You meet a guy you’re interested in at your friend’s party. The next day, he calls (or texts) and asks you to meet him for coffee. Are you disappointed that he doesn’t want to take you out for a romantic dinner date and thinks of you only as "coffee worthy?" Or, are you relieved because meeting for coffee is quick and safe? When it comes to what to do on a first date, which is better, coffee or dinner?
I think there are advantages and disadvantages to both.
1. The sobriety factor. This is a big plus for coffee. With dinner, comes alcoholic beverages. If you are only having coffee, no one is getting tipsy and saying things he or she might regret the next day. Alcohol can also cause people to lose control and take things a little further physically that they otherwise would have had they been drinking espresso instead of wine.
2. The time and money factor. I will never forget this. I once had a blind date with a guy who asked me to meet him at Starbucks. I got there first. He walked up to the table and said, “Are you Jackie?” “Yes,” I answered. He looked really relieved and said, “Come on, let’s get out of here and go have dinner!” I should have known right then how superficial he was. He obviously didn’t think I was as hideous as he expected, so it was okay to spent more time and money with me. That really bothered me. What if he didn’t find me attractive? He’d most likely have have a quick Frappucino and would have been outta there stat. Coffee most likely means less time and money spent. There are exceptions. I once sat in a Starbucks with my boyfriend until they closed at 10:00 pm.
3. More time forces you to get to know the person. This is a huge plus for drinks and dinner. Several years ago, I went on a blind date. When he came to pick me up, I thought to myself, “Ugh…I can’t believe I have to go out for an entire dinner with this guy, and it’s probably going to be 3 hours minimum before I get home!” What a biatch I was! Shortly after we ordered our main courses, however, I began to really fall for him. I noticed how pretty his eyes were and I was appreciating his wit and intelligence. I ended up dating him for 4 months. And by the way, he ended up breaking up with me! Ain’t Karma a bitch?
4. Dinner and drinks are more romantic. There’s not getting around it. Dinner and drinks definitely go with a more relaxing environment than a bustling coffee house. Coffee is edgy. Do we really need caffeine to make us more jittery on a first date, when we are already so nervous as it is??
5. Coffee takes the pressure off. Having coffee on a first date is like meeting a good friend. So, unlike a dinner date, you are perceived as being either platonic friends, or it might appear you are there for a business meeting. It’s kind of nice to have that pressure lifted off. Plus, if you don’t hit it off, you really are just two platonic friends having coffee. And, the best part is, no one has spent a lot of money, so no one feels worse if the date doesn’t go well.
I have two solutions that I think are the best first date scenarios.
1. Meet for coffee, and if it’s going well, turn it into dinner!
2. Meet for lunch! Lunch is somewhere between a casual coffee meeting and a romantic dinner. And with lunch, you can always say, “I need to get back to work,” or “Want to get together tonight for our next meal?”