Who Pays on a First Date?

mindy

In the age of swiping left and casual "hangouts," financial responsibility when it comes to dating is increasingly confusing. When two people go on a date, who pays? And how do they pay? Is it a faux-pas to split via Venmo? Modern struggles, y'all.

So, we present to you for your consideration....

Modern Dating Payment Terms & Agreements

  1. The person who initiated the date (for practical purposes, the “asker”) should first offer to pay.
  2. The person who agreed to go on the date (henceforth, the “askee”) is free to accept that offer. The askee can also suggest to split the bill.
  3. The asker can rebuff the askee’s offer to split, but only half-assedly, and only on the first date. Acceptable ways for the asker to politely or half-assedly rebuff the offer of a first-date split include a tentative, “Nah,” and an even more tentative, “Are you sure?”
  4. Throw out the notion that either party offering to split the check is a referendum on the date itself. If someone offers to split the bill, take them up on it.
  5. If you’re the askee and, through two dates, the asker has insisted on paying for everything, be careful; they’re either an egomaniac or they’re expecting something in return.
  6. If through two dates, the askee has not offered to split the cost of an outing, walk away. With rare exception, this person’s interest in you doesn’t extend beyond their desire for free food, or even worse, being pampered. You’re better off dying alone than you are trying to please this person.

There are a few things you can do to avoid this mess altogether: If you go out to eat, opt for something cheap and fun that won't break the bank. Food trucks are always a great idea. So is coffee and all its inexpensive relatives. Tea rooms are popping up all over the place, and they’re covered in fancy pillows, which practically beg customers to lounge for hours.

Don’t feel the need to do something grandiose, especially on a first date. Are you a member at a museum? Take your date on a stroll through the newest exhibit. Parks are free, and so are hikes. Keep in mind that the point of the date isn’t to impress the pants off the other person, but to get to know them just enough to find out if they’re someone you’d like to see again.

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