment to the tzedakah tradition, facilitating meaningful connections among disabled Jewish people.
  • Human Touch offers insightful articles and enlightening relationship advice by the love coach Alouf Devora

JMatch gives a customized and stress-free online platform to Jewish singles worldwide to explore, communicate and fall in love with someone special who shares their faith and values. With a vast network of matchmakers, years of experience, and many successful unions, this site is the best place to find your soulmate.


Relationships: Dating, romance, relationship
Profile: Only marriage-minded Jewish singles*
Popularity: 3,700+ members got married through this site*

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JWed blazed new trails by establishing itself as a Jewish-only dating site for single, divorced, and widowed Jews worldwide. As the name implies, this exemplary dating site is marriage-oriented.

JWed has proven to be a niche dating site in the truest sense, as it does not foster member diversity. JWed understands the importance of sharing the same faith, religious beliefs, culture, and heritage with your partner. Thus, only a Jewish person seeking a Jewish spouse belongs to this site.

Special features

  • Multiple communication options like e-mail, instant and private messages, video chat, pre-phrased ice breakers empower users to connect with like-minded people.
  • The site offers valuable dating tips and relationship advice through Instagram live stories and webinars.
  • The user profiles are comprehensive, providing all the information, including religious affiliations, parental lineage, education, family background, and other Jewish-specific details.
  • The skip feature is a median between swiping left or right. Users can skip the profile without accepting or rejecting it and get back to it later.

JWed is a modern and fun dating site without losing the essence of being a marriage-oriented dating platform for Jews of all denominations, age groups, and ethnicities. Hatzlacha, my friend, find you chosen one on JWed.

Relationships: Date, romance, relationship
Profile: All Jewish singles*
Specialty: Free Jewish dating site*

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SuperTova is a square peg in a round hole. This site strives to preserve Jewish culture and heritage for future generations without any intention to make money. A mensch Justin Corsa developed this completely free Jewish dating website to keep Jewish values and traditions alive through marriage within the community faith.

Staying true to its name, which means good deed in Hebrew, this site provides an opportunity to thousands of Jewish singles to meet, match and marry within their faith without paying any subscription fee.

Special features

  • The SuperTova Wall is like a newsfeed for the members globally to share their beliefs and experiences with fellow community members.
  • Members can interact through various communication tools like e-mail, messages, private chat, active forums and blogs, multiple chat rooms, etc.
  • The site's advanced search filters enable detailed searches based on physical traits, personal attributes, distance, ethnicity, lifestyle, religious background, etc.
  • The site suggests automated matches based on your preferences and personal beliefs mentioned in the detailed profile.
  • This free Jewish dating site has a donate button to encourage members to contribute within their capacity voluntarily.

A blending pot of fundamentally diverse Jews, this site offers a transparent, friendly, and safe dating environment to like-minded people seeking their bashert. With positive word of mouth, this value-driven dating platform has gained trust and popularity amongst Jewish daters globally.

Relationships: Date, friendship, relationship
Profile: All Jewish singles*

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An all-welcoming dating platform for Jewish men and women, JPeopleMeet showcases a diverse pool of members from all races, ethnicities, cultures, backgrounds, sexual orientations, and gender identities. This popular site enables Jewish singles and non-Jews to find kinship, love, and long-lasting relationship with like-minded people having immense faith in Judaism.

This country-specific dating site has amassed great popularity owing to free and convenient sign-up, personalized and straightforward profiles, intuitive interface, and automated matchmaking.

Special features

  • Profile Pro feature enhances your profile with the help of a professional writer service.
  • JPeopleMeet events organize fun events and meetings, enabling members to meet and mingle in a relaxed environment.
  • The Echo feature notifies the members when someone reverts to their likes.
  • ConnetMe facilitates phone conversations between mutually interested matches keeping their identities anonymous.
  • Promote me highlights your profile, making it seem at the top in the search list of other uses.

With conventional and efficient communication tools, search filters based on Jewish law necessities, and excellent customer support, this site provides an enriching dating experience.

