10 unwritten rules of dating in London

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Dating in London

Dating in London is different to anywhere else in the UK. With a population of more than eight million, competition is fierce, the pace of life is rapid and romance is rarely a priority. Here are the 10 unwritten rules that govern dating culture in the capital

1. It’s OK to split the bill

London is the world’s 15th most expensive city to live in. Sharing the cost of a date, therefore, is a necessity rather than an option.

2. There are no lunchtime dates

Dates in London only happen in the evening. Just finding time for a sandwich in a one-hour lunch break is tricky enough, let alone travelling across the city for a date.

3. Avoid public transport during the date

We all have our own particular defence mechanisms for using public transport. Some feign sleep, some pretend to be crazy, and some adopt the fighting stance. Whatever you do, it’s probably best if your date doesn’t see it.

4. Books are judged by their covers

Time is a precious commodity in London, so expect to be judged quickly and decisively by the person sitting opposite you.

5. Check availability beforehand

Whether you’re going to a gig, play, restaurant or ­­the cinema, make sure you book in advance. Tickets sell out and tables get reserved faster than you might think. Trying to come up with an impromptu plan B can be a tad embarrassing.

6. Don’t expect your date to be on time

Getting from A to B in London isn’t always easy – you often have to go via C, D, P and L. When your date does arrive, don’t be surprised if they appear bedraggled and a little wild-eyed.

7. Choose the date together

Whether it’s food or film, Londoners are used to having a lot of choice. Make sure you involve your date in making decisions about what you do.

8. Dates should end before midnight

Londoners don’t turn into pumpkins at 12, but they do become nervous wrecks if they miss the last Tube.

9. Don’t arrange to meet in crowded areas

Making hopeful eye contact with strangers who might (or might not) be your date isn’t much fun. If you must meet somewhere busy, be specific about the location and get them to call you when they arrive.

10. Mobile phones will make an appearance

Don’t be peeved if your date uses their mobile – they’re probably just reassuring their friends that you’re not a psychopath.


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