Paying [on] a date

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VictoriaF
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Paying [on] a date

Post by VictoriaF » Mon May 19, 2014 8:50 pm

A few days ago I gave a talk on Behavioral Economics of Dating (BED). Among various dating aspects I addressed, the topic of paying for a date has generated the most discussion. I want to investigate if further and so I am interested in all possible ways of paying for a date. Here are the ones that came up at my talk:

- He pays
- He pays, she leaves the tip
- Both pay equally
- Each pays for his or her meal
- Whoever invites pays

Are there other options missing from the list?

Also, a man made a curious comment that the difference in the overall net worth between all married men and all single men is equal to the combined cost of the meals paid for by single men. I can think of several reasons for why this calculation is flawed, but I am more interested in the Bogleheads' opinions.

Victoria
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joe8d
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by joe8d » Mon May 19, 2014 8:56 pm

Whoever invites pays
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Boglenaut
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Boglenaut » Mon May 19, 2014 8:57 pm

My wife paid for dinner on our first date. I married her. :)

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Don Christy
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Don Christy » Mon May 19, 2014 8:58 pm

Quite heterosexually oriented options.
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Boglenaut
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Boglenaut » Mon May 19, 2014 8:58 pm

I should add it was a 4 hour round trip drive for me, so that's why she offered.

stan1
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by stan1 » Mon May 19, 2014 9:01 pm

Alternating who pays: He pays for dinner, she pays for movie; he pays this time, she pays next time. He pays for meals out, she pays for meals in.

I always found this works well for two independent, working professionals. Keeps things roughly equal yet you don't have to worry about counting pennies.

And, I should add, with some pronoun changes this would cover what many same sex couples have been doing for a long time.
Last edited by stan1 on Mon May 19, 2014 9:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by rjbraun » Mon May 19, 2014 9:01 pm

VictoriaF wrote: Are there other options missing from the list?
Sometimes the person who had to travel less will pick up the tab, I suppose the idea is that the person who traveled farther is more inconvenienced and the other person will try to compensate for that (or simply uses this as an excuse to pay).

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by The Wizard » Mon May 19, 2014 9:02 pm

Don Christy wrote:Quite heterosexually oriented options.
Agree; we need to expand the options.
I think the answer depends on early dates (D1, D2) vs later ones.
There's a presumption if the asker pays for the early dates.
Later ones are less of an issue, either split or paid by the one more able to...
Attempted new signature...

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VictoriaF
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Mon May 19, 2014 9:02 pm

Don Christy wrote:Quite heterosexually oriented options.
It's a fair comment. Which options would you suggest adding to cover all cases of homosexual couples?

Victoria
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by dickenjb » Mon May 19, 2014 9:07 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
Don Christy wrote:Quite heterosexually oriented options.
It's a fair comment. Which options would you suggest adding to cover all cases of homosexual couples?

Victoria
He pays the check, He2 leaves the tip.

She pays the check, She2 leaves the tip.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Quickfoot » Mon May 19, 2014 9:11 pm

They could contribute to a date fund in percentages equal to income and set an agreed upon maximum date amount and take turns planning dates.
Last edited by Quickfoot on Mon May 19, 2014 9:14 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by HurdyGurdy » Mon May 19, 2014 9:12 pm

- She pays,
- She pays, he leaves the tip,

- one pays for the main meal, other pays for dessert. That enhances the sweetness. (I've never seen splits by entree or soup).

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VictoriaF
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Mon May 19, 2014 9:15 pm

JuanZ wrote:(I've never seen splits by entree or soup).
What if it's a split-pea soup?

Victoria
Last edited by VictoriaF on Tue May 20, 2014 6:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
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HueyLD
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by HueyLD » Mon May 19, 2014 9:18 pm

I think whoever invites should pay.

Alternatively, the person who insists on going to a restaurant that is too pricy for the date should pick up more of the tab.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by matthewsalibi » Mon May 19, 2014 9:20 pm

It blew my mind when I learned that men were still expected to pay for dates. In 2014!!

Having only ever dated men (and being male), in my experience, it's pretty egalitarian. Sometimes we split it, sometimes we take turns, sometimes it's the asker/planner of the evening who pays. It's really not a big question. It works out without much thought.

