Dating in Europe: First date etiquette | Family | Expatica the Netherlands Dating in Europe: First date etiquette | Family | Expatica the Netherlands

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Here's a guide to take you through your first Euro date. If you like each other, you'll probably find a way to make it work, regardless of any cultural variations. But knowing some of the cultural differences — who makes the first move, kissing on a first date, how soon to call after a date — may help you avoid awkward situations, or at least stop you from getting hurt or hurting someone else unintentionally.

In the US and other English-speaking countries, the kiss just doesn't have the same significance it does elsewhere.


The date itself Unless you're going to be doing something sporty, dress up a little. Smart casual wear is probably best. After the first date, most people would probably expect to go Dutch and not just sejarah seni rudating the Netherlands!

In Germany and Switzerland, however, punctuality is highly valued so if one of you rolls up late, your date will be off to a bad start. There aren't too many rigid rules, either: Too soon, and it can put some women or men off.

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It's also common for couples to keep the fact that they're an item to themselves. Women can say it back to a man with the same meaning — it doesn't mean you should be moving in together or planning a wedding any time soon.

Just go with the flow and enjoy what's going on between you. So what you say may be taken at face value — and you shouldn't always take to heart what's said to you.

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Flip-flops, shorts or scruffy clothes in general tend not to make a good impression in fashion-conscious Europe. Here's a guide to expat dating in Europe.

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In Europe, once a man gets your number he will most likely call straight away, rather than wait a few days.

Too long and it can seem like they're not really interested.

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A French man or Spaniard might tell you he loves you after only a few weeks but don't panic: For example, in the UK, a woman might kiss one or more men when she's out in a club or bar or vice versa but it wouldn't necessarily mean anything or lead to a relationship of any kind. The day after In the UK or US, there's much debate about how long to wait before calling after a first date.

In the Netherlands you might take a walk or go on a bike ride. If a woman shows too much interest too soon, she may scare a man away.

If you really aren't interested, then be very clear and tell him politely but firmly the hints that might work back home, won't work here.

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Whatever you do, don't get drunk. In France, a man may be late but don't take it personally — French men are notoriously bad timekeepers.

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More often, the clue that a relationship is getting serious is if you're invited back home to meet the parents. So how do you date when living abroad and you don't know how the game is played?

In the UK, drinking a vast amount of alcohol can be central in beginning a sexual relationship with someone. It doesn't mean he's necessarily a creep, as paying a compliment is a form of acknowledgement rather than flattery in those countries.

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Making the first move in Europe In France, Germany and Belgium, it's common for the man to ask a woman out, but in Switzerland, the men can be a little reserved so women might want to give them a nudge. In Europe, getting to know someone romantically is fairly laid back. The dating game can be hard enough in your home country, and even trickier if you're navigating an international dating scene without knowing how the game is played.

The Spanish have a reputation as romantic and passionate people.

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Who pays for your date? If this happens, don't panic. To kiss or not to kiss. Of course, every relationship is different and how yours develops will depend on who you both are and the chemistry between you.

But the rule almost everywhere else in Europe is: If a man keeps calling you, don't start thinking he's a bit of a stalker.

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To gather real accounts of the European dating scene, last year we asked around mostly, but not exclusively, heterosexual expats living in the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany, Spain, and Switzerland a series of up-close and personal questions about themselves, their relationships and their sex lives.

French and Spanish men may seem a little OTT, showering a woman with compliments. If you're interested in someone, maintain eye contact — if you aren't, don't.