Bottom Line

They say the kindred souls are already united in the heavenly realm before their souls are sent to the earth. The dating sites serve as earthly assistance to decode heaven’s secret and help you find the other half of your soul.

We have attempted to demystify the online dating sites for everyone seeking a like-minded Jewish partner. Hope you find your soulmate with whom you stood at Sinai, at the giving of the Torah.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the best Jewish dating site?

Jewish dating is different, as it involves religious compatibility apart from congruity of thoughts, values, beliefs, characteristics, and lifestyle.

Jewish dating sites open up a massive platform for Jews to match the same religious and cultural values. Some of the best and Free Jewish dating sites are mentioned above.

  • JDate
  • JRetroMatch
  • JCrush
  • The JMom
  • Meet Yent
  • Jewcier
  • JewishFriendFinder
  • JewishMatch
  • JSingles
  • JZoog
  • JustKibbitz
  • Meetville

Below are some mainstream dating sites that allow you to set and limit your match criteria to only Jewish mate:

  • eHarmony
  • OurTime
  • Silver Singles
  • OkCupid

Hope the list finally takes you down the beautiful journey to connect with your soulmate.

What to expect when dating a Jewish man?

If you are dating a Jewish man who has learned Torah and follows Bar Mitzvahs, be rest assured, you have got a good catch. Men like these are good-hearted and committed. They are compassionate and kind, patient and tenacious, passionate and emotional—a bloody good cocktail of an ideal man.

Few things you can expect when dating a Jewish man are given below. Some of these are just common stereotypes. Not all men possess all the following qualities, as each individual is inherently different and unique in their way. Each has its quirks and qualities. But you are sure to find a few of the following attributes in your Jewish man.

  • Jewish men are earnest and meticulous, have a strong character and an unrelenting spirit. He won't give up easily on you.
  • They are through and through mama's boy, having unwavering devotion to their mother. You stand no chance with the man if his mother doesn't approve of you. However, they learn to treat their women right because of their mother's strong influence in their lives. They understand, respect, value, and cherish the women in their life.
  • They are loyal and faithful. So, if a Jewish man gives you his word, he will keep the promise.
  • Most of the Jewish men are deeply rooted in their culture and faith. They have high regard for their customs and traditions and are deeply dedicated to their fraternity. They expect their partner to respect the same.
  • They love to indulge themselves in the pleasure of good food. A sure way to his heart is through his stomach. If your food can tantalize his taste buds and satiate his stomach, you already have won that heart.
  • They are family-oriented and are respectful of the traditions involving family, food, and sharing. They observe fast on Yom Kippur and light the Menorah. They make sure to be with their family at the festivals and holidays. Most of their friends and social circle comprised of Jews. So be ready for a lot of family dinners, kosher food, and Jewish jokes.
  • As hardworking and earnest as they are, they also understand the importance of taking time off. You can expect good holiday fun and vacation from time to time to rejuvenate and bounce back.
  • They generally keep away from confrontation and arguments and detest physical fights. They are more polite, friendly, understanding, and accommodating. You can look forward to a calm and peaceful life.
  • Jewish boys know the importance of education and knowledge. Most of the Jewish men have stable and high-paying jobs. Life won't be in shambles with them.
  • Jewish men have extraordinarily hairy bodies. The curly hairs, thick brows, and chest hairs make them look unusually glorious, only if you find body hair sexy.
  • They are known to be good with children. They have great paternal instincts and turns out to be great fathers and uncles to kids in the family.
  • They have a good sense of humor. They are witty, lively, and fun-loving. If you are with a smarty pant Jew, be ready to crack into laughter anytime.

In Yiddish, a Jewish man can be called a mensch. Someone honest and humane. A Jewish man is a unique mix of benevolence, gentleness, intelligence, and modesty. You are lucky if you have found your mensch.

How to meet a nice Jewish girl?

Looking for Jewish girls isn't much of a task. You don't have to move mountains, but you have to get weaving to accomplish the quest of finding a nice Jewish girl. There is more than one way to find the girl of your dreams.