Honestly, I still have trouble getting it through my head that there's a general expectation that men pay for women everywhere always on dates.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by bhsince87 » Mon May 19, 2014 9:30 pm

I like alternating date by date. In other words, PP1 (potential partner 1) pays one date , PP2 (potential partner 2) pays next date, then PP1, etc.

It adds an element of competition, but also a fast path to understanding.

And it's not necessarily a race to see who can spend the most. It's also an opportunity for a frugal PP to show how much fun can be had by spending less.

And if you discover on your second or third date that you both enjoy spending less, ooh la lah!!! :happy
BH87

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by MoonOrb » Mon May 19, 2014 9:38 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
Don Christy wrote:Quite heterosexually oriented options.
It's a fair comment. Which options would you suggest adding to cover all cases of homosexual couples?

Victoria
Actually, this would be really insightful as it would tend to negate the role of gender expectations and all of the socialization that goes along with it. One would think that those things would frequently drive date-paying decision making.

It would be pretty cool if there were some same-sex-dating BH's who could add to the discussion.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by BerkeleyChris » Mon May 19, 2014 9:44 pm

MoonOrb wrote:
VictoriaF wrote:
Don Christy wrote:Quite heterosexually oriented options.
It's a fair comment. Which options would you suggest adding to cover all cases of homosexual couples?

Victoria
Actually, this would be really insightful as it would tend to negate the role of gender expectations and all of the socialization that goes along with it. One would think that those things would frequently drive date-paying decision making.

It would be pretty cool if there were some same-sex-dating BH's who could add to the discussion.
as a same-sex dating BH, here is how I approach this: i like to (try to) impress a date with my healthy (and frugal!) cooking skills, instead of going out. if i ask somebody out to a restaurant, i always try to pay and usually succeed. if i get asked out, and i think i have a substantial income advantage, i usually try to sneak in paying well before the check arrives at the table. otherwise, i usually am at the ready to split the check. somebody expecting me to pay, though, is a huge turnoff...to me, a sense of entitlement is not attractive

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carorun
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by carorun » Mon May 19, 2014 9:56 pm

I haven't dated many (any?) men who were comfortable with splitting things 50/50 early on. When I try to pay, even alternating, I'm used to hearing "NO I GOT IT." My friends have similar experiences. I try to alternate paying, or he gets dinner and I get drinks, but I hear from past bfs and guy friends that it can be "emasculating". Ugh, whatever. It feels weirder to me when I "know" that I make more than him.

The only times I expect to pay are on awful first/last dates.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by JonnyDVM » Mon May 19, 2014 10:07 pm

Married but when dating five years ago I think I paid more than 50% of the time but my now wife would pick up the bill sometimes. There wasn't any splitting. That strikes me as odd and probably annoying for the server. What worked for us was alternating with a slight masculine tilt. I would say before that with previous girlfriends I paid the vast majority of the time. Still, I can't imagine not grabbing a check on a first date. If the date offered to pay forcefully enough though I would acquiesce I suppose. I would take it as a bad sign if the other person never offered to pay.

BTW: the title of your thread reads like you were wondering what a fair price for an escort service would be. Just saying. :D
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Mrxyz
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Mrxyz » Mon May 19, 2014 10:15 pm

How about he cooks at his place and invites her over? That way no one pays............at least not money!

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by gwrvmd » Mon May 19, 2014 10:29 pm

Victoria: If you go out on a date and think BED has to do with Behavioral Economics of Dating, you must be an Engineer, probably with a minor in Statistics :D

I have often wondered what would happen if two Actuaries went out on a date and decided to split the bill......Gordon
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Gattamelata » Mon May 19, 2014 10:38 pm

bhsince87 wrote:I like alternating date by date. In other words, PP1 (potential partner 1) pays one date , PP2 (potential partner 2) pays next date, then PP1, etc.
I've worked with this approach in the past and like it very much. It also allows for some smoothing of income disparity. I dated a woman for about a year who shared my interest in trying new places to eat. We alternated both paying and choosing the place. This way she could choose bargain places for when she paid, and I was free to choose more expensive places when I paid. It allowed us each to treat the other, it allowed us to spend according to our ability, it gave us opportunities to hunt for good deals together and didn't exclude the occasional more expensive indulgence, and we each got the enjoyment of surprising the other with the place we chose, and we each got the enjoyment of either treating the other or being treated every time we went out. So much more fun and equitable than dividing bills 50/50.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by ASUGrad » Mon May 19, 2014 10:39 pm

"Also, a man made a curious comment that the difference in the overall net worth between all married men and all single men is equal to the combined cost of the meals paid for by single men. I can think of several reasons for why this calculation is flawed, but I am more interested in the Bogleheads' opinions."

