Awkward: She Chose A Pricey Spot For The 1st Date

Alias (DO NOT USE A REAL NAME!!): TinderQuestion
Comment: What do you say to a woman when she suggests a pricey restaurant for a first date? I recently met a woman on Tinder and asked her to meet for drinks. She replied and said yes and suggested we meet at and expensive place in Soho.  (Reviews say that people should expect to pay $100 per person for dinner.)  I’d prefer we meet at a lounge or bar because I don’t want the expectation out there that I will buy her dinner. How do I proceed?


Age: 42
City: NYC
State: NYC


As I have learned, many a men consider it a red flag when the woman picks the spot for the first date. I’ve been advised never to suggest a place unless the guy asks for possible locations, and in those cases I should be mindful of how trendy/expensive the lounge is.

Your date is being extremely presumptuous by choosing a date spot that is inordinately expensive. This one act speaks volumes about her character and expectations. She doesn’t even know you and is putting you in an awkward position by selecting an expensive place, fully aware that most guys are concerned about looking cheap and will therefore give in and say nothing. That’s rude. And you know what Hannibal Lecter thinks of those who act uncivil.

You should reply and completely ignore her suggestion, choosing instead to state a venue of your choosing and the time. There’s no need to detail why you don’t wish to meet at Chez Moneybags. You owe her nothing in the way of an explanation. If she responds and asks what was wrong with her suggestion or in any way insists that you meet at the place she mentioned, don’t even reply, for she has revealed her true nature to you.

You can lay down a boundary without overtly doing so. Refusing to acknowledge her request and instead choosing a place yourself communicates – or at least it should – that you know what she’s doing and won’t tolerate it. Give in even once and it’s game over. If she genuinely is baffled by why you nixed her preferred locale, she’s alerting you to her sense of entitlement.


The question still remains as to why you would want to meet this woman given her inappropriate behavior. You know what she’s doing and you are starkly aware that it’s impolite. Buyer beware and all that good stuff.

If a man is submissive enough to sit back and let a woman ride rough shod over him in this manner, then he can pay the literal and figurative price for his weakness by footing the bill.

Single women who do this need to understand that if they are the ones to select the costly meeting spot, they are putting themselves on the hook for paying that check. In situations where women end up getting stuck with the tab, I will bet the majority of them displayed little to no regard for the man’s wallet. Pay back is a bitch.



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86 Responses to “Awkward: She Chose A Pricey Spot For The 1st Date”

  1. DrivingMeNutes Says:

    It’s usually a dealbreaker for me when a woman suggests a venue for a first date without being asked to. No fanfare, especially on the tinder-esque apps, where there’s usually only a few texts before meeting.

    That said, if you don’t want to cancel and want to accommodate her request, you could say “lets meet at the bar.” Sure, she can order food at the bar anyway but it’s not necessarily expected and at least it will be somewhat awkward for her to do so, and you’ll have an opportunity to cut the date short before she orders. At a nice place with the right “classy” lady, of course, drinks could cost you more than the food.

    • Bree Says:

      I’m wondering if this woman was actually joking and has no intention of meeting him. I notice he’s 42 so he’s in the age range to be paying for Tinder. I’d also be interested to see how he presents himself on Tinder (is there a pic of him standing next to his expensive car, or piloting a boat or plane perhaps? Do men realize how douchey that shit looks?) and the age range of women he’s seeking. My guess is this women is just laughing at him.

      • ATWYSingle Says:

        Yeah, because women in their thirties and forties NEVER try to sucker a guy into spending a ton of money on a date. And if he had a photo of himself with his expensive car, then he’s totally asking to be used for free drinks.

        The rationalizations going on in this thread are astounding.

      • Mahkara Says:

        I think it’s entirely possible, esp. if he’s coming off as douche-y in his profile by looking at waaay younger women, showing off his car, bragging about his income in his profile, whatever.

        I think it’s entirely possible, too, that the girl’s trying to get a free expensive dinner.

        If I were him, I’d ditch the date, but also look at whether he might be sending off douche-bag signs. (Esp. if this happens regularly.)

  2. Snowflake Says:

    Well said!

  3. BostonRobin Says:

    The LW doesn’t say how old she is, or if she’s super hot. Young and beautiful women are used to older men throwing money at them. You gotta pay to play! People who brag about dating young usually gloss over this part. I’m just guessing, of course! A woman closer to LW’s age has no business playing this game. Rude, yes. But… if she’s 23 and hot, it’s the price of admission.

    • Bree Says:

      Agree. Especially if the LW bragged about his wealth in his profile and is actively seeking younger women.

      As a side, I don’t see anything wrong with women picking the venue. I do it all the time. In my case it’s usually coffee or happy hour. I avoid dinner and other activities that could take longer on a first date. With a quick drink date, there’s an easy out if we don’t like each other and if we do, THEN prolong the date into dinner somewhere we both can agree on that’s nearby the bar or coffee shop where we met.

      I don’t think most women pick expensive places. I think men who find themselves in those situations are trying to display wealth in their profile (mentioning a high status job, photos of his car, boat, leisure time, etc.) because they think women are all whores. Then they’re surprised when the women they attract with those tactics expect them to actually live up to the image they portrayed online.

  4. Mark Says:

    I’m in complete agreement with Moxie on this. Her reasoning is solid and on point.

    Consider this: Since you live in NYC suggest an alternative that YOU are comfortable with. There are a myriad of places/things that present a low cost alternative so that you can gauge each other for further consideration.

