The Price of Being Single

By price, I mean cost.

I was recently contemplating traveling out of town to date a guy who, for good reasons, couldn’t travel in. I ran an estimate on the cost of the trip and gave a low whistle. It was a huge amount to spend on a first date. And this guy spent this kind of money every time he went out with a woman in New York City.

It seemed an unsustainable sum. At that kind of rate, you need a full-time job to support your dating habit. How do guys do it?

Single women often think of marriage as expensive. There’s all the clothing you need, the household supplies, the rent, etc. Financially, it’s a less cozy state of existence. But for guys it’s the exact opposite. Finally, they can stop renting cars, driving hours on end, paying for restaurant meals and museum tickets and overpriced java… Marriage is so relaxing.

Guys, you have my sympathy.

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30 thoughts on “The Price of Being Single

  1. Such a practical concept and financial approach to dating. As a Bal T’shuva the frum world does indeed present various obstacles to dating. Being that one of the things I love to do is write, I need to stop myself from going on. Just wanted to say I appreciated your very level headed concept on dating in the frum world, particularly from the point of view of out of town dating. Thanks. AharonMoshe

  2. I have heard that people are opting for Skype dates for the first couple of dates with a new person. If after 3 dates you still are interested then you can go and meet in person. This saves the couple travel time and money.

  3. What’s your opinion on starting off an interaction with a potential shidduch via email?

    I find that I can usually get a sense of a person through a decent and honest email conversation, and can then make a judgement whether to put the time into meeting in person.

  4. The economy isn’t exactly making things easier (I’ll spare you my rant on economics as this isn’t a political blog) since we’re supposed to bringing the (non literal, I’m a mashgiach I have to avoid treif even on the internet) bacon.

    Simply put dating requires times x money. Since time = money and money is route of evil, dating = evil squared, then again it’s less evil than being single.

  5. I once upped the ante on a blind date from Mendy’s to Le Marais and we will soon have our fourteenth anniversary. Just saying.

  6. It may be evil^4, but joking aside you make more money when you’re married so there’s another cost to being married. Single men don’t need to earn as much as married men do (something with those mini-humans called children), hence they can be paid less. And you get taxed more as well.

    To go back to joke mode that makes marriage evil, but that’s better than evil^3 (or 4).

  7. As an out of towner, it is not easy to come in to NYC that frequently, though thankfully my brother lives there which means I have a free place to stay. It changes the dating dynamic a bit though because I usually talk on the phone with the Lady several times if not more before deciding to meet in person.
    In terms of cost a few tricks I have learned are using student fare websites to find cheap airfare, or if they don’t have it checking with TripleA. Also shared ride shuttles are nice since public transit to and from LaGuardia is not efficient in my experience. As for how I pay for it, since I am now independent of my parents I generally set aside an amount each month to be used for this purpose.

  8. As a female I once flew almost halfway around the world to meet a guy that I had chatted to for a few weeks on the phone. He wasn’t able to fly to me for valid reasons so we decided that I was to go to him. We split the price of the ticket and my parents gave me money for my half which I refused to take. They can’t afford it and I am an adult… Whilst it was hardly a vacation I still had a good time (even though I was ready to kill him by the time I left…). The whole trip ended up being really expensive since the ticket was expensive plus I was there for two weeks and I felt bad that he kept paying for things so I paid for quite a lot in the end. I think he ended up paying more though. I do feel bad that guys always pay. As a non-American though, I am always told I should move to New York or at least need to go to NY for dates… With the price of the tickets as they are now I think I’d rather be single…

  9. If we’re taking “root of evil” to mean “square root of evil” then anything that equals time x money = evil, not evil squared or cubed or fourthed. That’s a more satisfying result anyway, isn’t it?

  10. My husband actually just told me he paid for all our dates, and I still feel guilty for making him spend $70 at MAKE. I only realized how much it costed after I saw the receipt, and I never would have picked the piece I did if I would have realized how much it cost.

  11. The price I pay for airfare etc. does not come close to the price my pride pays when the young woman for whom I travelled stands me up on the second or even first (yes, that has happened) date.