  • Find and join the local Jews community. Generally, they are more than happy to help a fellow Jew find a nice Jewish girl.
  • Get help from professional and reputable dating agencies. They have a vast database of Jewish people worldwide and can help you find the most relevant match as per your preferences.
  • Online Jewish dating sites are prevalent platforms to find a Jewish girl of your choice. A simple sign-up and few clicks lead you on an exciting love adventure to find your soulmate for life.
  • Find a place where Jews reside in the neck of the wood. This way, you may bump into many Jewish girls at the local bakeries, diners, Starbucks, and other places to hang out.
  • The teachings in the Torah classes attract a lot of youngsters. Find out the timings of the classes when single and young girls join. It is a perfect place to meet a desirable single girl and learn about your Jewish heritage.
  • Make Jewish friends who can introduce you to their other Jewish friends. The larger your Jewish friend circle, the better are your chances to find someone from the same circle or let your friends set you up with some nice Jewish girl.
  • You can go the old-school way and seek help from a personalized matchmaker. A shadchan knows Jews from all backgrounds all over the world. They offer valuable services and match like-minded people together after all the due diligence on their part. Go ahead, trust your shadchan and find the girl of your dreams.
  • Jewish singles event is a straightforward way to meet eligible ladies seeking a soul connection like you. You can also plan a singles trip to Israel to find an Israeli girl for marriage.

Visit often places like Jewish bakeries, a kosher supermarket, synagogue, the Jewish bookstore, Friday night dinners, etc. It may increase the opportunities to chance upon a lovely Jewish girl.

How to meet Jewish singles?

Below are some of the most prominent places to meet Jewish singles:

  • Jewish weddings are the best places to meet all the eligible fellas. There are bridesmaids and groomsmen, friends and family, relatives and cousins who might also be seeking to find their happily ever after. The common relatives may also try to set up a match. Tip – Make sure your dance moves are impressive to get noticed.
  • If you are looking for your Jewish soulmate, visiting synagogue as often as you can is a wise step. There are high chances that someone might catch your fancy during the prayer service. Wait till the end of the prayer service to meet them. Or you can catch up with them during the post-service snacks over the kiddush table.
  • During holidays, get on a party spree. Attend parties thrown by your Jewish friends or by their friends. Be it a costume party, sushi party, game night parties, or single parties. You can be sure to find someone you can connect with at such parties of mutual friends.
  • Engage yourself in some extracurricular activities during the weekend. That way, you can most naturally meet someone with a common interest. Ensure you sign up for the activities that have Jewish participants or the activity/event itself is in a Jewish locality to attract as many Jews as possible. You can also try volunteering for a cause close to your heart. You may meet someone who cares for the same cause and community as you do.
  • The Jewish community center called the Chabad house is the center of all Jewish activities. Many Jews, young and old, attend the community center's events. You will find local Jews and tourists with different degrees of religious observance attending the activities, programs, and services hosted by the Chabad house.
  • You can also find Jewish singles on Kosher Cruise, Jewish Luxury Cruise, Passover vacations, and visits to Israel.
  • The most convenient way to meet Jewish singles is by signing up on Jewish dating sites. These sites raise your chances to come across a like-minded Jew than you would in everyday life. Dating sites are easily accessible from the comfort of your home or office and gives you a multitude of options to search from.

Is dating allowed in Judaism?

Jews worldwide have a substantially different approach to how they view their faith and observe religious laws and rituals. There are various religious denominations of Judaism, namely Reform, Conservative, Orthodox, and Reconstructionist. Each of these streams has its own beliefs and values about love, dating, and relationship. With changing times, the thought process has changed, and so has the attitude of Jews towards dating.

Dating in Judaism isn't frowned upon. However, they approach dating as a means to an end. In the orthodox Jewish community, parents, relatives, friends, and singles themselves are involved in the dating process. This process of finding a prospective partner is called Shidduch. As per Torah (Jewish laws), matchmaking is considered a mitzvah (commandment). The families seek the help of a professional matchmaker, who is called a Shadchan.

The process of Shidduch is mandated by Jewish law and is taken very earnestly. It allows men and women a chance to meet and be familiar with each other before they give their consent to the match.