Newly single. I can tell you its more likely to be the difference between paying half the rent/mortgage and paying the whole thing. A nice dinner is a drop in the bucket in comparison to major monthly expenses.

Side note: My food budget has went down since becoming single, not up. Single men are ok with eating a sandwich and noodles on the nights they are not on dates. You try to pass that off as "dinner" when you're in a relationship and you better have a comfortable couch. Even if she doesn't complain about the food, she will complain about something else... but its really about the noodles.

However the beer with buddies budget has been a bit high lately. :sharebeer

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Gattamelata » Mon May 19, 2014 10:39 pm

gwrvmd wrote:Victoria: If you go out on a date and think BED has to do with Behavioral Economics of Dating, you must be an Engineer, probably with a minor in Statistics :D
I assumed that little innuendo was intentional :)

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Watty
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Watty » Mon May 19, 2014 10:39 pm

I remember one date where I the woman I asked out suggest a reasonably priced restaurant which was OK with me. It turned out that she wanted to go there because she had a "two for one" coupon. I still payed for my meal and then hers was free. We have been married over 25 years now.

Are there other options missing from the list?
A bit more than a date, but when travelling with a girlfriend we talked over how to handle the expenses and we each put a hundred dollars in cash in an envelope then paid for things like meals and tour tickets out of that envelope. When the money got low we would both replenish it.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Browser » Mon May 19, 2014 10:59 pm

I was going to say that the person with the most money pays. Traditionally, that has been the man and I guess that has seemed OK to both parties. Then I got to thinking about being on a date with a woman who has more money than I do, and how awkward it would feel for me for her to both have more money than me and be paying for the date. Would kinda make me feel like a child or something. I think I'd rather salvage a little of my pride by paying for the date even if she has the money. Is that the way it feels to women when the guy has the money and pays for everything?
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by celia » Mon May 19, 2014 11:01 pm

Watty wrote:I remember one date where I the woman I asked out suggest a reasonably priced restaurant which was OK with me. It turned out that she wanted to go there because she had a "two for one" coupon. I still payed for my meal and then hers was free. We have been married over 25 years now.
I was going to ask if "Dutch treat" was ever used on dates, but that sounds tacky. However, one provides the coupons and one provides the cash isn't as bad.
But Watty beat me to it.
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by steve_14 » Mon May 19, 2014 11:06 pm

Don Christy wrote:Quite heterosexually oriented options.
Not to mention gender binary! How about "Hir pays the bill, ze leaves the tip".

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celia
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by celia » Mon May 19, 2014 11:10 pm

Browser wrote:I was going to say that the person with the most money pays. Traditionally, that has been the man and I guess that has seemed OK to both parties. Then I got to thinking about being on a date with a woman who has more money than I do, and how awkward it would feel for me for her to both have more money than me and be paying for the date. Would kinda make me feel like a child or something. I think I'd rather salvage a little of my pride by paying for the date even if she has the money. Is that the way it feels to women when the guy has the money and pays for everything?
How aware are you of the other person's financial status when you start dating? Figuring out if the other party has more or less than you seems awkward to me. Do you google your dates to find out their finances?

I don't think many women feel inferior if they think the guy has more and is willing to pay. If you are just starting to know someone, you will probably go the traditional route and expect him to pay if he did the asking.
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by lululu » Mon May 19, 2014 11:22 pm

Browser wrote: Then I got to thinking about being on a date with a woman who has more money than I do, and how awkward it would feel for me for her to both have more money than me and be paying for the date. Would kinda make me feel like a child or something.
:oops:

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Mingus » Mon May 19, 2014 11:43 pm

celia wrote: How aware are you of the other person's financial status when you start dating? Figuring out if the other party has more or less than you seems awkward to me. Do you google your dates to find out their finances?
I briefly dated a girl who asked me non-nonchalantly one day if I made a lot of money. So I told her I just got a raise recently and was making 50 cents an hour more than minimum wage.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 20, 2014 5:30 am

JonnyDVM wrote:BTW: the title of your thread reads like you were wondering what a fair price for an escort service would be. Just saying. :D
I thought that escort services were paid out of expense accounts. Which is another option for "who pays."

