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Dating ideas
Particularly if you do not wish to spend a lot of money


By Pierre Coda

So you have made up your mind about starting to date or are already actively looking, have done all the right things, for example, joining all the leading online dating websites (a complete review of online dating websites by MYNIPPON expert is here), and have developed a short list of people that you like.  You might have even looked at the photos, used instant messaging to chat or even used a webcam to look at each other live.  Now is the time to actually meet, or in other words, go out on a date.

Photo of a couple locked in an embrace on a date. I think we should clearly separate dating into two groups:  first date (Related:  Sex on first date) with a person whom you have met online or through traditional means and ongoing dates with that special someone (Yes, I strongly encourage even couples married for years to go out on ‘dates’).

Ideas and strategy for first date

Since online dating allows you to target a larger pool of candidates, it is much better to make up your mind about exploring prospects for a long-term relationship only after at least dating once a larger group.  Yes, people these days are falling in love through email, instant messaging, and phone conversations alone, but I cannot emphasize enough the value of sizing up someone in person before you do anything more substantive.

Photo of a couple eating ice cream at Cold Stone shop on a dateAs I said in a previous article about safety practices in dating, it is important that you exercise some precaution on the first date.  So I would strongly warn you against visiting someone at home.  For the same reason, it is better not to invite someone over to your home.  What I like is a public place where you can get to chat a little bit but without the pressure of staying too long or the need to be romantic.   So stay away from dates that require lot of planning (e.g. movies, museums, public parks, etc.) or force you to stay at least for a definite period of time (e.g. meal in a fancy restaurant).  I think a café attached to a bookstore is the best alternative though if you want to make it more fun, a bar is a good alternative.  Once you finish your coffee or drink, you can simply leave if things do not go very well.  In both cases, there is rarely any pressure to leave after you finish your beverage; so it is easy to stay longer if you are having a good time. 

Ideas and strategy for subsequent dates

It is very important to use creativity and imagination when you are embarking on a new relationship or are already in a relationship.  By not just going to Olive Garden for every single date, you are showing that you care for the other person and are truly a romantic person.  Believe me, a $120 meal in an upscale restaurant might turn out to be no fun at all (your partner may not like stiff places) and a $40 trip to the water park might turn out to be a remarkable experience that might show a completely different side of your date’s personality.  Thus, at this point it is fine to spend more money and choose places and situations that would allow you to spend more time with your date.  (Related: Second date tips)

Merrill Teemant, founder of the 101 Awesome Dating Ideas website, has some excellent suggestions too.  Who would think that a round of all the yard sales during the weekend trying to find the best bargains on ceramic wares can be so much fun?  And this is another favorite of mine:  Get the fireplace going, put some comfortable pillows on the carpet, get a good bottle of wine, put some soft music, light an aromatherapy candle, and then just let the moment guide you from there on.  No matter how uptight your partner is, something like this turns on anyone.  The cost:  Less than $25.  The reward:  Passionate kisses and probably hugs on the floor

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