The Talmud prevents a man from marrying a woman until he meets her and finds favor in her eyes for him. Similarly, it contains a woman to marry a man until she is ready for the proposed match. The Talmud beholds dating paramount for the holy matrimony, but it prohibits any physical intimacy or promiscuity before being bound lawfully in wedlock.

The tradition of Shidduch is similar to modern-day dating. It aims to ascertain if the person they are meeting matches their idea of a life partner. It is imperative to know the person and assess their qualities and values to have a harmonious and happy life with your partner.

Dating allows them to have candid private conversations, share their life goals and vision, express their emotions and feelings. Simply put, dating in Judaism is aimed at marriage, while it isn't the same as modern-day dating.

The Jewish way of dating is more intense and mindful. They put forth rationality before emotions, head before heart, and compatibility before attachment. It is a more prudent and healthy approach to dating.

In Judaism, dating is no game to be played for pleasure. Torah forbids dating for entertainment. An understanding of Kabbala states that dating without intending marriage is frivolous and ruins the sanctity of marriage or the relationship. Negiah (Jewish law about touch or physical contact between opposite sex) rules out any physical intimacy outside the marriage framework. Any intimacy or cohabitating before marriage violates the texts and teaching of Tanakh.

What does Judaism say about love?

Love is a confusing concept in the world today. The notions of love ingrained in our psyche and society are too superficial; it does not lead to a happy, healthy relationship. Love based on physical or sexual attraction is an expression of the body, not of the soul. It isn't love at all. It's infatuation.

Love is the foundation of Judaism. However, Judaism does not treat love as a paragon, a belief, a principle, or a concept. According to Judaism, love is an obligation, a duty, a responsibility, or a requirement.

The Torah defines love as the feeling of profoundly appreciating the virtues in someone, generated by giving yourself to them. Love is a deep appreciation of who someone is. The Torah describes Adam and Eve's love as “knowledge” – the basis of their love was understanding and appreciation of their inner being, not merely their physical looks.

The word for Love in Hebrew is “Ahava.” The middle two letters spell “hav,” which means “to give” in Aramaic. The more you give to a person, the more you love the person, and the more you appreciate the good virtues within them. It is about appreciating the other, giving to the other, and about moving beyond your wants.

Torah's core idea is to find love for other people. True love emerges from dedication. We often misunderstand our desires as love. But it is your dedication towards someone that takes you to a state of transcendence. That is why the Torah says that Issac got married, and then he loved her – in that order. Loving someone is in our hands; it isn't just a feeling; it is a choice we make. Through choosing to invest effort in giving to the other, the love grows. Love can thrive and grow. But without effort, it stays still and eventually declines.

Jewish Marriage Facts

Judaism states,” it is not suitable for man to be alone.” Therefore, God created the first human couple, Adam and Eve, to propagate and survive humanity.

In Judaism, marriage is the union of two souls becoming one. It is a divine union sanctified by God.

Jewish marriages are the Jewish community's foundation, a link between the past and the future generations. A Jewish wedding is a momentous event for the community as it fructifies and multiplies Jewish survival.

The wedding is the most significant event in the life of the couple. On the day of the wedding, the bride and groom are freed of all transgressions and wrongdoings. They achieve a divine status on this auspicious day. Family and friends attend the wedding to honor the spiritual union and bestow their blessings and good wishes on the couple.

The dating process starts with the Shidduch. The dating concludes to the wedding if the prospective matches find favor in each other's eyes. Once they agree to the match, they are engaged to marry. As per Jewish culture and tradition, the wedding ceremony has many rituals that symbolize spiritual connection.

Tena'im: The couple gets engaged in a ceremony called tena'im. The mother of the bride and groom breaks a glass plate to celebrate the engagement. It symbolizes the destruction of temples in Jerusalem, reminiscing the loss and the suffering of their people.

Wedding Day: A Jewish wedding can be held on any day of the week except during the Sabbath (Friday sunset till Saturday sunset). The wedding is also not held on traditional holidays such as Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement), Rosh Hashanah, Passover, Shavuot, and first and last days of Sukkot.

