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Ten top tips for a memorable first date

Beat the first date nerves with our dating tips and list of fun first date ideas.

Woman ten pin bowling
Doing an activity together, such as ten pin bowling, can take the pressure off

First dates can be daunting, especially if you’ve been out of the dating game for a number of years. Choosing the right place to meet can be enough to reduce even the most laid back among us to quivering wrecks as you wrestle between finding something that will be both enjoyable and memorable but not so wild and crazy that you scare your date away.

Dinner and drinks may seem like the classic thing to do, but it can make for an awkward first date if you find yourselves staring at each other tongue-tied after the initial pleasantries. Doing an activity together can provide a topic of conversation to ease you out of those first date nerves.

With the increasing popularity of online dating it is even more likely you might be going on a date with someone you have never met before, but don't panic! Here are ten great ideas of where to go on that first date, and hopefully make a good enough impression to be invited to go on a second!

For more first date tips, read our guide to first date dos don'ts

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Good first date ideas

Museum visit

Depending on the venue, your conversation could run the gamut from the macabre to the majestic and you can have a cup of coffee together when you’re finished.

Wine tasting

A wine tasting event takes the pressure off of the pair of you by being in a group, gives you something to discuss and lubricates conversation with some delicious wine. Perfect!

Dance class

Even if you’ve got two left feet, this is a brilliant date. You’ll have an excuse to get up close and personal to see if that chemistry is fizzing and you’re guaranteed to laugh a lot.

National Trust properties

Find out which is nearest, meet at the entrance and feast your eyes on our fabulous heritage.

Farmers Market

Most towns have a farmers market within easy reach. Peruse the stalls, find out a bit about each other and have a bite to eat.

A trip to the zoo

Whilst it may not seem like an obvious choice, there is always so much going on at a zoo that there should be lots for you to talk about as you wander round.

Open-air theatre

Pack a picnic, some fizz and enjoy watching an open-air production from the comfort of your picnic blanket. You’ll also have a great excuse to sit closer if the evening temperature starts to drop a little.

Ten-pin bowling

Show off your sporting credentials, or lack of them, and have a drink together afterwards to toast the winner.

A cookery class

If you’ve established that you both enjoy good food, a cookery class can be a great way to indulge in a shared passion. You can even enjoy the fruits of your labour together afterwards.

Ceramic painting

For the artist in you, going to a ceramic painting workshop together can be great fun and you’ll often be in a small group, which you may find makes it easier to relax and enjoy yourself.

Even if your date doesn’t turn out to be the love of your life, by choosing to do an activity together can make the date more fun and memorable and at the worst you may find yourself a new friend.

Still nervous about a first date? Read our tips for conversation starters

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The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.

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