There is a standard recipe for most dates when you meet someone online. First, you get a phone number. Second, you make the call. Third, you set up a casual first date. While some of us tend to get creative with our first date plans, most of us opt for something easier like meeting for drinks which is a smart and effective way to meet someone new for the first time. The great thing about meeting for drinks is that it won’t cost you much, it allows you to relax when you may otherwise feel nervous, and it typically doesn’t come with much implied pressure. With that said, you still need to be careful when it comes to choosing the right location for this date idea.

1. Keep It Cool

Choosing an over-the-top bar does not necessarily translate to a great location. Yes, it is nice, and preferable to a hole-in-the-wall bar, but it’s not important. In fact, choosing a location that is too fancy may have the reverse effect and lower your value in the eyes of your date. Nothing screams desperate and lonely like trying too hard!

2. Look to the Layout

One of the most important aspects of choosing a bar or lounge is finding the right set up and seating arrangements. An ideal set up involves a place in which you can sit fairly close to your partner as the night moves on. Anywhere with small couches, or intimately close tables will suffice. You should be less than an arm’s length away from your date at all times.

Physical progression (even something subtle like you’re knees rubbing together) assures that you stay out of the friend zone with your date. One of the biggest mistakes many daters make when going out on a date is that they laugh, have a good time, and enjoy each other’s company, but when it comes to touching their dates in small ways throughout the night, nothing happens.  Being slightly physical is important. At some point, your date needs to see you as more than just a friend. These actions are essential to building up attraction, especially if you want a first kiss at the end of the night!

3. Set the Mood

Aside from staying out of the friend zone by choosing a place with the right seating arrangement, you should also make sure that the atmosphere serves your first date purposes. An ideal atmosphere will offer somewhat dim lighting and the right noise level. Too quiet and the date will feel awkward. You don’t want to feel like everyone around you can hear every word you say. Too loud though and you will be screaming into your date’s ear the whole night.

Try to find the perfect balance of a fun atmosphere with romantic lighting and a hint of background noise. Remember, location can make or break a date. So that next time you are looking to find that perfect first date drink spot, think about these three tips first!

Joshua Pompey is the author of three online dating books for men, and runs a profile writing service. For more information, click online dating advice or online dating tips!
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