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30 First Date Rules for Guys & Girls That’ll Make Your Date Adore You

When you go on a first date, you’re probably nervous. But if you know the first date rules, you will be much more comfortable and might even get a second.

first date rules

Some people don’t like rules. And some people only like them when they benefit themselves. But other than that, some people just like beating to the sound of their own drum. Isn’t that usually how it goes? Regardless, a lot of people should learn the most important first date rules to have a great date, and impress their date as well!

First of all, before you go on a date, you should understand what you’re looking for. If you do this, you’ll save yourself a lot of awkward conversations if you’re honest with the person from the beginning. If they want something serious, and you don’t or vice versa, it’s going to be drama.

And as Mary J. Blige said, no more drama in my life. Hopefully, you know who Mary J Blige is, but if not, it doesn’t matter. The message is clear.

The 30 most important first date rules you need to know 

You have yourself all figured out, you know what you want and that’s great. But now comes the first date. What do you do? Do you go out for dinner? Do you talk about politics? Do you have sex after?

[Read: The top 50 best first date ideas to wow and impress your date]

These are all normal questions to ask yourself and you should be asking yourself these things. So, here is a little page of first date rules.

By all means, you don’t need to follow them. If something isn’t working for you, no one said you have to stick to the rules. But you should take a look at them, and see if there are any you’d like to follow. These rules could make or break a fabulous first date.

Let’s get you a second date by following these first date rules.

1. Land the first date

 It doesn’t matter what dating platform you use, but at the end of the day, you need to get yourself past texting and calling.

Meet this person. If you don’t, this is just a big waste of time. So, the first rule about the first date is to make the date a reality. [Read: 16 flirty moves to help you ask someone out on a date]

2. Follow your gut instinct

Everyone has a gut instinct, but most of us aren’t in tune with it. If you’ve talked to someone online and you’re not getting a good vibe, don’t meet them.

Maybe you get a fishy feeling about them, or they seem boring on the phone. It’s not going to magically improve when you meet them in person. Follow your gut always. [Read: 25 early-warning signs someone shows traits of being a toxic person]

3. Send your friends their info

This first date rule might sound like your mother’s advice, but this is really important. Before you go on any first date, you should always give your friends or family members the photo and phone number of your date.

And don’t forget to tell them where you’re going. We’re not trying to make you paranoid, but you need to stay safe.

4. Take it easy on the alcohol

You’re probably nervous, so a drink to calm down isn’t such a bad idea. But you need to know your limit. Firstly, you don’t know this person, and secondly, no one wants to see their first date completely wasted. Your date may be drinking the same amount as you, but everyone is different. So, just be mindful.

5. Put your phone away

You’re not five, you can sit for an hour or two without touching your phone. Honestly, if your date is on their phone half of the time, leave. Yes, that’s right. Get up and leave.

You don’t even need to say anything, in fact, they probably won’t even notice. But seriously, on a first date, you’re getting to know the other person, not your phone. [Read: Stop wasting time – 20 signs she’s not interested in a second date with you]

6. Make it a weekday

Yes, we know. A weekday. But really, if this is your first date, you have no idea how it’s going to go.

So, make the date on a Tuesday or Thursday. This gives you enough time to meet them but with a way out. You have work or school tomorrow. Plus, if things go well, you can meet each other at the weekend. [Read: 23 signs she’s not interested in a second date after the first one]

7. Be on time

Yes, this is one of those big dating rules you should never ignore! Do you know how many times people have to wait for their dates? A lot! And usually, those dates never go anywhere.

Just be on time. It’s a horrible feeling having to wait for someone, and it shows a lack of respect. Now, if something happened, like an accident, that’s different. But focus on respecting you and your date’s time.

8. Go eye heavy

If you’re into them, lay on the eye contact. How else can you tell them non-verbally that you like them? The eyes are the windows into the soul. And if your soul is thinking, “you are so sexy, I can’t handle it,” show it with eye contact. [Read: Eye f*cking & how to master the secrets of prolonged eye contact]

9. No talks about the ex

We all have an ex, but that doesn’t mean your first date needs to hear everything about it. Refrain from bringing up your dating history right now.

Focus on getting to know each other’s interests and personalities instead. If they bring it up, you can talk about it, but not for the entire night. [Read: 23 ways to perfect your first date conversation and impress your date in minutes]

10. Don’t lie about yourself

We’re all trying to make ourselves appear amazing on the first date, but don’t fabricate things about yourself.

If you lost your job last week, tell them. If you live with your mom, tell them. There’s no point lying, and plus, if they like you, these things won’t matter. But if they find out you’re lying, that’s a deal-breaker.

11. Actually listen

No, but actually. You need to be an active listener in general. But as a first date rule, it’s crucial. Not only does it keep the conversation going, but if you listen, you’ll be able to learn more about them. Who would have thought? So, it’s time for you to clean those ears.

