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Uru Eke: Dating…and Who Pays?



In the UK, there’s a dating show called ‘First Dates’ on Channel 4, where individuals apply to be set up with a stranger and go on a blind date.  They meet at a restaurant in Soho and during the course of the date they get to know each other and soon realize if there is an attraction or not. At the end an interview is conducted, where they are asked if they want to see each other again.

On a few of these dates I have noticed that some of the woman have offered to go dutch (pay half the bill) but some have held back and expected the men to offer to sort it. There was one particular episode that had this much older couple. When it came to paying the bill, the guy asked her if she was going to pay her half and she bluntly told him that she expected him to pay the entire bill and she doesn’t ever expect to pay on a date (I could see thunder in her eyes as she said it).  During their interview when the producers asked them if they would see each other after the show, the lady said an emphatic “No” and solely because the man asked her to go half on the bill.  This woman is probably well in her sixties and she’s set this way, so does this mean that during her hay days men always took care of the bill?

There were a few couples who were more than willing to go dutch, some of the women offered and almost insisted to pay their halves. These couples don’t necessarily end up together; there are no heightened expectations at the end of their dates. Especially even when the man foots the entire bill, there are no underlining presumptions that there will be any kind of gratification afterwards.  If they don’t connect, everyone goes their way and about their business.  Now let me bring this back home, to Africa or Nigeria.   From my personal experience and to the best of my knowledge I havn’t had to go dutch or ever offered to pay on a date. Not because I don’t want to but because the men have always or shall I say by default performed that duty, I guess maybe the African man feels going dutch is offensive to his dignity or somewhat emasculates him.  I must say I have been spoiled a little because when I go dating outside the country I almost always expect that to happen there as well. I’m of the opinion that If you have a woman split the tab with you she may no longer see this as a “date”. She may instead get the message that the two of you are nothing more than friends.  If you want to avoid her seeing you in that light then paying for the date will go a long way.  Remember, this is my opinion and is in no way a representation of the dating populace.

The only expectation from going on these dates should be to meet someone and see if it leads to something more.  Not sex, money or any kind of favors from each other. I once wrote about transactional relationships; giving your love, affection or attention to someone in return for goods, money or favors.  A date isn’t transactional and I think, whoever initiates the date should pay and if the man decides to sort it then that’s great.  During the date, conversations will indicate what takes place after and if or not an attraction develops.  This brings me to the matter of sex.  If during the date a spark ignites and things go further and you end up having sex, should there be a transactional expectation to this? Someone wrote into one of the blogs for advice and narrated how she went out with a guy, they ended up back at his house where she decided to spend the night. As it were, sex took place a number of times she claimed. In the morning the young man offered to drop her off at home and when they got there, she expected something from him and nothing came. She got upset and held him by his shirt and caused a scene until he brought out about 50,000 naira and handed it to her.  She wrote into the forum to ask if she was justified in her actions.  Some people hailed her as being a sharp girl and some people chastised her and said she got away with it because she met a gentleman.  I thought her actions were foul. Clearly the attraction was mutual, you both made silent adult decisions between yourselves that there was more to be explored and off you headed to explore. Now he drops you off at home the next day and you suddenly expect “appreciation” for the time spent together?

Wikipedia described dating as a “stage of romantic relationships in humans whereby two people meet socially with the aim of each assessing the other’s suitability as a prospective partner in an intimate relationship or marriage”

One of the reasons for dating is social interaction, dating provides the opportunity to refine your power of observation, what type of personality is best suited for you.  For some people it might be a sexual adventure or sexual conquest but nothing is more hindering to the development of friendship than immature sex.   Maybe this is what happened with the 50,000-naira girl. If they had taken the time to get to know each other a bit more, it probably wouldn’t have resulted into a night of immature (transactional) sex.  This is not to say that she probably wouldn’t have laid some demands on him as they got familiar but he would have sussed out the kind of person she is and discontinued communication with her.

According to Emily Post on the etiquette of dating, the rule for a first date at least, the person who asks should pay unless both parties agree in advance to share expenses.

I also think if a guy asks you out on a date, he should pay and whoever asks the other out after that, should take the initiative.  If a lady decides to take a guy out on a date, by all means do the needful but if you find this happening more than once, girl get your mind right!!

Final thought,  Dating is not transactional and the expectations should be skirting around attraction and chemistry, these often direct how far things will go and the progression.


  1. Asa

    January 23, 2018 at 11:14 am

    When I was dating my ex, I would take him out and give him a treat, expensive treat o. Sometimes if we spent a whole day together, I would pay for one of the meals because it would be clear to me that he had spent a lot. However, if any man asks me out on a date, I expect the man to pay totally and completely. I do not expect you to ask me out and still want me to pay for it. Abeg, you requested for the pleasure of my company and if my “company” eats rice during that pleasure, I expect you to pay. When the tables turn and I ask you to hang out, trust me, I will pay. And truly, I only ever ask out my guy friends not romantic interests and of course, I pay when we hang out.

  2. SoniaPaloma

    January 23, 2018 at 12:19 pm

    Whoever does the asking should pay for the date . Regardless, when the check comes as a lady i always act like i am reaching for my purse to pay and hear the dude say, oh no, I got this. That way I have played my own part of not expecting him to foot he bill lol
    When in a relationship, that is a different ball game, anyone can pay, as you both are working to build something together at this point.

    • simsi

      January 24, 2018 at 1:49 pm

      Lol. The day you’ll do this and end up paying is still coming. It happened to a friend of mine. It wasn’t funny


    January 23, 2018 at 1:58 pm

    No matter who pays, ALWAYS carry vex money with you in case you start feeling uncomfortable or because of a drink and small popcorn he bought for you, a guy wants to start rubbish , It will be easy to walk away with your head high and proud.
    Remember the “keep the change, bruh” incident.

