POLL: Who should pay on the first date? 6 years ago

POLL: Who should pay on the first date?

We are looking for the definitive answer on this...

Ahead of the invariable carnage that is St Valentine’s day-we have decided to perform an act of public service to all of our JOE readers. The age-old question that changes with each wave of feminism, Cosmopolitan opinion poll and recessionary boom-bust trend, will soon be answered and dating may finally have some financial guidelines.


Yes, we recognise this is wildly ambitious.

So it is first date night and running through your head are the competing arguments of modern dating versus the etiquette first learned from rom-coms versus your bank balance, all interspersed with memories of strange proverbs repeated by your mother.

You’ve gone for dinner, maybe you’ve gone for drinks, maybe you’re cranking up the fancy and doing both but whether it is Eddie Rockets or somewhere without milkshakes on the menu, the niggling dilemma always remains; who pays?

Sure there is an argument to be made for no one paying at all and just legging it, but on the presumption that we are all law-abiding citizens, let’s ask, is it him, is it her or do you split it?


Such a simple questions and there are valid points to consider for each option. Circumstantially one of you could earn a lot more than the other so it makes financial sense for that person to take the hit but it is a first date and unlikely that wage packets will have been exchanged.

There are preconceived notions that a man should pay for the first date, and although this has been challenged as equality between sexes has progressed, the notion remains.

As a woman, it is less common to pay for the first date, whether this is because it is perceived as dominating behaviour and potentially emasculating for the man, or whether it is because women are scabbby and still want the 'romantic' etiquette of old-world dating enforced, is up for debate.

For one person to pay for everything is rough, it is a first date after all and what if it hasn’t gone well, you’ve no interest in seeing your date again and you have another date lined up for tomorrow night. How can you keep paying for everything and not wind up broke and resentful?


Going dutch and spitting the bill is becoming increasingly common and seems the most pragmatic if not always the most practical but can it be broached by one person or is it a dance of credit cards and cash manoeuvres?

These are the questions that haunt us cause us momentary agony. So what do you think? What does the modern world of dating require and where do you sit on the fence? 

This could get very heated.