We aren’t psychic: there’s no absolute way to predict whether a first date will lead to a second. But if any of the following things happen on your date, the chances of seeing each other again are pretty good…
1. She doesn’t take out her cellphone once! Well. Maybe once. And maybe another time, secretly while she’s waiting in line for the bathroom, to text her friend that it’s going “really well!” But no more than that!
2. He tentatively says, “How are you holding up? Cause, I mean, I could do another drink … should we do one more round?”
3. An hour and a half into the date, you realize you’re having fun – not strained, “This date is going well so far” acceptability, but an actual good time.
4. Your coffee date takes an unexpected turn when your date realizes you’re just around the corner from their favorite record store/sticky bun shop/second hand bookshop/bar, which they insist “you have to try/see.”
5. After the date, he texts you the same night to make sure you got home okay/tell you he had a great time.
6. She touches your arm, brushes your leg, hooks her elbow through yours while walking, holds your hand, or kisses you.
7. You make references to a movie or concert you both really want to see, a museum you’ve been meaning to check out, or a bar that recently opened. (Though maybe you don’t outright say it, you’re both aware that you’re laying the groundwork for what will eventually end up being your second date activity.)
8. Your date orders coffee after dinner/dessert. (No one ever orders coffee on a bad date.)
9. If you stay on one conversation topic for a long time, it’s because you find the conversation to be genuinely interesting, and not because you’re simply relieved to have found something easy to talk about and want to get as much mileage out of it as you can before you’re forced to fill the awkward silence with another random topic.
10. He offers to walk or drive you home. Conversely, she says yes when you offer to walk or drive her home. (“Oh, no, that’s okay … I’m fine.” is not a good sign.)
11. You both take turns asking each other questions, beyond the perfunctory ,”What do you do/Where did you grow up/What do you watch on TV?” questions. The date isn’t a one-way interrogation.
12. It’s not an abrupt ending. The evening winds down at a natural, maybe even prolonged pace, NOT with a sudden excuse about “work in the morning” or “getting home to walk the dog.”
13. He’s leaning into you while you talk. She’s crossing her legs towards you. If you’re in a loud bar, you move closer to be heard instead of just talking louder.
14. When she comes back from the bathroom, you notice she’s let down her hair or reapplied makeup. (If she wasn’t interested in you or thought the date was ending soon, she probably wouldn’t bother.)
15. One of you makes a reference to the fact that it’s a good date while you’re still on the date. (“I was actually nervous about meeting you!” is not something you’d confess to someone you have no interest in seeing again.)
This piece originally appeared on How About We’s blog The Date Report.