Wedding Dress: The bridal dress is generally white with a veil overhead to signify purity. The groom wears a Yarmulke and Tallit (a prayer shawl gifted by the bride) over a black morning suit.

Participation of Rabbi: A friend or family member with the permission of Rabbi can solemnize a Jewish wedding. However, most Jewish couples prefer a Rabbi to conduct a wedding as they are familiar with the wedding's laws and customs.

Personal Yom Kippur: Wedding is as important as Yom Kippur, the holiest and most auspicious day in the Jewish faith. This day is considered as one's personal Yom Kippur when all sins are forgiven. The couple observes fast on their wedding day to cleanse themselves of their past sins and purify their souls for the future union.

A week before the wedding

Uruf:  Uruf is arranged for the groom in a synagogue, where he actively participates in the service and announces his wedding to the congregation. The members of the community celebrate the wedding announcement with sweets, food, and wine.

Mikveh: The bride visits the Mikveh. It is a ritual bath taken by the bride a week before the wedding to cleanse her soul and attain purity physically, mentally, and spiritually. With a supervisor's assistance, the bride immerses herself fully in the water while reciting a special prayer.

A Jewish wedding isn't a prolonged ceremony. It consists of two traditions and takes 30 minutes to officiate the wedding.

The two parts of the wedding ceremony include:

  • The Kiddushin (betrothal ceremony)
  • The Nisuin (wedding ceremony)

Traditionally, the two ceremonies were held a year apart, but they do it together in modern weddings.

Kabbalat Panim—The Pre-Wedding Reception

Before the wedding, a special reception is organized in honor of the bride and groom. The reception is held in two different rooms for the bride and groom. Traditionally, the couple cannot see each other a week before the wedding until badekan (veiling ceremony). The bride is congratulated and blessed with good wishes by her friends and family. While at the groom's reception, they sing songs and deliver words of Torah.

Ketubah: Before the wedding ceremony starts, a traditional marriage contract/ pre-nuptial agreement (ketubah) consented by both the parties is drawn up and signed by the couple and four witnesses in the officiator's presence. The contract enlists the obligations (emotional, physical, marital, and material) a husband must fulfill towards his wife during marriage, condition of inheritance on his death, support to his wife and children in events of separation or divorce.

The Kiddushin (Betrothal Ceremony): The first part of the Jewish wedding ceremony is called Kiddushin (sanctification). Kiddushin signifies the betrothal of the bride-to-be.  Kiddushin starts with Badeken.

Badeken (Veiling ceremony): The Badeken ceremony takes place after the pre-wedding reception. The groom and his friends and family proceed to the bridal reception room to cover the bride's face with a veil. It symbolizes the greatness of inner beauty over the bride's external beauty.  After the veiling ceremony, the groom's entourage proceeds towards the Chuppah.

The wedding processions

After Badeken, the parents of the bride and groom escort them to the Chuppah. The escorts lock elbows with the bride and groom while accompanying them to the Chuppah. All the escorts hold candles (symbolizing light and joy) during this wedding procession.

Chuppah: The wedding ceremony takes place outdoors in a canopy called Chuppah. The Chuppah symbolizes the home and the family the couple is going to build together.

The groom arrives at the Chuppah first, where he awaits his bride. As the bride comes to the Chuppah, she encircles the groom several times before they stand side by side. The cantor welcomes everyone on behalf of the couple and graces the occasion by singing hymns and songs and chanting prayers.

The betrothal: The groom gives the bride a simple gold ring (a full circular gold band without a break or ornamentation) and declares: “Behold, you are betrothed to me by this ring according to the law of Moses and Israel.”  It is the most memorable moment of the Jewish wedding ceremony. The blessing precedes the ring ceremony over wine.

It is customary to read aloud the signed ketubah under Chuppah to the guests at the wedding. Mazel tov!!! With this, it is the end of the betrothal part of the ceremony.

The ketubah is handed over to the bride, and it is rightfully hers throughout their marriage.

The Nisu’in (Wedding ceremony): The concluding part of the ceremony is called the nisu'in. It takes place in the Chuppah.

