The question of who pays for the first date is one that has only recently popped up in society. Turn back the close by a few short decades and the answer was not only definitive but commonly known.
The man is the one who pays for the first date. In non-heterosexual relationships, it is the one who leads the relationship. And in 2020, it’s the one who set’s the date who pays for the first date or the bill is split evenly.
Dating norms and customs change with each generation and that’s okay. Some elements to first dates remain the same but for the most part, we move with the times.
However, I believe it is still important to hold onto some common dating practices from the past because they existed for good reason.
For instance, when a man pays for the first date, it is him displaying his ability to provide for the lady.
But just because women of today can provide for themselves and for men, doesn’t mean they should during the first date. Especially if you want to feel like you are on a traditional romantic date.
With that being said, let’s look at all the possible answers for who pays on the first date.
The man pays for the first date
As a man, paying for the first date makes me feel as if I’m fulfilling the role of the provider. And I like to feel that way.
Even though this is something that varies from individual to individual, there is an affinity towards being a provider and leader.
Let’s look at it this way, on a fundamental basis, what is it that you’re looking to get from a woman?
Most men will describe a host of wants that usually gravitate towards one central theme, nurturing.
They want a woman to provide them with a sense of love, belonging, care and affection that is feminine in nature.
So if you’re entering the relationship dynamic with the expectation of a woman to be nurturing towards you, then you ought to be willing to fulfill the role of a provider.
The same could be said for women in the dating scene. Just flip the roles to match the situation.
Someone has to do it. Especially for people who are very traditional. It’s the perfect example of Yin And Yang.
If this is your way of thinking, then the man should pay for the first date.
If you’d like to read more about how many dates should a guy pay for, be sure to check out this article.
The one who sets the date pays for the date
Now things get more interesting. Times have drastically changed. Women are not only more empowered in general but they are financially well off, in spite of the looming wage disparity.
Truth be told, you would be hard pressed to find a young woman in 2020 who can’t take care of herself, provided she is ambitious and not lazy to work.
So that begs the question, if she can provide for herself, what’s the point in the rule that men have to pay for the first date?
Well, you could make the argument that tradition dictates he should. Or it could be the intention to provide despite knowing she can take care of herself that adds to the attraction.
But, if you’re really not looking at things in such an analytical manner, you could simply peg it down to the initiator who pays the bill.
In other words, the one who set the date can pay the date, whether it’s a man or a woman.
It’s quite simple, logical, fair and realistic. I asked you out on a date so I plan to pay for it. Okay great!
Split the bill equally
The approach of splitting the bill equally seems to be gaining a ton of momentum over the last decade.
It removes any expectations from the date, the burden to fit a big bill is taken off the shoulders of one party and the feeling of obligation towards the one who pays is removed from the equation.
Not only is this approach extremely fair but it works.
Nobody walks away from the first date having lost anything, even if things don’t work out at all.
And if you’re looking to casually date or meet many new people, this approach is the best on to adopt.
Consider this before deciding who pays for the first date
Despite the claims that both men and women can pay for a date in this day and age, that isn’t a rule of thumb.
You never truly know what’s someone’s financial predicament like until you’ve gotten to know them well enough.
So consider whether the person you’re going on a date with can actually pay for it.
If you have a suspicion that they can’t and you can, either pay for it or split the bill evenly.
Also, if there is a financial issue, opt for a cheaper date. Take a look at this list of 50 first date ideas. Many of them are quite affordable and extremely fun.
At the end of the day, it’s not just about the date but the chemistry, connection and bond you can establish with a person.
Let that guide you towards finding someone who truly knocks your socks off.
First dates can be a lot of fun once you get passed the awkwardness at first.
Try not to overthink things and focus on having a good time.
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