A first date is always going to be hard. It doesn’t matter if you met online or in person, because you are essentially two strangers who are going to meet in a definitely purposeful romantic setting. Normally when you have interest in someone you shower them with gifts and affection, but this is obviously not the same situation. You don’t want to come off as weird by bringing her a present, but also if you choose a good one she could be super impressed. Do the benefits outweigh the bad enough to risk it?
The first date is sort of like an interview. You’re going to a meeting and you’re hoping to impress the other party enough to get invited back. In a business meeting you won’t bring a gift, but for the first date something like flowers is a nice touch. That’s still pretty mediocre though, lots of guys bring flowers. So while you’ll get an “aw” here or there from her friends, that’s about it. If you bring her something unique you’re showing that you’re not the type of guy who dates girls randomly. Otherwise you wouldn’t bother spending all of that money on them all. Unless you’re rich, then you can do whatever it is that you want. A great pro is that you’ll definitely be unique, as most guys don’t go past flowers on a date. If you can manage to get something that’s particular to her interests you’ll be in even better shape.
Aside from the possibility of her hating it, you have something even worse to face if you bring a gift for a woman that doesn’t like it. You may come off as the type that rushes in. You’re on a date so obviously you want to be together forever because you got her jewelry. Aside from that it could seem very snooty of you, assuming that since you bring a gift you’re obviously better than others. Of course, you know that you’re just being a nice guy, but women read into things like nobody’s business. Even if you never see her again, it’s very annoying for someone to make these types of accusations.
So What Do You Do?
Honestly the best thing to do is to take the chance. You want to stand out from the other guys, even if the date isn’t anything that you hope to take too far. Getting a stranger a gift is hard, but it’s not impossible. If there’s no online profile or secrets that a mutual friend could share with you, then go with very normal things. You know the type, the stereotypical stuff that big box stores sell. Jewelry is nice, but people have such different tastes you might want to avoid it. Instead go for little gift sets of bath products, a cool knickknack, or something that’s shiny and pretty. The more generic yet pleasing to the eye, the better off you’ll be finding success. And even if she doesn’t like it, it’s not offensive.