Who should pay for a date (early on)?


So this popped up on the radio today, and it's always been a bit of a controversial question apparently.
My belief is that: whoever does the asking should be prepared to pay for the date, BUT both people should offer to split things 50:50.

While I would love to just have a guy pay for a date for me and make me feel special, I will still offer, or make it up somehow. He pays for movies, I pay for the next movie/dinner/bowling or whatever we do after etc.

But primarily, I think if one person is going to pay, it should be the asker of the date, male or female (for one simple answer).

___ ___ ___
Story time: I made it clear once to a guy I couldn't really afford to go out because I was strapped for cash, he still proceeded to ask me out on a date to the movies, I reminded him I can't really afford it and he said "Meh who cares", I took this to mean he'd pay (perhaps I should've outright asked if he'd pay but I was younger and nervous and less confident than now). We get to the cinema, get the tickets and he looks at me to pay for my own... I was kind of thrown because I made it clear twice I couldn't afford it, he still insisted on asking me out.

  • Guy
    26% (38)24% (38)25% (76)Vote
  • Girl
    1% (2)2% (3)2% (5)Vote
  • Whoever has more money
    2% (3)5% (8)4% (11)Vote
  • Whoever asks for the date
    30% (44)30% (47)30% (91)Vote
  • Just go 50:50 no matter what
    36% (54)27% (42)32% (96)Vote
  • I'm a single, hermit, who has no friends, no love, no dates and just wants answers (an exageration).
    3% (5)8% (13)6% (18)Vote
  • Other - comment please.
    2% (2)4% (5)1% (7)Vote
And you are? I'm a GirlI'm a Guy
Updates:
Not sure whether it's sad or funny that every single section has a vote EXCEPT "girl".

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Most Helpful Guy

  • wow that was shitty lol. SUUUCH an awkward fucking moment if I ever did that to a girl.

    well just because I am me, I'll offer to pay for dinner and shit. if she wants she can pay for dessert, I don't mind, but I'll still try and pay for dessert too lol. it's a first date, i don't give a fuck about all that shit until shit gets serious, then we can start splitting everything down the line, but I'll probably still pay for food because I want too lol, and because hell I fucking can. watching her eat will be more of a joy.

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Most Helpful Girl

  • I say whoever asks for the date unless there is an insistence from the other person to help and then if so go 50:50

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    • A lady on the radio mentioned "the only time perhaps a girl should pay if a guy did the asking out and insists to pay himself, is if she says - we should try this particular place - because that may not be in his price range and he didn't intend on going there".

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    • Yeah she was of the belief a guy should always pay no matter what except in that one case ha. I mean the one case is an understandable case, but yeah, she thinks 50:50 is a bit ridiculous which was her downfall.
      I like your belief.

    • Thanks for MHO :)

What Guys Said 49

  • I am all about equal, as a male it seems that we are more expected to pay than a female even these days.. But for me, I was raised by 2 independent females who actually made more money than their male counter part. So as a rule, I will pick up 50-100% first date, maybe even 2nd and 3rd. But first date I am fairly verbal wanting things more equal on the pay front.. NOW.. I will say, I do tend to do better financially than many of the single women I meet and date, "meaning, they may be just keeping things a float" so for that reason only, I am more willing to cover the check. I dont mind buying and spending, but prefer an equal "as much as she can be at least"

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  • "Whoever is doing the asking should be the one to pay for the date." The guy asks out the girl 99% of the time. That saying is simply a way to avoid confrontation, while still saying "The guy should pay." It's an excessively minor concession to avoid beratement or argument. The statement is directly "The guy should pay 99% of the time." Have you literally ever known a single girl who asked any guy out? Ever?

    You pay for your own shit. It's really a very simple concept. The fact that people have a hard time grasping it shouldn't surprise me, but it really does. Trying to split it up. "You pay once, I'll pay next." Over complicated. Just buy your own shit every time, and it doesn't have to be so complicated.

    I do the same shit with my friends. I buy my shit; they buy their shit. Why would I do differently for someone I don't even know? Sure, if one of them is short on cash, I might just spot them or lend them. But I'm not going to make a habit out of it. Treating a female differently just because you're trying to get into her pants is 1950s, for real. If I pay for everything, then I no longer see her as my equal. Seriously, the West raises generations of cognitive dissonance.

    Sure. There are situational differences, as with anything. Yes. You should have asked him whether or not he would pay for you. Yes. Most likely, he should have taken the rather direct hint. But. If I might ask. What did he do afterwards? Did he begrudgingly pay for you? Did he go "Oh, shit, my bad." then pay for it? Did he simply say "Oh, date's off." I'd bet money he simply forgot you had said you were broke, then paid like it was nothing. Like 90-95% of guys would do so if they really gave a shit about dating the girl.

