With The Bachelor Australia returning to our screens tonight, I thought I’d suggest 5 different date ideas for someone in a wheelchair! Now I must say, it’s ironic that I’m writing a post on date ideas when I’m single and never been on a date myself, but here I am.
As well as the tips, I’ll be going through some things to think about which will make sure the date goes smoothly and everyone has a great time! So, let’s get into the ideas first.
Idea 1 – Coffee/Dinner
Now, this might seem like an obvious one, but I’m going to list it anyway. Coffee is nice and relaxed plus it’s usually easy to get to for anyone in a wheelchair. However, if you’re looking to take the next step then maybe go to dinner.
In the Perth area, some of my favourite dinner places are the Rose n Crown if you’re looking for a relaxed and warm atmosphere or maybe the Meatball Bar if you’re looking for something a little bit more upmarket but still casual. If 5 star is more your style, then it’s hard to go past Bistro Guillaume or Modo Mio at Crown. While if you’re looking at having lunch together, why not head out to the Swan Valley, a perfect location if the sun is shining.
Idea 2 – Zoo/Museum/Art Gallery
This date idea is very particular to what your date likes, but still a good idea neither the less. The biggest positive about this idea is that these locations are generally very accessible. They also tend to be central/in the city, so getting to them isn’t too hard. Another positive is that places like these give you and your date something to talk about.
Perth doesn’t have much variety when it comes to picking a place, so just be careful not to overdo one particular place.
Idea 3 – Movie/Show
If you’re completely new to dating and don’t know what to say to each other, then what is better than sitting in a dark room, not having to talk to each other!
In terms of a show, something in Perth like the Comedy Lounge or a show at the Fringe Festival when it’s on would be a safe option. Plus, if they don’t humour do you really want to spend the rest of your life with them?
With movies consider what you think your date would like. For example, personally, I hate horror/thriller movies. When picking a theatre, it’s best to go to a new/common one (e.g. Hoyts, Ace Cinemas, etc) as they’ll generally have better access than the old, arty theatres.
Idea 4 – Sporting event/races
Like the zoo/museum/art gallery idea, this idea also depends on what your date likes. With sports events happening all year round, it won’t be hard to find something. However, if nothing is happening, you could always head to a sports bar (I think there’s one at Crown) and watch something there.
In Australia, here are some key sports and what time of year they’re on:
- Football – March to September
- Basketball – October to February
- Tennis – January
- Cricket – October to January
- Netball – April to September
- Horse racing – every Saturday
Idea 5 – Experience/class
Just because someone is in a wheelchair doesn’t mean they don’t like new things. Some of my favourite events I’ve been to are ones that I wouldn’t have picked to go to myself. So, if you’re looking for a different date idea this is probably the best one for you.
In terms of experiences, it could be something like an escape room or a chocolate/cheese tasting. While a class could be an art class or cooking class. A simple google search will reveal plenty of places which offer experiences or classes.
So, you’ve got an idea on where to take your date but you’re new to dating someone in a wheelchair and you’re not sure you’ve covered everything. Well, you’re in luck because I’ve created a checklist to make sure you’ve thought of everything.
This is obviously a big one because the date isn’t going to go ahead if your date’s wheelchair can’t get into the venue. While steps are a no go, little things such as bench seating are also no good because these often can’t be moved and therefore your date will have nowhere to sit. For restaurants, this will mean finding a place that has enough room to move, while for the movie/show/sports event idea, it will mean making sure that your date has an accessible seat.
2. Loud places
This checklist point is more specific to people like me, who have limited lung function, but in order to make sure the conversation isn’t one-sided, pick a quiet place. This will mean your date doesn’t have to spend all their energy trying to speak loudly and you’ll both enjoy the date more.
3. Food options
While everyone has a preference on what food they like, some foods are simply too hard for some people in wheelchairs to eat (e.g. steak) if their condition affects their whole body. So, get to know your date if you’re going out to dinner and pick a restaurant that has a good variety of food.
Similarly, just going for drinks is absolutely fine. For some people in wheelchairs, like myself, we always have a support worker with us, so if it’s just drinks all we need to do is put a straw in the drink (haha whether that’s a hot chocolate or mocktail for me) and away we go, no more third wheel.
Winter is annoying for everyone, but especially for people in wheelchairs, so keep this in mind when you’re planning a date in winter. Pick a place that is warm and preferable inside in winter, but also in summer if it’s very hot. This is where the museum/art gallery, movie/show and experience/class are great ideas.
One mould doesn’t fit every wheelchair user and we all have differing levels of strength, particularly upper body strength. This doesn’t mean you can’t do certain things but just something to keep in mind. For example, with the cooking class, you might have to help your date stir the pot, but this doesn’t mean it’s a bad idea (haha think of it as a chance to get closer).
I hope these ideas and the checklist have proven helpful! If anyone has tried these ideas or has any other ideas, then feel free to let me know below in the comments.