The easiest, most direct way to invite a date in at the end of the night is to say, simply: “Would you like to come in?” Simple, elegant, and to-the-point.

Unfortunately, most of us in the real world aren’t quite self-possessed enough to pull off the direct approach. No, we unhappy souls have to use contrived excuses in order to lure dates back to our apartments and hopefully make out with us.

So what excuse do you use when you invite people over at the end of the date?

According to How I Met Your Mother, your bait” should be something interesting enough to get your date upstairs, but not so interesting that it overpowers the night.

Inviting someone in for “coffee” is the classic example: odds are that sure, your date would like a cup of coffee now that they think about it: but coffee isn’t so exciting in that 3 hours later, you’re still sipping it.

New Yorkers, to some extent, have it easy: everyone is extremely covetous of one another’s apartments. So many of my first dates involve lengthy real estate conversations that by the end of the night I’m usually dying to see his “killer Craigslist find.”

Another friend plays guitar, and has had pretty good luck inviting people in to “hear a song.” One of my girlfriends works at a cheese store, and will often invite guys over under the guise of sampling whatever cheese she has in her fridge. And another friend has an amazing rooftop view that she loves to invite people to see…

Of course, the whole “excuse” thing is just a charade: if your date likes you, he or she will take you up on any excuse to come in, no matter how flimsy or weird. And you both know what’s really going on when one of you invites the other in at the end of the night.

Still, some of us with puritanical blood running through our veins need some sort of facade.

Do you use roundabout excuses for inviting dates in? Let us know!

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