Victoria
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 20, 2014 5:34 am

gwrvmd wrote:Victoria: If you go out on a date and think BED has to do with Behavioral Economics of Dating, you must be an Engineer, probably with a minor in Statistics :D
Gordon,

I am dumbfounded. What else could BED mean?

Victoria, an engineer
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Call_Me_Op » Tue May 20, 2014 5:35 am

I suppose you could add "if one person makes a lot more money, that person pays."

I once had the mother of a girl I was dating tell me "if a guy ever let my daughter pay, I'd tell my daughter to dump 'em." This was after she learned that we had been splitting date expenses, since we were both in school.
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 20, 2014 5:48 am

Gattamelata wrote:
gwrvmd wrote:Victoria: If you go out on a date and think BED has to do with Behavioral Economics of Dating, you must be an Engineer, probably with a minor in Statistics :D
I assumed that little innuendo was intentional :)
Every joke has a bit of a joke...

Victoria
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 20, 2014 5:50 am

gwrvmd wrote:I have often wondered what would happen if two Actuaries went out on a date and decided to split the bill......Gordon
There was another talk on "Metrics of Relationships." The presenter and I had a lively discussion afterwards.

Victoria
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Tue May 20, 2014 5:56 am

He pays for dinner.
He pays for tip.
He provides car and drives.
Within 7 days of the conclusion of the date, she contributes $1000 to his Roth.
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 20, 2014 5:58 am

steve_14 wrote:
Don Christy wrote:Quite heterosexually oriented options.
Not to mention gender binary! How about "Hir pays the bill, ze leaves the tip".
You are confusing me. My first language is Russian, where everything has a gender. A glass is "he" and a cup is "she." You use "him" for vodka and "her" for hot tea.

Victoria
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 20, 2014 6:00 am

Call_Me_Op wrote:I suppose you could add "if one person makes a lot more money, that person pays."

I once had the mother of a girl I was dating tell me "if a guy ever let my daughter pay, I'd tell my daughter to dump 'em." This was after she learned that we had been splitting date expenses, since we were both in school.
Is there an option where the mother pays for a date?

Victoria
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 20, 2014 6:04 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:He pays for dinner.
He pays for tip.
He provides car and drives.
Within 7 days of the conclusion of the date, she contributes $1000 to his Roth.
That explains the Rothschild's wealth.

Victoria
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by FedGuy » Tue May 20, 2014 6:23 am

vachica wrote:I haven't dated many (any?) men who were comfortable with splitting things 50/50 early on. When I try to pay, even alternating, I'm used to hearing "NO I GOT IT." My friends have similar experiences. I try to alternate paying, or he gets dinner and I get drinks, but I hear from past bfs and guy friends that it can be "emasculating".
It never occurred to me to feel emasculated if she picks up some or all of the check. However, a female friend with a particular interest in dating advised me long ago that many women will offer to pay their half on a first or second date as a test of the man's generosity, and if he accepted the offer she would refuse to go out with him again. I know that not all women are like this, but some of them are out there, and it's hard for the guy to know what kind of woman he's on a date with, so I think a lot of men feel more or less obligated to pay if they want another date.

Also, I've noticed that how the woman handles the check can indicate her feelings towards another date. In my experience, women that tend to insist on paying their half are typically less interested in another date than are women who don't pay. Paying their half seems to be their way of saying "I don't want to see you again and don't want to feel that I owe you anything or that I took advantage of you." I've actually come to expect that somewhat--it seems fairly common in New York City--and am now somewhat surprised when a woman "lets" me pay and then says no to a second date.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by max12377 » Tue May 20, 2014 6:37 am

Wait.. what? You mean men take women on dates and don't pay? I always pay. Although I admit that some of the, say, less traditional women I've dated have gotten quite angry if, at times, I don't let them pay. So technically, I always pay - until - I am practically fighting with my date over who pays.. lol

Then I gracefully bow out and let them pay :D

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 20, 2014 6:43 am

FedGuy wrote:Also, I've noticed that how the woman handles the check can indicate her feelings towards another date. In my experience, women that tend to insist on paying their half are typically less interested in another date than are women who don't pay. Paying their half seems to be their way of saying "I don't want to see you again and don't want to feel that I owe you anything or that I took advantage of you."
In my presentation, I described the concept of "social norms" vs. "market norms." A discussion of the payment (regardless of how the payment is eventually decided) invokes the market-norms mindset. This mindset is detrimental to the social-norms based romance. My suggestion was that a party interested in romance should make payments as transparent as possible, and a party trying to avoid romance should use payments as a prop. Your experience seems to support my suggestion.

