No one ever said dating was easy, but it becomes even more complicated when your romantic interest is from another country. Things that you take for granted may suddenly become an issue and the rules of getting to know someone can be vastly different. It’s all too easy to find yourself in a situation that leaves you scratching your head when dating outside your culture.
But fear not—in this handy guide, we’re going to cover everything you need to know about dating an Austrian man.
How Is Dating in Austria?
Let’s start with a brief look at dating practices in this country.
An Overview of Dating in Austria
Austrians typically have their first dating experiences in their mid to late teens. Date activities are relatively standard and can include having coffee, seeing a movie, grabbing dinner, or meeting for a walk.
Men and women usually cover their expenses while on dates, though men like to treat women to the first one. Special occasions such as birthdays can be an exception, where one person pays for the other.
Here is a list of the most popular Austrian dating sites and apps.
It’s a Long-haul Game
It’s essential to keep the general personality of Austrians in mind. Both men and women are more reserved than they are in countries like Spain and Italy, and Austrians don’t tend to be overly flirtatious at first.
Neither are they quick to reveal their true selves. Even if you feel you have an obvious connection with someone, it may take them a long time to open up to you truly. Given this reserved nature, meeting people and forming profound bonds in Austria can be difficult.
When dating in this country, remember that patience is a virtue, as trust is earned over a long period.
Is Marriage Popular?
Marriage is popular in Austria, and Austrians regard this institution highly, thanks mainly to the country’s Catholic tradition. For many, marriage is an essential rite of passage, though there is generally no social pressure for couples to marry.
Austrians are in no hurry to tie the knot, either, and the average age for first-time marriage has increased significantly since the 1990s. In rural areas, people tend to marry in their mid to late twenties, and in urban areas, the marriage age has risen to late twenties and early thirties.
What Are Some Austrian Dating Etiquettes?
While stereotyping an entire country should be avoided, there are some commonalities that you’re likely to run across when dating in Austria. Being aware of these traits is an excellent way to prepare yourself before that first date. Plus, a little knowledge can keep you from unintentionally offending your Austrian love interest.
Here’s what you should know before agreeing to meet.
Pay Attention to Date Ideas
As mentioned above, date locations tend to be similar as they are in other Western countries.
A coffee-house get-together is almost a given, as coffee culture is an integral part of life in Austria. This fact is even more true in Vienna, which has an abundant number of historic coffee houses and makes an excellent choice for a first date. Restaurants, bars, and museums are also favorite date locations in Austria.
And given the country’s beautiful natural scenery, couples often head outdoors to enjoy each other’s company. Don’t be surprised if your Austrian love interest suggests going on a three or four-hour hike through some insanely beautiful mountains. Even if the great outdoors isn’t your thing, there is usually wine and beer at the end of these outings.
Should You Make the First Move?
Despite their traditional nature, Austrian men have difficulty making the first move unless explicitly instructed to. If you’re waiting for him to show interest, you may be waiting a long time, so taking some initiative is not a bad idea.
The good news? Austrian men shy away from games. They’re straightforward when they’re interested, so even though you run the risk of rejection by being upfront, this personality type is excellent for anyone looking for commitment.
What Should You Expect on a Date with an Austrian Man?
Are you preparing for your first date with an Austrian man? Here’s what to expect.
They Are Punctual
Punctuality comes first because, in Austrian culture, it’s a critical trait. Unless you have a valid reason, it’s considered rude to keep others waiting. Austrian men won’t show up late for a date, and they’ll expect you to arrive on time as well. Tardiness is a surefire way to turn off potential love interests.
It’s also best to avoid suggesting spontaneous dates. Austrians like to plan these outings with some advance notice, and they don’t receive impromptu invitations well.
Make an Effort to Look Good
On the whole, Austrian men have a laid-back and stylish way of dressing. They like to be comfortable, but they also want to look good. This philosophy translates to a classic, elegant style, which you can expect to see on a date. An Austrian man will generally show up well-groomed and polished—and women are expected to do the same.
The bottom line? There’s no need to go over the top with your dress for a first date, but a little bit of effort goes a long way.
Who Pays the Bill?
Their traditional nature means that many Austrian men like to be chivalrous and will probably want to pay on the first date. However, don’t be afraid to insist on splitting the cost if you’re uncomfortable with him paying for you. While this gesture is seen as offensive in other cultures, you’re unlikely to offend your Austrian date if you do.
Be Patient When Flirting
We’ve touched on this a bit already, but Austrian men are not the most proficient at flirting. They may leave you wondering if they’re really into you because they tend to give off vibes that they’re not interested in. Plus, it can take a while to break the ice, so be patient and transparent with your intentions.
