Almost everything has changed with time. And of course, the dating world has turned upside down with time. Younger generations’ way of finding a partner has become easy yet interesting. Meeting the “love of your life” or “the one” at some library on a cozy morning or from a cute cafe on a rainy evening is way too old and typical now. In this virtual world, even your love could be found online. With butterflies packed and swarmed.
Tips For The First Date After Meeting Online
After finally agreeing to take the relationship offline, you will be thrilled and nervous at the same time. It’s not every day you meet someone online and meet them in person for real. But if you are, don’t pull your hair out yet. I know that you are nerve wrecked to the point that you want to be done with it already.
Pro tip: Calm your nerves as this is just an hour or two of your day.
At the end of it, you will be down with two options; you might run for the hills or this could the last first date you will ever have! Not the exact words to calm a person, but stop picking your nails and consider the normalcy of the situation as this is not your marriage. Give it a go!
Chances are the person you are going to meet will be as anxious as you are. Because the unknown is scary as well. Do you know how many people meet and date online? According to the Pew Research Center, 15 percent of Americans recently reported using online dating sites to meet people, and online dating is gaining wider acceptance across most age ranges, notably tripling among people aged 18-24 from 10 percent to 27 percent between 2013 and 2015(1). I wonder how many of them made it to the first date. On the bright side, look at how every aspect of the world is evolving with time!
11 Tips To Ace The First Date – Online To Offline
Here I have the ultimate universal tips for the first date after meeting online you could use to ace this. Let these tips help you go meet him with confidence.
Another pro tip: pop a mint!
Make sure you are ready for the date
Are you mentally and emotionally prepared to have this first date? Ask yourself. You need to see where you are at your current stage. Meeting someone off the virtual world means letting them into your life. Do you feel this is too soon? You might only be talking to the guy for a week or two. But if you are looking for something casual and just a fling, you can go ahead, making sure the guy is not some creep. On the other hand, if you are looking for something long-term and serious, give it some more time to seal the deal of the date. Get to know him more and make sure that you are fine with him being as he is and wants to give this a chance.
However, do not spend weeks talking to a guy online before meeting him in person. Delaying the date will make you drained because of all those feelings and emotions building for this person. Getting attached is not wise before a first date in person. If you are emotionally ready, get over with it and plan the next one.
Don’t set the bar too high
Another surprising fact is that the first date is not exactly the “real first date”. It is more of a “meet-and-see” date that confirms the real first date that follows a few days later. You are meeting this person for the first time from the virtual to the real world. It could be entirely different from what you expect after knowing only the digital aspects of someone [which is never enough].
He could be sensible and smart online but unbearable in person. Or a great guy on the phone and off the phone. You never know! So, don’t get your hopes up because expectations are not often met. See the date as just an opportunity to meet someone compatible, nothing more and nothing less.
Suggest somewhere public
Choose a place where there are people around you(2). Safety comes first, duh. But also to not make it more awkward with silence and dead conversation. After knowing a few things about him, you will know where to go that both of you will agree to. Ask him if he likes to do any activity to take him to the game center. Choose an interesting venue, not the same old diners where you see only the “button-down” personality.
Great choices for a first date is a trip to a museum [not if you are interested], a zoo, an amusement park, a picnic at a park, for bowling or golf, or a coffee shop for a coffee. Dates should be fun, so choose a place fun! All these places will show their “fun” side.
The worst choices for a first date are movies, bars, and dinner. Big fat no. There is no way you can talk to the guy, let alone interact and get to know if you go for a movie. A movie sounds pointless on a first date. Bars are loud and you will have to scream for him to hear you talk. On the other hand, dinner can be your worst nightmare if the guy is a jerk. You are talking about sitting and staring at each other for one or two hours straight to a dead-end conversation.
Set up a back-up
Keep the date short. For that, you should go for a cup of coffee from where you can leave by thirty minutes at the top of the date is not going well. And you can always go for dinner if he is great enough to spend more time with. Just say the classic “I’m hungry” and watch the date getting cozy.
Again, go somewhere you have been to before or somewhere you are comfortable and feel at home. That familiarity will calm your nerves down, if not already gone. But always keep a backup plan! If the date goes downhill after ten minutes itself, make your move.
Let someone know where you are
Apart from the guy being a total creep or dangerous, this could also be your backup plan. A friend or anyone you inform can save you, literally and figuratively, if the date is horrible. The majority of the people you meet from online sites or social media platforms(3) are genuine and trustworthy. But if in case you are on the other side of luck, you need to inform someone about your location. After all, it is still a stranger. Better be safe than sorry.
