First Date Advice From Real Women


First dates are important in that they are the one-and-only chance that both people have to make a great first impression. But don’t make that a reason to stress. Just see dating as a fun way to see if you are compatible with someone that you are physically attracted to. For this feature, I asked a batch of real women what they thought would be an ideal first date. The good news is that despite the women being so varied in interests, none of them mentioned anything about breaking the bank to impress them. In fact, the common denominator for all women was that the guy has manners and that the purpose of the date is to get to know each other.

Remember that the following advice is general guidelines and suggested etiquette based on female feedback. We all know that there are other factors involved in the making of a successful date for both parties, but at least these suggestions can give you an idea of how to have enjoyable dates. The main goals of first dates are to get to know each other and to decide if you’d like a second date.

While gathering this data, I quickly learned that, one size does not fit all when it comes to what sounds like fun, but luckily there was a commonality among all the date suggestions and that is, these women felt that the ideal date location would be one that allows conversation, yet in a public location that they’d feel safe in.

Every woman is different. Try to get clues about what she’d like to do. What sounds like fun to one woman might sound dreadful to another. For example, one woman might love it if you took her to a baseball game, while her best friend would much rather go paddle-boating at the nearby park.

If you met this person online, you can get clues about what their idea of fun is from their profile and in your communication with them. If you call her before meeting her in person, ask her where she likes to hang out usually or if there is a place in town that she’s been meaning to check out.


Who Should Pay for a First Date?

When it comes to first dates, the women that I surveyed were pretty traditional when it came to who pays. An easy rule of thumb is that the person who does the asking is the person that should pay. Typically it’s been men that do the asking so it’s been customary that they pay. Although, I think it’s only fair that if a woman wants to buck tradition and do the asking, I think she should be expected to pay. Regardless of who pays, the person who is being treated should be politely grateful. I know that in recent times, the traditional dating customs have been blurred and it can be confusing. But I think the safest thing to do is always assume you will be paying and if the woman insists on paying her way, then let her.

One little secret though, if a woman insists that she pays her way and starts putting a distance between you two (both physically and emotionally), it could also be a signal that she has made up her mind and decided she wants to keep things on the friend level with you. Sort of a subtle signal that she will not be wooed by you, so she’s not going to waste your time or get your hopes up. Like I said, there are so many different types of women and all have different opinions, but I’m just letting you know what the general consensus around here is.

Take an Interest, Rather than Seek it

Don’t be a salesman where you are the product. I’ve observed quite a few dates that look like this; table for two, man and woman face each other and you never hear anything but the man’s voice. I’ve observed women with glazed-over eyes, stifling a yawn or feigning interest with an “uh-huh” every now and then. I’ve been there. And you know what is going on in our heads the whole time he’s listing his achievements, opinions and life story… it’s “Is he going to even ask me anything?”

I get it. You can be nervous or you really think that this is your one chance to make this woman like you. But trust me, the best way to interest a woman is to show your genuine interest in her. And by interested in her, I don’t mean being only interested in her physically but interested in such things as her thoughts, hobbies, dreams, and her passions. You can find this stuff out by asking questions about what she likes to do in her free time or what her hometown was like when she was growing up. These casual questions that you ask of her allow for an organic flow of getting to know each other. Most women know the etiquette of carrying on a conversation. We were taught at a young age that if someone asks you a question, such as “ How was your weekend?” you give your reply, and then always ask the same question back to the initiator. Like Dale Carnegie said, “To be interesting, be interested.”

What Makes a Man Worthy of a Second Date

Behave nicely.”

Open doors, be considerate, ask questions to get to know your date. Don’t just talk about yourself. Let her know you like her but don’t get creepy.”

Don’t do stuff that only you like to do. Consider your partner’s interests.”

Incorporate some type of affection/intimacy so it’s more like a date and not buddies hanging out…but don’t get overly physical either.”

Being chivalrous (opening doors is easy), calling and not texting, asking if they can hold my hand on a date (I think that’s super sweet), sharing food at a restaurant, doesn’t check their iPhone every 5 minutes, and compliments my outfit. As for fun dates – ice skating, a picnic, a festival or fair, wine tasting, baseball game…basically anywhere that gives you a chance to talk.”

For the love of God, if you want to date a woman actually ask her out on one. And don’t ask her to “hang out”…unless you are both still in college and living in dorms with free Foosball. And even then, buy her a soda or hold her hand or something so the intention is clear. Dating is about establishing romance. Otherwise, you’re just acquaintances.”

Personally, I don’t care about tipping (servers know guys on dates are likely to tip better btw, in order to impress their dates). More than money spent (or not) it’s the intent of the person and how considerate and present they are. A date is about feeling each other out. You want your date to feel good on and after the date.”

dating - body language

For date ideas, asking the woman what she’s into is helpful. Or telling the woman something you love to do and asking if she’d like to see what it’s like. Talking is underrated. Go somewhere you can chat, not too loud. No movies. If you’re not sure about conversation, sports games are good because it relieves some of the pressure off you.”

Book that second date by the end of the first date.”

If you know that you are interested in the woman, book that second date before the end of the date. From personal experience, you get major bonus points if you show a little bit of “going after what you want”. Obviously only do this if all signs that she’s given throughout the date are that she’s having a great time hanging out with you.”

It is a turn-off when at the end of a seemingly successful date, the guy leaves without any mention of future plans. It can literally swing the pendulum from, “ I’m totally interested in this guy!” to “Ok, I guess he’s not that into me. Next!” Plus when a woman returns from her date, one of the top questions her friends ask her are, “Are you going to see him again?” Women feel lame having to reply, “I don’t know.”