    I, for one, don't pay to go to interviews.

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    • I agree with this, but found it very hard to actually enforce on a date. It's why my first dates are always cheap now (coffee etc) so I don't need to think about the bill. It's a non-issue.

      As I said in my own comment I hate that a lot of women see men as a wallet.

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    • Insult? Oh, you mean like calling someone a "douchebag"? Yeah, I didn't do that. "One would think". Perhaps you should take a few middle school English classes along with avoiding the internet when you're on your period.

  • My first dates avoid this situation by the first date not costing money. Seriously, let's see a show where we don't talk or get to know each other and go through the awkward paying thing. Or dinner? You know, I just don't like to watch people shove fistfuls of speghetti in their moths, just not a turn on.

    There are plenty of other ways to have a first date, bike ride, rent a movie, go to the park, go to the beach, or something on her bucket list like in that movie "a walk to remember." Seriously Mandy Moore and that guy that looks like the lead singer of third eye blind will teach young men everything they need to know about romance. It really should be required viewing. Most of my guy buddies think a romantic date is taking her to a movie and then giving her a "present." Yeah I'm sure she loved your present Mark, I imagine she'll tell her grandma about it tomorrow. But I digress.

    My point is, in order to really get to equality you can't expect the man to pay, even if does seem romantic, it really is just feeding into a patriarchal system. So instead take turns after the first date, or pay seperately.

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    • I love messages that digress! More people should do it. But I'm sure Mark's present was awesome, as long as it wasn't him dropping his pants saying "surprise!".

      But you're right on those first date suggestions. I find something like movies/bowling/pool easy options (especially if it's a first date from online/blind date) because you probably will be nervous, awkward, and a movie offers an ice breaker to talk about afterwards to make you comfortable, bowling/pool gives you a chance at some humour to lighten the mood and help start conversations.
      But just going for a walk, sitting somewhere to chat, bike ride if you don't mind getting sweaty on your first date (nothing wrong with wanting to look nice the first time you meet!), are also good ideas and you're right, take away the money situation.

      Haven't seen that movie though.

    • You haven't seen a walk to remember? Rent it, and prepare to ball your eyes out.

    • Dude, I ball my eyes out to cheaper by the dozen. I start crying at pictures of kittens.
      If it's a sad movie, I'll need a bucket for those tears to go into.

  • As a guy I would always like to pay for the date as I fell like its the gentlemanly thing to do. However that being said you can't really say
    "hey lets go to this restaurant"
    and then expect the guy pay for all of it.

    I feel like you should just split the payment now days unless one or the other is happy to pay for the whole thing.

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    • Totally agree.
      If you said "I'm taking you out, I'll pay no exceptions" and I picked this expensive restaurant, if you weren't even slightly annoyed at me for that, then you're an amazing person. If I was an outsider seeing that I'd be like "wow what a bitch".

  • The guy who asked you out was just an ass. Don't take that to mean anything.

    It tends to depend. I always start off with a cheap first date anyway (coffee, a walk along the sea front of where we live that kind of thing) so generally I call the first date a wash. It's either good or it isn't, but money is barley spend.

    The second date is almost always more expensive and depends on who it is. I've paid for the meal before and gone home because she refused to buy the movie tickets. I wasn't enjoying the date anyway and once she made it clear she wanted me to pick up the full amount I just faked a phone call.

    So for me it depends. I consider a date an investment. I hope to find someone I wish to see again, but if not I won't automatically buy you stuff. Usually if they don't at least offer on date 2 or 3 I'll ask and well it's not always a deal breaker it does show you how serious she is. If she flat out refuses to consider it I think it shows she is stuck in the past and is almost like me suggesting she should cook because... well you're the women.

    The guy isn't a wallet. It annoys me beyond belief when I find women who think we are. It's rare they even consider this sexist.

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  • That guy is an idiot. You weren't too nervous he was an idiot. You had told him twice you couldn't pay before he asked you out. So it is very much implied that he was going to pay for both your tickets.

    But yeah whoever asks pays. After that for future dates whoever wants to spoil the other person that day pays. If neither people are in the mood for spoiling the other then there's something wrong with the relationship.

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  • The man should always pay for the early dates. Around date 3 they can go Dutch Treat

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  • In a perfect world, i would agree with you. The person who asked should be the person who pays.

    But in our society, 95% of the time, the male is pressured or forced to initiate everything - which includes asking you out on the date.