    Since many women generally expect something low key for an initial meeting with the guy picking up the tab, then go with that option. If she insists on something far more upscale, then you might want to reconsider her motivations. Is it you or the dinner she is interested in?

    Again, Moxie’s analysis covers the rationale for KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) addresses a number of points.

    Best of luck and hope things work out.

    • E-B Says:

      I would add that, when suggesting the place to meet, add a personal touch (e.g. “I have been there before and love the atmosphere”). That makes it seem like you are selecting someplace you like, instead of merely selecting a cheaper alternative.
      I agree with Moxie that if she scoffs at your suggestion, blow her off.

  5. Dori Says:

    It is Tinder for Pete’s sake! The lady is not looking for a relationship, she is looking for a fun night and a hook-up. An expensive dinner is her price for the subsequent… activity. If the OP is not willing to pay, he should pass. And continue his attempts to get laid for (nearly) free. Ummm… good luck with that.

    If OP wants to meet a woman over a glass of wine in order to get to know her, perhaps he should try Match instead of Tinder.

    • Amy Says:

      I don’t know where you live, but many people in NYC use Tinder as they would OkCupid or Match. In other words, it’s not known here as exclusively a hook-up site; most, if not all, of the people I know who use it in the city DON’T use it as a hook-up app.

  6. Bill Says:

    Easy, you asked her for drinks, not dinner. Shoot her a time that is very apparently for drinks because it is after most reasonable times for dinner.

    Around here, most dinner dates are 6-7 pm. For drinks, I do 8 pm. NYC norms are likely later.

    • ATWYSingle Says:

      There is no such thing as a “very apparent” time for dinner. Choosing a time that is later or earlier than your “typical” dinner time won’t make a lick of difference because the time people eat their evening meal widely varies. Only those with families tend to have a set dinner time.

      • CoolDude Says:

        I suggest the “I’m actually grabbing a early bite with friends/family so mind if we just meet a little later? If so, there’s this great lounge (blah blah blah)”. Cancels the dinner idea without directly addressing it.

        I too am wondering how old she is. She’s likely either very young (23-24) which…if that’s the case, good luck finding common ground. On the other hand, she might be late 30’s and just expect that everyone makes more money at that age (thus the dinner suggestion).

        • maria Says:

          no way, I would not want to be somebody’s leftover date after they hang out with other people. nope. Moxies advice is best. he simply needs to say “oh I know a great place with great drinks I’d like to take you, meet me at ___ at 6″ and if she pushes, he can either cancel all together cause she’s rude and clueless or insist on the place he recommended. easy peasy.

        • uesider Says:

          Actually I find a lot of that in 40’ish newly-divorced suburban women. You can identify them in online profiles by the words “gentleman” “chivalry” and “knows how to treat a woman.” And also they generally aren’t so attractive.

  7. I'mnoexpert Says:

    Wow! Well I think more information would be required be for such a harsh evaluation of her suggested spot can be made. He is 42 so hopefully she is around the same age. Does she work in SoHo? Maybe she picked a place close to her office. Most places in SoHo will cost about $100 pp for dinner. Plus, he didn’t say dinner he said drinks.
    Maybe she only has one drink, picked the place b/c she has been there before and found it a good spot for a 1st date, quite enought to have a convo. but still interesting and fun people watching. Who knows, but to assume she is a gold digger based on a restaurant meeting spot is pretty judgemental. She might not even realize the issue or thought based on their conversation. The place would be to both of their likings. And no it’s not me who the person is writing about. :)

    • Yvonne Says:

      I agree that to automatically infer that the woman is an entitled gold-digger is a rather cynical assumption. She might have picked the place because they do have a quiet bar, and she’s only planning to order one drink and/or split an appetizer.

      You won’t know for sure until you meet her, but if you’re concerned about it, then simply suggest an alternate spot that you really like or have heard great things about.

      If you’re going to assume the worst about someone before you’ve even met, then either they are not someone you’d want to meet, or you should reconsider giving them the benefit of the doubt.

    • Tangurena Says:

      Yes, it is cynical, and one borne out of experience.

      As an older dude, when I’m hanging around the younger crowd (like at university where I’m old enough to be their father), I’ve heard remarks substantially similar to “I only date to go to restaurants I can’t afford to go to myself” more than a few time.

      You are correct that one won’t know for sure beforehand.

      • I'mnoexpert Says:

        Don’t hangout in those places or with those people as an older dude then.

        • Tangurena Says:

          I’ve since graduated and no longer have any desire to hang out with those folks who were in my classes.

  8. Jason Says:

    We don’t know why she chose that place, or what her motivations are. Might I suggest a deeply radical and controversial idea: stop reading into things or playing shadow games, tell the other person whats on your mind (ghasp!) and see what happens. Id respond with something like “That place seems too expensive/formal for a first date. How about we go to a more laid back spot. I suggest xyz…” Shell either take it or leave it.

    • ATWYSingle Says:

      That advice is spectacularly bad and will serve to do nothing but cause hurt feelings. No, you don’t reply and say, “Wow, that place is too expensive for a first date” or any variation of why the locale isn’t appropriate. In the event that it was an innocent suggestion, you’ll offend or embarrass them for suggesting it. You just don’t address it at all. Interpersonal skills are your friend.

    • Jason Says:

      Maybe, or she might find it refreshingly honest, or appreciate the feedback (Good fb is sorely lacking in today’s dating scene). And your approach might come off as domineering or inattentive (or it could be quite tactful). There are so many variables and multiple approaches to every issue, all with their own unique drawbacks. Social psychology is a soft science, and there aren’t usually totally wrong or right answers.

