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Who pays? The classic first date faux pasPosted on: October 3, 2013 16:26:52
The scene set is quite a familiar one - you're on the first date with someone new and you've been out for a slap-up meal, enjoyed a few tasty courses and knocked back a few cocktails.
However, awkwardness then hits as it comes to that most delicate of situations when you hardly know someone - the bill and who pays it.
A recent news story in the London Evening Standard told how one man faced legal fees of £1,200 after his date refused to split the charges for the night - resulting in him following her to the tube station and snatching her phone to "get her attention". He was subsequently arrested, but then cleared of theft.
His date's defence for her seemingly-shy purse making an appearance at the end of their rendezvous was that she hadn't brought any cash out with her because she assumed that he would foot the entire bill. A brave assumption to make, seeing as though she had never met him before.
The tale raises a question of what exactly is the best way to broach this topic.
If you're of the generous nature, then the most obvious way of sparing your date's blushes is to let them know beforehand of your intent to pay for your get-together. If you meet through online dating then a simple message through the website should suffice and unless they are of an equally giving train of thought, then problem solved and it no longer risks becoming the focus of the evening.
However, if you'd rather split the bill - which is fair enough in this modern world of equal genders and all that - then a simple suggestion at the start of the meal to share the costs straight down the middle should suffice. This way, nobody ends up making a faux pas later down the line.
The golden rule is never assume - if there's one thing that the story in the Standard teaches us, it's that you just never know how people are going to react.
Give online dating a go if you're on the lookout for a new partner.
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