Consider the do’s and don’ts about dressing
Your dress will, to an extent, define you. To be more specific, the way you dress will define you. So, show your personality through your choice of clothes. Keep the venue in mind while ruffling your wardrobe. You don’t want to walk into a zoo in an LBD(4).
Don’t go overboard with the way you dress for the date. Don’t go in thinking if you dress up in a certain way the date will go the way you want. That’s false thinking which has every chance to be a total mistake. Don’t let your expectations dress you up. Then again, don’t dress nonchalantly either, making him think that you hadn’t given a thought about what to wear. Your date deserves a little respect and effort from your side. How would you feel if he comes in looking like he took no effort at all? Be a lady, remember?
Know when to talk and when to listen
A date is all about getting to know each other. If you haven’t already exhausted all the topics before the meeting, this date is definitely for you! Ask him questions about him that you couldn’t ask him online. If he is an introvert, first and foremost, you should do is make him comfortable while respecting his personal space. As you would want.
Ask him the right questions. Not the icebreakers like hobbies and favorite food, which you must already know. Take online relationships offline, and get serious about what you ask. Ask about his priorities, views, and expectations on relationships, belief systems, ideas, and much more. His personal opinions on general topics.
Then, listen to him attentively when he answers. Listen to not reply, but to understand. You can see the real passion in the eyes when someone is talking about something they love. Make sure you keep eye contact while talking and interacting. Share your views and ideas with him too. So that both of you know where you stand with each other.
Keep your manners in check
Be a lady and leave a good impression of yourself. Be a pleasant date. First, be punctual and be on time. Don’t ever be late on a first date. That date will start badly leaving a pretty bad impression. Don’t make him think that you don’t care about his schedule. Waiting for someone on the first date is not fun.
Second, keep your phone away. Nobody likes it when their date’s eyes and attention go to their phone and not on them. Even if the date doesn’t interest you anymore, don’t make him feel bad by paying more attention to your phone. Third, don’t steer the conversation to you, your interests, your ideas, etc. A date is not a monologue. Fourth, no matter how much of a jerk he is, do not forget your table manners. Keep up the good etiquette and your classiness.
Fifth, split the bill. Offer to pay for whatever is it that you had. Most of the guys will insist on paying and decline your offer which is his job. But the offering is your job. And finally, you can leave the date by ending it off but not in a rude way. Tell him politely that it was nice to finally meet him but you have to go. He will get the hint.
Don’t mention the ex and dig up the past
Who likes to hear or talk about their date’s past relationships? None. It’s the first date, for crying out loud! Your “ex” topic is the fourth or fifth date topic. Don’t get too personal on the first date itself. The first offline date is as cryptical as your first online date. You don’t even know if you are going to see the guy after that day.
If he asks you anything about your past relationships, try to change the topic. Or if you really trust them already, talk about it for a few minutes and no more. Besides, you don’t want him to feel like a rebound after a healing wound if you recently had a breakup that is. Ex is the past for a reason. So don’t go around asking him about that either. He might feel attacked, just like you.
Don’t get worked up
Try not to overthink and imagine it to be something horrible when you have no idea how it will actually go. And don’t waste the date by wondering whether you are connecting or not the whole time you are with him. Either you will, or you won’t. Getting worked up over it won’t do any good. I say go with the flow. Have a good laugh, enjoy yourself, and have fun! That is what dating is about. Fun not He is not a complete stranger if it helps you. But most importantly, watch out for red flags!
Go with an open mind. This might work out great in the end, or not. As I said, it’s not marriage. Give it a chance and be open-minded about whatever the outcome of the date is.
Be clear about your intention. Let him know what you want. You should know for yourself if he has the qualities you look for in a guy. At least from what he has already told you. If he is a smoker and you don’t even like being near one, give him a hint. Don’t lead him on. If you find qualities that you won’t be able to not find fault in, let him know.
Why drag this long if it is not going to last? Be honest about being casual(5)or serious about the date. Be honest about how you feel. Be honest about wanting to spend more time with him or calling it quits. Be honest if you would like to plan a second date with a simple text, “I had a great time and I’d like to do it again.” Honest. Simple. Easy.
The first dates are like testing the waters with baby steps. The job is either to make a relationship or break a relationship. Now, in this case, you already know a thing or two about the person. You must have a good relationship already. But worst-case scenario, he doesn’t match up to any of your expectations. Break it. You can always keep him as your close-knit friend if you don’t want to completely cut him off. Best case scenario? He is more than you expected and is more fun in person. Then you make the relationship. Sit back and relax, let these tips do the job.