It is your first date with this on-line person. Who pays the bill? What happens next can set the tone for the future of your relationship.
Dr Wendy L. Patrick writes in an excellent article in Psychology Today (2nd Sept 2017) that there are no rules regarding bills these days.
My personal stance is that whoever makes the booking (or chooses the venue) and places the order should be the person who pays the bill.
As a coach, I am very aware of people’s behaviour. Recently, I had a first date with Victor (not his real name). Victor clearly liked to take the lead; he not only chose (and booked) the restaurant, taking into account my home address he also placed the order throughout the meal. But …when it came to paying the bill, he had other ideas. In fact, he stated that “it was the rule that a first date should be ‘Dutch’”.
I explained that I was not aware of any such rule (because it does not exist), and explained that he had taken lead the way throughout the evening which had led me to believe that I was his guest. Furthermore, women of my age (50+) are of a generation where the man paid the bill. And I still do so.
This exchange did not bode well for our ‘future’ and left a bad taste in both our mouths.
So the question is: who pays the bill? Do not rely on body language or on assertiveness as was the case with Victor. So it may be a good idea to ask at the beginning of the date, when ordering (if the order is for anything over and above a glass of wine), ‘ I would just like to clarify at the beginning of this evening, am I your guest or would you prefer going Dutch?’
For : What happens after the second date where you have been a guest, see our next blog : The Bill and Meeting No 3…