The Ultimate First Date Must-Do List

The first 5-10 minutes of a first date indicate where the rest of the evening is headed. To bypass the initial awkward stage and move onto having fun, it helps to prepare ahead of time and put your date at ease. Once things are flowing naturally, you’re practically guaranteed to enjoy yourself!

First off, make sure you have plenty of time to get ready. This includes showering, shaving, and wearing clean and ironed clothes. Ladies, make sure you leave plenty of time for your hair and makeup, as guys really don’t enjoy waiting at the door so you can have “five more minutes” to get ready.

Make sure your car is clean and gas tank is full. You don’t want your date kicking aside empty water bottles or bags of fast food. Even if you’re normally a slob, leave a little mystery on the first date. Have your radio stations programmed to music stations you both like and leave the volume on low so you can talk or let the music fill up awkward silences.

No, it’s not presumptuous to bring your date flowers or a bottle of wine on your first date. If you know something in particular they like or collect (like beanie babies or shot glasses) bring them one with a small bow on it. It will go a long way toward starting the date off on the right foot. After all, you can never go wrong with thoughtfulness.

Right after you two decide on where to go, call and make a reservation. Then, call and make a back up reservation somewhere else. Do not assume the hot new restaurant that just opened downtown is going to have no wait time at 7PM on a Saturday night. There’s nothing worse than driving around with a starving date looking for a place to eat. You will end up at McDonald’s. NOT CLASSY.

In this day and age, there are necessities to pack, and yes, we’re talking condoms packed by both sexes. While you may not plan to sleep together on the first date, it could happen, and it’s best to be safe. To this list I would also add tissues (allergy season now spans all seasons) and breath mints. If you expect any kissing to occur on this date, they are a must-have.

Although it’s important to be yourself on a first date, you don’t need to overshare. Ask about what a typical day is like for that person, what they like to do for fun on the weekends, any interesting vacations they have gone on or are planning. DO NOT ask about their plans for procreating, how much money they make, or where they see themselves in five years. This is a date, not a job interview.