Whoever makes the date is typically responsible for paying. Now we all know that traditionally the guy asks the girl out on the first date and that would mean that he should pay. But if you are a single guy this can get pricy in today’s economy. It can be especially expensive for those dads who are paying child support, alimony and saving for college tuitions.
So here are a few ground rules to help make dating both fun and affordable!
- If it is a first date you should never have to drop $80 on a dinner when you don’t even know if the two of you have chemistry! Take her out for a coffee or an ice cream. I always call these milk shake-hand shake dates. This way you drop $10 and there is no pressure on anyone!
- If the chemistry is mutual and she seems interested in seeing you again, then the guy will likely ask his new lady friend out to dinner and he should pay. She may offer to leave the tip or to buy a drink at the bar after, which is perfectly acceptable.
- After the dinner I encourage both parties to start making plans that don’t revolve around expensive dinners. You never want the guy to hold off on asking you out again because he wants to avoid dropping another $80 on a dinner. It is ideal if the lady suggests a hike, renting a movie or cooking dinner in. This sort of gives the guy permission to spend time with you without burning a hole in his wallet.
I remember my third date with my husband, Erik. We had the milk shake date and the dinner date and both went well. Erik asked me to go to a park with him. He picked me up with a bottle of wine and had some cheese and crackers to go with it. The park looked beautiful to Erik when he sped by quickly on his bike rides. But when we parked the car and began our romantic little picnic we quickly noticed this was a less than desirable place. There were broken bottles, trash everywhere and a drunken guy gawking at us. We laughed at what a wrong perception he had of this park! We left the wine glasses in the car and drank straight from the bottle. Erik joked that it was just a test of my character and I passed with flying colors. The truth is that I liked Erik at this point and it didn’t matter where we were as long as we were together. And ten years later we are still together and still remember that third date.
It can be so much more fun to date in creative and affordable ways! Don’t ever be fooled into thinking that the amount one pays for a date is a measure of how interested they are in you! Most singles are just looking for that mutual connection and if you can find that, it really doesn’t matter what you are doing as long as you are spending time together!