A Guide to Getting a Gift for a New Date

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You’ve gone out with your date twice, and things are at an awkward stage. Both of you are just beginning to know each other, and you’re not sure if things are going well. You’ve got to play it cool, yet show that you have interest, while not appear over-zealous. And to add to that, Christmas is around the corner. Should you get a gift? What does it signal?

We’ve heard many cases of such dilemmas before. Hence we decided to help you along this Christmas.

The short answer is yes, getting a gift may be a good idea, but not before we remind you of some dos and don’ts.

  1. The list below is a suggestion, so feel free to deviate. Just follow the principles behind how we select the gifts.
  2. It helps to think ahead. Observe the person’s preferences and habits can help you make a more personalised choice.
  3. Do get your date something affordable. You don’t want to scare your date nor leave a bad impression with a gift that is way too expensive or budget. What counts as affordable is really subjective, so do exercise your judgement.
  4. Don’t get gift cards or vouchers. It doesn’t come across as sincere, and it puts a price tag on what you perceive the stage of the relationship to be, which might not be in line with what the other party thinks.
  5. Avoid inviting your date to your place. While things may have the potential of escalating the way you want it to, more often than not, it escalates the premature relationship towards the exit.
  6. You may think that a good workaround to point 5 is to organise a Christmas party and invite friends along. You might be inviting trouble! Your friends might end up interrogating you and your date, which adds additional stress that no one needs this Christmas season.
  7. Be ready that your date might get you something more substantial. Think about how you are going to react when that happens.
  8. In doubt, ask your friends or our friendly Relationship Managers. They should be able to give you some good advice.

Hand-written Cards

This is probably the most no-frills gift but shows tons of sincerity. In the age of printed cards, you’re showing that you bother to take some effort without coming across as trying too hard. But do note that if things are going quite well, a simple card is not going to cut it.

You can try talking about how you feel so far, show some appreciation or insert a thoughtful quote. Keep it short and sharp. Nothing about the future, please.

Exquisite Snacks or Beverage

This is another straight-forward gift option, but go for those that are just a little fancier (just a little!). So don’t buy a Cadbury chocolate bar or a box of limited edition 16-piece chocolate box at $72. You can consider fine tea or coffee, or even wine and spirits. Just pay more attention during your next date for some inspiration.

Practical Essentials

You’re going to score big if you nail this one. Listen carefully when your date is speaking and make an educated guess about what they’ll need. Otherwise, ask tactfully and casually. Get something small and cheap; you’re just trying to send the message that you’re paying attention. This makes your decision-making on the design and colour simpler too since it probably wouldn’t matter much if you get it wrong. Just laugh it off and take it as a chance to know your date deeper.
Word of caution: If you aren’t sure exactly what to get, try doing something else. We’ve listed four other ways to make an impression anyway.

Go on a Dinner Date

If your radar isn’t picking up any gift signals, turn to buying a meal. If the dinner venue is picked well, it will work like a charm. Point to note: do pick somewhere that’s not your everyday restaurant, but nothing too upscale. Think places like Fynn’s or Open Farm Community: slightly casual, but enough to make an impression. Just make sure you’re not on your phone during the meal.

This is more applicable to the guys, but if you’re a lady and you’d want to buy a meal, do note that you might risk coming on too strongly. There’s still one more thing that you can do.

Organise a Picnic Date

Ladies, the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. But inviting him to your place for dinner after just 2 to 3 dates might be sending the wrong signals. Besides, there’s no telling if he’s truly a gentleman, so keep yourself safe while playing the cooking card by planning a picnic. The simple act of cooking shows effort and interest. Even if you decide to just plan a picnic without cooking, you’re still making an impression without overdoing things.

Remember, don’t try too hard to impress! Just go with the flow and do something that takes a little more effort than the previous date, and have fun!