Do you want your first tinder date to go well? I bet you do!
Hence, I'll walk you through 10 amazing first tinder date ideas so that you don't mess it up!
But, before that…
First of all, let’s lay down the ground rules for good and bad dates.
- You must have an exit plan.
- Better avoid extreme situations.
- Make sure you have the ability to get to know each other.
- Do something that brings you natural topics for conversation.
Having an exit plan means you don’t tie yourself into a five-hour tinder date before you know you want to be on one. That means you avoid dates that would take five hours.
You can also say something like “I might meet up with some friends later, we haven’t decided yet.” Voila, there’s your exit plan for the first tinder date.
That doesn’t mean you can’t have a five-hour date — it just means you only commit to 30-60 minutes. If the date goes well, you can just do something else later.
Meeting at a place like Starbucks, unless it’s one that’s filled with strange people, leaves you very few conversation openers.
You want to be at a place or doing something, that leads to natural topics for conversation.
Extreme situations can be fun, and adrenaline kicks actually make people fall in love more easily, but…do you really want to be in an extreme situation with a person you don’t know?
You don’t know how they’ll react, so probably not.
Ever tried meeting someone for the first time in a very loud, very busy bar? You don’t hear what they’re saying, you’re distracted by everything happening around you and chances are you’ll end up more frustrated than attracted/in love.
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10 safe first date ideas for you & the person you swiped right on:
1. Go to Wine Tasting
Something like a wine tasting, cheese and wine pairing, or beer tasting, is a great way to spend an hour together, while also having other people to interact with. You just don’t want a full-day tour of a vineyard — stick to an even that’s maxed an hour, or so.
2. Meet for Dessert
An after-dinner dessert (or late afternoon one), can be really fun for first Tinder date. You go to a place with lots of choices, so you can talk about your favorite desserts. You get to oh-and-ah about how good it is.
You get a sugar rush. It’s sweet. In more ways than one.
3. Go for a Walk
A walk gives you something to do.
Buying takeaway coffees, or some ice cream, and then going for a walk in the park, or on the beach (choose somewhere with plenty of people around as it will give you topics of conversation and help you both relax as no one fears getting kidnapped).
You can always bring a frisbee, paper to make boats for the pond, that kind of thing and then use it if, and only if, you feel your Tinder date is the kind to appreciate it.
4. Go to a Quirky Bar or Café
When you go to an oddball place, you have something to talk about naturally. Whether it’s the super cool decor, or the funky drinks menu.
5. Coin Toss Dates — The Penny Date!
We actually got this idea from the guys over at Kirby, but it’s so good that I (the author), for one, am going to try it out!
Basically, you walk around the city and at each street corner, you toss a coin. Heads you go right, tails left.
Of course, you can also have a goal. Such as stopping at the coolest bar you see (maybe you need to walk far enough to find two so you can make a choice, esp. if you find the first one after one minute of walking…), or having dessert somewhere.
6. Events in Your City
While concerts, plays and the movies are a terrible idea as you can’t really talk to one another, farmers markets, Christmas markets, Renaissance fairs, art fairs and the rest, are excellent first dates.
You can walk around, looking at different stalls, so you have something to talk about and it won’t take all day. And the bonus is you might actually get to see something new in the city!
7. Ice Skating or Rollerblading
OK, so if you, or your date, are prone to breaking your bones (or being scared of being seen looking like Bambi on ice), don’t do this. If not, it’s a pretty epic way to spend an hour together.
You can laugh (especially if you’re beginners) and after some fun exercising, you can stop for a coffee, ice cream, or hot chocolate.
8. Hang out with Your Friends
This is a bit of hit or miss. For it to work your friends have to…..
a) Be a nice bunch that will respect your date, whether s/he is super interesting or deathly boring
b) You have to be able to pay attention to your date and ensure they don’t feel left out
c) It needs to be something where s/he can leave after 30-60 minutes if you don’t have chemistry (such as you’re all preparing to go to the next bar and they can join/go home, or you can choose to go with them somewhere else, or leave yourself).