      • wishing u well Says:

        Well, no. She will think you’re broke and exit accordingly. If she proposed such an expensive place to begin with her implied expectations are clear. If you aren’t interested or don’t meet them on a financial level, moving on now makes the most sense. If you still want to meet her, Moxie’s advice is accurate. What you call “refreshing honesty” will translate as being rude, unnecessarily critical, and a tad domineering in the way you phrased it above.

        Just to play devil’s advocate on the whole scenario: what if this person is financially successful and eats in such places on a regular basis? If this is her way of life, her unintentional lack of societal awareness is something that can be smoothly handled. Setting boundaries while giving the benefit of the doubt is a good thing.

  9. Lisa Says:

    Maybe in future, when you ask the woman out, suggest a place and night right away? “How about we meet for drinks Thursday night? Do you know where XYZ Bar is?”

    Her intentions may have been innocent (she might genuinely want only a couple of drinks) but you never know.

    But yeah, you are asking and presumably paying, so counter her suggestion w/ one you are more comfortable with.

    • ATWYSingle Says:

      Jesus. No, you don’t ask someone out by saying, “Wanna meet for a drink? How about Thursday at Chez Louie and 7pm?” It’s presumptuous and implies that the person extending the invitation may be just a tad over-eager and presumptuous themselves.

      Honestly, how do some of you function in the real world?

      • Mary K (Actually Jason but he left a comment under a different username) Says:

        Most of us function just fine in the real world, and our experiences and oppinions on the matter are just as valid as yours, so why is it you feel the needto be rude to your readers and insult them when they pipe up? Interpersonal skills are your friend.

      • Lisa Says:

        Yes, if mutual interest has been established and both ppl have said they want to meet, there is nothing wrong w/ extending an invitation that includes the suggestion of a day and place. Details can be negotiated but it establishes a point of reference for the type of place the person asking wants to go and lets you know at least one night when he’ll be free. Men have asked me out that way and it was fine with me.

        Moxie, I think you need to chill a little and stop creating all these artificial barriers (must be a trendy, cool spot, must not be too expensive however, must be assertive in planning the date, must not be so assertive you seem presumptuous, etc.) There are many acceptable ways to ask for a date and behave on date and get a second date and so on…

  10. SS Says:

    When I’ve been asked to meet for drinks before, depending on our respective locales I have suggested one particular nice bar (which happens to have a nice restaurant attached) because they said drinks. Some men have balked because they clearly (??) thought I wanted dinner. Why suggest drinks and then jump to the conclusion that dinner was an option?

    I tended to resent it when I took them on face value that it was “just drinks” but they didn’t do the same for me. This guy seems to be doing the same. I think that’s ridiculous.

    Or is he afraid she’s going to put a gun to his head and force him to feed her, AND then force him to pay for it too? That’s one heck of an extrapolation buddy.

    • D. Says:

      It’s because most guys, especially by their 40s, have been on at least a couple of dates where it was supposed to just be drinks, but then the woman they were with spontaneously “upgraded” the date to dinner by ordering food. Now, this is rude, and polite people don’t do it, but the guy doesn’t want to be stuck with the tab, and doesn’t want to be forced into a position where he has to say “You ordered food. You pay for it.”

      As a result, for drinks, the safer approach is to suggest a place that either has minimal food, or where it’s patently obvious that you’re going for drinks.

      • mistori Says:

        As a result, for drinks, the safer approach is to suggest a place that either has minimal food, or where it’s patently obvious that you’re going for drinks.

        Moxie said that you can’t make it obvious by what time you select but I think you can. I think, especially for a first date & if only drinks were mentioned, if the time is set for say 9pm, most people would not think it is a dinner date.

      • SS Says:

        That makes a sense, and I am sorry to hear it.

        It’s a sorry indictment on today’s dating that there are people out there that force that situation!

      • Jenny Says:

        So if she’s rude enough to suddenly order, suddenly be rude enough to stick her with the tab. Problem solved. You’ve gone on the date, seen her colors and are now free to counter – ‘pay up love’. At that point you’re done and wtf cares?

      • J Says:

        I went to grab drinks one time but I hadn’t had time to eat. So I asked for a menu and he freaks out and goes “you’re ordering food?!” I was like yes, I can’t drink on an empty stomach. So he chose the appetizer and I didn’t like it so I only ate a few bites and therefore only drank half my drink. He ended up paying for the appetizer and my drink. I was planning to pay for the appetizer but didn’t even offer after he ended up having to eat it by himself. He just assumed I was going to stick him with it so… Self fulfilling prophecy.

        • ATWYSingle Says:

          While his freak out was tacky, so was your request for a menu. It was a date for drinks. You plopped yourself down and, without even asking him, decided you were going to order food. Asking for a menu was rude, because the date was for drinks. A man more couth would have kept silent, got through the date, and never called you again. He was right to assume you would stick him with it BECAUSE YOU DID. Did you eat some of it? Then you offer to pay, end of story. Doesn’t matter that he ate most of it. I hate to break it to you, but the likely reason for why he expressed surprise when you ordered food was because he saw you and wasn’t attracted to you and was now stuck having to sit through a possible meal.If he had been into you, he never would have said that.

          And please spare everybody the “but I was planning to pay for it!” defense. If that were the case then you would have, you know, ATTEMPTED TO PAY FOR IT.

