First dates can be fun and exhilarating, but they can easily turn awkward and -- gasp! -- forgettable. The tried-and-true formula of dinner and a movie is usually enough to get a second date, but more planning is needed to really sweep her off her feet. While your date should feel relaxed and spontaneous, there are smaller details you can plan ahead of time to make sure the date goes smoothly. You can also ask your date a few questions to subtly gather intel about how to spend your time together. Think about the following issues as you prepare for that all-important first date.
If you're taking her out to dinner at any point in your date, try going someplace where you can make a reservation. Not only will this show that you care enough to plan ahead, but you won't have to worry about a long, awkward silence while waiting for a table.
I'll pick you up at (time)?
You need to schedule a time to pick up your date, but here's the thing about most women -- they really like a guy who will take charge. So, rather than negotiate a time to pick her up, just tell her when you're going to come get her, but say it as if it's a question. That way all she has to say is "yes," and it's a done deal.
Is my car cleaned up?
Don't you dare pick up your first date in your dirty car with trash all over the interior. Clean out your car, and vacuum the interior if you must. Fair or not, your car will be part of the first impression she makes about you, and you want to make the best first impression possible.
What kind of food does she like?
Women like men who take charge and make plans. However, you want to be sure you're taking her someplace she'll like. What to do? Come up with a restaurant you'd like to take her to, and ask her friend for an opinion. Your idea will either be praised or shot down; if the friend rejects your idea, she'll likely say why (she doesn't like that particular place, she prefers another kind of food, etc.). You'll still be viewed as taking charge of the situation, and you'll also be viewed as considerate for asking one of her friends for an opinion. Your date will feel like you've gone the extra mile to really show her a good time.
How much time do we have?
You've got to plan your date within reasonable time constraints. If you only have an evening on a week night, then a "dinner and a movie" approach may be your best option. If you're going out on a Friday night or a weekend, then you can plan something a little more elaborate.
Tell me about yourself.
This really isn't a question, but the idea is to invite your date to share things about herself. It's easy (and perfectly natural) for guys to feel like they need to dominate the conversation. Resist those urges. Women appreciate men who are polite and caring enough to listen. This doesn't mean you can't talk about yourself, but you should be more focused on learning about her.
Should I attempt to kiss her?
Some girls kiss on a first date; others wait until at least the second. Knowing whether or not the time is right for that first kiss, especially on a first date, is tricky. If you're going to try, don't try until the end of the date, and pay very close attention to the cues you get from her. If she's attempting to get close to you and initiating a lot of contact (both physical and eye contact), then she may be trying to get you to kiss her. If you've had a great time, though, don't worry so much about rushing that first kiss. Mess up the kiss attempt, and you may end up blowing a goodbye kiss to your chances of a second date.
Do I have my clothing for the date ready?
Having your clothes ready doesn't just mean having something picked out and washed. Whatever you wear on the date should be ironed or pressed, as well. Also, even if you're just doing something casual, you should still dress up slightly more than you would otherwise. Wearing a nice, carefully chosen (matching) outfit will that you care about the date. Also, she'll notice -- and be very impressed -- if you've ironed your clothes.