Dating Tips: Is It OK to Use a Coupon?

Last Updated Sep 13, 2010 11:50 AM EDT


Can Groupon help you get your groove on?

A new RedPlum Purse String Study says more than three-quarters of Americans would have no problem bringing a coupon on a first date, be it at the movie theater or restaurant. "In years past, using a coupon on a date would have been unheard of and considered not to be the best way to make a good first impression." says RedPlum's Lisa Reynolds. "Today it is a mindful choice...You're seen as savvy for saving money wherever you can."

Many single folks I spoke to agree.

Thirty-four-year-old Michael Stenz of Portland, Ore., says using coupons on a date is "practical." Last month the operations director used a buy-one-get-one-free lunch coupon at a downtown pub. "The date went well. We talked about it and how she always uses coupons out of the newspaper," he says. "I wouldn't want a woman who doesn't appreciate that."
Atefeh Yazdi, 30, a sales rep from Harrisburg, Pa., has been using coupons on first dates for as long as she can remember. In one case she used two coupons in one night, first at the movie theater and then later at TGIFridays. "The date went well...I think I caught him off guard [with the coupons] so he was a little taken back at first, but then we laughed about it."

David Sanders, 41, recently used a buy-one-get-one-free coupon when he and his date visited a frozen yogurt shop in Atlanta. It wasn't his first attempt presenting a coupon on a first date, either. "I have no problem," he says. "Look, if we're going to a particular place anyway ... and we have a coupon, why not?"

Still, some relationship experts think it's a bit inappropriate. "We all know times are tough and money is tight, but a first date is not the place to break out coupons...They can quickly dampen the atmosphere," says Hattie Grace Elliot, founder of The Grace List. If saving money is a priority, just stick to a plan that's within your budget, she suggest. "A picnic in the park on a beautiful evening can be just as romantic - if not more - than a dinner at a five-star restaurant," she says. "You can craft a priceless first date" without a coupon.

Bottom line: Using coupons on a first date may get you mixed reactions, depending on the person. But at least, if your date does end up ditching you because of it, you didn't pay full price to get dumped.

What would you think if a date used a coupon? Please sign in and comment below.
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    Farnoosh Torabi is a personal finance journalist and commentator. She is the author of the new book Psych Yourself Rich, Get the Mindset and Discipline You Need to Build Your Financial Life. Follow her at www.farnoosh.tv and on Twitter at @farnoosh.

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