Who should pay on a date?

@Money July 11, 2011: 4:52 PM ET
Who pays on a date?

(Money Magazine) -- After dating for over a year, is it still the man's place to pick up all the restaurant tabs? --T.N., St. Charles, Ill.

Readers say:

The one who invites the other out should be the one who pays. -- Norma Sidler, Lake Elmo, Minn.

Not in this era, the 21st century. -- Mike Dolan, Bolivia, N.C.

If he makes a lot more than she does, it seems reasonable to expect him to pay. But she should be willing to pick up the check on occasion or invite him over for a home-cooked meal. -- Cynthia Osterman, Sugar Land, Texas

Many women today earn more than their significant other, so they should pick up the check once in a while. -- George Adams, Hoschton, Ga.

Does the girlfriend cook for him? Do his laundry? He may be getting the better of the bargain. -- Jacki Burdick, Roseville, Calif.

Who pays should be based on how well each person can handle the expense. If you can't talk openly about it at this point in your relationship, consider it a warning sign. -- Jayne Dorfman, Wellesley, Mass.

The expert says:

We all -- even men -- have Disney princess fantasies in which we are taken care of (and occasionally treated to steak dinners) by Prince Charming. But many guys are reluctant to act on this because of a lingering sense that "real men pay." Why role-play from the Mad Men era, especially in light of most modern relationships, where everyone is working. Raise the issue with your gal pal, saying,

"How would you feel about taking me out every once in a while?" Who knows? You may be wrestling your girlfriend for the check in no time! -- Philip Galanes, "New York Times" Social Q's etiquette columnist

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