While hanging with friends is low-key and a great way to get to know someone without much pressure, it’s usually better for first dates with people you already met in person. So you know if they’ll gel with you/your friends.
9. Billiards, Ping-Pong, Mini-Golf, Bowling, etc.
Granted neither one of you are prone to hit people with golf clubs/bowling balls or feel totally humiliated by how bad you are at the pool, playing a game together can relieve a lot of tension. Granted neither is a bad loser, either.
10. Exhibitions and Museums
This is similar to a fair — you walk around and check something out. It helps if you’re both into whatever is being exhibited, but if you both hate it, it can also lead to a good laugh.
Just bear in mind that if you’re a science geek and they’re an arty fart…unless you can make the science exhibit fun for them, or they the art exhibit fun for you, it’s not a good idea.
You need to find common ground, or something that’s new to the both of you, or something one can explain to the other to make it interesting. We all know what it feels like going to a boring exhibition and that is a total killjoy.
First Date Ideas That Sound Good But Aren't
Meeting at Home
Pressure, much? You don’t know the person. They don’t know you. And trust us when we say that online chemistry doesn’t always translate. Not even if you’ve spoken over the phone, or done video chatting, before the meeting.
Going to the Movies
Yes, you may both LOVE film. Great. You’ll have something to talk about. That’s just the point though: to get to know each other you have to speak.
Sitting silently next to each other in a dark cinema for two hours? Not a very good way of getting to know each other.
Besides, remember the rule of an exit plan? Mhm.
Going to a Shooting Range
It sounds exciting, doesn’t it? Lots of fun for a first tinder date. Pretty sexy. Especially if you both dress for the occasion. A bit of role-playing. Sure, it is all of the above, but you don’t know who you are meeting. Imagine going to a shooting range with a lunatic.
They’ll have a gun. Need we say more?!
Having a Big Dinner
You want to impress each other, so you want to dress up to your knees and head to a fancy restaurant for a three-course first tinder date dinner.
First of all, are you really comfortable being THAT dressed up on a first date?
Secondly, how much time investment doesn’t it take just to get ready?
Thirdly, you can’t leave in the middle of dinner, even if they turn out to be as exciting as a sleeping pill.
Extreme Adventure Sports
You’ll probably survive if your date, who said s/he likes adventure sports, turns out to be a wuss and refuses to climb the wall in a climbing place. Not too much fun, but nor too much time or money wasted.
But imagine if you’re in the same situation out on a rock? Especially if they’re halfway up the rock. Or when you’ve paid to go paragliding and last minute they back out as it’s scarier than they thought?
And just imagine heading out to the middle of nowhere to go mountain biking with a stranger. And if they come home with a broken ankle because they were busy trying to talk to you when biking…great first date. Not.
It sounds like fun, right?! But you have no idea if they’ll start crying when hit by a splash of paint, or if they’ll go completely crazy and shoot you up close, which is against the rules and hurts like hell. It can also get awkward chasing each other with guns on a first date.
Meeting in the Middle of Nowhere
I’ve touched upon this already, but being in the middle of nowhere with someone you don’t know, creates unnecessary fear and stress. You don’t know them, they don’t know you, there isn’t enough trust to meet far away from people. No matter how great the sunset happens to be at that beach.
Sure a concert is fun and if you both like the same band, great. However, you can’t talk to each other during the concert, they may turn out to have moves like the worst 70s disco nerd, want to get trashed, or sing like a banshee and embarrass you in front of hundreds of people and you’re stuck together for the duration of the concert.
It can get awkward as F**K.
A Boring Coffee Shop
There’s nothing wrong with meeting for a quick coffee. In fact, it’s a great way to establish if there’s any attraction in real life. But meeting in a boring coffee shop, as the Starbucks mentioned above, leave you a few conversation topics.
Like “is your favorite the mocha or the Americano?” Not cool.
Having chemistry with one person is one thing, with two more, another. And horrors if it’s a first date and your date ends up liking your friend instead of you, or you end up liking your friend’s date.