How To Politely Decline A Date
  • April 30, 2024
  • user
  • 0

Declining a date is never easy or fun – not to mention awkward, uncomfortable, and painful. Research revealed that it may be even harder than getting rejected since it brings a great deal of guilt. We understand that it takes a lot of courage to say no. 

Imagine someone has texted you and asked you to go on a date. But deep inside, you know you’re not interested in that person and don’t know how to politely decline a date. This thought might have you sweating profusely. 

You may believe that you owe nothing, including empathy, to the person who has asked you out. However, you would prefer to reject someone without hurting their feelings.

Even if you aren’t romantically interested in someone, you still need to be polite and friendly to them.

Maybe you worry that backing out could jeopardize connections and make you look erratic or untrustworthy.

Ghosting them might not be a smart move, either. So, what can you do? The best approach is to respectfully say no and thank them for asking, which will almost certainly make them feel better about rejection. 

Here, we’ll equip you with some tips on how to politely decline a date. Read on to learn how to face the moment without being a jerk. 

Importance of Being Polite

While dating can be an exciting and fun experience, everyone ends up finding themselves in the situation of having to turn down a date.

 Since it’s really not about them, it’s important to reject people politely so they don’t take it personally. Even if that person isn’t your type, they may have thought the date was a huge success.

Studies have shown that people never seem to regret being rejected. It’s not like you’re stopping someone from becoming very rich or bringing about world peace.

Humans constantly become attracted to, fall in love with, and then move on from other people. Not every relationship between two people will work out.

Let’s move on to the interesting part of the blog.

How To Politely Decline A Date? 

There’s no beating around the bush when it comes to rejecting someone. It can be difficult to come up with the right words to express your disinterest to someone in a kind and understanding way. Here are a few pieces of advice to help you reject a date without being rude. 

1. Be Honest upfront 

The rush of attention is one of the best things about dating, but if you’re not feeling it, you need to be open and truthful and not want to take things any further.

Make sure your excuse is solid if you must come up with one. Say that although you’re happy, you’re not interested.

And, while we’re on the subject of honesty, never say yes out of guilt. You are under no circumstances required to go on a date with anyone else!

Although it could be tricky at first, turning someone down right away is preferable to wasting time and leading someone—who you might even care about, if only platonically—on.

2. Know why you’re saying NO

Sometimes, the simplest answer is the easiest to stick to. Why do you want to say no? Ask yourself. Are you willing to spend time with this specific person but are having doubts because of something else, such as a friend’s viewpoint, their social standing, or a rumor you’ve heard?

If so, it’s probably wise to give them a try; hence, figure out the true cause and take appropriate action. If the case is more delicate, such as if one of your best friends has a crush on the person in question, make it clear that you would love to go out but have to take care of something first. By doing this, you’ll be able to get things straight before going on your guilt-free date. 

3. Give genuine compliments 

Keep it light and friendly. They’re not a bad person, and neither are you. You know it. It is quite natural not to have chemistry or romance with someone. You may get along well with friends, neighbors, and coffee shop employees, but you probably don’t feel anything for them.

Inform a stranger who asks you out that you’re flattered but not looking for anything specific right now. It feels a bit more awkward, but not necessarily if it’s someone you’ve known for a while.

You can make the medicine go down easier by subtly offering an honest compliment. It can really make a difference to balance a disappointing moment with something encouraging.

Tell them what you find attractive about them, but don’t relate them with anything romantic. There’s not a hint of romance! It can seem simpler said than done. Just keep in mind that being truthful now will spare you a lot of embarrassment and shame in the future. 

4. Be clear and to the point 

Whatever you say, keep it short. The simpler, the better! There is no need to prepare ten 10-minute speeches explaining your lack of interest in them.

There is more room for frustration, confusion, or hurt feelings if you write a long essay about why you do not want to go out with them.

If you are not really unsure, avoid saying vague things like: “I’m just not sure how I feel about going out with you right now” or “I do not know; I have to think about it.”

Say something like, “I’m not into you in that way, but you’re a nice guy.” It’s not as direct as telling him outright that you think he’s unattractive, but it’s still clear and unambiguous.

  • “I think you’re attractive, but I’m not romantically interested in you.”
  • “Hey, I’m not interested, but I know it was probably hard to ask me out. I’m sorry. Hope you have a good day.”
  • “I don’t have feelings for you, and I’m so sorry, but if I’ve learned anything, it’s to not stay and try to force feelings.”
  • “Hey, I think you’re great, but the chemistry just isn’t there.”

