Top 10 Tips for a Safe First Date
You are about to embark on a first date, perhaps with someone you’ve met online dating, from a recent speed dating event or perhaps through a friend. Whichever one it is, and no matter how much messaging or emailing you have gone through in the lead up, don’t be fooled into thinking you know that person just yet. Dating should be fun, but it should also be safe. So, with everything else to think about when it comes to a first date – be interesting, have good chat, look your best – mixed with a small dose of excitement and nerves, don’t forget these key pointers. It should always be safety first, so follow these top 10 tips for a safe first date.
Top 10 Tips for a Safe First Date
1) Have a Pre-Date Call
It’s a great idea to have a phone call with your date before you meet up. You may have had great email and text banter, but that’s nothing like conversing in real life. If you can’t hold a normal conversation over the phone, how are you going to sit through a date? A phone call should re-enforce your desire to meet up, and put you more at ease in the lead up to the date. Always trust your instinct – if something doesn’t feel right, don’t be afraid to pull the emergency rip cord.
2) Don’t Reveal Too Much
We’re not talking about your real age, most embarrassing moment or too much flesh. We’re talking about those all-important personal details like your home address, work address, local gym and your favourite hangouts. Anywhere you might not want to bump into your date should you not want to see them again.
3) Don’t Get Drunk
Yes, you might need a few to ease those first date jitters, and help the conversation flow, but there’s nothing positive about getting drunk on your first date. Not only does it carry the obvious safety risks, it can also mean you act and talk differently than you would when sober. Don’t assume it’s OK because you’re drinking the same as your date. Stumbling to the loo or going on about your ex one too many times might not impress everybody. Keep a close eye on how much your drinking and slow down by having a water on the go too.
4) Do your Homework
It’s not a job interview, but you still want to impress, so go over old emails or texts to make sure you remember what you already know about your date. It’s also a good idea to check their facts stack up in real life. Have a Google and do some social network research. It’s a good way to make sure your date has been telling you the truth, and is who they say they are.
5) Meet in a Busy Place
It’s an obvious one, and a golden rule for that first date. Always meet in a public place, but also a busy one, and preferably somewhere you know, making you feel more at ease and confident. Make sure there will be plenty of people around both at the start and towards the end of your date. This can help ensure all formalities are in full check throughout the duration of your date.
6) Tell a Friend
Always let someone know where you’re going. It can be a work colleague, house mate, best friend or your mum. Ideally tell them who you are going with, or give them as much information about your date as you can. Let them know how your date is going (a loo stop is a great opportunity for this) and most importantly, when you’re home safe, so they don’t need to send out a search party.
7) Trust your Instinct And Have An Exit Plan
Your instinct is rarely wrong so don’t ignore it. If you feel something isn’t right, it probably isn’t. Don’t feel you should be trusting or put up with a situation you’re not comfortable with. If you feel the need to get cut the date short, then do and leave. It’s a good idea to have a get-out plan arranged should you need to pull the rip cord and parachute to safety. Arrange for a friend or friends to meet you at your set location an hour into your date. Or get someone to call you to give you an excuse to leave the table should you need to.
8) Bring Extra Money
Ignoring the debates about first date etiquette, it’s best to split the bill equally on your first date. That way nobody feels like they are owed something else because they paid for the night so far. Always keep emergency cash available for a taxi home for that fail-safe journey home, no matter how sure you are that you’ll get that last train or bus.
9) Keep Your Things With You
Always keep your phone, wallet, bag and any other valuable possessions with you at all times. Pick pockets can strike at the most inconvenient times, and you don’t want to be stranded without your phone, wallet or train pass on your first date.
Also, keep an eye on your drink at all times. If you’re going to the toilet, take it with you or finish it before you go, and watch all your drinks being made or poured. If you’re worried, order something else, spill it over or say you don’t like it. Whatever you do, don’t drink it, and leave as soon as you can.
10) Sort Out Your Transport
This applies to both getting there and getting home. No matter how well your date has gone, don’t be persuaded into a lift home, to the station or elsewhere. It’s just not worth it. Make sure you choose a location where you can easily get transport from, make sure you know the times of your train or bus home, or have a reliable and trusted taxi number to use.
With these top 10 safety tips for a first date in place, go and enjoy a good old flirt!