Online Dating from A to Z: Coupling Over Coffee

Welcome to the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge. This month I’ll be working my way through the alphabet, one day at a time, on the subject of Online Dating. If you’ve never visited my blog before, I’m happy you’re here! Be sure to check out my previous A to Z Challenge posts and the books that were inspired by them for more alphabetical fun.

C is for Coupling Over Coffee.

As mentioned in my previous post, the best way to turn an online match into a real relationship is to start with a low-pressure Coffee Date.

In case you’re not familiar with the concept, the idea is simple: meet your potential date in a casual, fun environment for the very first meeting. Why? Because going out on a full-fledged date, like dinner and a movie, is time-consuming and expensive (not to mention super high-pressure!), and if the person you’re with turns out to be a dud, it’s far easier to extract yourself from a coffee date than a several-hours-long “real” date.

The beauty of the coffee date is that it is intentionally kept short. Half an hour, max, is a decent amount of time to meet up with someone and see if you have any spark of connection. You can plan a coffee date during the day, where you can get a better first impression than in a dimly-lit bar, and it’s easy to see whether your date has good manners (tipping and treating the barista or server well, for example) as well as an opportunity to measure their conversational skills.

While some folks fear that coffee may put them in the “friend zone,” I would argue that the best way to start any relationship is as casually as possible. When there is pressure on either party to perform typical “date night” rituals, such as paying someone else’s way or feeling as if you “owe” the other party for doing so, things can get awkward. With the coffee date, if both parties have fun, a second date is easily set up or requested on the spot. If not, it’s easy to part ways without feeling as if either of you has been embarrassed or used.

Does a coffee date have to involve coffee? What if you prefer tea? Juice? Smoothies? Ice cream? Or an alcoholic beverage? Go for it! My concept of the coffee date is fluid, although I generally think that there’s less pressure involved if both parties are consuming non-alcoholic beverages, and if you generally substitute low-cost snacks or beverages in place of coffee. But, again, this all depends on what you’re really looking for from a date, and it’s best to be honest with your would-be partner-in-crime.

The most important part of the coffee date? HAVE FUN! Remember: it’s not a job interview, it’s a date! Ask interesting questions about your date, or ask them whether they like horror movies and see what they say. Who knows? It might give you some wild ideas for your second date…

Check back tomorrow to learn more about Do’s, Don’ts and Dealbreakers!

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  • Debs

    I know this type of date is ideal for weeding out those who tell tales about their age & post mis-leading (or no) photos. I always found them pretty easy to spot once I’d a little practice – but then I was always very direct when dating. Personally, I’ve never had a coffee date that went anywhere. For me, there has to be a mental connection. If that was present, I genuinely wasn’t concerned with how they looked. If someone couldn’t be bothered to get to know me (& vice-versa), when they swooped (for inevitably they did), I felt akin to some sort of titbit to a bird of prey. Not a good feeling. Luckily, I’ve been with my bloke for 4+ years now, so don’t have to suffer this particular form of torture any more. But then I accept I’m not your typical dater :)

    A-Zing this year at:
    Normally found at:

  • Jayden R. Vincente

    Coffee dates are a great way to meet people! (Or tea!) Diners are a nice place to go, but Panera is my favorite place. You order, no table service so dates can linger if you want to, and you can refill your own beverages. You just don’t get the sense of how someone is treating the waitstaff as much.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Jayden R. Vincente
    Erotic Fiction Writer

  • Melissa Sugar

    Wow, I’m so out of touch. I’ve never been on a coffee date. I’ve never participated in on-line dating. I’m getting up there in age. I hope life isn’t about to pass me by. I’ve never really dated now that I think about it. I’ve always known right away whether I was into someone or not and then I was more of a one girl/one/guy type of relationship person. I never liked dating around or playing the field or whatever people call it. I can usually tell if there’s chemistry or not and if there is, I don’t want to be sharing it with anyone else. I suppose that’s just not how things work anymore. My kids keep trying to get me to sign up on one of the dating apps, but I’m feeling more and more awkward about it. I’ll reserve my opinion until after I read all your post during the challenge.
    Melissa @Sugar Crime Scene

  • NameNameRed

    Although I have always challenged the concept of dinner and a movie being a “real date”. Movies are possibly the least social setting ever invented! Sitting in the dark for 2 hours without getting to know someone? Only suitable for a date after you are already in a relationship. (imho)