Here's exactly what to say when you're not sure who should pay on a first date

If you end up marrying the person you are now on a first date with, you will at some point have to talk about money.

You know, paying the electric bill and saving up to send the kids to college, and all that romantic stuff.

But right now? There’s no need to start drawing up a plan for splitting the bill for drinks or appetizers or whatever you ordered.

In fact, according to relationship expert Andrea Syrtash, author of “It’s OK to Sleep With Him on the First Date,” it’s best to avoid talking explicitly about who’s going to pay, in order to avoid exacerbating the awkwardness in this already uncomfortable situation.

In general, Syrtash believes that whoever initiated the date should pay. The other person should accept graciously.

Interestingly, among her clients, she’s noticed that most women who date men do still expect the man to pay.

If you expect the other person to pay but you’re planning the date, “be respectful,” Syrtash said. Try to pick a place that isn’t so expensive so you won’t feel guilty when your date foots the bill. She suggested arranging a date over happy hour drinks.

When the bill arrives, even if you expect the other person to pay, you should still offer to pay. Otherwise, Syrtash said, it’s “kind of rude.”

Know that your date might agree to split the cost — even if you weren’t being entirely sincere when you offered. If that’s not what you’re looking for in a partner, then it’s good to know now that it’s not a great match.

And if your date does end up paying, Syrtash said, make sure to say, “Thanks again and nice to meet you” — even if you weren’t feeling a romantic connection.

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