10 Unique Ideas for a First Date

A Man and a Woman Playing Basketball

“What are good ideas for a first date?” you might ask.

If you have a date coming up with someone new and you want to stand out (and hopefully secure a second date), you will need to plan a first date that is unique, one that your date will remember for years to come! This means that the classic date to the coffee shop around the corner or the lunch out at a nice restaurant is not going to cut it.

Keep in mind that these are suggestions for good first-date ideas. They are not going to work the same way for every single person. This is definitely not a one-size-fits-all matter. What we have done is put together some suggestions that apply to certain types of people. Ultimately, it will be up to you to determine the best course of action and develop a winning strategy for a successful first date!

You will have to get creative. If it’s possible, you need to do good research on your date partner in preparation for your time together (unless, of course, you already know them). You need to find out what they like, how they spend their time, or what they value, and then tailor a unique experience around that!

Here are 10 of the best first-date ideas for singles in 2022:

#1: Take a Little Road Trip

This can be a great way to spend a first date, especially if your date likes the thrill of the open road or discovering new places out of town! And the keyword for this unique first date idea is “little.” You do not want to plan anything like a cross-country trek or even a trip that takes several hours. You will want to shoot for something that is under an hour away.

Maybe your date is into beer, and there is a cool brewery the next county over that you want to check out. Hop in the car and go grab some brews! If your date likes being on the water and you are under an hour from the beach, make a day of it and head for the nearest ocean or lake! They always say, “getting there is half the fun,” and this can apply easily to your first date!

#2: Visit an Animal Shelter

This is a unique first date idea that will work to significant effect if your date is an animal lover! And we guarantee the experience will be better if the two of you are on the same page when it comes to like cats or dogs! Either way, it is still a fantastic opportunity to bond with the animals you love. Plus, you can show your date the more tender side of your personality.

This is a great first date idea for those who get nervous around new people or those who struggle in conversation.

Cats tend to do a lot of cute and comical things, giving you and your date plenty to talk and laugh about. And who doesn’t love getting loved on by a good-looking dog? These animals will provide you and your date with hours of entertainment and bonding time!

#3: Do a Progressive Meal

Here is a great first date idea for all the food lovers out there. Plan on taking your date out for a nice lunch or dinner but put a little twist on things by breaking up the date between a few locations. Your first stop is where you will get your appetizer or starter. Then move on to a second location for the main course. Shift to the third venue for a delicious dessert!

With this first date, we do not recommend doing it if your date has a limited amount of time to spend with you. However, this is a unique first-date idea that should have a general appeal to most people. The change of scenery is going to keep the date exciting and fresh. Your date is going to be on the edge of their seat trying to guess what is coming next! It also gives you a chance to scope out some new restaurants or eateries or visit some old stand-bys.

#4: Play Sports Together

This first date idea will work out the best if your date is into sports and playing sports, but this is one that has some general appeal as well! The key here is choosing a game or activity that can be played by two people or where the number of people participating is irrelevant. This is if you want to spend one-on-one time with your date. You can always get a group of friends together for some team sports if your date is into that idea!

There are endless opportunities when it comes to playing sports on the first date.

  • If your date likes to golf, take them out to a driving range or even 18 holes out on the green.
  • Play a one-on-one game of basketball to show off your agility and speed.
  • Play a round of tennis.
  • Your date might enjoy running, suggest that the two go for a run or sign up together for a short marathon.

Simply find out what your date enjoys, and then plan on a time to go head-to-head against one another! 

#5: Do a Puzzle or Play a Board Game

If you feel more comfortable going the whole date-at-the-coffee-shop route, then, by all means, take this course of action. But we suggest you put a little twist on things to make it more interesting for your date! Instead of simply talking with your date over a coffee and avocado toast, you can make things a bit more interactive by doing a puzzle together or playing games.