          • J Says:

            It wasn’t a first date so I doubt “he saw me” was an issue. I asked him if he wanted some and told him what I was going to order. He said he would rather have something else which I had never had. I had one piece (aka two bites) and stopped eating. No I wasn’t going to pay when he had me order what HE wanted and then I didn’t even like it. Had he just kept his mouth shut and let me order what I wanted I would’ve shared it with him and paid for it. Then I would’ve finished the drink he offered to pay for from the beginning.

            • J Says:

              I suppose in hindsight I could’ve paid for my own drink but he had already put it on his tab when he ordered it (I just said i would have whatever he was having because I wasn’t a big drinker and didn’t really know drinks. Plus, his looked good and had sprite in it. Yum.) it’s so sad I have to add so much detail to a simple statement lest people fill in the blanks with the worst possible info they can think off.

          • Mimi Says:

            I had an Internet date that was set for 7:30 at a sushi bar for drinks. He texted at 6 and asked to change the time to 9 …we met and sat at the bar and halfway through a cocktail he asks if I want to eat. I told him I ate already and he got annoyed with me!

    • mistori Says:

      That’s one heck of an extrapolation buddy.

      Yeah, I don’t get it. He says that she suggests an expensive place. Then he says reviews say that dinner is $100pp & he doesn’t want her to have the expectation that he will buy her dinner! Did she mention dinner? Where did you get the idea about dinner? Just because the review mentioned the price of dinner? I could understand if you said you thought the drinks are pricey, but no one mentioned dinner. In case you haven’t noticed, most bars happen to be inside restaurants unless you go to a night club or a more pubby or seedy kind of a bar. So I do think you are making a leap by assuming she is wanting dinner.

  11. Ben Iyyar Says:

    There were a few times I did take a woman out on our first date to what I felt was an expensive place in order to impress her. Not so unsurprisingly, none of these dates went anywhere, after all, we go out with others to see if we suit each other, not to see if we like expensive places.
    In my case I married the woman I took out to a cute little diner on our first date, not cheap but by no means expensive. But rather than focus on the expense of the restaurant, or the exotic cuisine, we focused on each other and we had a great time.
    I do not recall any of my first dates telling me where they desired to go on that date. But I do feel that if my date had suggested an expensive first date tryst, I would take it as a test as to my willingness to spend on her, and I would find that offensive. In my opinion, if the first thing a woman checks is her partner’s financial situation, she is probably not worth the expense!

    • mistori Says:

      But I do feel that if my date had suggested an expensive first date tryst, I would take it as a test as to my willingness to spend on her, and I would find that offensive.

      As others said, of course we do not know this woman or why she picked the place she did. However, what we can probably be safe about saying is that she does have an idea of the cost of the place. Most people know that it is not appropriate to select a high cost, high end, expensive place as opposed to a moderate, average place when they are probably not going to be the one to pay. So even if it was convenient there must have been other options so I agree that she was probably doing this as a test. Even though I also am a woman I don’t do it, unless that man emphasizes that he wants me to select a “very nice” place, which is rare but on a few occasions has happened. Anyway, I find it quite distasteful. If I were the man, I don’t know that it would be a deal breaker, but she would already have a strike against her.

  12. Hailey Says:

    This may be an offshoot to this question but I have never heard that it is uncouth for a woman to suggest a place on a first date/meet? If I ask a man to meet for drinks I always suggest the place because it was my idea to meet. That seems appropriate. Other times, if it’s his idea I will sometimes offer a place in between us for fair driving distance with an added “just a suggestion, I’m open to other ideas.” Should I just clam up and wait for them to offer up a spot? I always pick an average spot to grab a cocktail, nothing fancy. Just curious?

    • SS Says:

      I totally agree with you. I’ve never once offered up a place first because I am always asked where I want to meet, and then I suggest a few nice options that are equidistant.

      I’m not sure what is happening for these guys that the women are needing or wanting to do the leg work?!

      • Hailey Says:

        That has ALWAYS been the case in my past dating experiences. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve dated someone who asked me out and then says: “So what do you want to do?” Er, you asked me out? Shouldn’t you have some kind of idea? So, I’ve always figured it would be easier for me to suggest a couple of places to keep things rolling. I didn’t realize men found that so “offensive.”

  13. ATWYSingle Says:

    For all the people saying it’s a bit cynical to think the worst in this situation, here’s two hypothetical questions:

    Hypothetical #1:
    Your best friend offers to take you to dinner for your birthday. Do you accept the invitation and say, “Let’s go to Chez Moneybags?” or do you politely accept the invitation and allow them to choose the place since they will be paying?

    Hypothetical #2
    Your best friend offers to take you to dinner for your birthday and says you can pick the place. What sort of place do you pick? Do you find some place pricey or, when reviewing options, do you choose someplace modest but nice because you don’t want to take advantage of your friend?

    Forget what I said about hypothetical. These are rhetorical questions, because the only acceptable answer in both situations is to defer to the person (known or implied) paying the tab.

    If this were any other social situation, everybody would know the right thing to do. But because it’s dating people are splitting hairs.

    • Snowflake Says:

      I wrote the following comment on the

      “I treat the guys I date like how I would with friends, if they cannot give me the same respect and consideration in making plans like my friends do, they are not worth my time. Treat me like you would if you were a friend, respecting my time, my schedule, meeting me half way when making plans (not physically but you know what I mean).”

      Same applies to this, regardless of gender roles, same dealio… So I am one of those who do not get how this woman thinks its acceptable to just pick some fancy restaurant for a first date…even if it was just for drinks..

