How To Plan A First Date

How to plan a first date (Photo: Phase4Photography/Shutterstock)
How to plan a first date (Photo: Phase4Photography/Shutterstock)

When you’re dating, you may go on a lot of first dates. And the first few dates you go on with someone are an opportunity to get to know them and discover if you’re compatible. Plan your first dates well so you can get acquainted in an easy and natural way rather than it feeling like a neverending job interview. Some dos and don’ts when it comes to deciding what to do once you’ve decided to meet up.

Don’t just go see a movie

You’ll chat a bit when waiting for the movie to start and after the movie, but that’s all of maybe 20 minutes of interaction. Catching a flick is an easy thing to do, though, but if you decide to do this, at least throw in grabbing a drink or ice cream and a walk after the movie.

Do something in a social, active setting

Playing ping pong, going to the driving range, or shooting some pool are good choices because you have a chance to talk but also have the focus of the activity you’re participating in so you’re not simply sitting across from each other. It makes it easier if the conversation isn’t exactly flowing to have that awesome golf swing to talk about, or to be in the lively atmosphere of a pool hall, for example.

Don’t play a sport if you’re overly competitive

Heading to go-karting or to play miniputt is not going to be fun if you’re a win-at-all-costs type. Admit to yourself if you have an ugly competitive streak and stear clear of any pasttimes that may reveal this less than attractive side of you.

Do choose a restaurant carefully

Sharing dinner together can be fun, but these days, more people than not seem to have food restrictions so best to select a restaurant after a checking about any dietary restrictions. As for ambiance, don’t go anywhere too dimly lit and romantic or prim and proper. A more boisterous vibe can be good, but make sure the music or crowd isn’t so loud that you can’t have a conversation. Avoid going to a tapas place unless you both are on the same food wavelength (some people aren’t fond of sharing their food, after all).

Do keep the date short

This means no eight-course tasting menus or fIVE-hour hikes. Choose something where there are outs if either of you aren’t really into the date. Coffee and dessert, a visit to a museum exhibit, a walk with your dogs through a park–should you decide to add something else afterwards because you’re hitting it off, that’s fine, but make the main date activity one that would last an hour or two at most in case you two don’t get along whatsoever.

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