Victoria
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wander
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by wander » Tue May 20, 2014 6:45 am

It maybe just part of my culture. I always pay.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by MrManlyMister » Tue May 20, 2014 6:48 am

VictoriaF wrote: - He pays
- He pays, she leaves the tip
- Both pay equally
- Each pays for his or her meal
- Whoever invites pays

Are there other options missing from the list?
- She pays
- She pays, he leaves the tip
- Whoever invites, the other pays
- Both pay in whatever percentage they choose
- Someone other than he or she pays
- Neither pay, they go on a date that doesn't cost anything
- They take turns. He pays for one date, she pays for the next, etc.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by YttriumNitrate » Tue May 20, 2014 6:50 am

Don Christy wrote:Quite heterosexually oriented options.
Also quite oriented towards the belief that dating/bonding should be limited to two people. If we add in a third or fourth person to mix the possibilities become even more interesting. For example potential partner 1 (PP1) and PP2 already have a relationship and go out with PP3 and PP4 who are unaffiliated, so generally PP1 & PP2 would pay. If affiliated PP1 and PP2 go out on a date with affiliated PP3 and PP4 the bill might be split or one of PP1/PP2 and one of PP3/PP4 alternate picking up the check.

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Re: Paying for a date

Post by VictoriaF » Tue May 20, 2014 6:51 am

MrManlyMister wrote:
VictoriaF wrote: - He pays
- He pays, she leaves the tip
- Both pay equally
- Each pays for his or her meal
- Whoever invites pays

Are there other options missing from the list?
- She pays
- She pays, he leaves the tip
- Whoever invites, the other pays
- Both pay in whatever percentage they choose
- Someone other than he or she pays
- Neither pay, they go on a date that doesn't cost anything
- They take turns. He pays for one date, she pays for the next, etc.
Brilliant! How about:
- He invites and then escapes from the restaurant before the check arrives.

Victoria
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bottlecap
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Location: Tennessee

Re: Paying for a date

Post by bottlecap » Tue May 20, 2014 6:52 am

One, he pays, unless he wants to look cheap. If he doesn't want to pay, he should remind himself that thousands of other guys would pay for her meal if he doesn't want to.

Two, whomever pays pays for the meal and the tip. Never split that up - it's a faux pas.

Now, if he drives four hours to see her, maybe he wouldn't refuse if she insisted to pay, out of respect for her feelings.

Once the courtship has blossomed, and she's made the determination that he is better than the thousand other guys who would also buy her dinner, if she makes a good bit more than him, perhaps she should start paying at least some of the time.

If you're progressive, you could treat it like a platonic relationship and he pays, then she pays, etc...

I don't know how it works if it's not a heterosexual relationship, but would be interested in what the ettiquette is there, typically.

JT

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max12377
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Re: Paying for a date

Post by max12377 » Tue May 20, 2014 6:54 am

VictoriaF wrote:
FedGuy wrote:Also, I've noticed that how the woman handles the check can indicate her feelings towards another date. In my experience, women that tend to insist on paying their half are typically less interested in another date than are women who don't pay. Paying their half seems to be their way of saying "I don't want to see you again and don't want to feel that I owe you anything or that I took advantage of you."
In my presentation, I described the concept of "social norms" vs. "market norms." A discussion of the payment (regardless of how the payment is eventually decided) invokes the market-norms mindset. This mindset is detrimental to the social-norms based romance. My suggestion was that a party interested in romance should make payments as transparent as possible, and a party trying to avoid romance should use payments as a prop. Your experience seems to support my suggestion.

Victoria
Actually, I agree with this.. if she insists on paying I take it to mean that she's keeping her distance..

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