    • Yvonne Says:

      You are talking about examples where both parties have agreed on dinner, not a situation where it is supposed to be just drinks. I can see where someone might suggest an upscale place if they really are going to have just a drink or two. The automatic assumption is that this is a dinner upgrade. Not saying it isn’t, but it may not be.

    • wishing u well Says:

      For both scenarios the only way I would pick such a place is if my friends and I done at places such as Chez Moneybags on a usual basis or we celebrate birthdays with extravagance as a habit.

    • DrivingMeNutes Says:

      It’s inconsiderate for a woman to suggest a venue for a first date, unless she is asked to do so. Period, no exceptions. It doesn’t matter if it’s an expensive, high end place or a dive bar. If she IS asked, then OF COURSE it’s not inconsiderate to offer suggestions – but, it’s still a good practice to suggest a lower key place so it doesn’t look like you’re trying to take advantage of someone. Most people, I think, care about the impression they make, especially when meeting someone new. DUH?

      Women are not paying for the first date, so it doesn’t make one bit of difference if she can afford the place she suggested, or goes there all the time, or is “willing to pay,” or if she thinks the guy can afford it, or thinks he should be able to afford it.

    • BTownGirl Says:

      Seriously…good manners are good manners. Likewise, if someone takes you out to dinner, you say sincerely, “Thank you very much for dinner. I had a lovely time.”


    • J Says:

      It depends which friend. Some friends would find Texas Roadhouse expensive. My best friend wouldn’t set food in Texas Roadhouse if you paid her. That was a real issue when I first started dating after college because my best friend and I routinely ate at high end places and we didn’t really consider them expensive. Now I’m more frugal an hang out with more people who make less so I pay more attention to cost, though I can technically afford to eat anywhere. It all boils down to what you are used to combined with knowing your audience. In the case of a first date, if you ask someone out and ask them to choose you either agree or counteroffer. Where’s the question in that? People make social situations so difficult for no reason.

  14. bbdawg Says:

    I live 5 mins from Soho and I would sometimes suggest few places there if the person lived near me, but I’d always say something like “anywhere downtown works for me”, if they asked for suggestions, that gives plenty of cheaper options (East Village, Lower East Side, etc…) But before meeting someone I’d always ask what neighborhood they live in so that we could meet halfway or somewhere convenient. Does she live in Soho? Maybe she does.

    I’d disagree with Moxie that I think a lot of women make good money and feel that they want to hang out in places they normally would hang out in regardless of dating. If the man isn’t comfortable with that,
    he’s out. After all, it’s Tinder, and the OP is 42. Meaning it’s not unreasonable that he could afford a few drinks at a Soho bar. I am not sure it’s “entitlement” to want to meet someone at a nice bar. The OP doesn’t sound very assertive, and the woman is not putting out vibes that she is desperate for a man from Tinder. The OP should focus on women who like to go to the places where he does instead. This isn’t going anywhere.

    The OP sounds REALLY “beta” in the sense that he can’t even say to the woman what he wants. I mean just SAY I’d prefer to meet for drinks at a more casual place XYZ. Just SAY I don’t want to meet for dinner, just a drink to get to know each other.

    Not all bars in Soho are expensive and as a man, you have to have enough “game” to be able to turn things around to your advantage. Meaning, you can say. “what about X place in Y neighborhood”. Anyone who dates, man or woman, must have several places they know well to suggest as meeting places.

    Tinder is the sort of throw-away land of men who feel entitled to sex with the least amount of effort, so it makes sense in a way that the woman is throwing back filters/hurdles at the OP. There isn’t much at stake here. The rationale is really “I can’t be bothered… UNLESS he can meet me at ____”. She doesn’t care. You’re not Mr. Hedge Fund/Tech Start Up Dude/Harvard MBA/Whatever. Move along to someone who is on your wavelength, OP.

    • ATWYSingle Says:

      After all, it’s Tinder, and the OP is 42. Meaning it’s not unreasonable that he could afford a few drinks at a Soho bar.

      Thank you for proving my point. It’s not your place to decide what anybody can or can not afford.

      Tinder is the sort of throw-away land of men who feel entitled to sex with the least amount of effort, so it makes sense in a way that the woman is throwing back filters/hurdles at the OP.

      Enough with this bullshit justification. It’s an excuse for acting entitled.

      She doesn’t care. You’re not Mr. Hedge Fund/Tech Start Up Dude/Harvard MBA/Whatever. Move along to someone who is on your wavelength, OP.

      It’s okay for you to prejudge every guy you meet on Tinder as just being out for sex, but when a guy turns that around and makes a similar snap judgment, he’s wrong? Okay. Whatever, dude. You’ve made all these assumptions on his income and status based on..what? His decision not to take her to a price restaurant? But that’s not wrong or anything. Okay. Sure.

      • bbdawg Says:

        This woman is not interested. She is ONLY interested in men who can take her out to X place. She is not flexible or interested in the OP because he can’t meet her at place X. it’s not controversial. She is working with a lifestyle bottom line here.

        I don’t get that as “entitlement”. I get that as a clear statement that says ” I am only open to the idea of fucking you if you make XYZ and want to take me to the Hamptons”. The woman is the female version of the dude who expects sex for no reason just because he is hot enough and gets that usually. Not your thing? Move along. She is not on Tinder to be a “nice person”. I prefer people to be honest rather kind, personally. She put her cards on the table. Is she a “bad person”. Maybe. It is what it is. I had a boss who used to say “when people show you who they are, believe them”. This is such a situation. OP isn’t into this, move along.

