55 Tips & Things to Do on a First Date to Leave Your Date Smitten & In Awe!

If you want to have a great first date, then you need to know everything you should do to impress your date. It will leave them begging for a second.

Things to Do on a First Date

Most of us don’t spend too much time thinking about things to do on the first date. But if you’re reading this, you want your first date to be amazing. More importantly, you want a second date to happen. 

But have you ever thought about this?

That very first date will decide the potential fate of the relationship and the rest of your life!

Perhaps it’s dramatic to say so, but in almost all cases, it’s the first date that tests your compatibility.

Before you start thinking about the future, though, focus on the present. You want to nail the first date. If you want that to happen, you need to know the right things to do on a first date.

Your friends have probably told you what to do, but sometimes friends don’t always know. Before you listen to everyone else’s advice, take a look at these tips. They’ll help you have a successful first date and maybe even get you another one. [Read: What girls always notice on a date]

Things to do on a first date to have a perfect one

If you’re wondering what to do on a first date, there are quite a few things to keep in mind to ensure that both of you have a memorable experience.

While the place you choose and the way you behave on the date might seem like the most important, they’re just two of the many things that matter.

The main point is that your first date should be memorable. It has to make a lasting impression, no matter what type of date it is. [Read: Understanding and calming the stages of first date panic]

The key to this is originality, sincerity, and a whole lot of confidence. So, what can you do to prepare for an epic first date?

Here are 49 of the most important things to do on a date to ensure that you have a perfect first date.

1. Calm down

Sure, you’re excited, but take a deep breath. Trying to be calm is easier said than done, especially when you really like the person. [Read: Signs you’re unknowingly ruining your first dates]

But no one wants to go on a date with someone who’s a little too enthusiastic. Take a deep breath, and maybe even go for a run before the date. It’ll help you to exert some energy and keep you focused.

2. Visualize the date beforehand

Most guys think that they’ve planned the date perfectly. If you spend a few minutes visualizing the whole date, however, you’ll be able to see if you’ve actually planned something exciting for the entire evening.

3. Ask your date for suggestions

Involve your date. It’ll make her feel appreciated and more involved. [Read: Tips to have a perfect movie date]

You should understand that the girl expects you to come up with all the plans, but ask her for suggestions or places she’s interested in going to.

4. Location, location, location

When it comes to a first date, location is everything. Don’t invite your date over to your place. You want to get to know them rather than give them the impression that you only want to have sex with them.

Pick a location that’s public and sets the tone for your date. A low-pressure location gives you a chance to get to know each other without added stress. Coffee, going for a walk, and grabbing lunch are good ideas. [Read: 15 places to go on a first date to ace the date and land the second]

5. Keep your date’s comfort in mind

While meeting each other at a club may seem like the perfect start to an amorous relationship, not all dates are comfortable with that. The more comfortable and happy your date feels, the better the evening is for both of you.

6. Revolve the date around her interests

This may be unfair to men, but it is a man’s chivalrous job to ensure that the woman has a great time during the date. Put your priorities aside, and learn to think like a woman. [Read: How to think like a woman and impress the girl]

7. The date setting

It can often be tempting to try something different on the first date, like paintballing or water-skiing, but the problem with this is that you are not going to be able to talk to your date. 

Yes, you might seem adventurous to them, but they won’t get the chance to actually get to know you. This makes it hard to build a connection with your date and significantly lowers the chance of getting a second one.

8. Make simple plans

Avoid making the date too complicated.

Yes, it might be lovely to go see a film, go eat, and go to the beach, but you might find that you have nothing in common by the time you’ve eaten. [Read: Easy ways to avoid getting stood up on a date]

Instead, plan a simple date with only one or two activities. If, at the end of those activities, you want to go to the beach, then go. At least there will be no pressure if both of you want to split ways.

9. Places to go on a first date

The place you choose to go on a date has a lot to do with your age and expectations of the date.

Do you want to date someone casually, or are you trying to find a lover? Read this feature on the best places to go on a date to make the perfect choice.