Sheva Brachot—the “Seven Benedictions”: The Rabbi who officiates the wedding holds a cup of wine and recites the blessing over the wine and the betrothal blessing for the newlywed couple. These seven blessings are recited by the Rabbi and selected guests while holding a cup of wine. The bride and groom take a sip from the cup of wine.

Smashing the glass of wine

The wedding ceremony ends with the groom breaking the glass with his foot. The cup of wine is wrapped up in a cloth and placed under the groom's feet to be smashed by him. It is done in the memory of the ruined holy temple. It denotes how the couple, family, and friends haven't forgotten the past's struggles and sufferings even in their joyous moments.

As the groom smashes the glass, everyone is jubilant and congratulates the couple with celebratory Mazel Tovs.

Yichud (seclusion): After all the rituals and ceremonies, the couple retires to Yichud room to spend some alone time. It symbolizes the consummation of marriage.  The couple breaks the wedding day fast in the yichud room and exchange gifts.

The Wedding Party

The couple returns to the wedding party after spending some time alone in the private room. Wedding guests welcome them with cheers of Mazel tov!!!

The wedding party is a merry and joyous event. It is all about celebratory music, singing, dancing, and festive meal. Traditionally, the feast begins when the groom recites the hamotzie blessing on challah (an oversized traditional bread), which is sliced and shared with the guests.

The couple spends the next few days celebrating the union with friends and family. The new couple is supposed to eat meals with a minyan and recite the seven blessings.

Jewish Dating Culture and Traditions

The Jewish community has always been open to the culture of dating. However, it differs from our understanding of conventional dating.  There is no swiping right or left on what you see on the screen of your phones.

Traditional Jewish dating has a very restricted approach to dating. Dating (A shidduch) is limited to finding the bashert. One cannot take it casually. The whole dating process is done prudently and rationally to reach the ultimate goal of finding a suitable life partner.

A person's character, intellect, financial stability, family background, physical attributes, and religious observance level are considered during the dating process. Moreover, family, friends, relatives, and a shadchan are involved in the process of marriage.

The prospective matches meet several times in public places or in the presence of family and friends to get to know each other before taking the giant leap of marriage. The number of dates before they announce their decision varies. Some may continue dating for several months, while others can decide within few dates. According to Tzniut, the traditional Judaism outlook prohibits any kind of physical intimacy between prospective marriage partners.

Suppose one of the people isn't convinced about the potential match; in that case, the shadchan is intimated. Similarly, if both men and women feel they have found the right match, they can announce it to their families, who will reward Shadchan for their services and plan the engagement and wedding celebration.

As per the Jewish tradition, matchmaking is a noble task done by Shadchan (a Jewish matchmaker), but with the changing times and needs and advent of technology, traditional matchmaking has taken a backseat. Simultaneously, online dating sites serve as a one-stop solution to find love that lasts every day.

Jewish singles have taken over the reins of finding bashert in their own hands. It has changed the dating scene significantly. The shadchan is no longer the only means of finding a suitable love match for single Jewish men and women. While the shadchan still offers a valuable service to devout Jews, most single Jews prefer to rely on contemporary way meeting matches.

They have started exploring other avenues. Meeting people at synagogue, participating in programs and classes, attending events and retreats, signing up on Jewish and mainstream dating sites facilitating matches based on religion. It manifests how finding a suitable match within one's faith is paramount in the Jewish community. Specialist dating sites offer a convenient way to connect with a mate of the same faith looking for a serious connection.

Jewish dating can range from dating a secular person within the religion to someone who is highly devoted. In today's time and date, dating a Jewish man or woman has no absolutes at all. They believe in diversity, which makes a Jewish dating experience exciting and meaningful.

Many Jews have adopted a new custom termed Jewish Speed dating. Under this arrangement, individuals are paired with different potential matches for around ten minutes to see sparks and chemistry between them. During the brief meeting, the prospective partners share information about hobbies, interests, religion, and family. Speed dating has given traditional Jewish dating a complete makeover and has proven very successful.