    Most women just sit on their lazy asses, fluttering their lashes and stuffing tissues in their bras until the guy realizes that there is no chance she will approach him. so he either has to approach, or there will be no approaching.

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    • Oh I totally agreed and loved the respectful tone in your comment until the last paragraph.
      But men do do most of the approaching you're right.

    • Don't take offense. I said most women, not all.

    • Didn't take offense, was just saying ha.

  • The guy should always expect to pay for the first couple of dates with nothing in return.

    This way, if the girl doesn't lift a finger to even offer something nice to bring to the table, then you know she's not a keeper and you can proceed to hit it and quit it completely guilt free.

    If the girl makes an effort to do something nice for you in return, then you know you have a potential keeper on your hands that is worthy of your respect and attention and most importantly - time.

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  • Whoever invites pays the bill and the unspoken rule dictates that if the other party insists on paying for themselves the date was not a success.

    Story time:
    Once I got "treated" to a drink and the other party left me with the bill.
    Fappin a-mazed from the social skills of some people, especially when they act surprised after that like they did nothing wrong.

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  • I think the guy should ask her out for the first date and pay. After that it's who ever asks I think.

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  • I'm a single, hermit, who has no friends, no love, no dates and just wants answers (NoT and exageration)

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  • First date or 2 who ever asks should pay, if you get to a third date you're getting into the relationship stage and you should take turns paying for each other.

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  • The one who invited pays. You don't invite someone and then be like "We gonna split, right?"

    And if you don't have cash, you invite to something that doesn't cost money.

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  • I'm split between having whoever asks pay the bill and 50/50 all around. I think that the two should switch with each date on who pays for it. So one person asks the other out and pays and then it switches the next time. I don't think it's fair that usually the guy pays for everything.

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  • If I ask a woman out then I expect to pay. If she asks me, then I don't mind going 50/50 or if she insists, she wants to pay, then I let her.

    I am not about to get in an argument over something so trivial.

    That is kind of my rule of thumb.

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  • Whoever wants to.

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  • If you ask someone out on a date, you are inviting them out. Be prepared to pay. However, in the relationship stage, both individuals should realize that having one person cover all the dates is unreasonable.

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  • When me and my girlfriend are in the early stage of dating, I pay for all the date but she alway offer to pay but i refused.

    I think a 50:50 on date 3 would be good. The one who ask the other person out should pay for date 1 and date 2.

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  • Both of their parents should come and supervise their date and pay for their dates then both of those ppl's parents should start dating each other to make it as awkward as possible.

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  • If you ask someone out, be prepared to pay for everything.

    If someone asks you out, offering to cover your costs is courteous but not required.

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  • I always at least offer to pay for her because I think it's the polite thing to do but if she wants to split the bill or pay for me sometimes I'm ok with it

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  • I'm old fashion so I feel like I must pay for dates but it's generally the inviter that pays

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  • you should never split a check on a date.
    However, the man should not get stuck paying every time
    usually, i will pay the first date if I asked her out.
    but if i am dating someone, and she does not at least offer to pay for something within the first 3 dates, I will end the relationship. I have done that 2x.

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  • It depends.
    If you're both short but still want to go out (damn, stay inside and cook for money's sake), I'd say 50:50.

    Normal days, where you have enough money and going to a regular place - take turns.

    Normal days, when anyone asked to go out on an expensive place - whoever invited - but the other one should at least offer a split bill/cover other expenses like cab, drinks, etc.

    If you feel like you're Tony Stark and Bruce Wayne combined rich, damn, spend away.

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  • Honestly if my date would offer to split or to pay before 2-3 months of frequentation I would be confused.
    Especially if she does that on the first date. I would see that like a way she's telling me "Dude, see you never."

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  • 50-50
    it's the easiest

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  • I've always paid early on because it's just the way I roll.

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  • the server will be paying after we walk out.

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  • First few dates I'll pay then we'll split or whatever.

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    • So what would you do if girls stop contacting you after the first few dates and your pockets are thinner while she got free meals from you.

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    • yeah but with this mentality you'll be taken for a ride by girls for free meals.

    • @BubbleBoy69 nope because I don't date every girl I meet. I usually form a friendship and try to workout the girls personality before we ever go on a 'date'. This has worked for me and I don't get taken for a ride. Its all about the personality, you have to figure out the girl very fast.

