Ask a guy for tips on how to ask a guy out, and he might give the following advice:
Step 1: Walk up to the guy.
Step 2: Say, would you like to go out with me?
But it can’t be that easy…can it?
The older you get the harder it becomes to figure out how to ask a guy out. If you’re in your 30s or 40s, an overwhelming majority of the men you meet are unavailable (62% of Gen Xers are married). The rest, it seems, are gay.
So how are you, a woman who’s had her shares of ups and downs in her romantic history, supposed to figure out the best way to ask a guy out, especially if you’re not even sure he’s an eligible bachelor?
First, Why Should You Ask a Guy Out?
You might be thinking to yourself, Adam, I’m a traditional gal. I want the man to ask me out. Convince me why I should go all Sadie Hawkins.
I’m willing to bet that it’s less that you’re a traditional gal and more that you’re afraid of the prospect of walking up to a man you’re attracted to and asking him out…then having him reject you…or even laugh at you. But think about it: why should men be any less afraid?
And with all the female empowerment vibes we’ve been experiencing since the explosion of feminism in the 1970s, there’s simply no excuse for why you can’t take initiative.
The man you have your eye on may very well be interested in you, but with all the #MeToo conversations, he may not want his intentions to be misunderstood. In fact, one in three men worries that their actions may be perceived as sexual harassment. So if he’s afraid you might take his advances the wrong way, he’d rather not take the risk.
Your option? Ask him out yourself! You are a strong woman who should fear nothing.
I’m going to give you a few scenarios that you can use to ask a guy out, but in truth, it doesn’t matter which you use. The most important thing is that you are confident when you do it. Men love confident women and find them sexy, so as long as you have that going for you, you’re golden.
1. Ask Him Out on a Group Date
For most women — especially post-divorce or big relationship — the biggest barrier to figuring out how to ask a guy out is rejection. You may kick ass at work or be known as the outgoing one in your group of friends…
But the idea of having a man turn you down is simply more than you can stand. You just can’t take the confidence reduction.
So this strategy is good if you simply can’t get over that fear of rejection: invite him to go out with you and a group of friends. From the outside, it looks like just a bunch of platonic friends are having a night on the town. And if that’s all he wants — to just be friends — then it’s no harm, no foul. You’ll all go out and have a great time. You might be sad that he doesn’t have romantic feelings for you, but you never know: you might just end up with a cool new friend.
On the other hand, he may accept your invitation and, after spending time with you, realize that there’s a spark between you.
Either way, you win. And rejection is minimal. Maybe next time you’ll have gained the confidence to ask him out one-on-one!
2. Ask Him for Coffee
Here’s how to ask a guy out while also minimizing the risk of rejection. Coffee is such a safe activity that few people will turn it down if they’re available. If he’s not into you and he makes a big deal of it (er, I don’t like you that way. I’m seeing someone. I’m a celibate monk!) all you have to say is: Jeez. It’s just coffee.
I guarantee he’ll feel like an ass.
Coffee is a low-pressure situation. There’s no giant financial outlay (something he may be sweating), and no alcohol that may dull your senses. And it’s short! If things don’t go well, you’re in and out of there in under an hour. If they go well…well…sip slowly or order another latte.
3. Use the “I’ve Got an Extra Ticket” Trick
Some of these tips for asking a guy out may seem cheesy or like he’ll see right through them, but I’m telling you: they work. That includes the ole I have an extra ticket to this really cool event. Wanna go?
If you’ve seen How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days (and of course you have!), you remember that Andie pulls out highly-coveted basketball tickets. Can Benjamin resist? Of course not.
But consider what type of tickets you want to offer. Will he agree to go with you to a Celine Dion concert?
Only if he really really really likes you.
He’ll be more inclined to say yes to accompanying you to a sporting event, beer fest, or concert for a band he likes.
Now, keep in mind that if he can’t or won’t go, you’ll be stuck with two tickets, so make sure it’s something you actually want to go to. And have a backup friend who will go if your plan fails.
4. Leverage Your Mutual Interests
A guy in your friend circle is as into surfing as you are. This is a fantastic opportunity for you to turn that common hobby into a date. The best way to ask a guy out is to do so in such a natural way that he doesn’t immediately realize you’re asking him on a date.
So I surf every Tuesday at sunrise. I’d love a surf buddy. You in?
There’s a meteor shower tomorrow night that you can see from the top of Mount Franklin. Would you want to hike up with me?
Because he’s into the activity, you’ve got a good chance that he’ll agree to accompany you. And if he can’t make it, he might suggest another day for the same activity.
5. Use a Terrible Pickup Line
This tip will help you master how to ask a guy out in a bar or at a party where you haven’t yet met. You want to engage in conversation, but also want to make a memorable impression.
Guys are known for delivering cheesy pickup lines, so why not turn the tables by giving him one yourself?
Do I know you? Because you look a lot like my next boyfriend.
If you were a vegetable, you’d be a cutecumber.
Nice shirt. Is it made of boyfriend material?
I seem to have lost my phone number. Can I borrow yours?
You’re not aiming for smooth here, but to get a laugh. Getting a guy to laugh breaks the ice and makes it easy to move in for the kill…er, ask him out. It will, at the very least, open the door for an interesting discussion. You two can compare pickup lines and have a few laughs.
6. Buy Him a Drink
Here’s another strategy on how to ask a guy out that is traditionally done by the male, but for no good reason.
We’ve all seen episodes of Sex and the City where Carrie and the ladies are given Cosmos sent over from some suave man in the corner who gives a confident head nod when they look his way.
What if you gave that confident head nod as the object of your affections looks up to see who sent him a Bud Light?
It’s not common for women to buy men drinks…which is why this works so well! He’ll be so blown away by the gesture that he will immediately walk over and introduce himself. What happens next, my sexy lady friend, is up to you.