10. Prepare yourself

One of the things to do on a first date if you want it to go well is to spend some time preparing for it. You don’t need to look like you came out of a magazine, but you’ll be more confident if you feel good. 

Have a shower, wash your hair, and pick out an outfit that you love. If you do that, you’ll automatically put yourself in a better mood.

It can be really easy to get worried about impressions in the hours leading up to a first date. People can often find themselves freaking out when they can’t find the perfect outfit or their face has become zit city. [Read: How to look hot – 24 sexy tips to go from boring to irresistibly desirable]

This doesn’t need to happen, though! Often, the other half of the date is just as worked up. You both like each other. Otherwise, this date wouldn’t be happening, so relax and just be yourself.

11. Ask friends and family for their honest opinion

Maybe you love to wear baggy clothes and think you look great in them, but that could give a different impression to other people. 

Asking your friends and family for their honest opinion can really help you out when it comes to first impressions and appearance. [Read: How to dress sexy – 29 subtle and classy ways to make them lust for you]

12. Show up on time

Sure, you might want to look cool by being a little late, but the only thing you’ll look like is a jerk. If you want to make a good impression, show up on time. You respect your time and their time. If they’re late, that’s on them.

13. The rules of dating

Not only should you never be late on a date, but you should also never stand your date up.

If you’re the guy, behave like a gentleman, and treat your date like a lady. If you’re the girl, be the damsel around your date, and help him feel more like a man. These are just a few of the most important dating rules you need to remember to have a perfect date. [Read: Dating rules to be a classy date]

14. Be a good date

Whether you’re the guy or the girl, try to show off your best side. Don’t embarrass your date by dressing badly or turning up late on a date. Behave well and learn to be a good date. [Read: How to be a good date all the time]

15. Keep the date personal

If you want to know what to do on a date, stop thinking about what others think. Plan the date keeping your and your date’s interests in mind. 

Do you both like a band that’s playing in your city? Would your date prefer to try a new cuisine? Would you prefer to play it safe and just go for coffee? Plan the date keeping your intimacy levels and comfort in mind.

16. Have plan B in place

Sometimes, a perfect date can go downhill if your plans don’t work out. If you want to have a perfect first date, keep a few options in mind just in case something goes wrong midway. [Read: 30 first date rules for guys and girls that’ll make your date adore you]

17. Remember why you’re on a date

Always remember the focal point of a first date. You want to impress your date and make them like you. 

Otherwise, there’s no point in going out on a first date! For every moment of the date, keep that in mind. Avoid talking about anything that portrays you in a bad light.

18. Be charming

Have a pleasant conversation with your date, and keep the happy conversation going. Talk about yourself, and help your date know more about you without them having to prod you for details. [Read: What to talk about on a first date]

19. Test your compatibility

Sometimes, asking the right questions can make all the difference when it comes to knowing if you and your date will be compatible for the long haul. [Read: Perfect questions to ask on a date and test your compatibility]

20. Create memories

A first date has to be memorable. You have to keep in mind that your date will definitely have a conversation about this date with their friends the next morning. 

The more special you make her feel that night, the more her friends will speak in your favor the next morning. Look for ways to create something memorable and happy during the date, and the date will tilt in your favor no matter what.

21. Expect to talk

When it comes to first dates, your goal is to get to know them on a basic level and see if you connect with them. This means that you’re going to have to engage in conversation. [Read: 20 ways to perfect your first date conversation]

Talking is probably the one thing people fear the most. If you’re nervous, come up with topics beforehand so that you avoid awkward silences.

22. Put your phone away

Unless you want to show them a funny meme or YouTube video, there’s no reason for your phone to be visible. Put your phone on silent, and keep it out of sight.

First of all, you’re on a date, so spend time with your date. Secondly, it’s rude. Show your date that you’re interested in them more than your phone. [Read: 15 first date rules everyone should follow for a memorable time]

23. Easy on the booze

A glass of wine is a great way to loosen up on a first date, but you don’t need to be drinking four glasses. No one wants to go on a date and watch their partner get wasted. 

It shows a lot about you as a person and takes away from getting to know each other. Take it easy on the first date. You don’t really know each other yet.