That’s another thing, women like to talk about their dates. If you really like her, it’s best that she has some good stuff to tell her friends about the date. Saying, “He already asked me for a second date.” will be met with positive thoughts by her and her friends.

Date Ideas that Most Women Prefer

I recently went on a date that we both decided to go for a walk without our phones. It made for no outside distractions. We walked a beach neighborhood and had a seat by the sea. We just kissed for the first time and I noticed in the light that the waves washed up jumping seaweed. I knew it couldn’t be frogs so we got up to gander at the floppy wash. It was grunion!!! It was so cool and so unplanned for a date to remember. I was talking about it for a week!”

sexy rain

We met up one rainy day and walked through San Francisco from the Ferry Building through Chinatown where we had a crab lunch and then ended up in North Beach where we ended up at a little round table sharing tiramisu. I wasn’t too sure if I liked him at the beginning of the date but after 4 miles of him walking alongside me holding my umbrella over me and making me laugh the entire time, well, I definitely made up my mind by the end of it.”

I wasn’t really sure what plans he had for our first date. He just asked me to meet him at a café for bagels and coffee. Then he asked if I wanted to go to The Legion of Honor. I had never been there before so I was thrilled. We asked each other questions as we looked at the art and moved from room to room. After that, he took me to his favorite Pho place. It was a sweet and innocent date and it felt great knowing that he put thought in the planning and made sure I was having a good time.”

Date Ideas that Women Dream About

There is this farmer’s market in Avila Beach. It would be the perfect place for a date. Just stroll through the market, maybe get something to eat and then walk on the pier, maybe watch the sunset. That would be a perfect date. Simple, romantic and not expensive for the guy.”

The perfect date for me would be to go hiking somewhere beautiful. I like being physically active so it would be a great way to see if he can keep up with me. Also, it gives us a nice way to get to know each other’s personalities. Hiking trails are perfect because we can talk without rude interruptions. Plus the scenery is constantly changing so we’d always have something to talk about.”

Dates Ideas that Most Women Would Prefer to Forget

One time a guy asked me to meet him at a little cafe for a date. I get there and see he already has his drink. I join him and he immediately starts complaining about his mom and sisters. After awhile of this I hint that I’d like something to drink. So he walks with me towards the counter. While in line, he complains about his ex-girlfriend who’d bring her friend along with them when they’d go to Starbucks and she’d expect him to pay for the friend’s drink. “And those frappucinos are expensive!” Obviously he was trying to send me hints. So just as the man at the counter asks me what I’d like to order, this Casanova decides that he must walk all the way to the other side of the cafe to look at the wall art. So I ended up paying. I just grabbed my chai latte, returned to the table where the guy was and he went back into his woman- hating rant. I felt so disrespected that I didn’t even hear what he was saying, I just saw his lips moving and chugged my chai latte. The second I slurped up the last drop, I got up, said, “ I gotta go”, and bolted out the door. The guy actually texted me later that evening to tell me that he had a great time. I didn’t bother answering. I’m pretty sure I’m going to be added to his list of difficult women that his next date gets to hear about.

Bad first date

One guy asked me out to dinner. I meet up with him at an art show and at the art show he runs into a friend of his. My date ends up inviting this friend to join us for dinner. I was completely fine with this as I seemed to be getting along better with the friend. Anyways my date suggests this restaurant way out of my price range but I figured he must be able to afford it since he was the one that asked me out to dinner. So we go to the restaurant. I still end up ordering the cheapest thing on the menu just because that’s how I am. Well the bill comes and my date throws down only enough cash to cover his meal. I did not accept any of his date invitations after that. I couldn’t afford it!”

I was on a first date at this nice Italian restaurant thinking everything was going well. You know, normal getting to know each other conversation… as I reached for another slice of pizza, he blurted out, “I was molested.” I was in shock for the rest of the date and when I got home, I cried. Poor guy, he didn’t need a girlfriend, he needed a therapist.”

“One date invited me to a party and on our way there, we had to stop while he texted his friends that were already at the party, asking them if his ex was there with her new boyfriend. As he was frantically texting away trying to get updates on his ex-girlfriend’s every move, he told me that he was over her, but that still didn’t mean that he wanted to see her with her new boyfriend. We didn’t date for very long after that.”

I once saw a meme that said, “Dating makes you appreciate the time by yourself,” and it made me laugh because I can remember two or three dates where I just couldn’t wait to jump into my getaway car and make a run for it. I’m sure everyone has their own horror stories. It’s just part of the dating experience. But my point here is to provide you with information to make for more dates that end up being good stories.

There are factors out of your control that determine whether your date wants a second date (or even if you do) but with these tips, at least you can increase your odds for that fun first date. It’s a very simple formula; be kind to each other, find something enjoyable for both of you, and learn about each other. Regardless of whether there is a second date or not, if your first date consists of those three things, you are still winning.

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About Adriana Green

Adriana Green always roots for the good guys. She also enjoys making good people look great. She runs a mens street style site called Trig & Polished (, in which she scours the streets for stylish men with the mission of promoting good men's style. She appreciates more than just well-dressed men; see what else by checking out her photography at Connect with her on Instagram @adrianagreenphotography & @trigandpolished

About Adriana Green

Adriana Green always roots for the good guys. She also enjoys making good people look great. She runs a mens street style site called Trig & Polished (, in which she scours the streets for stylish men with the mission of promoting good men's style. She appreciates more than just well-dressed men; see what else by checking out her photography at Connect with her on Instagram @adrianagreenphotography & @trigandpolished