When taking someone out on a first date, you will want to take certain steps to make sure you are using the proper etiquette. These things should be followed for any setting, to help your date and yourself feel comfortable so you will be able to enjoy yourselves.
On the day or night of the date, make sure to be on time. Do not show up early if you are picking your date up from their home, but show up right on time. It is alright to be a little early if you are meeting your date at a location, because then you will be able to scope out the area for good seating or a spot where you will be able to speak to each other comfortably without it being too loud or awkward. Timeliness is important because it shows you care about making a good first impression.
Dress nicely but do not overdress for the event. This will depend on where you are taking your date. If you are going out to dinner, a suit or nice pair of slacks with a dressy shirt will be fine. If the date is casual, you can wear jeans with a dressier shirt. Don’t show up for a date with a rock t-shirt or bright strange colors unless the event you are going to calls for it. Your date will not appreciate having the distraction of people looking at bizarre apparel unless the setting is somewhere that it is accepted. You will need to ease yourself into being able to wear things you enjoy. The first date is not the place to do this.
Be a listener. No one enjoys a date where the other person does all of the talking. You will of course need to speak and try to fill in silence with talking, but being a listener is a great feature that many look for in a relationship. Genuinely listen to what your date has to say and ask questions so they know you are really paying attention. Offer some advice if it seems necessary, but do not get so involved that your date feels uncomfortable talking about personal things so early. Keep the banter light-hearted and fun, if possible.
Offer to pay. Although nowadays it is acceptable for the first date to be split price-wise, it is very gentlemanly to at least offer to pay for the night. If your date is adamant about you not paying, then after insisting two or three times you will have to let them pay their share. Tell them that next time it will be totally on you though.
Open doors and allow your date to walk in before you. These small gestures show that you want to be with the other person and that you care about their well-being. It is hard to find a man who will open a door for their date. Old-fashioned is desired and should be carried out whenever an opportunity arises.
Pick a spot where you are comfortable. When you decide to go on a first date, don’t make it a spot that you will feel scared or strange about being. You will want to go somewhere you are accustomed to being so you will feel at ease and less nervous. Having familiar surroundings can really help your date go much smoother than if you are thrown into an area you have never seen before. Save that adventure for the second date!
Don’t expect anything other than a good time at the event. On a first date it is not recommended to try and kiss the person at the end of the night. It is too soon and you may scare your date in the process. Shake hands and let them know how much you enjoyed yourself and ask if it would be alright to call or to make another date. If they seem hesitant, tell them you understand and thank them again. If they agree, make sure you follow up with a phone call. Wait a day or two so you do not seem over-eager and call to see if they would like to go for coffee or for a walk. They will be happy you followed through with the call and most likely will be glad to see you again!