24. Body language matters

If you’re slouching, it’s not attractive but shows insecurity instead. People pick up on these things. [Read: 20 subconscious signs of attraction that show up between two people]

Though you may not realize it, body language is crucial. Pay attention to how you communicate non-verbally. Sit in front of a mirror and look at how you present yourself.

25. Don’t over-share

Sharing information about yourself is a good way to create trust and a bond, but it’s the first date. You don’t need to give them every little detail of your life. [Read: How to stop being needy – why people get clingy and 32 ways to fix it]

26. Stay away from controversial topics

You may be all amped up to discuss politics or religion, but one of the must-know things to do on a first date is to keep the conversation simple. Why don’t we leave touchy topics for the second or third date? 

The first date is just a light introduction to one another. It doesn’t have to involve heated debates. Leave the tough subjects for another day. 

27. Understand how they think

If you’re into your date, learn what fuels their desire and makes them tick. What makes them desire you and the qualities you have? [Read: 18 signs your date really likes you on the first date]

If they like how motivated you are, emphasize that side of you. Show them the qualities they admire!

28. Be interested in your date

If you want to have an interesting date, you need to appear to be interested in them.

If you’re staring at your phone and hardly answering questions, you’re not going to have a good date. If you’re not interested in your date, either start asking questions or end the date early. [Read: 72 first date questions, conversation starters, and things you must never ask]

29. Say something personal about yourself

It doesn’t have to be a whole list of autobiographical tidbits. You can tell them about your relationship with your family or a little background about how you got to this point in your life. It does not have to be anything life-changing. It just needs to be meaningful.

30. Rejection may happen

The first date is basically a sample run. You’re trying to see if you’re compatible, and that’s it. Honestly, you’re going to go on a lot of first dates before you find someone you really connect with. [Read: Warning signs that’ll always reveal a bad date no matter what]

That’s okay! It’s normal! If they don’t like you, move on. Rejection is expected in the dating world.

31. Be gentle with yourself

First dates are hard! Sometimes, you hit it off with someone. Other times, you don’t. This isn’t a reflection on you. 

A first date is basically two people who don’t know each other sitting down and talking. It can go either way. If it doesn’t work out, don’t take it too hard. [Read: The signs of a bad first date that reveal a lack of chemistry]

32. Cover yourself up 

It might be tempting to dress yourself up like sex on legs, but that’s all your date is going to see you as. There is a general rule of principle that girls should follow on a first date: legs or chest, but never both.

This way, you’re well-balanced, and your date is left with a little room for imagination. [Read: 16 first date tips for girls to dazzle your date every single time!]

33. Don’t reveal that you cyberstalked them

Admit it! As soon as you find out your date’s last name, you search for them on Facebook and Google. There’s nothing to be ashamed of! We all do it. 

However, telling your date that you know about their childhood pooch, Mr. Barks-a-lot, might seem a little weird. There’s nothing wrong with doing a little research, just don’t bring it to the table with you. [Read: Things you do that’ll make your date think you’re a stalker]

34. Don’t play games to “play it cool”

A lot of people watch enough romantic comedies to know that if you like a person, you should play it cool. 

This doesn’t mean, however, that you should turn into an ice queen or king. It doesn’t mean you should wait three days to call your date or that you should act like you don’t care while you’re on the date. 

Playing it cool means giving it a few minutes before you text back, not changing your Facebook relationship before you’ve even been asked out! [Read: The right time for a guy to call the girl after the first date]

35. Be yourself

Sometimes, the pressure of a first date can make you feel like you have to put on a performance or only show your best side. 

This might secure a second date, but it’s unlikely that you will get much further than that. A first date is all about working out whether or not you’re compatible with the other person, and you won’t be able to work that out if you’re playing pretend.

36. Keep an open mind

They say that within five seconds of meeting someone, you already form an opinion of them. Do not let that opinion stop you from getting to know someone. [Read: 18 signs your date really likes you on the very first date!]

You cannot know everything you need to know from spending five seconds with a person. You need to at least give them a chance! You never know if they might be having a bad day or if you might have caught them at the wrong time.

