17 Casual First Date Ideas - Cool Dating Advice

17 Casual First Date Ideas

They always say first impressions matter right? Of course, they do! Bad first impressions can leave a sour taste in the mouth of everyone involved, especially when it comes to the dating scene.  Don’t overdo it and make a great impression with these 17 easy first date ideas!

Coffee date

Sure, it’s a little cliche. But everyone’s go to is a coffee date for a reason; it works. A coffee date is awesome for a couple reasons: one, it’s cheap and two, it’s super casual. Going to get coffee is a super laid back option and promotes conversation, without the formal pressure of a dinner. The great thing about how cheap it is you can pay for the others coffee and not seem too over anxious because, well, it’s just coffee. So next time you bump into a cute stranger, ask them to go for coffee! The welcoming environment of a cafe is sure to create positive vibes.

A walk in the park

Beautiful day outside? Take advantage of it! A first date in the park or going on a nature walk provides beautiful scenery. You can avoid the awkwardness of having to cover a bill because it is free, which can be a hassle on first dates if that is something you are worried about. This type of date will also show how you are all about getting to know someone, without all the bells and whistles of an extravagant date (although these can be nice down the line). You’re sure to make the right impression with this one.

Ice cream date

Similar to a coffee date, just a touch more whimsical. This works especially great if its summer time, but hey, even if it’s not, there’s ways around it. Just like coffee, ice cream is cheap, so you won’t seem like a try-hard if you offer to buy. In the summer an ice cream cone in the evening at your local ice cream shop is both romantic and casual. The two of you can enjoy each other’s company, get to know one another, and enjoy the warm weather. If it’s not so warm out buy some ice cream at the store and invite them over to hang out and talk. Let’s be honest, there’s never a wrong time for ice cream!

Go with the flow date


Now this one is super, super casual. Basically just do whatever sounds fun to you two. Maybe it’s going to see a movie, maybe it’s going to an art or history museum, or maybe it’s just driving around and getting to know each other. The whole point of a first date is to see if there will be a second. What better way to do this than by just feeling the night out as it goes? This date will show that you are laid back and willing to roll with the punches. Try to have at least some structure to the night, however, so it does not seem like you just didn’t care enough to plan anything. You don’t want to seem too relaxed.


This is the perfect date for those who love to do memorable things and have memorable experiences. Most apple orchards or greenhouses are open year-round and just rotate their attractions according to the season. The great thing about a date like this is that it is relatively cheap, sometimes even free, but you won’t seem like a cheapskate for taking them here. Apple picking provides a great experience and warm memories, as well as a chance to get to know someone. If you take your date here, they are sure to never forget it, and you.

Sporting event date

If you know that your date is interested in sports then this is a good one. A sporting event does not have to be too expensive, but can still be entertaining. The conversation should flow here, as well as provide an opportunity to learn about one another. Sporting events are usually super fun, but still pretty easygoing. Maybe the team is something you two can bond over, leading to new connections. A sporting event like a baseball, football, or basketball game leaves the door open wide open for future dates.

Mini-Golf date

Again, kind of cliche. Still really, really fun though. Mini golf is also pretty cheap so it won’t be too much or seem too crazy. This date allows for the two of you to get a little competition going, which is always fun. While playing the mini golf, it’ll be easy to talk and joke around. Bonus points for this one because you don’t have to have any idea how to golf in order to enjoy this one. It’s all about your date, which should be the focus.

Pizza date

Think of this one as a stepping stone to the fancier dinner date. Everyone loves pizza and it’s accessible almost anywhere. Pizza is an inexpensive meal in a casual setting that will encourage the two of you to talk. Unlike a very formal, expensive dinner, the laid-back tone of the pizza parlor will allow for easy flow and it won’t feel super forced. You could even get creative with the pizza toppings to test one another. It’s all about what you make it when it comes to a date like this, and it’s pretty hard to mess up.

The main idea behind a great 1st date is to do something that promotes conversation. This all ties back to the idea of first impressions. You want to be remembered in a positive way and you want your date to come back (probably). Stray from movie dates at first, because they tend to stifle conversation. Also, try to avoid super fancy dinners at first, they can come off as too formal and intimidating sometimes. The best casual first date advice is to relax and choose an activity that promotes this idea, while also keeping in mind the likes and interests of your date if you know some.

Local fair

I used to love going to the local fair when I was a kid. This may be a perfect place to take someone on a first date. I would make sure who you are dating likes fairs or would be fine with it on the first date. You can maybe go to an art fair or craft fair which would be fun. Taking someone to the old county fair where they show animals and have rides would need their approval before setting that up. You just have to know a little bit about what your date likes before taking them to a fair. Make sure you ask questions to get a sense of what they like to do or where they like to go.

Town street gatherings

The town I live in has 4th Fridays every month through the summer. The downtown shops all stay open until late and the streets are blocked off for everyone to walk around the different vendors to shop and eat. There are also tents with different organizations set up for different clubs and groups. The whole community loves to get together so take your date to join in the fun.

Comedy shows

I know people love to laugh so dates go well when you can get the other person to laugh. Maybe you are not funny but a comedian at the comedy show is funny. Take your date there to laugh and talk in between each comic routine. Try to pick one of the shows that are not to bad with language especially if your date does not care for that type of comedy. Once again you have to know at least a little bit about your date before you go out.


Everyone can bowl even if you are not athletic. This is a great activity to do with a first date. You can have a little competition while talking to each other enjoying a game of bowling. The bowling places these days have a beer, good food, and great music to listen to while you bowl. Even if you are both bad bowlers it will still be a fun date and give you the opportunity to talk to each other.

Bike ride

Where I live we have a ton of bike trails. You need to see if they like bike riding and if so then set up a date to ride bikes. You get the exercise you need plus time to talk to each other while riding. If the date is not into outdoor activities or sweating then maybe pick something less sweaty.

Visit a zoo


The zoo is a great place to walk and talk. You get to see some rare and exotic animals while you get to know each other. This may be a long first date because walking a big zoo takes awhile. You never know unless you ask if this would be something they are interested in doing.


The bookstore you can learn a ton about someone based on the books they look at in the store. I took my wife to the book loft on a date we had and we had the best time ever looking at books. The book loft has like 50 rooms where you can check out all the different genres. We laughed so hard and really started to see what each other liked or did not like based on books we viewed. Then we went and got something to eat to cap off a fun night.

Rent paddle board, kayak or canoe

If it is the summer and you live near a lake, river or waterway then climb in and start paddling. This may be fun if you know your date likes water but make sure you know before scheduling this one. How fun just paddling a paddle board or kayak on a lake enjoying the nice weather.

Flea market

Take your date to a flea market and see what they like or what taste they have. These markets can be fun just looking for odd items that you can buy. This kind of date will also give you a glimpse into what taste your date has for items. What do they prefer and what type of things do not interest them.

First dates

The first date is always the tricky one so you may go super conservative. These casual creative dates just may be the thing that separates you from everyone else. Be bold when trying to connect with someone you only have one chance to make a good impression. If you found them online then their profile should give you great information on what they like to do. This is a perfect set up for one of these casual dates listed in this article. You may need tips on questions you can ask so check out our post the Top 36 funny first date questions. These questions can be good conversation starters and with questions, you can get to know your date.


There are so many things you can do and places you can go when on a first date. You want to make it casual and easy for you to talk to your date. Some of the suggestions are more casual than others but everyone’s casual is different. Find out what the date likes before setting up a date. Then you just make sure it is something they like to do. Ask them out then set it up and do it.

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