Why beautiful people don't expect to pay on a hot date
MEN, you have been warned - if you're planning to take an attractive woman out for dinner, make sure you take your wallet.
Research has confirmed what many have long suspected - people who think they are good-looking are less likely to offer to pay for their meal.
Psychologists from the University of St Andrews found that people who judge themselves to be attractive tended to expect their potential love interest to pay for dinner.
They also found that women preferred men to pay, especially when they were handsome.
Men were more likely to offer to pay for a woman's meal on a date if she was pretty - possibly increasing their chances of securing a second date, or perhaps putting off those they found less easy on the eye.
Psychologist Dr Michael Stirrat said: "We predicted that attractive people would show less willingness to pay because people that are more attractive bring more to the table - literally - in the dating market."
The psychologists carried out the study by setting up "hypothetical blind dates".
They asked the 245 men and 171 women to rate how handsome or pretty they thought they were. The researchers then showed them 12 facial images of the opposite sex, ranging from unattractive to good-looking, and asked them who they would prefer to pay the bill if they went for a meal.
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Most often participants said they would prefer to split the bill, with 47 per cent of men and 50 per cent of women quizzed choosing that option.
Both sexes more often reported a preference for their date to pay rather than to pay for the meal themselves.
The researchers also found that participants of both sexes who considered themselves attractive were more likely to prefer their date to pay for the meal.
Dr Stirrat said: "(More attractive people] need to make less effort either to meet people, or get a chance to impress people, so it does make sense that more attractive people would be less willing to pay. They are going to have more opportunity, so they can be more choosy."
The researchers also found that women were less interested in men picking up the bill if they did not find them attractive, perhaps to avoid them signalling they wanted another date.
Dr Stirrat said: "The women tended to say the more attractive the man, the more likely they were to say they would like him to pay. They would rather that a more attractive man paid for the meal than a less attractive man, because it seems to be that they saw this as a signal to further pursue the relationship."
The study - The Effect of Attractiveness on Food Sharing Preferences in Human Mating Markets - is published in the journal Evolutionary Psychology.
David Miller, director at etiquette guardian Debrett's, said: "There is one abiding rule when it comes to it - the person who requests the pleasure, pays for the pleasure.So as a simple point of etiquette, you should pick up the tab … if you have invited the other person."
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Saturday 18 May 2013
Temperature: 9 C to 13 C
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Temperature: 9 C to 18 C
Wind Speed: 8 mph
Wind direction: North east