The dating world is strange and competitive: I’ve had enough bad Saturday nights to fill a book. But what’s more shocking is how expensive it can be.
Putting aside the who-pays-when politics, the dating lifestyle alone is pricey--and every single woman should have a separate dating budget. Here’s the breakdown for a city gal like me:
|Mani-pedis, waxing||$50–$100 per month|
|Date-worthy clothes, shoes, accessories||$500+ per year (My writer’s budget means no Carrie Bradshaw closet!)|
|Transportation||$10+ per late-night cab ride (about $30 a week)|
|Online dating fees||Match.com: $21+ per month for 6 months|
|Going out—to a bar, classes, wherever men are||$50 per month|
|TOTAL DATING BUDGET||Approx. $300 per month|
Is my quote-unquote love life worth $300 a month? Shouldn’t I put that into my retirement account or emergency fund?
In fact, I do put 10% of every paycheck into savings. But dating is a necessity. Spending this money is an investment in my (happily coupled) future and it adds value to my life.
How can I afford it? Sometimes I can’t—and my budget will force me into a dating break. Then my wallet and I spend a cozy night at home, together.
Kiss & tell. How much does your love life cost you?
Simone Grant is a writer/blogger and social media consultant in New York City. She blogs regularly at Sex, Lies and Dating in the City.