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Nothing spells romance like a date who doesn't leave a tip for the waiter or forgets his wallet at home. Patti Stanger, a third-generation matchmaker and the dating guru behind Bravo’s reality TV series The Millionaire Matchmaker alerts Food & Wine to five more indications that a potential love interest is a cheapskate.
1. Going out for coffee. “The rule is that coffee is very non-personal,” says Stanger. “If someone asks you out for coffee they’re usually cheap. Lunch is an interview and drinks are an audition, as if you’re auditioning for a part in a movie. Dinner is romance.”
2. There's a Groupon involved. “That’s like the early bird special in Florida with my parents. That’s really bad and totally cheap. If he uses a Val-Pak you're in trouble. Or if he knows where the 2-for-1 specials are all over town. Mmm hmm.”
3. "Let's split something." Sharing an appetizer or dessert can be an intimate part of the experience, but splitting a main course is a red flag according to Stanger.
4. Being dissuaded from ordering an appetizer. "Of course you shouldn’t order the most expensive thing on the menu like Cristal or lobster unless your date says order whatever you want," says Stanger. But the average appetizer in the U.S. runs about $8—not a bad add-on for a date with a potential lifetime partner.
5. Rushing out before dessert. "Most importantly a guy should want you to enjoy the experience," says Stanger. If he doesn’t linger for dessert he’s probably not going to stick around for a meaningful relationship.