There are a lot of rules and guidelines for successful first dates.
Instead of reading through all the nonsense, I will just tell you the 5 things that are most important to remember.
Never do dinner as a first date
It baffles me to this day why guys continue to believe dinner dates are great first dates.
Dinner dates set up two things:
1. An obligation of her time. Knowing that she HAS to stay a specific amount of time, she’ll feel pressured to stay longer than she may want to and immediately puts her in a different mindset.
2. An obligation of your money, where dinner dates cost an average of $140. If you’re lucky enough to have 2-3 first dates a week, that adds up VERY quickly.
The first date is really about getting to know each other and building on physical chemistry.
It is not about how much money you have to throw around. This also begs the question of why would you invest so much in a woman you don’t even know.
First dates generally should be just two people having drinks in a fun environment. This allows the two of you to focus on each other and not worrying if you’re practicing good dining etiquette.
And yes, guys, the same rule applies here: pick up the tab on the drinks.
PRO TIP: If you had a good time, let her know you’ll pick up this round and she’ll get the next one.” Her reaction will be a great way to gauge her interest for a second date.
“It baffles me to this day why guys continue to believe dinner dates are great first dates.” Tweet this.
First date expectations are set by how you ask her out
The word “date” sounds very formal, and although there are some women who like to hear the word, it creates expectations that build unnecessary pressure for you.
Instead, say, “I’d love to take you out for a drink (notice the singular in “drink.”) [add date and other specifics],” or if you want to be even more casual, “let’s get together for a drink...”
In context of a good conversation with a woman that’s attracted to you, it works well and comes out perfectly natural.
Do not meet up with friends, whether hers or yours
Never agree to this kind of date, nor set your date as such. All this says is, “I don’t value you enough to give you time alone with me.”
If she really likes you, she’ll make time to be alone with you. It’s as simple as that.
Friday and Saturday night first dates are not recommended
Most people go out on Friday and Saturday nights so any place you’d like to take her will likely be crowded and noisy, making it hard to connect with her.
Also, these are what I consider “high-value” nights, where most will have plans to go out, hang with friends, and even hope to meet someone. These dates are very important to those people and will typically not want to sacrifice them for someone they don’t know, no matter how exciting they may be about the date.
Your best bet is to set up a date any other day. Personally, my favorite nights are Thursdays and Tuesdays. Expectations will be more realistic and you won’t need to be full of “party-style” energy in order to match the environment you would on a weekend night.
Take her to a place that is comfortable and on the quieter side
On first dates, the environment should hint at some intimacy. This will better allow you two to find out if there’s a “spark.”
Good places to take your date are venues that are on the smaller side, have some charm (artwork, a rustic ambiance, etc.), and doesn’t play terribly loud music.
Guys always ask me what’s the ideal seating arrangement for first dates. The answer is simple. You want to be sitting next to her, not across. This is one of a million reasons why dinner dates are so awful.
Ideally, it would be great to sit on a couch but if that’s not an option, sitting together at the bar is fine.
You want to focus on being interesting and interested on the date and you don’t want the environment to distract you from those two things.
Remember, if she’s going out on a date with you, she’s already attracted to you -- that’s one battle won. There’s no need to go out of your way to impress her. This date is ONLY about you two getting to know each other and deciding if a future is promising.