So, you’ve made it. Congrats. You’ve got a rocking profile that makes the opposite sex get excited in their special bits, you have an opening message that gets the blood flowing and now it’s time for you to take your online pen pal to the next step… an in person meeting.

If there’s one thing that I’ve learned about dates it’s that they’re a lot like job interviews (which explains why I’m single and unemployed). The first date is important, especially if you’re meeting for the first time. All those lofty expectations you’ve had about the person you’re about to meet are about to come crashing down. I think it’s something that people need to understand when meeting someone from online for the first time. Online personalities don’t transfer over as well as you’d think. Sometimes witty responses take a while to think of, and some people just aren’t as naturally quick witted as others… ahem, ahem.

But really, first meetings are great. There’s no more mask to hide behind and then real people begin to show up. You learn all the things that make them tick, the things that make sad, mad, and glad. The stuff that real lasting relationships are made of… if that’s what you’re looking for. But enough with the long winded preamble, let’s talk about why you’re reading this, how to go on a first date without having the person you’re meeting disappear forever.

You’re going to say more with what you look like than with what you say. So, first things first, don’t dress like a slob. Fix your hair, manage your facial hair (ladies too), and shower. Please shower. If you need any more tips then I suggest you read this.

Demetri Martin once said, “There’s a difference between peeing in the pool and peeing into the pool. Location, location, location.” Now that joke doesn’t have anything to do with anything really, I just think it’s funny. But it does lead me to my next point, date spot. Bars or coffee shops are the place to go because sitting in the dark in front of a giant screen doesn’t help you get to know the person that you’re sharing popcorn with. I try to change bars I go to pretty often because I feel like the bartender is going to learn too much about me by the people I bring. It’s like I can feel them judging me. They probably don’t remember me but when I feel like I’ve been there way too many times I start to get a little paranoid.

And now for the question that plagues everyone… who pays on the first date? And the answer is totally up to you. Personally, I’ll pay if I get along with the girl because that’s how you get a second date. It’s all about the implication.

So comment below and tell me what you think. Who pays on the first date?

And in the meantime, check out!