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Tech Dating 101: Using Your Phone While on a Date

Sometimes we all need a little help navigating the choppy waters of dating when tech gets tossed into the mix, which is why geeksugar and I have teamed up for another installment of Tech Dating 101. Last week, we talked about canceling a date via text, and this week we're discussing whether or not texting and making calls during your date is acceptable dinner etiquette.

Can I text and make phone calls during a date without being rude?

To see DearSugar's answer,


I'll make this one simple. Using your phone while you're on a date is rude — period. A date should be about you and the person you're with, trying to get to know one another, enjoying your time together, and most importantly, not worrying about what your friends are doing or who is trying to get in touch with you.

If you're on a date with your long-term boyfriend or your husband, my opinion is a little different, especially if you have kids. While I think having chats at the dinner table is still impolite, I do think checking to see who is calling or reading a text is acceptable if you're trying to make plans with other couples or if you're calling to check in with the babysitter, but taking it any further is still a no-no in my book.

However, if you're on a blind date and you think there's a chance you'll need to make a quick escape, by all means keep that phone on the table for your "emergency call" from your best friend!

To see what my girl geek has to say, be sure to click here!


dikke-kus dikke-kus 8 years
I agree with Dear Sugar. Rude. It's not really the cell phone though, it's the person. If they are already clueless they will have a third party chat. If they didn't have a cell phone they might still do other things just as stupid. I see it happening all around me though. I saw a girl start texting under a table on a date once. The poor guy asked what was going on. He read her message she didn't like him. She was left with the bill.
superjules superjules 8 years
I suppose if my mother were on her death bed I might keep my phone on and explain that situation. Otherwise I would expect to bitchslapped for such horrible behavior. And if you put up with this from your significant other, I pity you.
jessr1214 jessr1214 8 years
the guy i am dating now does this alll the time and it makes me crazy. not so much while we are out to eat or something but just sitting around at my apartment watching tv or a movie he is CONSTANTLY texting. we just started dating though so i dont want to nag him about it...frustrating.
aimeeb aimeeb 8 years
It's rude on a first date but otherwise I check my phone when I have a missed call or something with friends, my boyfriend or fam in case of an emergency.
youbetcha youbetcha 8 years
'Not really all that long ago, people did actually get by without being able to be contacted immediately. And they survived. ' Amen to that!
Louie Louie 8 years
No, extremely bad manners. If you desperately need your phone on, put it on silent and check it when you go to the bathroom. Not really all that long ago, people did actually get by without being able to be contacted immediately. And they survived.
Calimie Calimie 8 years
Of course, it depends on who's calling, I'd definitely check the ID and, if they're friends, hang them up so they'd know I can't talk to them at the moment. They'd only ring again if it's really important. If it's someone else I would answer to see what they want and, if it's not an emergency, tell them I'm busy. Oh, and I'd keep the phone on vibration, no need to tell the whole restaurant you're receiving a call.
sparklestar sparklestar 8 years
I'm contactable 24/7. If I'm in a visit with another service user and another calls then I have to take the phone call. During my first date with my boyfriend I had 3 phone calls from people. I apologised before I took it and I wrapped it up quickly...! We've been together for a year now so I don't think he minded too much. =)
lindssaurussss lindssaurussss 8 years
i find it very rude. almost walked out on a date. but he wasnt from this country so i let it go. but i have gotten into arguements over people talking on the phone while im across from them, even in the car. im not turning down the volume for an hour so u can talk on the phone. phone etiquette is a deal breaker for me and it should be for more people.
bluespirit bluespirit 8 years
That girl in the picture looks like she's wearing a nightie.
candace87 candace87 8 years
Um.. why would you be making phone calls? Even just with friends I dont just pick up my phone and start chatting away calling people .. theres no reason to make calls. If you answer one I think thats fine if you need to, or just tell them you'll call back, same with a text you can respond but don't have a conversation.
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
This is even a question? I don't even like it if I'm out to dinner with a friend or family member. It's just rude, period. Talk to the person you're with.
sprinkibrio sprinkibrio 8 years
NOOOOO. This should be a question on a guy's site because so few men know the correct answer to this one.
Marci Marci 8 years
Why would you want to be talking to anyone other than your date? I don't get it.
Mousuke Mousuke 8 years
Using the phone during a date is rude. Calls and messages from your mom and friends can wait. You set aside time to spend with your date, so you should do the courtesy of giving them your full attention. If you absolutely must answer an emergency call, excuse yourself and take the call in the bathroom or outside so your date doesn't have to sit awkwardly through your conversation. If a date used the phone while I was there, I would feel extremely disrespected. I've been with my boyfriend for 2 1/2 years, and I still turn off my phone for our dates.
mnp mnp 8 years
I think I'm the odd man out but I think it's completely fine to send a text or two or pick up a call. I mean, sometimes someone calls and you just have to pick up. No big deal. //
Spectra Spectra 8 years
It's disrespectful and rude. I always turn my phone to vibrate when we're out and my husband does as well. If the call is an emergency, we'll see it on the caller ID and pick up, but otherwise it's nice to not have the interruption of the phone when you're trying to spend time together.
Ac2366 Ac2366 8 years
I think it's extremely rude to talk on your phone or text at the dinner table especially while on a date. I remember when my bf and I were out on a dinner date recently and he got a phone call he excused himself from the table and went outside to take the call and then came back and apologized. I thought he was such a gentleman.
RockAndRepublic RockAndRepublic 8 years
Yes, it's shows a lack of respect and i'd walk out.
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 8 years
I'm on call 24/7 for my job. I have to see who's calling at all times of day in case our servers go down. I always let people know that's the case beforehand though so they're not appalled. If it's not work, though, I would never, ever pick up the phone. So rude.
youbetcha youbetcha 8 years
Whether you are on a date or with a friend, during dinner or just hanging out, I find it rude when my companion replies to text messages or phone calls that are not pertinent (for example, making a reservation for dinner that night for us, ordering a pizza, calling a cab etc) or urgent. Anything else can wait. I have a friend who would whip out her phone and start texting her friends while we are having a conversation. She claims it is not rude cos she can listen to me and text at the same time but I find it rude regardless.
oohsexypenguin oohsexypenguin 8 years
I will admit, I used the "emergency call" to get out of a really horrible blind date once (which I feel guilty about, to this day). That aside, I do think it's rude to be on the phone when you're on a date with someone, regardless if it's a new guy/girl or your long-term significant other. Your date deserves your full attention.
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