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What Girls Said 35

  • there's no single answer. it depends on the couple.

    in some couples, the guy will INSIST to pay every time, because he's been brought up with those traditions. he can also afford it, and he likes doing it.

    in other couples, they make a decision to split every meal.

    in others, it's whoever asks [which i personally find ridiculous but anyway]

    the point is, no offence but if u don't have money, don't even offer to take someone out somewhere nice. i don't get why anyone would do that. having a boyfriend or girlfriend shouldn't make you go broke. go where your money allows you. if the date is at a food court in a mall, do it dammit -.- if u can afford to go to a fancy restaurant every week, then do that.

    it's called MANAGING YOUR BUDGET.

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  • MEN! hahah Always Men!

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    • Really? Even if you asked a guy out. Or while out with a guy you said "oh this restaurant is great let's go there", knowing it may be an expensive restaurant. You'd still expect him to pay?
      (Not judging, just curious lol)

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    • 'I don't want feel like a burden n stuff'.
      By 'having the guy pay' you are a burden.
      And assuming all guys want sex all the time is ridiculous and not allowing for the depth of character that most men have which would be as unhealthy as a guy assuming all girls are crazy or fickle.

    • @Viperkiss agree with you.. and they root for equality lol

  • I a big believer that it's whoever invites. I don't mean just dating friends too. Obviously there are exceptions. Like if I ask my friend to come to dinner. If it's like hey lets go skydiving I'm not paying that but dinner is generally inexpensive especially when it's a regular thing we take turns. If we all want to go see a movie than it's all separate.

    As for dating if you ask me out then your paying for dinner same as if I ask you it's on me to pay. If through the date I decide hey lets go bowling or whatever than that's up to me to pay. I've never had the experience you've had. I've been on dates that's like a whole day adventure or weekend (I know I'm weird) but I didn't pay for anything but I offered.

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  • I think that both should always pay for their own shit unless one of them offers to pay for the whole thing.

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  • Alright, maybe I'm old-fashioned, but I think men should pay for the date. I was raised in a family where there are a lot of men-my father had several brothers-and now every one of them has girls. My father and my uncles were raised in the time where men paid for women-no ifs, ands, or buts. It was something gentlemen did, a sign of courtesy to a lady. I believe in that tradition, ESPECIALLY on a first date. The guy who did that to you is an ass. No matter who asks who on the date, the guy pays, especially on the first date. It's courteous. I've seen fewer men with the chivalrous, or should I say gentlemanly nature. However, it's just something in good manners. I would still offer to pay, but if you let me, it's not going to go over well if it's early on. If we've been dating for a long time and/or are a couple and I insist on paying, I wouldn't mind if he let me-honestly, I wouldn't think about it another second. But we'd have to be dating for a while, not early on-early on, men pay. It's how I was raised (by men in my family, not women-though the girls in my family have all been told the same stories I was) and it's simply part of what I expected in a decent guy.

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    • Completely fair, our upbringing pays a big part in our lives too. People that are raised to believe men are all bad guys - genuinely believe that. You're raised to believe this is just a standard respectful gentlemanly act and I respect that.

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    • @ProCuddler I don't agree with the opinion itself, but someone's upbringing isn't their fault and sometimes it's hard to just turn that off and change, so I can respect that she has a REASON for believing what she does other than just "evolution tells me a male should pay" like the other lady. But I don't agree with the actual opinion.

    • Thank you for clarifying.

  • I think in the beginning its whoever asks. If you've been dating a while or are into the relationship stage then taking turns or going 50/50 is best.

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    • Yeah I have that thought further into the relationship. My SO insists on paying more because he earns more than I do, so I try to make up for it by cleaning his place up, doing laundry etc, make his life easier. But that's why I specified "early on", when it is new etc.

      Thanks for the opinion! :)

    • Haha it's opposite for me, my boyfriend currently has no job because of college so I make sure he saves what money he has. You sound like you have a wonderful arrangement!😊

  • Early on, I think you should split it. When you become more serious I think you should come to a mutual agreement in my opinion.

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  • I mean if I really like the guy I wouldn't mind splitting the bill. I even paid for cinema tickets once when he forgot his wallet (genuinely, I knew him well lol). I don't really feel comfortable paying for the entire date early on. I think if a guy asked me to split the bill (I'll always offer, but you know...) I would split it, but I wouldn't go on a second date... I would really like to say that I don't mind equality in financial matters, but it just isn't true. It's so much nicer if a guy pays and doesn't make it awkward. I will never make him feel used and I don't play games, so if we're on a date I must really this person and I'll always be considerate of their financial situation and never order the most expensive thing from the menu for example. I've thought about this a lot. It just makes me feel really awkward if I have to pay.

