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10 things not to do on a first date

25th February 2014

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Whether you’ve been drawn in by stimulating Tinder conversations or just finally plucked up the courage to talk to that wildly attractive person that you’ve been stalking around the library for the past three months, the process of beginning to see someone can be fraught with unexpected dangers.

To begin with, what should you suggest doing? Drinks and the cinema? Is that too much? No? Fine – but what if they’re unexpectedly teetotal, and hate all films?

We wouldn’t recommend dating this person, if that is the case – but the question remains. What makes a great first date? Or, maybe more importantly - a very, very bad one?

Luckily Ladbrokes Bingo asked a whole load of 18-24 year olds what they expect on that all important date number one, and we’ve used their results to put together this handy checklist of behaviours/places to avoid. Be warned.

And if you find that your date is doing any of the below things – Bad Date Bingo. Hey, there’s fun to be had in every situation...

DON’T bring flowers

Yes, it might seem like a nice, romantic gesture at first. But think about it. Might it be a little bit too intense? On date one, 86% of 18-24 year olds are going to be totally thrown by floral tributes. Unless it’s Valentine’s Day or their birthday – but then, why are you going on a first date on either of these days? That’s a bit weird... in any case, save the flowers for later.

DON’T suggest a date at your house – or theirs

Neutral ground, people. Would you really want to spend an evening on someone else’s territory, without a failsafe escape route? No, thought not.

DON’T go ice-skating at a tourist attraction

We think this sounds ok (well, we would if we didn’t hate ice-skating quite as much as we do – bruises) but both ice-skating and visiting tourist attractions come close to bottom on the preferred list of first date venues, with just 4% picking either. Luckily the winter ice rinks at Somerset House, the Tower of London, Natural History Museum etc have probably all closed now the lighter evening are setting in, so you might not have to worry about making the wrong choice too much. Unless you find yourself in one of the restaurants below...

DON’t go for Mexican

No matter how much you love fajitas, there’s no escaping it – they’re not a sexy food. No one has ever felt the need for a second date after spending an hour sat opposite a person who has guacamole dripping off their chin... not that we’ve heard, anyway. Save that novelty Mexican with the sombreros and tequila for a date when you know each other well enough to look silly and find it endearing, rather than off-putting.   

DON’T go for tapas either

Only 2% of 18-24 year olds would choose ‘Spanish’ as their restaurant of choice. Why is that? Surely tapas and white wine and churros makes a perfect date night? Apparently not.

DON’T go for Thai EITHER...

Again, we don’t know why only 4% of respondents think Thai is a good shout for a first date. Everyone loves Thai - don’t they? Guys?

DON’T expect one party to pay for everything

Yes, it’s the 21st Century – but let’s not bullshit here, sometimes it’s nice when the other person offers to pick up the bill. It might be a nice surprise to be treated to dinner, but what’s not nice (and is unlikely to endear you to the person opposite you) is to blatantly assume that this will happen. 48% would expect to split the bill on the first date – which we think is fair. To the 46% that expect the man to pick it up as standard – really?

DON’T expect a goodnight kiss

Because you won’t be getting one from 37% of those questioned... just so you’re aware.

DON’T expect to go for drinks after the main event

53% of respondents aren’t going to want to prolong your date by going for just one more drink after you’ve finished with dinner/film-watching/whatever it is you’ve spent the evening attempting to impress them with. We think this is fairly harsh... but then, maybe you’d taken them ice-skating?

DON’T expect sex

Well if you weren’t even getting a goodnight kiss, did you expect to be stopping over? 76% of those questioned are ready to kick you to the curb if you suggest getting it on to top off date one. So – exercise some patience.

It seems that meal choices and date venues are pretty divisive. So, what should you be doing rather than eating patatas bravas round yours whilst calculating the exact moment to go in for a snog?

We’ll tell you tomorrow.   

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