It could feel a bit uncomfortable to be direct like this, but the person will likely appreciate your honesty. After all, you really don’t want to give them a feeling that you’re interested in them or that you’re open to them.

5. Say it’s about you, not them

Never blame them for your lack of attraction or for any other reason. Instead, focus on your own feelings. If you give a sense that there is a problem with the future date, the rejection will hurt even more.

Say something like, “It sounds like you’re looking for something serious, but I’m not ready to get involved with anyone right now,” or “I do not feel any chemistry here.” Avoid saying things that seem like they’re to blame.

6. End it on a positive note

This is a kind and gracious way to end things. Instead of just rejecting them and leaving them there, let your prospective date know that you wish them the best.

Leave things on a friendly and hopeful note. For example, say something like this: “Good luck out there” or “I know you will find someone amazing.”

7. Their response is not your responsibility

While being thoughtful in your delivery is kind, how the rejected person reacts or feels is not your burden to manage. You cannot control whether they will be angry, relieved, insulted, etc.

As long as you are respectful in turning them down, their emotions are theirs to work through. The right person will not make you feel apprehensive about saying yes. 

8. Be assertive 

Don’t be afraid to be aggressive if the person won’t accept no. Explain that you’ve previously made it very clear that you’re not interested in going on a date with them.

You may also say that it’s inappropriate for them to continue to disrespect your limits. Although it can be difficult to turn down a date, if you are considerate and respectful of the other person’s feelings, they must understand where you’re coming from. 

It’s not rude to reinforce your borders. It’s about self-respect and making it clear that your boundaries are not a challenge to be overcome but lines that should be respected.

9. Use the Feedback Sandwich method

Ever heard of a feedback sandwich? For those who don’t know, this is what happens when you sandwich the less enjoyable criticism between the flattering remarks. It’s a delightful way to share something that could be a little difficult to chew.

One great strategy to arrange your feedback to make it easier to present and more balanced is to use the feedback sandwich method. A pleasant comment placed in between a harsh one helps reduce the blow.

Here’s an example: “I would love to go on a date, but it won’t be possible because I am married/in a relationship/busy/having a break from dating for a while, but I am extremely flattered.” “Thank you.”

10. Lastly, Don’t feel guilty

Don’t let guilt drag you into uncomfortable situations. Rejection is part of life, and some things just aren’t meant to be. Don’t be hard on yourself when you inevitably have to break it off with someone.

Remember that you’re doing something that is good for both of you–the right-now rejection will save you both from future heartbreak and keep you from spending precious time and energy on something that just isn’t working.

Final Note

Hopefully, by now, you mastered the art of how to politely decline a date. Frankly, declining a date doesn’t have to be a nightmare. So, the next time you have to turn someone down, keep these tips in mind to help soften the blow. It won’t be easy, but at least you’ll be nice about it! 

Don’t give them false hope. Just do what your gut tells you to. Most importantly, there is no need to apologize. You did everything you could, and being honest is better than playing with feelings.

Rejecting someone or turning down a date isn’t unkind. As long as you’re being polite and honest, you’re doing the right thing. 


1. How do you reject a date nicely? 

Ans: “First, acknowledge their request,” “‘That’s flattering; thank you for asking me out. ‘” Next, give an unequivocal “no” and say something like, “However, I am not interested in going out.” Lastly, finish with a gracious send-off that provides a sense of closure.

2. How to politely reject someone over a text?

Ans: Emphasize your perspective and text something like “I think you’re cool, but don’t feel a romantic spark between us.” or “Due to personal reasons, I’m not dating anyone at the moment.” 

3. How do you say no without being rude? 

Ans: This can be a delicate situation, and you need to handle it with care. Be gracious yet firm in your response, saying, “I’m not looking for anything serious right now, but I like your company.”

4. How do you turn down a date you already accepted? 

Ans: Be honest and phrase your cancellation so that it’s clear that you’re not interested in them anymore. Say something like, “I believe you’re a wonderful person, but I don’t sense a romantic connection. I hope you can understand!” or “Although I thoroughly liked our last date, I am not interested in continuing this relationship. “Good luck.”

5. Is it OK to decline a date over text?

Ans: Yes, rejection by text is preferable by many people. But, if you’ve been dating for months, then it might be best to decline in person.

Read Also:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *