You nailed your Tinder profile, both swiped right, crushed the friendly dating app banter and have finally decided to meet IRL. Choosing a comfortable yet creative first date spot is super important. It can help ease the onset of emotions (excitement! anxiety!), while ensuring that both people have a ton of fun, even if sparks don’t fly. While you can’t control everything, you can definitely do your best to avoid your first date ending up as an online dating horror story by skipping some of the worst locations we’ve heard about. Scroll on for the list of six places to NEVER take a first date, and all the dirty deets.
1. An Overcrowded Restaurant: Grabbing a bite on a first date is pretty much always a good idea, as it gives you time to enjoy something delicious (built-in convo starter) while getting to know one another. The exception? Meeting for the first time at an overly crowded restaurant where you have to shout to hear one another or continually get knocked around by passing guests. Since feeling relaxed is important, choose a low-key place that has a fun vibe, but not the crowd to match. It’ll help the convo flow.
2. Your Apartment or Your Parents’ House: You can meet your date at your house or theirs (we still appreciate when someone picks us up), but move on after the initial hello! While cozying up at home is wonderful once you’re in an established relationship, save it for future hangouts if the two of you hit it off. Staying in won’t give you the opportunity to bond over a fun evening out and can lead to a makeout sesh or more — before you’ve even learned anything about your date! No need to bring your date to a family member’s house either. Dinner at your mom’s can wait. Seriously, it can.
3. The Car Wash: If it’s not obvious already, DON’T have your first date at the car wash or anywhere else that requires the two of you to get dirty or do chores. Though they’re not completely about primping, first dates are a good opportunity to look and feel your best. So don’t take it too seriously, put on your fave outfit and go have some fun together! The mundane tasks on your to-do list will still be there when you’re done.
4. The Gym: Though it can be tough to squeeze time for fitness into a schedule that’s full with work, social commitments and trying to date, a jam-packed gym is no place for a first meeting. If you and your date love being active, consider a walk, hike or outside adventure that still lends itself to seeing how you jive. ‘Cause let’s face it: Trying to talk on treadmills or catch up when you’re catching your breath after an exhausting sweat sesh just isn’t ideal for getting to know a potential S.O.
5. Office Happy Hour: Office happy hours with a plus one can be super fun, but they’re best reserved for people you’ve been seeing for a bit. The last thing you want to do is subject someone new to boring work chatter, your boss’ crude jokes or team culture clashes. And you don’t want to be the person to suffer through that while attending your date’s office event either! Enjoy focusing on each other during the first meeting, without the added pressure that comes with getting to know other people in your date’s life.
6. On a Boat: Unless you’ve discussed it before meeting up and know that no one is prone to sea sickness, don’t show off your sailing skills. You’ll be trapped with a could-be special someone on the open water, which might be a bummer if you’re itching to end the outing sooner than originally planned. Opt for a picnic near the marina instead.
Have you been on a bad first date? Tweet us the deets @BritandCo!
(Photos via Getty)