How To End A First Date (7 Right Ways)

Last updated on June 9, 2022 by April Maccario

The dating world is full of incredible tales, both the good, the bad, and the ugly. Some of the best relationships began on the first date and conversely, first dates have left a very bitter taste in many mouths. 

Either way, the world still rotates on its axis and so we have no choice but to take chances. Having said that, let’s proceed to the entrée.

You have been asked out by this handsome, captivating guy who you were either introduced to by a friend or maybe even matched by a dating app. It’s natural for skepticism to set in as you consider if this is something you should be doing in the first place but then you muster up the courage or excitement to check him out in the face-to-face.

The date could go either way, good or bad, and you’ll want to know how to end a date and hopefully make plans for another one. If you think you’ll have a great time, and need some tips on how to end the date, sit back, and let’s go through these helpful ones together.

7 Ways To End A First Date

1. Sit through and be polite

Sit through and be polite

If the date doesn’t go as planned, there’s the chance you’d want to leave early, but you know what they say about first impressions?  You may have to keep smiling and nodding longer than you planned, just so you’re polite. Don’t try to say much so the dissatisfaction in your voice won’t be too off-putting, he might get the message when it almost seems like he’s talking to himself. 

Some people might notice the disconnect and ask about your well-being, but don’t always count on it. Some others would remain boisterous through it all, completely unaware of your lack of attention. Just try and count the minutes till it’s over.

2. Have a friend bail you

This is one of the oldest tricks in the book and my personal favorite. You are on your first date with a guy and you can’t wait for the end to come. Plus, you also don’t want to offend him by coming up with an excuse to end the date. Easy peasy, you can pre-arrange with a friend to call you at a certain time with an emergency that requires your immediate attention. 

Mind you, if you did not have any prior acting experience, you need to develop commendable acting skills. The flip side to doing this is that even if your acting skills are poor and he sees through your veneer, he really cannot do anything about it, if you say you have to leave, then that’s just that. 

3. Tow the friendship line

You don’t feel like he is the yin to your yang and you don’t want to hurt his feelings, especially because he is a nice guy. You can say something along the lines of “I think you are a great guy so I’d like us to be friends”. You don’t want to say that sounding like you are bleeping him the green lights. Be sure he hears that you don’t like him romantically. 

When parting ways with him, to further smooth any ruffled feathers he may have, comment on something nice about him. Remember to be specific so he doesn’t perceive it as cheap flattery. Also, depending on how comfortable you are with him, you could give him a brief hug or handshake. 

4. Don’t let him drop you home if you don’t feel safe

It’s alarming the number of men who believe they ought to dive in for the kill on the first date; hug after the first date, or maybe even go all the way to third base. Makes you wonder what dating school they went to, right? If he presses you for a physical exchange on the first date and you are just not ready for that or don’t let him anywhere near your house. 

Hail for a taxi or if he is driving, have him stop you over a few blocks away from your house and make sure he drives off before you turn in the direction of your apartment. Ditch him like the pro you are sure to be when you finish reading this article.

5. Hug goodbye if you enjoyed the time together

Hug goodbye if you enjoyed the time together

On the flip side, if you are genuinely intrigued by the guy and are looking forward to another date, then you definitely do not want to rush things with him, you can give him a ‘first date hug goodbye’. Body language speaks volumes, depending on how good the date was, the hug could tell if you’d want to see him another time.  

A lingering hug means both of you really connected, and he might even be thinking about you the next day. You’ll know by what he says, and if he suggests they’ll be a ‘next date.’

6. Be mindful not to self-sabotage

It is very easy to flippantly end a first date with the words “see you next time”, “it was good to meet you”, “let’s do this again”. That may be your casual way of brushing him off, but his interpretation of your words may raise his hopes. So, be mindful not to be the reason he builds expectations in his heart only to find out later you really aren’t interested in him.

Also, if you want a next date, don’t hesitate to say so, don’t wait for him to make plans for another date. It may not have been great for him, but bringing it up could be a second chance at proving to him that something special could happen between both of you.

7. Suggest a redo

You absolutely had a great time and you are sad to see the date come to an end, let him know that you enjoy his company. You may be so bold as to suggest another date, not vaguely like “we'll see around”, but definitely like “we should do this again. How does Saturday sound?”. That way he definitely knows that you enjoy his company and he is not the only one making all the moves to impress his date.


How long should first dates last?

For as long as both of you are comfortable in each other’s company. For this reason, you may want to schedule the date early in the evening so if you aren’t enjoying his company, you can call it a night with a polite excuse for why you are leaving or an explanation of the true state of things.

Should you kiss on the first date?

You both emit the vibes of attraction and are comfortable with that level of physical contact? Sure. Be sure not to misread the signs so you may even want to ask for permission to proceed with the kiss. A hug can suffice as well if you don’t trust your date so early on.

What do you say at the end of a bad date?

You no longer have to think of what to do after an awkward first date, the answer is right here. Take a breath, cut yourself some slack, and don’t overthink it. Simply go home and re-strategize. Were both of you wracked by nerves that you botched it, or is the other person just not your type? That answers it for you.

How do you end the first date if you are not interested?

The best way is to be as direct as possible, politely thank them for the time but explain that it is best not to pursue anything else. You don’t want to leave him unsure about where you stand with him because out of politeness, he could feel obliged to invite you on another date even when he isn’t really interested in himself.

Do you hug on the first date?

We all know when a person is spooky. So if you sense it, then absolutely no hugs. Limit your physical contact to the barest minimum. If, however, you enjoyed yourself and are comfortable with him, it’s great to hug, it bolsters your date’s confidence.

In Conclusion

The need to love and be loved is as instinctive as breathing, and dating is the surest way to find and make lasting relationships. As awkward as first dates are, they are your portal to a possible ‘forever,’ so don’t limit or short-change yourself. 

Remember to lavishly love yourself while you wait for ‘The One’ to show up. Spend time doing the things you love and love might just be waiting for you on the other side of the door. 

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April Maccario
I'm a huge nerd when it comes to understanding how relationships between men and women work, and what drives a certain behavior. I spend much of my time getting into the nitty-gritty and try to share my findings on this site with the hope of making life a little easier for women that are struggling in their relationships or love life.

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