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Most say it's OK to use a coupon on the first date

A new survey found that some Americans even think that frugality is downright sexy.

By MSN Money Partner Jul 2, 2014 2:21PM

This post comes from Krystal Steinmetz at partner site Money Talks News.

Money Talks News on MSN MoneyDon't be afraid to whip out a coupon to help pay for a first date.

Man feeding woman © Jack Hollingsworth/Brand X/Getty Images

It turns out your date most likely thinks it's OK, and may even think your frugality is sexy.

That's the finding of a new Harris Poll on behalf of LivingSocial, a daily deals site that provides discounts on restaurant meals and other activities.

About 86 percent of men and 88 percent of women agreed that using a coupon is acceptable dating etiquette, while just 13 percent said it's unacceptable to use a coupon on a first date.

Interestingly, Americans with household incomes above $100,000 were more likely to approve of coupon use than those who make less than $50,000 -- 90 percent vs. 84 percent.

Other highlights from the dating survey include:

  • Grandpa is Casanova. Men ages 65 and older are more than twice as likely as their younger counterparts (ages 35-64) to go out on five to 10 dates each month -- 26 percent vs. 11 percent. Younger women, ages 18-34, date more frequently than older women. Married couples are also more likely to head out for date night (76 percent) than unmarried couples (50 percent).
  • Dinner and a movie? Sure, most Americans still enjoy a dinner date and a movie. But the survey found that heading outdoors (biking, hiking, or going to a park or a beach) is the third most popular dating activity.
  • Saving money = sexy. About 12 percent of women said frugality can be a sexy trait in a partner.

"There's no shame in getting a good deal on a good time, whether you're a married couple out on a scheduled date night, a recent college grad trying to save a few bucks, or a grandpa out on the town," said LivingSocial's resident shopper, Elizabeth Hebda.

Florida's WJXT News 4 Jax asked readers what they would do if their first date used a coupon. One woman responded:

I don't think it looks cheap and I feel that it is totally acceptable for several reasons. In my opinion, it shows that he is careful with his money. That is important in these difficult financial times. He showed thought into choosing a restaurant based on the availability of his coupons. Some men don't plan. These two opinions show wisdom in money management, and thought and planning to make the evening an event.

I couldn't agree more.

What do you think? Have you ever used a coupon on a first date?

More from Money Talks News

Jul 2, 2014 4:04PM
Wow, what an amazing study! LivingSocial, a coupon company, commissioned a survey that found coupon use was OK on first-dates. Who'd have thought? Worth of any big pharma company. If they didn't like the results, they could just bury them and commission another study.
Jul 2, 2014 4:14PM

A buddy of mine always used a coupon on first dates.  I talked to his dates, they were horrified he did it.

Sure, the ladies may approve in a survey, but you get a group of women together talking about loser dates and the guy who uses coupons will be the king of fools in that conversation!

Jul 2, 2014 4:38PM
I think it will really impress her/him if you go somewhere you can use your food stamps!
Jul 2, 2014 6:13PM
I'm always shocked when I read so many comments about how it's apparently a status symbol to overspend. Maybe that's why this country is getting further and further into debt. Personally, I'd rather put an extra $10 into my mortgage payment than shy away from using coupons as an embarrassment. The comments in here just go to show how shallow so many people are. Since when did using coupons signify whether someone is a datable person? Perhaps this pamper me attitude is an explanation as to why half of all marriages end in divorce (simply not sustainable).

FYI - I've been with my wife for 10 years, have a 2 year old son, we opened a 529 the day he was born, I've been saving 14% of my income in retirement accounts since I was 24 years old, and yes I've used my fair share of coupons when going on dates with my wife (both initially and still to this day). I'm not saying people shouldn't spend money, but I question why they think it's cool to pay more for stuff just because. To me, more money saved means more money for other important things (could take a vacation down to CA with all the money I've saved over the years in coupons).

Jul 2, 2014 5:37PM
Hey if your a coupon user in general get it out of the way early - if she has a problem with it on the first date she will have a problem with it on the second, third and fourth date as well. So clearly she isnt the one for you.
Jul 2, 2014 4:19PM
Ahhh...the perfect 'frugal' date:  "Do you mind if I use a coupon for our dinner" is followed up with "I got these condoms on sale at the dollar store!"
Jul 2, 2014 2:57PM
MSNBC gives us such important news to comment on......obama wants his followers to be dumb fux.
Jul 2, 2014 3:22PM
So if I tell the IRS that my computer crashed and I lost all my records, do I get off the hook?
Jul 2, 2014 4:58PM
Hell yes. Why be phony and pretentious of the first date??
Why would anyone have an issue with a person saving money? Well i can see millennials and teenagers having an issue as they have no concept of money yet.
Jul 2, 2014 4:07PM

I will use a coupon if it's a percentage off the total, but not if you have to order a specific item.  The latter looks cheap; even if I really wanted that item, she's not going to know me well enough to determine that.

Jul 5, 2014 6:20AM
Many years ago, I had a part time job involving distributing free passes for sneak screenings of movies (then I would attend the film to collect demographics & survey). A gentleman I was interested in asked me out to dinner; at 1st I was going to decline because I had the movie obligation, but then said to him "if we go to dinner a little early, then you can come with me to see the movie." He happily accepted, & we dined at a high-end restaurant, where he paid half price by using a coupon from his entertainment book! We had a few good laughs telling people how the 1st date was a coupon dinner & free movie, a situation we duplicated many more times!

Jul 3, 2014 12:09PM
It depends on how you use it. My mom used to love telling me the story of the guy she went out with in college who let her pay for her meal and then used a 2 for 1 coupon for his. Needless to say, that was their only date.
Jul 3, 2014 9:26AM
Sure, it is ok.  There will be no second date unless the man looks like a movie star.
Jul 5, 2014 3:33PM
This article just shows how shallow many american people are. a date is a date and a meal is a meal, no matter how it's paid for. I date, for the reason of being with another, not to record the method of payment for my food. Wake up americans, get your self respect back.
Jul 5, 2014 8:14AM
Discount date. Discount girlfriend. Discount marriage. Discount kids. YES!
Jul 5, 2014 8:18PM
It really depends on the type of coupon and why. If it's expired or dubious and it causes an embarrassing scene that would NOT be a cool first date activity. That is something couponers are known for, lots of couponing sites say you have to print out coupon policies for places where you use them because you will need it to back you up. If it's subtle and doesn't cause any issues then I don't see a problem. 
Jul 2, 2014 4:37PM
make the gold digger pay for the first date , shes gonna take half later on down the road anyways
Jul 2, 2014 6:20PM
Better yet I don't mind when the women uses one because I never pay on the first date but I let them know it takes more then a free meal to get in my pants. What about gay and lesbians can they use a coupon on the first date? I mean that in a respectful way. What is their dating etiquette. We live in the 21st century let's not leave people out of the discussion.            
Jul 5, 2014 9:43PM
I used a coupon I found in Golf Digest... and used it to get a free Cialis/Viagra for the date. It worked very well and there were no complaints.. :)
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