Planning your first date for Valentine’s Day is a risky move that’s not for the faint of heart. While many people find nearly all first dates a bit nerve-wracking, Valentine’s Day first dates often prove even more so, as the romantic nature of the holiday creates a whole new array of expectations. If you do elect to brave the challenge of making a first date with your flame on Feb. 14th, consider the fact that your relationship is but in its infancy when planning your date.

Steer Clear of Overly Romantic Destinations

While your city’s best restaurant will certainly put up a good Valentine’s meal, an overly formal setting may prove a bit too much for your first date. Instead of an overly intimate and perhaps intimidatingly formal location, pick something more low-key for this first date, like an area diner or coffee shop.

Avoid Roses

Flowers on any first date are a good idea, and on a Valentine’s first date are nearly requisite. However, roses, a Valentine’s Day staple for many, may not be your best first date bet. These flowers, aside from being expensive, are a bit formal and reflective of smoldering passion. Instead of these stunners, select something more sedate, like irises or even daisies.

Make Light of the Holiday

If you’re concerned that the date may prove a bit intimidating for your new flame as well, break the tension by making light of the holiday. For example, instead of buying a box of extravagant chocolates, buy a collection of penny candies to give to your date as an innocent, and tasty, treat.

Select a Get-to-Know-You Activity

As with any first date, the goal of your Valentine’s first date should be to get to know more about the other person. To promote this information exchange, don’t select a date that is not conducive to talking, such as going to a movie, but instead plan an activity that is communication friendly, like taking a trip to the zoo.

Don’t Discuss Exes

The Valentine’s holiday leads many to take a mental walk down memory lane and reflect upon past relationships. If you find yourself thinking about exes on your Valentine’s date, keep these thoughts to yourself at all costs. Mentioning an ex on a first date, regardless of whether you say something mean or nice, is never a good idea.

Don’t Expect a Valentine’s Kiss

While a kiss is the perfect cap to a lovely Valentine’s evening, you should not expect this romantic gesture from the individual with whom you are having your first date. If she does elect to kiss you at night’s end, consider it a bonus.