        It’s the same as expecting some “alpha” dude in his late 30s to become a strictly monogamous person who cares about personality over looks and wants to date a woman his own age. People need to date those who are seeking what they have to offer, instead of trying to date people who give out signals they are after someone else.

  15. D. Says:

    Normally, there’d be a sort of natural back-and-forth in this whole process. He’d suggest they meet up this week, she’d say sounds good, he’d ask if Thursday works, she’d say yes, he’d suggest a place and time, she’d say “Sounds good. See you then.” Or she’d counter for various reasons (e.g. “Oh, Thursday’s no good for me. What about Wednesday?” “Could we do it at 7:30 instead of 7? Work might run late for me,” etc.).

    In this case, the OP at least makes it sound as if the conversation went like this:

    Him: “Hey, wanna meet for drinks? Are you free Thursday around 7 or so?”
    Her: “Sure! Let’s go to [place]!”
    Him: “…….”

    If that’s the case, then she’s just lacking in social graces. Maybe she’s used to guys saying “So, where do you want to go?” Maybe she hates texting and just wants to wrap up the conversation. Maybe there’s some other reason she did this, but basically, to just jump in and offer a place to go unsolicited is impolite if you’re the guest.

    But, to be fair, the original letter is pretty scant on details. Might be that they did do the usual back and forth, and he asked her where she wanted to go. In that case, I still think it’s a bit presumptuous to suggest an expensive location (even if it’s not expensive for you, it might be for someone else), but it’s less rude, and the guy should really know to have a place or two in mind already when he asks.

    Regardless, I’d say at this point, the guy should just suggest an alternate location that’s more his speed. If she turns her nose up at it, then he’ll know where things stand.

  16. maria Says:

    while not nearly as often, I do feel like this kind of thing happens to women too. I went on a date once and the guy asked me out, picked the place without asking me, and insisted on ordering a 100$ bottle of wine to share even though I said a glass would be fine. He insisted. Before I could even offer to pay he told me to pay half. Of course I did and always do unless they insist but it bothered me because he NEVER took into consideration what I wanted. Which was a single glass of wine and I even vocalized it. we didn’t hit it off anyway which is why I think this whole thing transpired.

    OP You should just be honest though and suggest a different place. Unless she’s clueless or kind of a jerk, she won’t argue with you. if she insists on meeting at her place, you are completely right to expect her to foot half of the bill, hell I’d even say she should be responsible for the whole thing since this place was her idea. but i know that probably won’t happen!

    I think people of all sexes need to chill with going to expensive places for a first date, and just be up front and honest with each other about places to meet. If the men choose something overly expensive I think the women should have the right to refuse that too because these days guys aren’t footing the bill quite like they used to, especially if they don’t hit it off.

    everybody needs to go on dates assuming they will pay their own half and pick a place accordingly.

    • Greg Figueroa Says:

      Did you share that bottle of wine or just had a glass from it?

      • maria Says:

        I don’t want to hijak this thread and it was just a story that was relevant to the OP that I wanted to share so this is the only response I am going to give this.

        neither of us finished. it went to waste and I told him what a waste it was and he laughed it off. besides not wanting to drink a whole bottle of wine with a stranger on a weeknight, we also didn’t hit it off, and my date ignored me when I said I just wanted a glass which is what bothered me the most.

        I realize you are trying to justify my date being rude and ignoring me and upgrading the date when I didn’t want to and then making me be financially responsible for something I didn’t want and didn’t drink but it isn’t going to work. he was wrong. anybody ignoring their dates wishes and upgrading a date especially when the upgrade was not wanted is WRONG. if I was the one who upgraded to the expensive bottle of wine and then demanded my date pay for it, or even half, I’d be ripped a new one.

  17. I'mnoexpert Says:

    This guy need to grow a pair. Did he happen to see if there was a happy hour with drink specials?
    Tell her, that the place she picked is a great suggestion and maybe we can check that place out another time, I wanted to take you to XYZ. Also, probably what you should do is showup have one drink if it’s going well say something like, let’s check out a different spot I know this place XYZ that has really good food or drink or whatever.
    Also, did he text her asking her for drinks that day or when she in the middle of doing something? I am usually out or busy at work and if asked out while in the middle of something I might respond cool, let’s meet up here at 7pm. Also, I tend to pick places I know and know I can pay 100% of the bill his and mine if necessary. Also, what is his guys definition of expensive? Most glasses of wine in Manhattan, which is what most people drink (yes, I know you all drink other cheaper drinks) or cocktail cost between $10-$15 dollars unless you go to a dive bar so….really does he think the loung or place he is suggestions is going to be so much cheaper?!

  18. Tadpole Says:

    Wow, so much controversy from people.

    Look she’s either lacking in social graces or she’s got high expectations. My money is on high expectations, because she’d have to be completely clueless. You can’t say she might have chosen some place close to home, because if she lives in swanky town, then she’s looking for the same. I say this, because pretty much everyone knows where they stand financially. Sure there’s a couple people that don’t know, but most people know how they’re doing. You know if you live in the ritzy part of town, make more money than most people and have expensive tastes. I’m not rich by any means. I’m middle class in every single way possible, but in my circle of friends I definitely make the most money. This means that when we all get together and start trying to decide where to go out that night, I’m not going to name some place that I think is expensive, because my idea of expensive and theirs are going to be different since I make more money.

