It can feel really awkward to start a conversation on a dating app. Everything feels cheesier and forced when you’re trying to get the conversation going, but it’s like ripping off a bandaid — soon, the hard part will be over and you’ll feel so much better. So if you find it difficult to send the first message, it can help to have some go-to opening lines.
“Whether you choose to initiate conversation on a dating app or face-to-face with someone you’re interested in, it’s always important to have a great conversation starter in your back pocket,” Kate MacLean, resident dating expert at PlentyOfFish, tells Bustle. “A thoughtful question or reference to your date’s hobbies and interests will likely result in an exchange of information that can tell you a lot about someone and, more importantly, whether you’re compatible or not.”
As a basic rule, asking a question or something that suggests they send a reply is much better than just a statement — which can be easy to ignore. And, of course, a little humor never hurts. So if you’re not sure how to get started, think about things you can ask them based on their bio — or try one of these opening lines, which are all so much better than “hey”.
1. “What’s Your Theme Song?”
How a person answers this will tell you a lot about them — will they make a joke or do they take themselves very seriously? Also, a little glimmer into their music taste is always helpful.
2. “How Would You Describe Yourself In Three Words? How Would Your Friends Describe You In Three Words?”
Not only does this question let you get to know them, the contrast between how they describe themselves and what their friends would say can be very interesting.
3. “Cheese, Pepperoni, Or Hawaiian?”
It’s important to get down to the hard-hitting political issues, right from the start.
4. “What’s The Worst Opening Line You’ve Ever Received?”
Most of us have had some humdingers — and this will give you a chance to trade some dating app war stories.
5. “What’s The Best Place You’ve Travelled?”
If you’re someone who loves to travel, then getting an idea of where they like to go is a great way to start the conversation and judge compatibility.
6. “What’s The Worst Date You’ve Ever Been On? Mine Involved…”
Sometimes you have to give to get — sharing an awkward event from your life can help the other person feel more comfortable opening up to you about a funny or embarrassing experience.
7. “We’re Married. I’m Complaining That I Don’t Know What I Want To Eat. You Suggest…?”
The answer to this question may define the rest of your life — best to get it out early.
8. “What Three Characters Combined Best Describe You?”
Liz Lemon, Liz Lemon, and Liz Lemon is the correct answer, but feel free to pick your own.
9. “Why’d You Swipe Right?”
If you want to get right to the chase about what the other person might be interested in and get the ball rolling, ask them why they said yes.ADVERTISING
10. “When Sharing Ice Cream, Do You Dig Out All Of The Best Parts Or Share Them Equally?”
This question divides friendship groups, lovers, and countries (probably). Learn if they’re going to dig out all of the cookie dough or save some of it for you. Find out now, before it’s too late.
10. “What Are You Binge Watching Right Now?”
Get some insight into whether or not you’re going to fight over the remote — and maybe you’ll even get some good recommendations out of it.
11. “What’s Your Favorite Book?”
If you’re an avid reader (or just want to look like one), start out the conversation on a literary note.
12. “Are You A Stark, Lannister, Baratheon, Or Targaryen?”
With Game of Thrones returning soon, it’s really the only question on everyone’s minds.
13. “What’s The First Thing You Do When You Wake Up In The Morning?”
Being an early bird or a night owl can make a big difference in a relationship — just ask anyone who’s shared a bed with someone of a different chronotype. Seeing how they tackle their mornings can be a fun way to learn more about them and be forewarned about their 4:30 a.m. sunrise salutations and green smoothie.
14. “Why Did You Pick This App?”
There area a lot of different dating apps out there, so finding out why they went with this particular choice can help you understand what they’re looking for.
15. “Sugar Puffs Or Frosties?”
This isn’t just a question about cereal — although that’s important — it’s the first question from Black Mirror’s Bandersnatch episode, so you can find out how they chose their own adventure.
16. “I Solemnly Swear…”
They’ll either be very confused or you’ll be ready to get up to no good together.
17. “Favorite Sunday Activities?”
Sunday is usually the day of no ties and no obligation, where you can totally design your own schedule. Getting an idea of how they might do this can be really telling.
18. “What’s The Best Opening Line You Can Think Of?”
Sometimes it can help to put the ball in their court.
19. “What GIF Best Describes You And Why?”
Whether they’re a cute cat or a “This is fine.” meme, you’ll get a sense of how they view themselves — and their sense of humor.
20. “What’s The Worst Nickname You’ve Ever Been Given?”
Get some insight into their personality — nicknames are normally there for a reason, albeit an often stupid one.
21. “Most Embarrassing Childhood Memory? Mine Is …”
Another conversation opener where it can help to give a little first — share an embarrassing story and see what comes back.
22. “You Have 72 Hours Left On Earth. What Do You Do?”
They might go full-out while trying to save the world — or they might hide out and eat pizza and masturbate for three days. Either way, it’s good to know.
23. “Standard Greeting, Harry Potter Pickup Line, Or Rap Battle?”
This was an actual message someone was sent and we can all only hope that they lived happily ever after.
24. “How Many Different Pasta Shapes Can You Name?”
Anything less than 15 is unacceptable.
25. “What’s Your Perfect First Date?”
A good way to set the scene for things to come, getting a sense of their dating style can be really useful.
There’s no perfect opening line, but having a few funny ones or good questions in your pocket can make a big difference. If you want to get a response, notice things in their bio or stick with questions — it’s all about getting to know each other.
Originally posted on Bustle