  12. I think the time issue is a bigger deal than price. If you are in college or working, then yes it may cost a tidy sum to go out of town but I found the amount of time I had to spend on the whole ordeal even worse. I pay for my own dates and hold a full time professional job (40-60 hrs a week). As a guy who lives in New York, I have plenty of opportunities here so I can be more selective in my out of town trips. In the yeshiva world, the parents wish they were still only paying for dates once they have to start supporting the couple.

    Just remember that in exchange for paying for the date, guys do get to do things that they probably enjoy more than the girl, and can make the decision on when to end a date. Anyone who has been on a DOA date, knows what I mean.

  13. Allow me to relate a dating anecdote on how much dating costs.

    I discussed over the phone with my date the geographical location of our destination. She suggested a nearby place down the street. I happily obliged. With her right next to me, I ordered the water for which she asked. The employee said the water was $20. I was taken aback. $20 for water? This wasn’t a hotel lounge in Manhattan! The employee explained there were free refills. My date did not make any comment and took her glass of ice water.

    About two-and-a-half hours later, I asked if she had ever come to this establishment before and she said she visited numerous times on dates. I asked why she liked it and she stated the amenities and fringe benefits.

    Now, not only did she not want to take advantage of any of the amenities or fringe benefits of the location (non specific examples would be a nice view, outdoor seating, performing artists, a nearby boardwalk, etc) but she had been to the location before and knew how much a stupid glass of water cost. The kicker is that she only drank about 3 ounces of it! I would have been better off going to the place I suggested, where the chairs and tables were more comfortable, the decibel level was much lower, the ambiance nicer, and the selection of sustenance was broader and far cheaper.

    But no, this girl wanted her $20 water at approximately $6.67 an ounce in a place that was subpar.

    Post date, I told my sisters what happened and all remarked that they would not have let their date spend such a ridiculous amount on water and would have suggested leaving and finding another place, especially when my dating location suggestion was down the street.

    And the shadchun said this girl was considerate and thoughtful. Oh boy.

  14. LSD,
    I’m assuming that you got plastered after your law school finals prior to going out on that date. This is the only reason that I could come up with as to why you would actually pay $20 for dihydrogen monoxide.

  15. [mimicking voice] Why don’t girls ever make suggestions for where to go? If we agree to go, we’re okay with the price. Don’t girls care at all? etc etc. (Sorry for being obnoxious, but I couldn’t resist.)

    She thought this was a classier place to date.
    Whatever. Some people consider that very important. Otherwise, they can be very nice people.

  16. @frumcollegegirl – i pay for my dates too and so do some other guys i know. not all, but there are a number of them. Some girls are completely clueless about how much things cost and can be obnoxious about things. Like the girl who complained about my car, which while is not fancy or anything like that, is functional and reliable – oh and I paid for it with my own savings!

    Whats funny is that when a guy tries to be responsible, they get panned for not living up to the expectations that some of these girls have. But when they do get things paid for by others, they are seen as immature. whatever

  17. Double Trip, I never got “plastered” in my life.

    Bad4, for many people you can say, “Otherwise, they can be very nice people.” The KKK hang jews and blacks. Otherwise, they can be very nice people.

    College girl, Harryer than them all said it well. And, I, too, use my own money to pay for all my dates. It was your use of the word “actually” that may have caused MCP to respond.

  18. It could be that they don’t realize you’re paying for the date yourself, and figure you should be more generous with Daddy’s plastic. I have more trouble excusing the car comment, but it’s very likely that, living on her parents largess, she has no clue how much these things can cost. She may be educatable, or you can just consider her a lucky miss.

    LSD – C’mon. Skip the reductio ad absurdum. There’s a far cry of difference between liking classiness and lynching people. Moreover, classiness is an adaptive evolutionary trait in women that makes them very attractive to boring but wealthy men.

  19. LSD, you’re missing out 😉 also, her usage of the word “actually” wasn’t what made me respond, it was merely the fact that she happened to be wrong.

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