    A few years ago I was out with some friends, when two of them were concerned about having enough money. I told them I’d get it, but to this day I still wish I hadn’t. The two went crazy ordering things they don’t normally get. They got huge meals, multiple drinks, and even dessert. At one point I decided that I’d take the chance of being rude and made a comment about how I’d said I’d get their meals, not the whole restaurant. The reply was astounding, “You can afford it.” Just because someone can, doesn’t mean they should.

    • I'mnoexpert Says:

      That’s why you don’t tell someone your picking up the tab, you just do it at the end. If you think there will be a struggle for them to let you pay then you go to the bathroom and give the wait person your card and say at the end charge me.

    • mistori Says:

      A few years ago I was out with some friends, when two of them were concerned about having enough money. I told them I’d get it, but to this day I still wish I hadn’t. The two went crazy ordering things they don’t normally get.

      I know what you mean. I had a similar situation. I asked a financially troubled friend to stop with me at a restaurant where I was going to be catering my aunt’s 80th b’day party because I had to drop something off for the following week’s preparation. I said I wanted to stop at the bar for a quick salad to hold me over til dinner & that I would treat her if she wanted one too. She got the menu, said “a said won’t do” & then ordered one of the most expensive shrimp dishes on the menu.

  19. Jack Says:

    Personal experience. After talking to a girl on match, I asked her out for drinks for a first date. She says the place I suggested was closed, so she suggests meeting at this restaurant’s bar. I looked it up online, and it is this upscale and trendy spot. I knew what was up, but she was 30 years old and attractive.

    So, I meet her at the bar where she is having a drink and appetizers. After some conversation, she asks if it is okay for us to have dinner. Of course, I say yes. She criticises our server and orders a steak. I order some food, too. After we are done and more conversation, she tells me I should get our server’s attention for the bill. Well, I do absolutley nothing. After several more minutes, she gets the bill and lays it on the table. I continue to do nothing and converse. After another few minutes, she takes out her purse and money. I finally look at the bill, take out some money and pay my share. We talk a little more and then we leave.

    I never talked to this girl again nor did she ever talk to me again. Anytime a woman suggests a more expensive place to meet up for a date, it is because she wnats a free meal or wants to see if you can afford her. Did I mention she told me she had dated a surgeon, not just a doctor? Those commenting otherwise, I am sorry to say, are clueless.

  20. PwdrPuff Says:

    Or you could just meet up for coffee, and call it a day, which I’ve been told here is a lame. Actually even the bf after one year told me it was rather lame, but he still went with it. I rather have my wits about me, have an easy exit, and not give a guy thoughts on taking advantage, which has happened every time I met for just one drink.

    • Kyra Says:

      I prefer coffee dates for first meets when it comes to online dating, simply I’ve been burned by expectations and reality not lining up.

      It’s easy to jet after a cup of coffee if the date isn’t going well, and really easy to extend it if there is chemistry.

      Now if I already know the guy, then I can go straight for the drinks date or something a little more in depth.

      • Lisa Says:

        When I was dating, I actually preferred this, too. Quick, safe, always easy to find convenient place, and even if you want to nosh on something it would just be a cheap donut or similar.

        I would have been open to meeting at a coffee shop in the evening but all of my coffee dates were for a wknd late morning or afternoon.

        Does anyone like coffee in the evening?

        • Kyra Says:

          I’m a coffee addict, so I’m perfectly fine with evening coffee as well as any other time of day, haha. Most of my coffee dates were mid morning as well, but I’ve had a number of lovely evening ones as well.

  21. Steve from the city next door Says:

    If I was the OP I think I would bail.

    I see two real options depending on how exactly the conversation has gone on up to this point.

    1. Suggest another place – even better if you can make a comment like “I love that place” or “I have been dieing to try it.”

    2. riskier and has to be OK with buying drinks “Great! See you on Thursday at 7pm for Drinks at Club MoneyBags.” The OP will likely still have to deal with requests for food once there.

  22. I'mnoexpert Says:

    Why do you all assume this women is looking for a free dinner b/c she suggest an “expensive” restaurant that has a bar. People go on dates all the time at restaurant bars and get this…don’t order food!!! Shocking I know. In fact I do it all the time, for work and dates.
    So I guess the moral of this story is if you want a guy to like you pick a dive bar when asked out on a date. That’s BS! You guys think this women is a shallow gold digger b/c she didn’t suggest a dump for drinks. I think you all are petty shallow for judging a women you never met based on a restaurant selection.

    • ATWYSingle Says:

      And once again everybody is stuck on a nuance and oblivious to the actual problem.

      The bigger, more overreaching concern, isn’t that she wants a free dinner. It’s that she – without any provocation from him – suggested a place for the date, one that is expensive. THAT’S THE RUDE PART. That she did that speaks to her social skills and lack of situational awareness. We all know suggesting the place when someone else is paying is inappropriate. If you don’t, you should. Either she’s entitled or boorish. Spoiler alert: those aren’t positive qualities and probably means at the very least she’s an asshole.

      And for all those people asking why he’s afraid she will want dinner, it’s not that he’s assuming it because of where she chose to meet, it’s that he doesn’t want to be put in a situation where she might want or suggest dinner and he’s forced into an awkward situation. He is well within his rights to NOT WANT TO BUY THIS STRANGER DINNER. He’s hoping to avoid being put in a position where his hand is forced, because we all know if he refuses dinner, he’s being labeled cheap. It absolutely baffles me how some women here do not see the parallel between a woman fearing she’ll be assumed a slut and a man fearing he’ll be assumed a cheapskate.

      The reality is that a lot of people (many of whom seem to comment here) would think NOTHING of asking for dinner or walk into that date with a sense of entitlement.

