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Study

Study: Seniors 39% More Likely to Choose Coffee as First Date Activity

Hayley Matthews

Written by: Hayley Matthews

Hayley Matthews

Hayley has over 10 years of experience overseeing content strategy, social media engagement, and article opportunities. She has also written hundreds of informational and entertaining blog posts. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Bustle, Cosmo, the Huffington Post, AskMen, and Entrepreneur. When she's not writing about dating news, relationship advice, or her fantasy love affair with Leonardo DiCaprio, she enjoys listening to The Beatles, watching Harry Potter reruns, and drinking IPAs.

Edited by: Lillian Castro

Lillian Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro brings more than 30 years of journalism experience to ensure DatingAdvice articles and reports have been edited for overall clarity, accuracy, and reader engagement.

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Advertiser Disclosure

This is an exclusive study conducted by DatingAdvice.com, which surveyed respondents over the course of three weeks to reflect an accurate representation of the U.S. population.


Since the dawn of time – well, the dawn of coffee shops – there has been debate as to whether or not coffee is the go-to first date activity. Is it not structured enough? Is it considered cheap? Is it too cliche?

And then there are the positives:

Coffee for a first date allows for flexible pacing, going however long you want. It also shows off some of your date’s character (Did he or she tip the barista?), and it keeps your mind alert and focused on the date, unlike other drink-based activities.

With all of these pros and cons, we used our most recent study to find out who is skipping the coffee first date and who is embracing it.

After surveying more than 1,000 Americans, we found 43 percent of seniors chose coffee over dinner, drinks or anything else as their perfect first date activity. This makes these 54- to 64-year-olds 39 percent more likely to pick a coffee date than folks in the 25 to 34 age range.

Why are these seniors so ready to hit the coffee shop on their first date? We got some insight from our dating experts.

“Forty-three percent of seniors chose coffee

over dinner, drinks or anything else.”

Our senior dating expert, April Braswell, said midlifers often want a first date to be casual and comfortable, hence their desire for a coffee date.

“Midlifers are more likely to emphasize conversation on a first date than younger daters. Plus, after 50, they have more life adventures, travels and escapades to talk about than many 25-years-olds,” she said. “Secondarily more singles over 50 have had a few experiences of being a meal ticket. To avoid that, they want to emphasize a coffee date rather than a costly date. They save those for later – once true chemistry and affection are established.”

As an online dating and matchmaking expert, Carmelia Ray said in a YourTango piece a coffee date is her recommended first date because it’s a safe and comfortable way to meet someone for the first time.

She considers coffee dates “an opportunity for you to really get to know your date and a chance for you to make a great impression and move on to the second date.”

Michelle Marchant Johnson, the founder of Love Life Coaching, agreed this casual meeting takes some of the pressure off.

“If there is a good connection, they can extend the time together or plan for a second date. If not, it is a situation either party can excuse themselves from with relative ease,” she said.

It also could be an issue of personal safety. Johnson suggested meeting “in a public place for coffee may make these women feel safer and more comfortable.”

For seniors, the casual atmosphere that accompanies a coffee date could be the ideal way to meet because they can engage in light conversation and can really see if there’s a connection.

Anyone down for cappuccinos?

The study surveyed 1,080 respondents over the course of three weeks, balancing responses by age, gender, income, race, sexuality and other factors in order to accurately represent the U.S. population. The study has a margin of error of +/- 2.8%.

The Breakdown: 

DA-infographic-coffee1

Visit DatingAdvice.com/Studies for more research on dating and relationship topics. 

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