7. Have a Friend Talk to Him for You
Here’s another scenario if you’re in a bar or at a party. Women have been doing this move since junior high, as far as I can tell, but it works.
Have your wing woman go over to the guy you’re eyeing and ask if he’s single. If he is (and straight), she can point you out.
My girlfriend over there keeps making eyes at you, and I’d like her to stop. Can I tell her you’re absolutely not interested? (a little reverse psychology)
My friend over there wants to invite you to our table for a drink. Coming?
If he’s with a table of men, invite them all over. What man would say no to an offer like that?
By the way, “wing woman” is an actual job title. Erin Davis is helping New York City women find love by hiring her to be their wing woman at events, where she helps them meet the men they’re interested in. Future career move for you??
How to Ask a Guy Out Through a Specific Channel
In person. Text. Dating app. Each is a potential channel you can use to ask a guy out…but each requires very different strategies. Let’s look at each and which techniques work best.
How to Ask a Guy Out In Person
Most of the techniques apply to the in-person ask-out, but I do have a few more tips on how to ask a guy out in person:
- Smile, smile, smile! If you portray that you’re having fun (not terrified, which is the truth), it’ll feel contagious, and he’ll have fun too.
- If you’re not ready to do the big ask, engage in chitchat. It will put you (and him) at ease.
- Read the situation. What’s his body language telling you? Only ask him out if it seems positive and he seems interested.
- When you do ask him out, ask for a specific activity or date. Vagueness only complicates things.
How to Ask a Guy Out Via Text
Texting is a challenge because it’s hard to assess attitude and intent. How do you know if he’s really into you through words and emojis?? (By the way, my Love Texting Report will help you drastically step up your flirty text game)
It can be tough to know if a guy is into you via text, so I encourage you to have at least a couple of live phone calls or Facetime so you can better gauge interest. But in general, if he’s being consistent in texting you every day or two and is engaged in the conversation, all signs look good to me to ask him out. Here are more tips on how to ask a guy out over text:
- Keep it simple. Just say Do you want to try that new brewery with me this weekend and wait. He may not have seen your text yet, so don’t keep blathering after the ask.
- Strike while the iron is hot. Wait to ask him out when you’re in the middle of a conversation, not out of the blue.
- Be cute. Try something like Would you like to go out with me? Text Y or N.
How to Ask a Guy Out Via Dating App
Online dating. It’s a necessary evil for many in the dating game. But in the long run, it can really pay off: a recent study shows that couples who meet online not only have more in common, but they also have more satisfaction in their relationships! So hang in there!
Here are a few tips on how to ask a guy out if you met him on a dating app or site.
- Do it sooner rather than later. If you wait a week or more, the impetus is gone and you likely just have a penpal. Strike early, while the iron is hot!
- Some apps, like Bumble, require women to make the first move, so men there already expect women to be more assertive than on other apps. Try it!
- If you get rejected, dust yourself off. Dating apps are a numbers game, so look at every time you ask a guy out as practice for the next yes.
One Final Lesson: Trust Your Gut
I don’t care if you meet a man at a bar.
Get introduced through a friend.
Swipe right on him.
However you meet a dude that you want to go out with, there is one single thing you need to do before trying out any of the above strategies:
Trust your gut.
What does your instinct tell you about this guy? If he’s been in the corner chainsmoking and throwing back PBRs like there’s no tomorrow, I don’t care how “hot” he is. He’s probably not for you. But beyond a superficial assessment of his personality and where he falls on the whole Good Guy/Bad Boy spectrum, also trust your gut on whether the guy is even into you or not.
I know: you get excited when you meet someone interesting, and you start to create all sorts of what-if scenarios.
What if you go out and have a fabulous time?
What if he’s a great kisser?
What if you made beautiful babies together?
Whoa, Nelly. Before you start naming your kids together, take a deep breath and pay attention to his behavior. Is he leaning into you when he talks? Finding an excuse to touch you? Laughing at all your jokes?
Does he have his arms crossed? Is he looking around the room to see who is more interesting? Does he keep checking his watch?
It’s important that you have a real understanding of what his body language is telling you about how he feels about you. You might want it to be telling you that he’s into you, but you can’t make that be so. If he’s not into you, you can save yourself some embarrassment (see above mention of rejection) by not asking out a guy who only wants to be friends.
Also, some guys prefer to do the asking, and you asking them out will blow their minds. They may not react well. So also pay attention to that vibe. Does he seem like the kind of guy who needs to take charge? Would it be better to wait until he asks you?
So, yea. Trust your gut. It’s sometimes smarter than your heart, and will tell you all you need to know.
Learning how to ask a guy out will take some practice. You very well may get rejected from time to time. But that’s all part of it. And getting turned down isn’t the end of the world, is it? You don’t know what’s going on in a man’s world that makes him decline your offer to go out. He may not be single. He may be hurting after a breakup. He may be gay. He may be busy. He may not be looking for a relationship right now.
So don’t immediately assume you’re a hideous swamp monster and that this is the reason he said no. Be confident in knowing he wasn’t the right guy for you, and take that rejection in stride. Use the experience as practice. What would you do or say differently next time? What can you learn from the situation?
Maybe next time you wait a little longer before asking him out. Maybe you use that intuition a bit better. Be patient. If the conversation is flowing, use it to get to know each other a little better before you worry about going on a date.
But the feeling when a guy says yes when you ask him out?
You’ll feel like you’re on top of the world. Like you are the sexiest, most confident lady in all the land. And you are. So own that. Embrace that feeling — even before you’ve asked him out — so that sexy confidence is exactly what you give off. Because that’s mad appealing.
Share your tips on how to ask a guy out…and your experiences doing so in the comments below!
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