Sophie Watson, 06.11.2018

The Price of Love: What Does a Typical Date Night Cost?

JLo once sang about how her love don't cost a thing, and the Beatles famously declared that money can’t buy them love. However, for most people in the dating game, it turns out that romance does, in fact, come at a price – our latest data analysis has shown that a typical Australian date night totals up to an average of $145.

Calculating the cost of a date night

With a summer full of great date ideas stretching out before us, we decided it was time to delve into the cost of love and to discover how much Aussies can expect to spend on a typical date night.

Defining a 'typical date night' as one that includes a mid-range dinner for two, a shared bottle of wine, two cinema tickets, and a 8 kilometre mile taxi ride home, we looked at the standard prices for each item to determine that an average date night in Australia will set you back $1451.

Of course, there are Australian cities where dating is a bit more costly. We applied the method above to find out the average cost for a date in 25 of the world's most well-known cities – and the most expensive cities came as something of a surprise!

How much does it cost to date in Australia?

And Australia’s priciest city for romance is….Sydney!

A typical date in Sydney costs $160, making a date night in Australia's biggest city $15 more expensive than the average. But Sydney isn't the only city that might require a small loan to enjoy a date night.  The aforementioned date will set you back $158 in Melbourne, $156 in Hobart and $152 in Canberra.

At the other end of the scale is Dubbo. For those looking to save a few notes, the New South Wales city might be the dating destination of choice – an average date night is only $123. That means those dating in Dubbo are spending $37 less than those in Sydney – that’s enough left over for a coffee date the next day!

While Dubbo was the only sub-$130 city, other spots on the lower end of the scale include Geelong, where a date night is $133, Toowoomba, where it's $136, and Adelaide, which also comes in at $136. Meanwhile, the middle of the pack was made up of Brisbane and Gold Coast with a night out costing $146, and in Cairns dating is a snip at $145.

Cost of a Date in 14 Cities Across Australia

  1. Sydney, NSW: $160
  2. Melbourne, VIC: $158
  3. Hobart, TAS: $156
  4. Canberra, ACT: $152
  5. Perth, WA: $149
  6. Brisbane, QLD: $146
  7. Gold Coast, QLD: $146
  8. Cairns, QLD: $145
  9. Newcastle, NSW: $143
  10. Darwin, NT: $143
  11. Adelaide, SA: $136
  12. Toowoomba, QLD: $136
  13. Geelong, VIC: $133
  14. Dubbo, NSW: $123

The Cost of a Date Night Around the World

As well as analysing Australian dating costs, we decided to make a global comparison, and so we examined the average cost of a date night in 25 of the world’s most interesting cities.

To make the comparison a fair one, we used the same criteria to describe a ‘typical date night’ (the meal, the wine, the movie, the taxi) and, converting global prices into AUD, we discovered that the average cost of a date worldwide is $130 AUD - $15 dollars less than the Australian average of $145!

The World's Most Expensive City for Dating

While it may seem like Aussies are paying a fairly hefty price for romance, it does pale on the global scale. Indeed, at $160, an average date in Sydney is cheaper than the same date in seven other global cities, including Paris, Amsterdam, Tokyo, Stockholm, New York, London, and Oslo.

Oslo is, in fact, the world’s most expensive city for a romantic date night. A typical date in the Norwegian capital costs an eye-watering $241, making it $13 more expensive than the runner-up, London, where a date night costs $228. Coming in third place is New York, whose $204 price tag makes it North America's most expensive city to date in.

Of course, there are also global cities where dating is much cheaper than Australia. The cheapest city is Istanbul, where the typical date night is only $44. Second-cheapest is Mumbai, where the cost is $50, and third place goes to Mexico City, where a night out will set you back $64. 

Cost of a Date (in AUD) in 25 Major Global Cities

  1. Oslo, Norway:  $241
  2. London, UK: $228
  3. New York, USA: $204
  4. Stockholm, Sweden: $175
  5. Tokyo, Japan: $173
  6. Amsterdam, the Netherlands: $165
  7. Paris, France: $161
  8. Sydney, Australia: $160
  9. Toronto, Canada: $155
  10. Auckland, New Zealand: $149
  11. Hong Kong: $148
  12. Berlin, Germany: $143
  13. Seoul, South Korea: $124
  14. Singapore: $121
  15. Barcelona, Spain: $121
  16. Nairobi, Kenya: $105
  17. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: $99
  18. Taipei, Taiwan (ROC): $97
  19. Shanghai, China (PRC): $95
  20. Moscow, Russia: $87
  21. Cape Town, South Africa: $78
  22. Bogotá, Colombia: $74
  23. Mexico City, Mexico: $64
  24. Mumbai, India: $50
  25. Istanbul, Turkey: $44