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"How Much Does a Date Cost?" (1959)

In the 1950s, West German youth had more and more disposable income. This article from Twen shows how much young men were spending on dates.

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Twens report how expensive girls are. “I spent a lot of money on her, but I don’t regret a thing.”

Twen asked twens: How much does a girlfriend cost? For one month, thirty twens wrote down every penny they spent on their girls, added it all up, and sent us the final total. The findings are random, sometimes even harsh, but nonetheless revealing. “I never was entirely aware of how expensive girls actually are,” one of them wrote. “Good thing you asked about it, now I know!”

Only a few of the surveyed twens, however, knew how much their girlfriends spent on them. That will be examined in the next issue. For that, Twen is still looking for reports from female twens.

How expensive, then, are the girls of young men? The twens we surveyed listed very different amounts. As a rough average, however, they spent about DM 20 to 150 per month for their dates (DM 5.50 and DM 310 are no doubt extreme cases). In other words: they spend this money not only on their girlfriends; rather, the majority of it is spent on themselves.


Klaus S., 22, a bank employee from Aachen, is one example. He gets together with Margit every Saturday afternoon. This costs him:

Two ice cream cups
1.80 DM
Two movie tickets
4.- DM
A small serving of french fries (for her)
-.45 DM
A large serving of french fries with a sausage (for me)
1.50 DM
Beer (one for her, four for me)
2.75 DM
Travel costs
-- DM
10.50 DM

Klaus explains this list: “My father is decent enough to give me his car. And Margit does not eat or drink very much. In fact, she has a natural instinct for inexpensive things.”

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