      • I'mnoexpert Says:

        Wow! Now the majority of the people who comment here are entitled…. Me I guess., I’m a women in my late 30dies…just an FYI. I’m not entitled. I don’t ever order food or suggest dinner when I was asked out to drinks. Honestly, eating while drinking kills the buzz…just saying. Great topic though.

      • Jenny Says:

        But Rhen he’ll know she’s not for him. At which point who cares if she thinks he’s a cheapskate? He can speak up at this point. They’re done!

    • D. Says:

      Possible morals/takeaways of the story:

      1. Don’t suggest a spot unless you’ve been asked to (e.g. “Where do you wanna go?”)

      2. If you do suggest a place, suggest something that is modest in price. Doesn’t have to be a dump, but shouldn’t be particularly expensive/fancy.

      3. If you’ve been invited to drinks, pick a bar. Not a bar attached to a restaurant. A bar. Wine bar, whiskey bar, dive bar, sports bar, whatever. If it has “bar” in the name, that’s probably a good start. Yes, many bars have food, but usually the food is ancillary and there’s less risk of an impromptu date upgrade. Bars that are part of restaurants aren’t intended

      4. If the guy says “Let’s go here instead,” and you’re not feelign it, maybe just say “Oh, I’m not really into whiskey, so a whiskey bar isn’t gonna be so great for me” and see what he suggests next, instead of saying “How about [another place almost exactly like the last one I suggested]?”

      I’d say the one biggest takeaway that the woman in the OP’s story should’ve learned is: “It’s not all about me and what I want.” Sounds like if she’d been less focused on “But I want this kind of experience,” she might have actually gone on a date. As it stands, he canceled and now she can find something else to do for the evening.

  23. OP Says:

    I am the OP, and I will say – Moxie gave great advice.

    To the people saying ‘maybe they have happy hour’ I will say – Michelin stared restaurants typically don’t have ‘happy hours’. They have bars so that people can wait for tables, it is not designed as a place to go and hang out.

    To people questioning the age difference – I didn’t put her exact age in, and I won’t. She is in her mid-thirties.

    I followed Moxie’s advice and countered her offer. The place I offered to meet wasn’t a divebar, and it is rated well for first dates:

    She replied by trying to steer us back into Michelin stars (Chez Moneybags – love that). I hadn’t read Moxie’s advice at that point (“If she responds…in any way insists that you meet at the place she mentioned, don’t even reply”) so i just replied and canceled.

    Thanks Moxie!

    • I'mnoexpert Says:

      Glad it worked out for you OP and you got to the bottom of it. There are different levels of Stars like Minetta Tavern has one star and it is a fun place to grab a drink after work. It’s rated the same amount of $$$ on Yelp as Flat Iron Lounge too. But yes, Minetta Tavern does also offer expensive food, where Flat Iron Lounge doesn’t!

    • DrivingMeNutes Says:

      Hopefully cancelled without explanation? That’s my favorite.

    • mistori Says:

      She replied by trying to steer us back into Michelin stars (Chez Moneybags –

      I can’t believe it, that is so obnoxious & self-centered.

      so i just replied and canceled.

      Good for you!!!

    • wishing u well Says:

      She’s in her mid-thirties? Yikes! That’s old enough to know better. Good call on cancelling. Entitlement is not an attractive accessory on anyone.

  24. Pd Says:

    I’m a woman in a creative field where I don’t make a lot of money. I don’t think a man should be tagged as responsible for the bill on dates by default. That said, if a guy knows this and wants to do the whole dinner and cocktail thing with ME…he’s should be ready and responsible for the bill. I always suggest coffee because that’s what I can afford. (I also suggest activities that don’t drain the wallet like free museums, open mic nights for music and comedy, walks, biking, cooking at home, picnics, and other creative lower budget activities) I used to drop hints (struggling artist) along with the suggestions.

    I had to get really blunt about it and describe my situation about the entertainment budget right on my profile to screen the either clueless or the just-don’t-care contingent:
    On our date (our first and last) I suggested coffee. He was game in advance, but then changed his mind as we arrived and said he’d like dinner instead. I hemmed and hesitated, and said I’m not hungry. He said, well he IS and let’s go here (upscale trendy hipster comfort food restaurant next door). I ordered coffee, and he ordered several carby-carb platters: fried macaroni, mashed extra sweetened sweet potatoes, some deep fried something or other. (I should add this guy was a lot wider than his photos.) He also ordered for himself several beers. None of this was my normal fare anyway (I’m a fish/salad person at home), and I was prepared and resolved to just have my coffee as planned. He kept pushing me to take a taste, try a little, cmon… So I had a few bites. Honestly. Like a fork of each plate. He proceeds to clean the plates. The bill arrives. He vocally divides the bill and let’s me know I’m responsible for half since I “shared”. I did pay it (I’m prepared to pay if I must for emergency’s sake, but again…I”m not budgeted for eating out at restaurants unless I just made a huge sale) and makes sure I walk with him to his fancy sports car which totally doesn’t impress me (I don’t care about cars in the first place. I walk, and it looks like he would benefit getting around on foot more) before he says goodbye.

    He ACTUALLY thought I’d go out with him again.

    • BostonRobin Says:

      Whenever I’ve been out with one or more people who ordered way more than I did and they expect me to pay the same amount they did, I’ll just put down enough for my modest drink or whatever (plus tax and tip, overestimating) and say “all I had was a beer,” loud and clear. And if I’m with someone who only had that one cheap item, I certainly don’t expect them to subsidize my appetites!

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