Man and Woman Doing a Crossword Puzzle
Doing a Jigsaw Puzzle
Playing a Board Game on a Date

For a date that takes place over several hours, you might want to try your hand at a large jigsaw puzzle. We are talking about one of those puzzles that are 500 to 1,000 pieces! If your date likes doing puzzles and you cannot finish them on the first date, this can be a great opportunity to secure a second date! If you are up for a real challenge, you could even give a complicated crossword puzzle a shot on the first date. This can give you a chance to show off some of your smarts!

#6: Trivia Night

Perhaps you are comfortable with the idea of your first date being over drinks at a local bar or tavern. But just like our suggestion about doing a puzzle or crossword at a local coffee shop, we are going to suggest you add a twist to this bar date scenario. If the bar or tavern has a trivia night, plan on going out that evening!

You could do this with a group of friends or, if it is just the two of you, you can team up with other people at the bar.

Here is another chance for you to show off some of your smarts and to show the more competitive side of your personality to your date! You can also see how your date works within a team and how they go about solving problems and finding answers. Plus, it is great if you can bring home the win and get a lower price on your drinks and food!

#7: Go to an Escape Room

Escape rooms have become more and more popular in recent years! You can show off your deductive reasoning and detective skills to your date and be the hero in the end who unlocks that front door! This is a good first date idea for those who like mysteries, solving puzzles, and are up for a little thrill and adventure.

Here is where you can work together with your date and see how you function as a team. And let’s not forget the fact that you and your date are a captive audience. You might even spend more time with them than you originally anticipated. If you really like them a lot, you might even want to buy yourself some extra time and stall a little bit before turning that lock over with the key!

#8: Volunteer Together

This is definitely not what most people have in mind when it comes to the first date, but this is a prime opportunity for you to show off your philanthropic side, show your date that there is a side of you that wants to give back and serve the community. Selflessness and giving are two things that really matter to a lot of people, and volunteering on your first date can make a memorable impression on your date partner.

This is an excellent first date idea if your date is someone who likes giving back and serving.

You can always help out at the local homeless shelter or soup kitchen. You could check out things like local clothing or food drives that service unprivileged community members. You and your date could even do yardwork for a widow or a single parent in your neighborhood. You could clean up litter in the local park. There are a lot of possibilities here for a great first date that will leave a lasting impression!

#9: Go Thrift Shopping

We recommend this kind of first date for people who are interested in older, unique clothing and antiques or for people who simply love finding a deal! It can be fun looking for hidden gems at a thrift store! You and your date can go on the hunt together and bond during the course of the search. Thrift stores can be a treasure trove of random, ironic pieces which are perfect fodder for developing an inside joke with your date or creating a lasting memory.

Thrift shopping is an excellent idea for a first date if you are concerned about your budget or if you are limited on where you can travel. We wouldn’t really recommend this first date idea for those who enjoy the finer things in life. This is definitely the perfect first date for college students who are short on cash and lovers of vintage clothing or timeworn furniture. 

#10: Take a Free Class

There are a lot of classes and educational courses out there that you can take for free the first time before you have to pay any money. This is a way for whoever is instructing the class to get people interested in signing up for a course. Take advantage of this opportunity and make a free class the venue for your first date! This is a unique first date idea for those who like to learn new things as well as those who don’t have the biggest budget.

Young Black Man and Woman Having Fun Thrift Shopping
  • You can take your date to a cooking class, and the two of you can make tasty treats together.
  • You could try out a free yoga course and see who is more flexible!

There are all sorts of courses out there but just make sure that it is something you and your date will enjoy. Don’t just pick the course topic from out of a hat! Make sure it is something you will both like and something that will create some lasting memories!

Wrap Up

The moral of the story when it comes to great first date ideas is to do some good research into what your date partner likes and values. Once you have figured this out, it becomes much easier to develop ideas for the first date. Make sure you do something that both of you enjoy, but ultimately, make sure it is something that makes them feel comfortable, allows them to be in good spirits, and gets them engaged with you!

As we mentioned earlier, these good ideas for a first date will not work for every person every time! They are simply suggestions based on different personality types. Be careful as you tailor your strategy for that first day. Make it one that they remember for a lifetime!