First date questions you have to ask


Unfortunately, questions are easy to get wrong. The most painfully awkward situations occur when people reel off a series of questions that only really have ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answers. For example, it’s easy to see that ‘do you like this restaurant?’, ‘did you get wet in the rain?’, or worst of all, ‘was the traffic bad?’ aren’t going anywhere.

So what do we ask? The best questions are those that allow the other person to reveal their interests and values, without the asker appearing to be too prying. If it’s an opinion that you’re after, offering your own before asking the question can save embarrassing conflicts.

Remember that asking a question is just the beginning – you’ll need to listen to the answer and then acknowledge its content in your own response.

So, armed with this knowledge, here are some of our favourite questions for extracting those precious nuggets of personal information.

1. How was your day?

Simple? Yes. Effective? You betcha. Your date’s answer to this seemingly innocuous question will speak volumes about their outlook on life. For example, a reply involving a stream of obscenities is bad; as is a lengthy list of things that are ‘annoying’. If your date pulls out some positivity, this is good – even if the things they describe aren’t that interesting.

2. What’s your favourite sort of holiday?

This is a great one for discovering not only whether they like to do the same things as you in their spare time, but also if you are compatible on big picture values too. Their answers will reveal how adventurous they are (hiking in Nepal vs. Hawaii beach holiday), whether they know how to – or want to – relax, how they prioritise spending their money (economy vs. business class flights), and their views on the world and global issues. It can easily generate an entire evening’s worth of conversation.

3. Do you like your job?

This is much better than simply asking what someone does for a living. It reveals whether the person is career-minded, or sees work as a necessary evil. It will also unveil their plans for the future.

4. What would you take with you to a desert island?

This fun question is a good indicator of your date’s priorities, as well as a measure of their spontaneity. At the very worst, it is a good way of starting a new conversational thread.

5. What’s the scariest thing you’ve ever done?

Adrenaline junkies will relish this question, while more thoughtful sorts might describe a moment of personal revelation. Whatever the response, it’ll provide valuable intelligence about your date’s fears.

6. Are you close with your family?

Not one for the start of the night, but essential nonetheless. Ideally this question should follow on from some other family-related topic. Good family relations make it more likely that your date is emotionally balanced and secure. While you’re in the conversational area, it’s also worth finding out whether your date has a supportive friendship group. You know what they say; you are the company you keep.

What are some of your favourite first-date questions? Tell us in the comments below!

This article originally appeared on eHarmony Dating Advice.

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