Dating Online? This is When You Should Meet Up.

The internet has completely changed the dating landscape. From Match.com in 1995, we now have smart online dating apps that help you meet your prospective romantic partner.

Online dating is now more widely accepted and it has become the second most popular way to meet someone, according to a University of Rochester study. In an October 2018 report, Global Web Index also says online dating is one of the most popular activities online, with 41 percent of online singles using online dating apps or sites within the past month.

But meeting and getting to know a person virtually are just the first step to opening doors to a potential relationship. The next crucial step is to actually meet in person. The question is, when is the right time to meet face-to-face?

A study published in the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication has the answer: it should be after 17 to 23 days of meeting each other online.

Why? Because meeting after that period increases your risk of getting disappointed. The longer you wait, the more you or the other person may have inaccurate representations of yourselves and false expectations. This is also why most first dates are disappointing.

A study on deception in online dating as cited by Psychology Today suggests that “greater communication and disclosure” lower risk of first date dissatisfaction.

First Offline Date Ideas

Here are some few first date ideas after meeting someone online:

1. Have a morning coffee date.
2. Visit an art gallery or museum.
3. Go to a local fair.
4. Do volunteer work together.
5. Have a picnic in a park.
6. Attend a workshop or class together.

The first date should encourage more interaction and conversation. This makes movie and dinner a bad choice for your first face-to-face meeting. Both of you need to loosen up. It should be casual and quick enough to avoid the pressure of prolonging awkward conversations.