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  • just go 50/50 that's it

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  • The person who asked should always pay, if nobody really asked everybody pays for what they're having - that's how I always handle this and nobody ever complained.

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  • The guy. Here's why:

    1) Men generally make more money than women do.
    2) Women have to spend more money, time, and energy on beauty products, & sanitary products, particularly since men are more "visual" and care more about looks than women do. So women serve men by looking pretty and appeasing men's "visual" senses; men serve women by appeasing their other senses by buying food/entertainment/etc.

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    • That logic doesn't work. Nobody makes you buy these things, and you pick your own job. If you're not earning enough go back to education. I've had to (starting September).

    • @RandomBritishGuy94 Expecting women not to seek a male provider is like expecting men not to seek a sexy woman. We evolved this way through thousands of years of evolution.

  • How aweful, that movie date. So sorry.
    I mostly agree with you except for the first date. I believe it's a guy's responsibility.

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  • The whole whoever asks should pay thing isn't really fair cos guys ask more. In the past I have taken it in turns to pay for dates. Splitting the bill is just a hassle. But I always feel bad when they say u get it next time and I know there isn't gonna be a next time.

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  • guys who dont pay for dates are fuckboys

    men who like you will at least think your worth the effort.

    if a guy won't pay for a date, what makes you think he would support a family? ladies, leave these non-men alone and help bring real men back!

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    • That's just ignorant tripe.
      Time to bring back REAL WOMEN!

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    • @mistixs Those are cultural standards, not evolutionary traits. Cosmetics are a choice made by the woman. Ask most men and they'll tell you they don't really care for much makeup. Cosmetic consumption varies upon region as well. Furthering my point of your complete ignorance of anything outside of your misandrist, western view of the world.

    • @ProCuddler they THINK they don't care much for makeup but that's because all the "no-makeup" women they've seen are actually wearing "natural looking" makeup.

  • I'm actually more F. However, I don't let people pay for me ever. I prefer to pay for myself. If I do go out with a guy, I want to pay for myself. I'd pick up his tab if he wanted me to, but I liked to take care of myself. I voted 50/50.

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  • At first I think the guy should but after that when you're dating I think it should be split or just take turns paying.

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  • Who ever suggests it. . . I've never had to pay for anything. :)

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  • Whatever feels natural. I'd just go into it thinking I am going to pay, and if he insists... I'll let him and say I'll pay next time or we split it. Simple as that

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    • Tends to be what I do, I go out on a date assuming I'll pay (except the one in my story). I don't do an Alan from two and a half men and just always forget my purse. And I'll offer to pay my half but if they strongly insist, I will try and pay the next time then.

  • When I was first asked out he payed but I still tried to give some money towards whatever it was, or pay for drinks at the bar if we went to dinner then bar. Every time we usually would switch off one day he pays the next me, or depending on if its a surprise, or whatever the case may be. I actually like to be able to switch off and take the guy out for once and it shows that I don't have to depend on him in a relationship.

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  • With my ex, I had almost no money so he always paid for dates.
    With current bae (not yet boyfriend), each pays for own share.

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    • Did you try to do anything to make it for since you couldn't pay?
      I mentioned in another reply I clean his place, do his laundry, just try to make his life a bit easier to make up for not currently earning enough money.

    • It was his fault I had no money because he hated every job I got. So NewtonsLaws took care of that,

    • Aaah. That sucks.
      My ex offered to pay for everything when we got together, at first I refused but he kept insisting. When I finally got a job he slapped me with like a 1500 dollar bill (made up of some of the most ridiculous crap), basically taking my money that I was earning. Not really your situation but some people are crap.

      Glad things are equal for you now :)

  • Early on who ever does the asking should pay. After that 50/50 is the way I go.

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  • Haha what an awkward story about your movie date. Sorry that happened, what a weird guy. Anyways, although many of my friends think a guy should pay, I always offer to split. Even on a first date.

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  • Whoever asks for the date

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  • I'm just expecting to pay for my own food or anything else.
    I usually feel bad if someone is paying for me. And I don't feel like I can expect somebody to pay for me.
    If the person wants to go to an expensive place, then I will tell him that I cannot afford that.
    I have tried a few times my boyfriend would offer to pay, but I insited on paying myself

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  • The ones who asks for the date.

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  • Whoever asks for the date or 50/50.

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  • 50/50 or the one that aksed - which, in these days is most likely the girls...

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  • Actually to pay is suitable who invites the guest but i offer/offered to pay my part if he accepts.

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  • I prefer to split the cost
    but the one who invites the other, has to pay sounds ok too

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  • Just split the damn bill

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