14 Ultimate First Date Advice & Tips

First Dates are tricky so we put together the ultimate list of tips advice and tricks to help out.

First dates are nerve wracking but mostly because we aren't sure what to do. Finding good first date advice is tough but it can only help to have a plan going in and lead with the right mindset. After all the idea here is for everyone to have a good experience.

Yes, first impressions are scary and for a successful first date you'll have to open up about yourself a bit, but there's ways to do it that make it a relaxed, fun time instead of a scary experience you have to get through. Here are some of our essential first date tips that can help make it to that very important second date.

1) Everyone's Nervous:

Understand that both you and the other person are nervous on a first date: It's been a long pandemic. People have not been going on many first dates lately. The first date is one of the first times you'll see this person's personality and it can be scary to put yourself out there. Understanding that you are both acting from a place of nervousness can help you navigate their behavior.


The human brain neurologically cannot tell the difference between nervous and excitement. It's the same center of the brain and it's the same base feeling "pay attention". So in those first date moments, whatever you tell it, that's what it will feel. So when you feel nervous the first thing I want you to ask yourself is, "is that nervous or are you excited!" Excited at the potential of the future. Excited of what you can accomplish. It all starts with a first date.

2) Play it Cool. Be Cool Yo.

Don't talk about yourself too much on a first date. Talk more about events. Ideas. And Them. Ask them questions but not endlessly. Make sure to include stuff about yourself that relates to what they're saying. You know, like an actual conversation. . Take a little time to discuss non-serious topics first to show them who you are truly so you can see if you are compatible.

"Remember, dating isn't about winning anybody over. It's seeing whether you're actually good for each other.

3) Place your Phone Face Down on the Table

This is one of the more essential first date tips. A first date can be just as nerve-wrecking for the person planning it as it is for the one who agreed to go out with them so try not to add any unnecessary stress on top of everything else by checking your phone. Try to be present in the moment and putting your phone face down on the table shows you are there 100% and ready to engage with them.

4) Make a list of Things you love

On a first date we can all have trouble connecting and finding things we both enjoy and love. Making a list of fun date questions centered around things you love will help both of you understand the kind of people you are and allow for more conversation about those topics which can easily lead to more first date ideas.

You can also use the Lantern dating app here and ask each other the date questions there. These are specially formulated to spark conversations and allow you to experience an array of emotions together on the first date.


Avoid saying Yes or No on a first date when answering date questions. Try to give a story when you can that relates to the topic. This way they won't feel like you're not listening while also avoiding the awkwardness that would otherwise come from having an entire conversation with only one person doing all the talking.

5) Focus on their Interests

On a first date is important to try getting to know someone first, focus less on personal details and more on their interests because even if they seem boring at first glance it may still lead somewhere later in the conversation especially since knowing what people are passionate about often brings them to life in ways we never knew.

It can be hard to find ways to do this so we recommend using our app to run through some first date topics as well. You can even play the game together! Download from the App Store Here:

6) Set a Time Limit: Kinda

This is one of the most important first date tips and really comes down to picking the right first date location. For a successful first date feel free to keep it shorter & don't do anything that will lock you into a long time commitment.

"A much better strategy is to go somewhere with a short experience that can lead to a longer one. Drinks at a classy restaurant at the bar can lead to dinner if both parties are having a good time. If they aren't that's ok and you leave after a few drinks and some conversation with someone new."

7) You Can End a Date Early

First dates aren't always perfect and first dates should only last as long as both people are enjoying and want to continue. It''s not a job interview of busienss meeting where we need to stick things out no matter what. Even if you were having a good time at the beginning of the first date, a lot of times we find things out about people that change our minds and that's ok. That's why we date. If you encounter deal breakers, red flags or triggers it's time to protect your mental health and just go.


Be Aware on Amazon

If you ever feel unsafe pm a first date (or any date for that matter) make sure you know you can TEXT 911 from under the table discretely. Also make sure to read our SAFETY ARTICLE that gives incredible first date tips to stay safe.

Also pick up the book BE AWARE on Amazon Link HERE. Written by the former head of the FBI Miami Crime division it details unique ways for women to protect themselves.

8) Keep Body Language Open

Try not to close of on your first date. Closing arms, making a fist, keeping your drink in front of you as a barrier between you two. This will make your date uncomfortable or feel like they've done something to make you feel close off.

For a great book on Body Language pick up The Definitive Book of Body Language! 

Some Dont's:

1) What are you looking for?

Do not ask people what they're looking for in a successful first date because this will only lead to an awkward conversation that can easily be avoided by asking them about their interests instead. For example, if you want the first date just to be casual then don't say "Are you hoping it'll lead somewhere?" Instead try something like "What do you usually like doing on first dates? Have any fun stories from past experiences?" This way no expectations are set and both parties get more of an idea of who each other is without having to worry too much about how things could go wrong.

2) Don't Limit Yourself

Dating is about exploration. Don't talk yourself out of making decisions or engaging in behavior that may seem out there but ultimately interesting or exciting because first dates are meant to be fun and if you're not having a good time then there's no point in continuing.

3) No Ex Talk

On first dates, don't talk about previous relationships unless the person across from you does first so they won't think of them as competition even if their presence has been felt before by any given individual. We all want to know that the other person accepts us no matter what but the first date isn't the time to bring up all those little details from the past.

4) Get them off the pedestal

When heading out for your first date, avoid judging or putting them on a pedestal which can easily happen especially since on first dates we are so full of hope we ignore peoples negative personality traits. While this is nice the issue is that later in the relationship suddenly these things begin to show themselves and if you don't learn the love those traits along with the person they can annoy you later on.

5) Acknowledge if the date is going badly and "switch it to friends."

We've all been there. Both parties are clearly not feeling it. We are half way through that first drink and we both know this is not going to be a successful first date. Sometimes it's better to just acknowledge this impression of each other and try to enjoy the rest of the time as potential new friends. It can't be any worse than sitting there awkwardly as you both sip and make small talk.

Above all, don't forget that first dates are meant to be fun and don't go into them with the expectation of finding your soulmate right away because this isn't how relationships progress Don't talk about serious things at first, there's plenty of time later in the relationship.


First dates are scary and nerve wracking but it's nothing you can't overcome. There are tons of date tips and relationship advice out there that helps with everything from body language to first impressions to getting them to want a second date. But just make sure you get your date tips from a reputable source (like a real relationship expert) and take the other person into account when planning your night. Keep open body language, avoid cheesy pick up lines and make your date feel like they are truly special. That's the best way to get to the next date stage. Show the real you.

About the Author

Lantern Exclusive

Immersive Storytelling meets Dating