12. Be open-minded… to a point

Of course, you need to listen to their opinions, rather than shutting them down when they state a belief. Instead of being close-minded, ask them questions and try to understand their point of view.

Who knows, maybe you’ll learn something. But at the same time, don’t stray too far from your comfort zone.

13. Don’t fight over the bill

Ah yes, we love this part. It’s the part where you see who’s going to pay. If the guy offers to pay, and you’re fine with it, then let them. If you would like to pay half, that’s also fine. But don’t argue about it just to show that you’re willing to pay. [Read: Going dutch on a date – What it means and all the things you must know]

14. Leave if it is boring

Yes, we’ll say it again. If you’re noticing right away the date isn’t going to go anywhere, then it’s okay to cut it short.

Why waste your and your date’s time hanging around and pretending to be interested? If it’s not right, it’s not right, and that’s completely fine. [Read: The signs you and your first date have a total lack of chemistry]

15. If things get weird, point it out

If at some point on the date, things are getting a little uncomfortable, you need to acknowledge it. If your personal boundaries are being pushed, don’t be afraid to voice them. If you don’t communicate your feelings and needs, they won’t know.

16. Consider making it short 

This isn’t a hard-and-fast first date rule, but you might want to consider making it short. You could suggest coffee during an afternoon or a short lunch when you have to return to work. That way, you have an “out” if you’re not feeling it.

17. Look your best

A first date is kind of like a job interview. You are “interviewing” for the part of a romantic partner. So, you wouldn’t show up to a job interview looking like a slob, right? So, look your best and try to impress your date. [Read: What to wear on a first date]

18. Ask a lot of questions

A lot of people have mixed feelings about this. But if you want to get to know someone better, you have to ask a lot of questions on the first date. You are trying to assess compatibility, so the more you know about them, the better.

19. Go with the flow

While some people suggest that a good first date rule is to keep it short and sweet, you really should just go with the flow. If you’re both having a great time and want to have the date go on for hours, then do it. Only you know how you feel, so trust yourself.

20. Be honest about what you’re looking for

If you’re only looking for casual dating, then you need to be upfront and honest. But if you’re looking for a long-term, committed relationship or marriage, then you need to share that too.

It’s only fair to let your date know what your intentions are. Plus, you need to match up. [Read: How was your first date really? Why honesty with yourself matters]

21. Tell them your circumstances

If you just got divorced or are out of a long-term serious relationship, then you should be honest about that. It takes time to heal from breakups, and it’s terrible or unreasonable if your date doesn’t want to continue with you until you’ve gotten over your ex.

22. Don’t dominate the conversation

Some people are natural talkers – and that’s okay. But if you are one of these people, try to remember not to dominate the conversation. Don’t only talk about yourself. Ask them to share their backgrounds and make it a two-way conversation.

23. Have basic table manners

This should go without saying, but don’t be a pig when you are with your date.

Don’t chew with your mouth open, spill things on the table, or do anything that could potentially turn them off with your bad manners. This is one of the more obvious first date rules. [Read: How to behave on a first date – 28 tips to impress anyone in minutes]

24. Be polite to everyone

If you’re out in public, such as at a restaurant, treat everyone with respect. Be nice to the servers and bus people. This will show your date that you know how to treat people and that you are a good person.

25. Don’t “interview them”

Because you should have a two-way conversation, you want to steer away from “interviewing” your date. Don’t fire off question after question for them to answer as if they are in a job interview.

26. Have the right attitude

Not every first date turns into a relationship. So, even if you are looking for marriage, just be realistic. You probably won’t find your future spouse after just one date. You need to have fun and enjoy being in the moment regardless of where it leads. [Read: First date nerves – 18 ways to not be nervous for a date and feel calm]

27. Don’t be nervous

Many people dread first dates because they are so nervous that their date won’t like them. But flip that around.

Instead, you should think that you hope that you like them. Have the attitude like you are a prize, and they would be lucky to have you. That will help with your nerves.

28. Ask about another date

If you have had a great time on the first date, it’s a good thing to ask your date if they would be interested in going out again. You can do that at the end of the date or text them later to see if they are interested in getting to know you more. [Read: How to ask for a second date and not fumble or appear too eager]

29. Follow up if you like them

Don’t lead them on. If you said you’d like to go out again, then stick to your word. Don’t just say a flimsy and lame, “I’ll call you!” if you don’t mean it.

Follow up, and follow up in a timely manner. Don’t just let the time lapse without setting up another date. [Read: How to ask for a second date without fumbling or looking too eager]

30. Keep your options open

Even if you had a great first date, you don’t always need to put all your eggs in one basket. In other words, keep dating other people. There’s nothing wrong with keeping your options open. Until you are in an exclusive and/or committed relationship, everything is fair game.

[Read: Strong feelings after a first date? How to read the right signs]

No one likes to follow rules, but you should always follow these first date rules. You do want to have a successful first date, right?

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...