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Top 10 Things To Do On A First Date

Updated on July 24, 2013

Best Things To Do On A First Date

The hard part's over - she said yes. Now you have to figure out what to do on that all-important first date. Movie, dinner, club? What will really impress while still being fun and inexpensive? The goal is to find out more about your date, but not be left in an awkward situation. Here are the absolute top 10 best things to do (and a few not to do!) on a first date (these work well for 2nd, 3rd & 30th date, too).

The Top Ten

Here are my top ten ideas for a first date that will give you an opportunity to see her true personality while enjoying yourself and keeping your (exit) options open.

  1. Everyone loves music. Ever met anyone who doesn't like at least some kind of music? Find out what she likes and see if there's anything playing in town. Music is nice because it gives you something to focus on, but still allows you to talk and interact. Plus, you can always leave early without awkwardness if things aren't going great.
  2. A simple meeting over coffee is nice and short. If you're not sure if you'll click, try just inviting her for a latte at the local Starbucks. It gives both of you an easy out if red flags appear (see below for red flags). If things are going well, you can always suggest grabbing a bite to eat afterwards.
  3. If you are fairly certain the two of you will hit it off, go for dinner. Traditional chain restaurants are safe, albeit uninspired. Perhaps opt for a local Thai or Indian restaurant. The food and unique culture will give you something to talk about.
  4. Batter up? Try an outing to a local sporting event. This can be risky though - you must make sure she really enjoys the sport and is not just tagging along because YOU like it! Also, there is a fine line between enjoying a game and being a fanatic. You should watch the game, but make at least as much eye contact with her as you do with the field or court. This might be better suited to a second or third date.
  5. Seriously consider making it a double. A double date, that is. Going out with another couple takes so much pressure off the two of you to hold up a conversation. It also gives you an opportunity to see how your date relates with people. Is she a chatty Cathy? Does she monopolize the conversation? Or is she a sullen Sally? Does she not add anything to the discourse? Dating with another couple can help you observe her without staring.
  6. Something silly might actually be a wise choice. If she can laugh at herself, she's a keeper. Take her out for miniature golfing, bowling, or another silly amusement (laser quest?) and see if she can enjoy the simple things. Mindless amusement might give you something to do while maintaining playful banter (doesn't work well later if you want to have a DTR, though).
  7. Plan a picnic. An afternoon at the park is a great way to get to know someone. Pack a picnic lunch and a frisbee or Bocce Ball set and spend a few hours enjoying the weather and scenery. How does she react to a low-budget but quality face-time activity? Does she require you spend a lot of money on her or is she happy just spending time with you? This is a great way to see what she's made of.
  8. Visit a comedy club. Laughter is a great way to seal a friendship. Make sure the comedian is not too dirty, though, as that could be a turn-off. Improv is a great comedy format and gives you the opportunity to see what she finds funny. Asking her to go with you to see a local troupe or performer is an easy way to get a first date.
  9. Explore your inner beast at the zoo. Most women love animals and strolling through your city's zoo might be a great way to keep the conversation light while enjoying the antics of the apes and anteaters.
  10. Inviting her to your place is risky, but it can be done. You can cook lunch for her, show her your vintage Pez collection, or go for a swim in your pool, but you should keep the invitation to daytime hours only for the first date. Otherwise, she may suspect you have other activities in mind. The idea is to get a second date while deciding if she's the kind of girl you'd like to take home to meet the parents. Hopefully, after the first date, she'll be looking forward to the second.

    If you already love to cook (and eat), check out Ways to Lose Weight at Work

    All Rights Reserved - Copyright 5/31/2010 - Viola Horne

Ideas to Avoid

Try to avoid the traditional (read: boring) dates like movies and fast food restaurants. Movies don't allow for enough conversation to discover if the two of you are compatible and fast food restaurants just show that you're cheap. Additionally avoid other never-a-good-idea-on-a-first-date choices like taking her to: a wedding (could be uncomfortable), a funeral (OMG, how awful is that idea!), an amusement park (no one looks good with barf on their capris), your best friend's house (too uncomfortable for her) or your parent's house (unless your parents are really fun!) Some people think church is a good first date, but those people are few and far between, and others think a trip to the library is a good time, but you might hold off on that until you are really sure you can read her well (sorry.)

I personally think having sex on a first date is a very bad idea for a number or reasons, the main ones being sex blinds you to the faults of another, you are giving away a very precious gift, and the possibility of contracting a lifelong disease.

Red Flags

Date's over? How did it go? Hopefully, you have a second meeting planned, but if any of these red flags popped up, beware. Most of these mean: RUN!

  1. She talks your ear off. This could mean she's nervous, but usually means she's self-absorbed. This can lead to you tuning her out and her complaining that you never listen.
  2. She only wants to hear about you. This is often a sign of insecurity. Not attractive.
  3. She has no opinions of her own. Co-dependent? Hiding her true self? Possibly.
  4. She complains - a lot. If she's never happy, she won't be happy with you.
  5. She's a gossip. If all she does is talk about other people, this could signify nerves or worse, a judgemental nature.
  6. She doesn't laugh at your jokes. A sense of humor can't be taught. Either she gets you or she doesn't. Period.
  7. She texts more than she talks. If she's always distracted, it could mean she finds value in being popular or needed. Both of which are hard to compete with.

To keep the mood light, play a fun game!

Say Anything
Say Anything

Fun, fast-paced game for people who know each other and people who would like to!

Mad Gab
Mad Gab

Get the group laughing and you're halfway home! Mad Gab always does the trick.

Wits & Wagers Deluxe
Wits & Wagers Deluxe

Fun for guys and gals. This game has aspects of Trivial Pursuit with a little friendly betting on the side.

PHD Pocket Disc Indoor - 7 Inch - PI21 Savanna
PHD Pocket Disc Indoor - 7 Inch - PI21 Savanna

With a Pocket Disc, you've got fun and your fingertips. Can be played indoors or out. Made of flexible, sturdy yarn.


Link List

Great places for more Do's and Don'ts!

First Date First Impression Gifts

If you really want to make an impression, gifts speak louder than words. But be careful, it shouldn't be something that reminds her of you later if the date doesn't work out, so make it something edible or disposable. A gift for her Dad would really be impressive!

Broadway Basketeers Celebration Gift Tower
Broadway Basketeers Celebration Gift Tower

Something the two of you can share. Picnic, maybe?

Coffee Lovers Care Package Snacks and Treats Gift Box Set with Mug
Coffee Lovers Care Package Snacks and Treats Gift Box Set with Mug

If your Starbucks date went well, ask for a second cup with a gift of coffee.

Smoked Salmon Seafood Gourmet Food Gift Box
Smoked Salmon Seafood Gourmet Food Gift Box

Want to impress her folks? Dad will love this!

That's Amore! Italian Gourmet Pasta Dinner For Two Gift Basket
That's Amore! Italian Gourmet Pasta Dinner For Two Gift Basket

Perhaps better suited for a second, third or 100th date?


Ideas? Disagreements? What's on your mind?

What do you think?

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  • squid-pinkchic18 profile image

    squid-pinkchic18 5 years ago

    Very neat ideas! I like your red flags list too. It's so rude to text through a date.

  • Viola Horne profile image

    Viola Horne 5 years ago

    @anonymous: Sounds like fun, but not for the queasy.

  • profile image

    anonymous 5 years ago

    Great lens!

  • profile image

    MobileAppMan 6 years ago

    The Zoo is a great idea. I will try that on my next first date. Are YOU single? :-)

  • profile image

    anonymous 7 years ago

    an amusement park is a wonderful idea!!! I would love a date like that. Perhaps I am weird though...