Dating ‘Expert’ Says Men Should Always Pay For The First Date

A self-described dating “expert” has insisted that men should pay the full bill on first dates to avoid looking “cheap” to the women they’re out with. TikToker Nelly, who goes by @ask.nelly on the platform, created quite a stir with a video she posted earlier this week in which she insists the onus is on men to pick up the tab, especially if they were the ones to ask the women out. Unsurprisingly, not everyone agrees with her.


I SAID WHAT I SAID ☝️💋#datingadvice #datingadviceformen #datingadviceforwomen #firstdate

♬ original sound – 🖤 Nelly 🖤

  1. Many people appreciate going Dutch. When you first go on a date with someone, it makes perfect sense and is completely fair for each person to pay their share of the bill at the bar or restaurant they visit. If things turn into a relationship, there will be plenty of time for “treating” each other, so on a first date, many people prefer to pay their own way. However, Nelly thinks that’s a terrible idea. “Men should never let a woman pay for a first date because if you’re asking a girl out and then going Dutch, it just shows you’re cheap,” she says in the clip.
  2. Men who don’t pay have bad breeding, apparently. If you’re wondering why not paying for a relative stranger’s bill makes a guy “cheap,” Nelly has the answer. She claims that making the person you’re out with pay their own way illustrates that they “weren’t raised right,” are “not chivalrous,” and might just be “dating out of their price range.” What does that even mean?!  “By that [dating out of their price range] I mean you’re taking a girl out on a date you can’t afford to do, so instead of trying to flex on a nice dinner, you’re better off taking her on a picnic in the park,” she explains.
  3. Even women who don’t want men to pay for the first date secretly do? While many women, myself included, prefer to pay for myself so there’s no precedent set with the guy I’m out with, apparently I’m lying about that according to Nelly. “Even the most progressive girls who insist they split it with you and say they don’t mind… do mind,” she claims. “Not because they can’t afford it, but because it shows us your character and if you’re a girl and you’ve paid for first dates, I want to tell you that he ain’t it sis.”
  4. Obviously, Nelly’s video has stirred up a lot of strong opinions. One person wrote: “Lol what? It’s 2021. Whoever asks the other person out should pay for the date.” Another added: “I would rather pay for myself. Then there are no ‘expectations.'” Someone else chipped in: “Am I the only woman who always either pays for the first date or splits it and would never let a man pay? It makes me uncomfortable when people pay.”

What do you think?

Jennifer Still is a writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience. The managing editor of Bolde, she has bylines in Vanity Fair, Business Insider, The New York Times, Glamour, Bon Appetit, and many more. You can follow her on Twitter @jenniferlstill