Okay now that I am in my thirties I am wondering whether I should start to go on real dates. I never did this before. In California its pretty laid back. When I meet girls usually I'll meet for coffee and then meet them later at the bar after I get their number.
Once at the bar/club I never pay for their drinks or... maybe I'll pay for a round just for fun. Then if I'm gonna hook up with them it happens.
I never ask chicks out on formal dates to dinner because I feel its awkward (unless I already know them). Now that I am old should I start doing this? Is this what women really want? Women I know use "dates" to get free dinners and we laugh about it. These same girls are sometimes meeting me an hour or two later.
On the other hand, there is something to be said for a "planned evening" which shows that you are cool and in control as a man, even if its dinner at Hot Dog on a Stick and then a walk on the pier.
If I don't know her, then I can't possibly know if she is the kind of person I want to "date" per se...therefore meeting some place casual for drinks seems the most appropriate and thing to do. It is less stressful and awkward for both of us (than say, a dinner date)...and you have more options, whether things are going well or not. I tend to sort for options, but in a way it is also a sort of test. If she likes me, it shouldn't matter where we go. If she demands something complex or expensive, then she's not the kind of person I want to spend my time or money on anyway. I'm not cheap by any means, but I can't tolerate shallow values either.
I just had this conversation via PM with another Yelper who was asking advice on how to ask a girl on a date. I told him that I always thought girls liked the casual, informal approach. As in, "hey, we should hang out" or "we should go grab a a beer", rather than an awkward, nervous proposition. If you're nervous and make it feel "date-like", I think it sets the tone of what the date will be like and the expectations he may have. I personally, don't even like the term "date" when hanging out with a guy.
Just make sure if it's casual you pay. It's not the money, it's the signal that "yes, we are on a date." If she refuses outright then you know that you're not on a date. If she says, "okay but let me get the next round" you most likely are. I hate the ambiguity of the 21st century. I want to go back to the days of courting. Way easier.
Do you want to go on real dates? If hanging out with chicks and hooking up later works than why are you even asking this question. What do you think you're going to accomplish by going on a formal date. If you want to start a relationship with a woman you hook up than do it. Formal dating is just going to cost you more money and will probably send out the wrong message.
Even if you are just meeting for coffee, have a plan. Text some near-by movie times to yourself, pick a meeting spot where you could walk around or go to a museum, play tetherball, whatever. Nothing's lamer than having a great time at coffee and then stuttering over what to do next.
Just make sure if it's casual you pay. It's not the money, it's the signal that "yes, we are on a date." If she refuses outright then you know that you're not on a date. If she says, "okay but let me get the next round" you most likely are.
Mmm...sometimes I say that I'll get the next round even before I even assume it's a date, so I don't think if a girl necessarily says that, it's officially a "date." I may not even talk to the guy after that and would never have recalled that "outing" a "date." It's a fine line.
But yea...in response to the thread...meeting for something informal is probably better...