    • simsi

      January 24, 2018 at 1:50 pm

      This is me all the time. I always take my Debit card with me. No stories abeg.

  4. larz

    January 23, 2018 at 2:11 pm

    In this day where women are fighting for equal pay and benefit; we are still arguing for who pays what. I have seen and heard of girls richer than a guy choose an expensive venue and expect the guy who is not as loaded to pay for it. So we say men should pay for dates, pay utilities, pay kids school fees on top equal pay. Make we fear God oh. That’s how a friend was saying if her date drives he should pick her up but if her date doesn’t drive, he should either come to her house with cab to take her there or she will drive herself and meet him there. Consideration is the key. Does the fact that they are male mean they don’t deserve kindness / consideration?

    To answer the question, I think whoever ask the other on a date and chooses the venue should pay.

  5. shift

    January 23, 2018 at 3:21 pm

    Shift jo

    You all act modern, therefore modernity should take every aspect of life. When it comes to paying for dates and gifting your guys, then you suddenly remember that it is an African thing, an insult to men bla bla bla

    If you tell me that there are changes in roles due to modernity and cant do what our mothers used to do then, you should be ready to take up and accept the responsibility of equality in every aspect.

    Many of you now are expecting val gift from your bfs and husbands but you dont even have a single plan to do anything for him.

    @ who ever ask for the date should pay, cos you will never ask a guy out and it is they guys that ask you out abi? no problems. Guys wont ask you out again then so you can “tey” like methuselah in your fathers house

    ejo e kosi lo jo

  6. jade

    January 23, 2018 at 7:06 pm

    Overflogged topic. You women will be crying feminism but spend most of your time talking about men.

  7. Engoz

    January 23, 2018 at 7:51 pm

    Uru, I just checked your age on Wikipedia to give me some perspective. I like you but I just find it absurd that you are 38 and still having deliberations, writing articles about who pays on dates in 2018???? Lord have mercy!

    Let’s be honest, you know you will never ask a man out hence the rationalization that who ‘asks’ should pay, Lmao! I hope you are not one of those cross-carpeters that want the perks of traditional women and the perks of modern women. Just choose one and stay in ya lane.

    • Eric

      January 23, 2018 at 11:14 pm


      Somebody wrote about a topic, rather than discuss the subject matter you go and research the person.
      @Engoz so she shouldn’t deliberate at her age? What is wrong with you? I don’t even understand what you meant? Are people not still
      Dating in 2018 or what?

    • Engoz

      January 24, 2018 at 3:08 am

      I would not like to add to your confusion and be very unkind to you. So just read Shift’s comments. Honestly I thought Uru was in her 20s hence the childish article, didn’t know she was racing for 40.

  8. Eric

    January 24, 2018 at 8:21 am

    @Engoz!! How is the article childish? If you read it, you will see where she talked about a couple on a date at the restaurant in their sixties!! Are you saying people at her age shouldn’t date or are beyond dating or cannot discuss it? Why can’t you people be subjective for once!! You want to be unkind to me with your ignorance? Go ahead!

    • simsi

      January 24, 2018 at 1:53 pm

      Like how does age have to do with anything??. People are just bullies and they will always want to bring someone down one way or the other. @Engoz, you are a bully. It’s very unnecessary to mention her age.

    • Engoz

      January 24, 2018 at 2:57 pm

      The woman in her 60s is also very childish. Something is sincerely wrong in grown women feeling disrespected for paying for a meal they ate. Are you people not ashamed for goodness sake? A small girl can be forgiven, but grown women? Wow.

    • Gbaski

      January 24, 2018 at 3:11 pm

      And to think I used to think Engoz had small sense in that fish brain… tufiaaaa!! All these Ndiala people.

  9. Eric

    January 24, 2018 at 3:29 pm

    @Engoz Rather than making a personal comment about someone’s age, make your point about the article! Talking trash about someone racing for 40 over a subject that is very relevant to almost everybody. Uru looks magnificent for her age, let us see you nah!!!

    As Simi said you are a bully!!!

    • Engoz

      January 24, 2018 at 4:01 pm

      Don’t care if you feel bullied, but it must be said that grown women in their 30s and above should not feel disrespected paying for a meal they ate. Grow up so that you will not feel insulted when your age is called into question. You can call me out any time too like you did. I can take it, lmao!

  10. Eric

    January 24, 2018 at 5:05 pm

    @Egoz Now I see where the problem lies, you lack comprehension! Where did I mentioned I felt bullied? I said you are a bully. How can a grown man like me be bullied by a no faced, anonymous like you! It’s impossible. You are trying to age shame the writer of this article by pointing out irrelevance! Be subjective with your opinion and let us dialogue like the adult you claim so highly to be! I don’t feel insulted either but I will definitely not point out nonsense when I see it. Madam age appropriate with your weak argument!

    • Engoz

      May 9, 2018 at 8:22 pm

      Only Nigerians get offended by their age being called into question. You are the only one with insecurities about age that was clearly on her own Wiki page. A grown 38 year old woman, self proclaimed independent woman should never everrr feel disrespected paying for her meal. The rest of your argument is just sentimentality.

    • Smh

      May 9, 2018 at 10:52 pm

      Coming all the way back to reply a comment made 5 months ago. Na wa oooo. Height of pettiness.

  11. Eric

    January 24, 2018 at 5:08 pm

    *point out nonsense when I see it*

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