Should I buy a gift for my first date?

So you’re smitten, it was love at first sight, and you worked up the courage to ask her out. You’re not sure what you’re gonna do, all you know is that you really want to impress this girl. Flowers and chocolates won’t do for this goddess. Then you think to yourself “Should I buy a gift for our first date?” Hold your horses champ! I’m all about first impressions, but this is tricky territory. I don’t advocate buying a gift on the first date. You don’t know anything about their likes and dislikes. Buying a meaningful gift would be near impossible. On a first date, buying a gift, puts you at risk of looking like you’re trying to bribe them for affection, or looking exceedingly needy and clingy.

First let’s take a look at what you should bring to your first date. If you’re still hoping to work a gift into the date, we’ll cover that as well. This article isn’t for those with established relationships, or “second” first dates if you’re getting back together with your ex. By all means in those situations, feel free to give them a gift.

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What Should I Bring, If I Don’t Bring A First Date Gift?

The most important thing to bring on a first date is, well, yourself. Dress to impress. I’m not talking interview for a new job nice, but you should definitely clean yourself up. Dress business casual (if the event merits it), get a haircut, and shave. Because “every girl’s crazy ’bout a sharp dressed man.” Probably not a bad idea to bring a light jacket too, just make sure it’s not your athletic running jacket. Never know if your date will get chilly, and you can save the day!

Be prepared to talk about yourself in depth. Feel free to bring your phone, but for goodness sake put that thing on silent so as not to interrupt your time together. Bring cash gentlemen. I know it’s old fashioned, just do it. You never know when a “cash only” opportunity will arise, and you don’t want to be stuck asking, “do you take credit?”

Along those lines, there are some things you should leave at home. Foremost on this list is any baggage. I’m not talking about your suitcase, although probably best to leave that as well. What I’m getting at is your relationship baggage. Avoid talking about your ex. Whenever possible steer the conversation toward your likes, dislikes, goals, etc. but do NOT bring up your ex.

Why A Gift On Your First Date Is A Bad Idea

Notice, I did not recommend bringing a gift. In the world of Tinder, and other dating apps of that ilk, it’s not unusual for your first in person meeting to be the first date. There’s already a ton to process, for the both of you. You will be overloaded with information when you first meet, like does your profile picture match the you in the flesh. Seeing someone waltz in with a gift to boot may send up red flags.

First, imagine what it would be like on the receiving end of a first date gift if you didn’t bring one. That’s probably how she’ll feel as well. It’s not fun feeling like you forgot something important on your first date. After all, no one wants to feel ungrateful.

So assuming you ignore this information, and you show up with a gift (and she doesn’t), what’s next? Well, at this point, she may begin to think that this gift is in some way a bribe. You’re setting the expectation, intentionally or not, that you expect to receive something at the end of the date. This could be anything from a good night kiss, a guarantee of a second date, or more. You don’t want to be the guy that tries to guilt this lovely woman, right?

Finally, giving a gift before you even know anything about your date seems like an act of desperation. It screams, please like me! Not only that, the gift will likely be shallow, because you have no point of reference of their desires. Then your date may begin to wonder if you start off every first date with a gift. “Did he get this same thing for the last girl?” Congrats, you’ve been red flagged!

How To Work In A Gift On Your First Date

So you’re set on giving this girl a gift. That’s fine, I’m not against giving your date a gift, but it has to seem impromptu, even if you planned it from the start. If you haven’t taken a look at my date night ideas post, I highly recommend using this to generate first date ideas.

Let’s take the carnival idea, and see how we can work out a gift. Remember in the first article I said to bring cash. Well, take out some dollars and pick out a carnival game to play. Ideally, it will be something she enjoys. But if she defaults to you, or is hesitant to display her carny game skills on a first date, all the better. Now you can pick something you’re confident you can excel at, save yourself some money, and win that teddy bear or other trinket. Guess who gets that? I know this example is cliche, so I’ll give you one more.

Rather than show up with a bouquet of flowers at the onset of the date, how about going for a scenic walk after dinner. If you’re in a metropolitan area, you may be lucky enough to find a vendor who is selling flowers or some other local trinket. Or you could make it happen if you know the area well enough. Now you can pick up a flower, or whatever, and give it as a memento of your first date together. Now there’s some kind of meaning attached to the gift.

Better yet, while you’re out on your scenic walk, you can pick some flowers (season permitting) and give them to her. It doesn’t need to be a whole bouquet of roses to make a profound statement. The fact that you picked a beautiful flower to give her speaks volumes about how you feel. Even seasoned couples can appreciate this kind of gesture.

Final Thoughts

I’m not saying I am against bringing a flower to kick off the date if you really are a hopeless romantic. However, I would not suggest any overly romantic gestures that may seem insincere, like a store bought gift on your first date. Instead, plan a quality date night (here’s some of my ideas), and if the opportunity presents itself, then get a gift that will carry some meaning. Don’t bring a gift that can be misconstrued, and leave the recipient feeling that they in any way “owe” you something.

If you found this content helpful, check out some of the other articles in the gift guide section. You could also signup with the pack to receive special promotional codes, and fresh gift ideas delivered to your inbox.

This site (TheGiftasaurus.com) is owned and operated by Graphite Designs Unltd. LLC Graphite Designs Unltd. LLC is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Graphite Designs Unltd. LLC also participates in affiliate programs with Clickbank, CJ, and other sites. Graphite Designs Unltd. LLC is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies.

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