That is the question hotly debated all over the eHarmony Advice boards. In fact, it is one of the most popular topics of discussion we have ever had with over five hundred comments. Who would’ve thought!?
Reactions from the community run the gamut from “that’s soooooo tacky” to “it makes economical sense.” Others weighed in with, “I think it’s kind of smart” or “I have to say NO to coupons and gift cards on first dates. It makes it seem like you’re a super penny pincher and while some people LOVE to bargain hunt, coupons are not the way to go on a first, second, third (date).”
Some of my favorite responses were, “If it’s McDonalds or Applebee’s two for $20 … don’t do it!” and “I freely admit to being frugal and tight with money, but even I wouldn’t use a coupon on a first date. What’s next, you ask your date to catch the bus home rather than offering a lift?”
Now, with online deals like Groupon flooding our inboxes, there is an added layer of cost-cutting complexity. So, after reading all 576 opinions, here’s where I stand on things…
First date: No coupons. No gift cards. No Groupon two-for-one deal. If you take any of our relationship advice in the first place, you won’t be at an elaborate or expensive steak house anyways, which can tend to up the “uncomfortable” factor. You really want the first meeting to be casual, cool and uncomplicated. Meet at the local taqueria (I love Mexican food!) or coffee house (not Starbucks, something with character!). The focus shouldn’t be on how much you will have to spend but really getting to know this possible love connection. The consensus is that many people do think it’s tacky. I am all for being smart with your money, but in this specific occasion, it’s not worth the risk of someone thinking you are simply frugal and writing you off.
Second date: Still no coupons. No gift cards or Groupon deals. It’s still too soon and you are just getting to know each other.
Third date: If you are feeling very comfortable and like the person already has a good sense of who you are, approach your date with a, “Hey, I got this killer Groupon deal for this place I’ve been wanting to try. Are you up for it?”
Further, use coupons on dates every so often. Not every weekend.
For you coupon coveters, I know you will completely ignore me and that’s cool. You may even find a compatible cost-saving lover and things will work out perfectly. This is all about trying to help you find a good partner.