Social Question

Ranimi23's avatar

What is better at first date: to sit at a table facing one another or sit next to each other?

Asked by Ranimi23 (1867 points ) May 1st, 2010

Well, if we are sitting on the bar so there is no choice, sitting side by side, a chair by chair. But if there is a small square table, then here too the choice is to sit facing one another. But there are restaurants that have comfortable armchairs and can sit next to each other. What is most preferable and why?

In my opinion, sitting side by side is better for status of closeness and not distance. Facing one another is sometimes like a job interview but may be better for getting to know the person on the other side of the table, giving him a space.

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26 Answers

jaytkay's avatar

Side-by-side is weird for a first date

MRSHINYSHOES's avatar

Personally, I would prefer to sit with my date next to each other. Physically you are closer to one another, there is more “warmth” because of the closeness, and there’s more subtlety. I like subtlety, not “in your face”. And sitting side by side you can communicate better, like whispering into each other’s ears. It’s closeness without being “untoward” with each other.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Have you talked face to face before? If yes or if you’ve talked a whole lot online and then meet face to face and she’s all smiling and being physically close the sit side by side. If it’s a blind date or first time face to face and you’ve not talked much elsewhere then across unless she makes a move to be by you.

plethora's avatar

Physical positioning is very important for any kind of conversation. If you have a square four top, the sitting next to each other, corner to corner, is definitely best. Across from each other would signal a desire for distance rather than intimacy.

A booth is difficult, unless it is small. If small, the back give a sense of some privacy and can signal a desire for intimacy. In a big booth, you have the choice of distance (across from each other) or too much closeness (on same side). Avoid big booths.

At all costs, avoid a round table. A round table for two people is AWKWARD and destroys any sense of intimacy.

JLeslie's avatar

I think that depends a lot on what country you live in. Americans almost never sit next to each other at a table (this is assuming it is a 4 person rectangualr booth style table, two seats on each side) they typicaly sit facing each other. At a four person square table, Americans sit usually at a corner of the table, not opposite each other. Outside of America I think this varies.

primigravida's avatar

Normally, I’d say across from each other, but it depends on the place and the seating arrangements. If you’re at a table, or booth, across. If it’s a nice restaurant that’s fairly quiet, you should still be able to have decent conversation and hear each other. However if you’re in a bar, or coffee shop where the seating might be a bit more casual, side by side is good so you can actually hear each other. BUT, if it’s the first date, you might be a little apprehensive about that, so I’d recommend dinner or something first, and if it’s going well, get a drink or some coffee as a night cap, so you can talk more intimately.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

I think facing each other. A first date is meant to rely heavily on conversation, and it is a lot easier if you are naturally looking at the other person. It also avoids any awkward misunderstandings about how physical you should be on the first date for most of the time.

MagsRags's avatar

On a first date I’d want to sit across or as @JLeslie mentioned, on a corner. I’m a visual person and I’d like to be able to see the other person’s face and body language as we talk. I wouldn’t be comfortable with whispering into each other’s ear on a first date as @MRSHINYSHOES mentioned, not during the initial part of the date anyway. If things are going great, then move on to a cozier setting.

thriftymaid's avatar

Sit across from each other or at a right angle. To me, it’s easier to talk sitting across the table from each other. After you’ve been dating a while, sit where she tells you to. :)

toomuchcoffee911's avatar

Side by side. You can focus more on personality. If you’re staring at your date, you may pick up make-or-break physical imperfections. That way, if you like his personality, you won’t mind the physical imperfections, you know?

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

I would say face-to-face

wundayatta's avatar

This is too much. I’m going to let the hostess decide.

Gemini's avatar

If it were my first date I would prefer to be across the table. If it goes well there will be plenty of time for more intimacy later. At the beginning I would like to face the person I’m trying to get to know….easier to talk and you can read them easier when you can look into their eyes.

marinelife's avatar

I prefer sitting face to face so I can see the person’s expression and look into their eyes without cranking my neck.

DarlingRhadamanthus's avatar

If this is a _first date_and at a square table….sit on the two sides that intersect. That way you can still see each other’s faces, but you aren’t all the way on the other side which is quite distancing. Side by side (say in a booth at a diner) should be reserved for when you have established some sort of rapport or intimacy.

That last thing you want is to be sitting next to a person that you are absolutely not attracted to——and they start nuzzling your ear.

Been there, done that…check please! :)

Allie's avatar

If it’s a square table, I think sitting on sides next to each other would be good, not directly across from each other. You can still be close and still see each other without turning your neck all the way to the side. Then if you want to hold a hand or give a quick kiss, it can be easily done. None of that leaning across the table stuff.

jazmina88's avatar

across from each other….so you can look directly at each others gazing eyes.

Zen_Again's avatar

Across from each other, unless you have trouble hearing; then you want her next to your good ear.

wonderingwhy's avatar

I’ve always liked face to face until I know the person better, it allows me to read their facial expressions and gestures more clearly and provides the same for them. I’ve always felt it provides a level of comfort early on and seems to generate more dynamic conversation. Though if she leads the way and wants to sit side by side I certainly will oblige.

Kodewrita's avatar

depends on the girl.

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

Across from each other. This is a first date, the point is to talk and get to know each other in a safe environment, not whisper sweet nothings into each others ears and make out. Side by side is for the 20th date. Go to fast and their won’t be a second date.

casheroo's avatar

People who sit side by side (like in a booth) are just weird to me. Across the table is perfect.

Trillian's avatar

Facing is preferable. Eye contact is more important the physical closeness when you first get to know someone.

tranquilsea's avatar

For a first date: face to face. If things progress, and this has to be much later in the game: side by side.

This is something that I had never thought about prior to the last couple of years. Where I come from everyone sits face to face. A couple of years ago I sat beside my hubby instead of in front of him and we had a much better time as it was much more intimate. But I would only do that in special circumstances.

Jeremycw1's avatar

I’d say, for a first date, it’s all about getting to know one another. You can make eye contact across from each other. You can see each other’s face. That’s just my opinion.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

Fact from fiction, truth from diction. If you are on a 1st date you are in an interview of sorts. Until she is more comfortable with you don’t invade her confort zone and sit across the table, you will get to sit off her hip in due time.

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