The death of dating

Already some millennials see the value in the old-fashioned dinner dates—like Elizabeth Whitney, a New York-based educator who describes herself as “heteroflexible” (that is, she considers herself heterosexual, but is open to dating members of the same sex).

“It’s not about the meal—more about the time investment,” she said.

“In theory, I like the dinner date, but nearly every time I’ve gone on one as a first date I feel like I’m trapped with somebody who got stale after the first 15 minutes,” said Christine Victoria Waller, a 35-year-old childhood educator who lives outside of New York City.

“For beginning dates, I prefer a cocktail someplace nice, with the option of it turning into dinner if we are feeling it.” Online dating has been instrumental in this shift toward more casual outings like coffee or drinks, said April Masini, a relationship and etiquette expert.

Restaurants are busy on Valentine’s Day, but many couples early in their relationship avoid them.

In recent years, somewhere between endless Tinder swipes and countless Ok Cupid matches, the dinner date has fallen by the wayside.

Millennials, by and large, have come to realize that “hooking up” is not all it was cracked up to be.

Articles by twentysomethings critiquing the hook-up culture have appeared in numerous sources, even on ’s website.

(This appears to complement another trend noted by market researcher NPD Group that suggests 57% of meals In the U. are eaten alone.) There’s good reason why people don’t want to sit through a meal with a stranger for an hour or, often times, longer.One singleton this reporter spoke to called it her “worst nightmare” and another said the idea of sitting through an unspecified number of hours of food, drinks or dessert makes her anxious.A recent article in Cosmopolitan detailed, “Why First-Date Dinners Suck,” listing similar reasons: the date category is antiquated, the time frame of the event is too long if there is no chemistry, and eating is too “intimate.” Dating online can be more miss than hit, even when you see the photo beforehand, so there is a risk that the dinner will feel even longer.Location-based apps like Tinder and gay dating app Grindr have made the number of potential partners endless and the prospect of buying dinner for all of them impossible.In large cities like New York and Los Angeles, a dinner tab for two at a midprice restaurant can be well over , not including wine and aperitifs.It’s also usually harder on the man’s wallet, studies show.Three-quarters of about 1,000 people asked in a 2014 survey by personal finance site Nerd Wallet favored men picking up the check after dinner, with only about 20% preferring to go Dutch and an anomalous 4% saying men shouldn’t pay the bill.Indeed, caters to people who want to do more than have a quick drink or even hookup, although they focus on more group activities.For those who do their research and feel sure that the relationship could have a future, it’s worth giving dinner a shot.Although these articles do not usually condemn the hook-up culture outright, they tend to observe that hooking up rarely, if ever, leads to a meaningful relationship with the other person.In fact, the authors and interviewees of these articles see that the central idea of the hook-up culture—that sex need not carry any consequences—works against this possibility: The only way to avoid being hurt by a hook-up in which the other person only wanted sex (which, in the hook-up culture, is entirely permissible) is to be the person who only wants sex.


  1. In recent years, somewhere between endless Tinder swipes and countless OkCupid matches, the dinner date has fallen by the wayside. As online dating surges in.

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