Who Should Pay For The Date?

To tell you the truth, I have not dated much in my life.  The rule growing up was that I was not allowed to date until I was 16, but by that time I was living with a foster family who wouldn’t allow me to date, period, because they wanted me to marry their son.  Of course he always picked up the tab. Can you say #awkward?

Decades ago it was so simple. The man always picked up the check, and he expected nothing in return. He was thrilled at the prospect of simply spending time together. It has become much more complicated.  Nowadays a couple has many options, which depends on a whole host of factors (duration of relationship, each person’s financial situation, etc.).

Dating Gingerbread Couple

So I decided to list some options with pros and cons.  I am not really critiquing them, since I don’t think one size fits all, but thought it might be fun to dissect them individually.

Possibility One:  50/50

-Pros:  Obviously going Dutch does have the pro of being an even split – both parties involved pay the exact same amount regardless of what they ordered.  When splitting an entree, this option makes particular sense, as it would be rather hard to proportionally divide the check (and makes for some funny mental pictures with a food scale at a restaurant).  This option is quick, easy, and thoughtless for you and the waitstaff.

-Cons:  Is this option really fair if one person orders three times the amount of the other?  Not only does this option ignore or even encourage uneven ordering, but it also fails to account for either person’s financial situation.

 Possibility Two:  Pay for what you order.

-Pros:  Again, this option seems very fair since you control directly exactly what you will pay.  The other person can feast or not, and financially, it doesn’t matter.

-Cons:  I am not sure why, but emotionally this option seems selfish.  You aren’t sharing a meal, just eating it at the same table.  That’s not a problem in itself, but does it symbolize the way money will be handled in other situations?

Possibility Three:  The guy pays 100%.

-Pros:  Tried and true, very conventional, and has that old-fashioned date feel.

-Cons:  Again, does this symbolize the way money will be handled?  And will having one party always pay discourage future dates at nice places?  And should it?  I have always wanted to be taken seriously as an equal, not a dependent, so I worry about how this one looks.  Not to mention those jokes about expecting something in return.

Possibility Four:  Both people pay roughly in accordance with how much they make.

-Pros:  I need to explain this one – if one person makes ten times what the other does, then that person contributes ten times more than the other.  That’s an extreme case, but a really probable one is one person earning twice as much as the other.  The higher grosser in this case would pay 67% of the bill, while the other would pay 33%.  To me, this is the most “fair” option in the sense of fiscally logical.  You pay your share according to your own means, taking into consideration both sides’ ability.

-Cons:  I don’t think crunching bills on a calculator at dinner is very romantic.

Like I said, I don’t really have the answers on this one.  How do you split checks on dates?

OUT OF DEBT AGAIN is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to AMAZON.COM. OUT OF DEBT AGAIN is an affiliate for several companies and may be compensated through advertising and marketing channels. This post may contain affiliate links.

Be Sociable, Share!

Related posts:

12 comments to Who Should Pay For The Date?

  • I haven’t dated in forever so I may not be the most qualified to share my opinion, but I will anyway. As a guy, I would definitely pay 100% for the first date if I initiated it. After that we may take turns or split it or feel it out from there. I don’t think guys should pay 100% all of the time.
    Lance recently posted..Best Gas Credit Cards – November 2013My Profile

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Hi Lance, as I responded to another commenter, times have definitely changed – and most people seem to be agreeing that it’s okay to split the tab or take turns. Thanks for weighing in!

    [Reply]

  • The one who wants the other more 🙂
    Financial Samurai recently posted..Personal Capital Review – New Investment Features And A Meeting With The CEOMy Profile

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    FS, that is certainly one way of looking at it. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!
    Mrs. Accountability recently posted..Shopping Cart Abandonment: Three Ways to Drop the RateMy Profile

    [Reply]

  • I have two teen daughters and they both share in the expenses of dating. Usually, kids out here in our rural community just hang out at each others’ homes. Gas is expensive so they only go out every once in a while.
    Betsy recently posted..New FSA Rule will Help Prevent Loss of SavingsMy Profile

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Hi Betsy, hanging out at your parents’ is probably the safest way to get to know your “date” so that’s pretty cool that you and your neighbors seem to share the same ideals. I can definitely understand the price of gasoline cutting into the fun one might have on a date. Not to mention movie theaters have gotten so expensive nowadays unless you go to an early afternoon movie and that just doesn’t seem very romantic. 🙂

    [Reply]

  • I’m a fan of the 50-50. I also like that if I propose a date, I pay for it. If he does, he pays for it.

    But I know girls who refuse to go out with a guy who doesn’t pay. Makes me a bit sad that they will be giving us ladies a bad name, but to each his own.
    Michelle recently posted..Student Loan Forgiven TaxMy Profile

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Hi Michelle, it sounds like some of the girls you know have specific ideas about what they want from boys and dating so I admire them for sticking to their guns on what they want. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

    [Reply]

  • Mel

    I agree with Michelle, whoever proposes the date should pay for it. If it turns into a relationship, just take turns paying. My boyfriend and I have been dating for 4 years, for 3 of those years we worked for a cruise line, made roughly the same amount of money and would say we split bills 60/40 with him paying a little more often (I absolutely would’ve split it 50/50 but he didn’t agree with that method and it was not worth fighting over). Now he makes a lot more than I do and he pays a lot more often than I do, which I think is ok (maybe I think it’s ok because I pay less often…). Mostly I think it’s ok because with his new job he wanted to go for a bit of a lifestyle bump and stop living like we were broke college students (we’re both right on the 20/30 border), but my paycheck doesn’t allow that yet.
    Mel recently posted..Five Dolla’ Make You Holla’ Holiday Series: GrandpaMy Profile

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Hi Mel, I’m glad you and your guy have it worked out. I can relate to not wanting to live like your busted broke all the time. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

    [Reply]

  • I fancy the notion of the gentleman and the chivalrous code: The man should pick up the tab (well, most of the times anyway!)
    In all fairness though, I think a 50/50 split is the best, gives the daters somewhat of an eqal footing.
    Simon recently posted..TradeKing Review – Exclusive Review of TradeKing BrokerageMy Profile

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Simon, it is so very interesting how things change as time goes by. I just turned 50 this year, and I’m realizing more and more just how things are changing. It just seems weird to go out on a date and have to split the check. I’ve done that when going out with my lady friends, and that feels normal. Of course nowadays there’s PayPal and you can have one person pay the whole check and then shoot payments to each other in minutes. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

    [Reply]

Leave a Reply

 

 

 

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

CommentLuv badge

Splyced Hosting