37. Smile

You overcame the hurdle of actually asking your date out. That means that you have enough confidence in yourself to smile and laugh with your date as much as possible. This small thing is what makes or breaks rapport. [Read: 20 ways to perfect your first date conversation]

38. Communicate

Learn as much as you can about each other. Ask open-ended questions. Tell them what’s on your mind. Just talk, and everything will flow from there.

39. Make her laugh

If you don’t have an effective joke in your back pocket, tell them a funny story instead. [Read: How to make a girl laugh, smile, and like you instantly]

40. Pay attention to the conversation

Sometimes, you will find yourself drifting in and out of conversations. A first date is not the place to do this. It doesn’t matter if your date is boring! 

You need to give them your full attention until the very end. Otherwise, you haven’t really given them a fair chance, have you? It wouldn’t be nice if they weren’t listening to you, so try to remember that.

41. Don’t talk too much about the future 

During your date, you will talk about all kinds of things, like where you grew up, what your upbringing was like, and your hopes and dreams for the future. [Read: Does he or doesn’t he see a future with you? 30 signs to read him]

It’s a great time to really get to know the person you might end up in a relationship with, but it’s not the time to ask about their five-year plan. 

It’s the first date, and nothing is certain yet. Asking whether your date wants to get married at some point might seem a little over the top.

42. You’re not in on the joke

If you don’t think a joke is funny, then don’t laugh. It’s perfectly alright to just smile.

There’s nothing worse than someone who laughs at everything their date says just because they want to impress them, even if it means behaving like a silly child who’s smitten by the person they’re talking to. [Read: 20 funny compliments you can use to flatter and make them laugh]

Let your date see who you are by the way you behave around them. After all, you’re not on the date to please the person you’re with. Truthfully speaking, you’re on the date because you are willing to let yourself be evaluated while evaluating that person.

43. Don’t talk about your ex 

One topic that should never be discussed on a first date is the ex-files. It doesn’t matter how much they screwed you over or how much better off you are without them. 

Talking about your ex on a first date will only make your date think that you’re not over them yet. No one wants to play second fiddle to someone’s ex. If it accidentally pops up, talk about them briefly. Otherwise, just skip it. [Read: 40 perfect first date questions to have a really great conversation]

44. Don’t be afraid to eat

So many girls think that they have to eat like rabbits on a first date. The truth is that men like women who can eat. Stop ordering the garden salad when you’re clearly hungry. Order the steak! 

After all, if you like your date enough, you’ll be seeing them again, won’t you? Do you really want to starve every time you see them? [Read: Signs you’re ruining all your first dates unintentionally!]

45. Please remember to use your manners

It’s actually surprisingly easy to forget to use your manners on a date, but that doesn’t mean that you’ll get away with it. 

If your date is picking up the bill, thank them for it. It’s that simple. A person with good manners will be remembered over someone who can’t even be bothered to say please when asking to pass the salt.

46. Watch for red flags 

It’s the first date, and you’re both nervous. Naturally, you may say some odd things.

However, listen to what your date is saying. If something strikes you as really odd, don’t blow it off. It could be an early warning sign. [Read: 20 great ways to perfect your first date conversation]

47. Get some alone time at the end of the date

Getting some alone time with each other after the date is the perfect way to evaluate it and see if it has any potential to go forward. 

After the date, spend a while talking to each other, be it in the car or while taking a walk on a lonely street. If you’re lucky, a lot can happen right there. [Read: Easy tips to touch a girl sexually on a first date]

48. End the date the right way

There are many things that you need to keep in mind to ensure that you know what to do on a date and end it the perfect way. Thank your date for a great time, and make some plans for your next date if all goes well. [Read: When should a guy call after the first date?]

49. Say good night rather than good morning

It doesn’t matter how great the date was. Tell them good night. Don’t let them get a good morning out of you! 

If you sleep with them on the first date, there’s every chance that it may just end up as a one-night stand. It could also lead to misunderstandings because of how easy it was to get you into bed.

Either way, it doesn’t bode very well for you unless your date knows and respects you already. [Read: Kissing on the first date – is that a yes or a no?]

