Safety

8 ways to stay safe when you’re meeting someone in person

By The HUD App Team

Meeting someone in person for the first time after connecting on a dating app can be exciting, but it's important to prioritize your safety. Online dating has made it easier to meet new people, but it's also brought new risks, such as the possibility of encountering fraudsters or individuals with ill-meant intentions.

Here are some tips to help you stay safe when meeting someone in person from a dating app.

1. Do your research.

Before meeting up with someone, be sure to research them online to get a better idea of who they are. Check their social media profiles, look for any red flags, and use common sense to gauge whether you feel comfortable meeting them in person.

2. Meet in public.

It's always best to arrange to meet in a public place where there are other people around. This could be a busy café, a museum, a park, or a mall. Avoid going to someone's home or inviting them to yours until you feel comfortable with them.

3. Tell a friend.

Let someone you trust know about your plans to meet up with someone from a dating app. Provide them with the person's name, their photo, and the details of where and when you're planning to meet. Ask them to check in with you at a pre-planned time, and have a code word you can use if you need them to give you an excuse to get out of there.

4. Use your own transportation.

Arrange to get to the meeting place using your own transportation, rather than relying on your date to pick you up. This gives you more control over the situation and makes it easier to leave if you feel uncomfortable. Have alternative transport in mind as well, just in case – an Uber, taxi, or friend who is on standby and can pick you up if for some reason your transport doesn’t work out.

5. Trust your instincts.

If something seems off or you feel uncomfortable at any point during the date, trust your instincts and leave. It's always better to be safe than sorry. You don’t even need to say goodbye, or make an excuse – just go.

6. Stay sober.

Avoid drinking too much alcohol or taking drugs when meeting someone from a dating app. Not only can they impair your judgment, but they also put you in a vulnerable position.

7. Go someplace neutral to be intimate.

If you’re planning to have sex, go to someplace neutral like a hotel, not your home or your date’s home. Choose a hotel that is in a safe area, preferably one that has a human at the front desk so there’s someone to actually see you as you check in.

8. Keep personal information private.

Avoid sharing personal information, such as your home address or phone number, with someone you've just met on a dating app. Wait until you've built a relationship and feel comfortable with them before sharing such information.

Following these tips can help you to reduce the risk of being stuck in a dangerous or uncomfortable situation when you’re meeting someone in person for the first time. More often than not, you’ll have a good time, and there won’t be anything to worry about. But it's also important to remember that no amount of preparation can guarantee your safety, so always trust your instincts and stay vigilant.

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