Research reveals the cost of a good date

3 months ago
The average person has gone on $3,025.12 worth of dates within the past year, according to new research.

A survey of 2,000 general population Americans looked at the cost of dating and relationships within the past year — the average respondent has gone on eight dates in the past six months, costing $189 each.

This lines up with what respondents estimate a good date should cost: $196, but one in eight expect to spend even more, at least $300, on each date night.

Results showed that men have higher expectations, believing that good dates cost about $220, while the average woman believes a good date costs $170.

Conducted by OnePoll in partnership with LELO, the survey found that it may be time to start saving for the next date.

When it comes to picking up the tab, the same percentage of respondents are likely to pay for a date (33%) as those who have the date paid for them (31%) and 27% said they split bills or take turns paying.

Men are more likely to be the ones who usually sponsor dates (54%) compared to just 12% of women.

Relationship costs don’t just stop at date nights. The average person has spent nearly $360 on gifts for their partner within the past year, with one in five saying they’ve spent upwards of $500.

Men averaged higher expenses on gifts for their partner ($430) while women spent a little less, averaging $272.

Don’t think about skipping out, either — 35% of respondents said regardless of how long they’re with a partner, they’d judge them if they didn’t receive a gift for a special occasion.

But how long can respondents keep shelling out for love? Two-thirds of those surveyed said that dates have become more expensive over the past year.

So much so that 37% see themselves going on fewer dates within the next year because of the economy and 60% will budget how much they’ll spend on relationships overall.

"In the dynamic landscape of modern relationships, where 'infla-dating' is reshaping connection costs, we encourage couples to redefine their approach to love's expenses,” said Luka Matutinovic, chief marketing officer at LELO. “Navigate the currents of love wisely, prioritizing experiences that amplify togetherness. Stretch your budget wisely, opting for meaningful moments over extravagant expenses, and watch your relationship thrive without financial strain."

Staying cuffed up may be the key, as 31% believe you should spend less on dates the longer you’re with someone.

Respondents also shared their favorite money-saving tips for relationships, like going out to eat at places that are cost-friendly (42%), buying gifts when they’re on sale (40%) and going out for meals at less expensive times of the day like breakfast or lunch (35%).

And nearly half believe it’s okay to take someone on a date that’s considered “budget-friendly” (45%), with a similar percentage claiming that they wouldn’t judge their date for taking them somewhere “cheap” (50%).

Likewise, half of Americans also believe it’s okay to take someone on a date that’s completely free and 47% wouldn’t judge their date for doing so.

Interestingly, women are less likely to be judgemental about going on a date somewhere budget-conscious than men (55% vs. 45%).

Two in three respondents even said that one of the best dates they’ve ever been on was somewhere that was budget-friendly like a party (21%), their home (19%), their date’s home (13%) or a movie theater (11%).

Money can’t buy love — according to one in seven who believe that money isn’t influential in having a good connection with someone.

"A remarkable number of respondents have embraced the transformative potential of intimacy through investing in sex toys,” Matutinovic said. “Eighty-five percent of respondents who have purchased a sex toy in the past year said it’s improved the quality of their relationship.

This trend underscores a commitment to enhancing pleasure and strategically elevating the connection within relationships. We proudly applaud those who recognize sex toys not just as items but as essential investments in passion, offering a sophisticated and thrilling way to switch things up and deepen the bonds of love."

Survey methodology:
This random double-opt-in survey of 2,000 general population Americans was commissioned by LELO between Nov. 8 and Nov. 9, 2023. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).

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