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Why restaurants are bad for first dates

It's one of the oldest first dates in the book. You see someone you like on Byber, get a conversation going, and then you ask them out to dinner. It's somewhat formal, so you show you're taking it seriously; reasonably expensive, so you can flash your cash (just a bit!) and ultra-classic, inoffensive, and totally expected. 

Here's why it's not a very good first date. 

On a first date, you probably don't know much about the person sitting across from you. Since both parties generally want to show off a bit on a first date, you're likely to include drinks, an appetizer, and dessert, even if you generally wouldn't have a three-course meal – which means you're probably looking at a meal that's close to two hours. 

If it's pretty clear that the person you're on a date with isn't a great match for you, a three-course meal is quite a bit of time to spend with someone you'd rather not be spending time with. Even if you like the person okay, unless you really click immediately, dinner first dates often end up feeling like interviews, and you don't get a good sense of who the other person is. 

Plus, restaurants can turn up surprise difficulties that may throw off your night. You might love a classic steakhouse, but when you get to the restaurant and find out that your date is vegetarian or vegan? Unless you can adapt on the fly, you're in for an awkward situation where you're stuck wondering why this never came up and your date's thinking you're insensitive and self-centered. 

So how do you fix this? 

Pick a first date that involves an activity. It could be visiting a local festival, taking a winery or brewery tour, or exploring the historical sites in the next town over. If there's an activity happening, both of you will be able to focus on the experience. This gives you something shared to talk about and relieves a lot of the nerves that stem from sitting across the table from someone, not knowing what to say! 

Then, if it's going well, you can suggest getting dinner afterwards. You'll have something to talk about and you'll have a better sense of who your date is as a person and how they might fit into your life.

BYBER Team 😉

Photo: couple by Sole Treadmill licensed under Creative commons 4