It's just one of the things I'm venturing into these past few months. I wouldn't really recommend meeting people you've met online especially if it's through one of those personals kind of thing-ies. It's dangerous. But if you do decide to go ahead with the meet-up then just keep in mind the following:
I have to admit, I've made mistakes with a couple of my first dates but I've made some wise decisions, too. The great thing about my newly-found dating life is that I'm discovering a whole new side of me, which I didn't realy realize was there. Also, I'm getting into contact with different kinds of people, which is pretty interesting, really. It's actually a good thing.
Let somebody know who you're going with and where, Make the meeting place really public, It's a good idea to go as a group especially if you're having doubts about the guy's credibility. It's not a crime to take pre-cautionary measures! Never accept an offer for a ride home or even to get into that guy's car. It's wise to be wary of such things especially in disclosing where you live [you wouldn't want to end up with a stalker, right?], and Always make the initial meeting a casual one like a lunch, dinner or coffee date. This also applies for all first dates. The main reason for the date is to get to know him and you wouldn't be able to do that inside the cinema now, would you?
I also met a few people who became good friends soon after meeting them. So, I'm glad I decided to meet them in person. Otherwise, I would've missed out on creating friendships with these guys. But I've learned to really be cautious of certain types, though, especially the ones who are just particularly keen on how attractive I am to them, which somehow sums up their real interest in seeking my friendship. I basically can tell what exactly they have in mind. Truthfully, I'd tell them to "bugger off, you stupid idiot!" if given the chance.
As a whole, it's quite an interesting experience. It's risky but it's part of its charm, I guess.