First date ideas to knock their proverbial socks off

It can be difficult to arrange something out of the blue, especially when you don’t know where to start. You can’t just come up with an amazing and unique idea out of thin air, right? 

For those of you who need some help, we have compiled a list of suggestions that will work for you!

1. Indie music gigs

You need to choose an artist that they like or a band you know that is really good. Choose a band that has a pseudo-pop vibe. Almost everyone likes a band that may one day have a chart-topping hit. [Read: Ways to make dating a music lover more fun]

Why it’s a good idea: There’s just something about dim lights, good music, and the close proximity of one person to another. 

The whole feel of the experience is like a tiny spark that builds up to a climactic explosion at the end of the night. Plus, going to a less popular band’s show is way more inexpensive than splurging on tickets for a big concert.

2. Romantic restaurants near bodies of water

Since frou-frou restaurants are overplayed, you can opt for a cozy and quiet café near a river, a lake, or the sea. 

Date Hack: Set the date for a full moon when the weather is agreeable. [Read: Romantic dinner date ideas for two]

Why it’s a good idea: The ambiance of places like these will compensate for the lack of showboating. It also gives you the option to ask for a walk down by the water, which is one of the most romantic activities.

3. Pump up the adrenaline

Researchers suggest taking a date to a theme park to simulate a sense of euphoria in each other’s presence. That shtick pretty much died out in the 90s, so why not opt for something along the lines of paintball, laser tag, surfing, or go-kart racing?

Why it’s a good idea: Science says that couples are more likely to develop an attraction for each other when their first date pumps up their adrenaline. It’s also way more fun than a walk in the park. [Read: Fun and romantic summer date ideas]

4. Add a little culture and socializing into the mix

Art galleries are no fun when neither of you is interested, but there are other ways for you to infuse a little culture into the date. Sign up for an abstract art class or join a Color Run, for example.

Why it’s a good idea: Abstract art is subjective, so neither of you will feel intimidated by your lack of art skills.

The Color Run is a race that has no winners or prizes. The main attraction is that you and the other participants are showered with colored cornstarch until you reach the end, where a huge party awaits! It’s basically an art installation and an adrenaline-pumping date all rolled into one. [Read: 34 secrets to make someone like you and draw anyone in the first few minutes]

5. Make your own food

Or at least sign up for a cooking class that lets you eat the final product. It’s best to choose a class that’s out of the ordinary, like ones that teach you how to make sushi, cute desserts, or anything that’s easy. 

Why it’s a good idea: It’s original. It’s cute. Learning together allows you to bond with each other. The easy-to-make part lets you eat good food without risking a failed experiment. [Read: Foodie dates – 15 trendy dinner ideas for new couples]

Most cities offer date night cooking classes, so you have a ton of options in case you choose this type of date.

6. Scavenger hunt! 

If you have time, you can set up a small scavenger hunt that will lead you to various date locations. 

You can start with dinner, then dessert, and an added option between drinks and coffee. You can also add little detours, like places where you can buy flowers or listen to music. [Read: The 50 best free date ideas when you want romance on a budget]

You can even adjust the stations according to your and your date’s preferences. Just make sure that the clues are obvious and the locations are within walking or commuting distance.

Why it’s a good idea: The mystery of not knowing where the next location is can add to the excitement! 

Even if you make a crappy set of clues, you can always laugh about it while you explain how you messed up. [Read: 30 fun first date ideas that will leave them wanting so much more]

Final thoughts

First dates are the time for magic and chemistry to begin. They’re the openings to beautiful relationships and experiences that will change your life if you can avoid the pitfalls that arrange themselves along the way.

Being yourself won’t always secure a second date, but the second date that you do get will be because the person really liked who they saw, not just the act that you let them see.

[Read: The complete guide to ending the first date with class and finesse]

Enjoy yourself and have a good time, but don’t forget the little details. Remember these things you need to do on a first date, get out there, and enjoy that chance to find your soulmate!

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Vinod Srinivas Serai
Vin Serai
Vin Serai is the founder of LovePanky.com, and has delved deep into the working of love and relationships for almost two decades. Having dipped his feet in almo...