Steer Away from Small Talk
When you’re trying to find things to talk about, steer away from small talk. In general, Austrians are not fans of small talk, so don’t bore your Austrian date with inane details of what you did that day or how upset you are that it’s raining.
Don’t expect deep conversation right away, either. It will probably take some time for your Austrian man to open up to you with more intimate details. However, he is always willing to speak his mind. You’ll likely get a straight-to-the-point answer to whatever you ask him.
This direct personality may be hard to get used to at first, but you may find it invigorating as time goes on.
Are Public Displays of Affection Okay?
By now, you may be thinking that Austrian men would be opposed to public displays of affection given their more reserved personalities. The opposite is true.
Once you’ve won them over, they are happy to hold your hand, kiss, and cuddle you in public. PDA is quite common in Austria, which may be shocking if you come from somewhere more reserved.
How Do You Meet Austrian Men?
In Austria, people meet much as they do in other European countries. Social groups at school and university put couples in contact with one another, and it’s also common for relationships to begin in professional settings.
These social structures are the most organic way to meet Austrian men, but the options don’t end there. Here are a few other ways to find an Austrian mate.
Online dating is popular in Austria, perhaps thanks to the more cautious personality type in this country. Austrians like having the opportunity to scrutinize profiles and interact online before deciding whether to meet.
As such, there’s no shortage of Austrian men on dating apps like Tinder, OkCupid, and Badoo, some of the most common in this country. But if you’re looking for something more serious, you may want to check out Parship.at and WebSingles.at, as they have fewer members. As always, your chance of success increases if you pay for an account.
Speed dating is another popular dating tactic, and it’s a fun and adventurous way to meet Austrian men. You can find speed dating that caters to specific age groups, as well as special categories like more serious dating or young/old pairings.
If one-on-one dates right off the bat aren’t your thing, meetup groups offer a low-pressure way to meet singles. They’re very popular in Austria, as they’re an excellent way to put lots of singles in a room. You can find many options in both big cities and smaller towns. Plus, even if you don’t meet the love of your life, meetup groups can help you make friends in your age group.
What Can You Expect at the Beginning of a Relationship?
It’s hard to chart the course of a “typical” relationship with an Austrian man because each partnership is a world unto itself. Everyone has different expectations and needs, and every relationship is different. But in general, we can observe some cultural tendencies that come into play as you begin a relationship.
They Aren’t Shy to Get Intimate
Don’t be fooled by their Catholic backgrounds and apparent shyness—Austrian men (and women!) are quick to get intimate. When Austrians like someone, they’re unafraid of progressing to the bedroom quickly—perhaps more rapidly than what you may be accustomed to.
This willingness to have sex early on may be a part of this culture’s honest approach to life: they see something they like and go for it. Austrians also have an open approach to discussing sex. They’re not afraid to talk about intimacy or have conversations about defining the relationship.
This open attitude may take some getting used to if you’re accustomed to a longer courtship, but it’s something to expect in Austria.
You Might Meet the Family Early
When dating an Austrian man, be prepared to meet his family sooner rather than later. One thing that’s refreshing about them is how clear and vocal they are about their feelings. If an Austrian man has strong feelings for you, he’ll likely want to get serious quickly. You may find yourself face to face with his parents after what seems like a relatively short time.
However, in Austria, meeting the parents is typically less of a formal affair than in other countries. It’s not a huge step in a relationship, and you might not even have a lot of warning. He may randomly suggest dropping in for a quick visit or an informal lunch. As long as you remember your manners, meeting the parents is nothing to be intimidated by.
Moving In Is Quite Common
When things are going well, there are many options for couples who want to move in together. Both opposite-sex and same-sex couples can marry or choose to have a registered partnership. Some people prefer no cohabitation before marriage, some like to spend years living together before settling down, and some prefer not to marry at all.
There’s a little bit of everything in Austria, so you can always find something to suit your preferences when it comes time to settle down.
How Does Family Life Affect Dating?
What can you expect in terms of family life if you choose an Austrian man as a mate?
Family Roles Are Important
Family is at the center of life in Austria, and people have enriching relationships with their parents throughout their adult life. If you marry or otherwise form a partnership with an Austrian man, you can rest assured that you will be spending lots of time with his family.
Children Are Independent
Families in urban Austria are usually small, consisting of the parents and one or two children. In rural areas, families may have more kids and live with their grandparents to help with child-raising. Family units in city areas typically live on their own.
And when it comes to raising the kids, children in Austria are often given a lot of freedom and are treated with respect. Austrian parents encourage their children to be independent and shy away from more authoritative styles of parenting. Depending on where you come from, this parenting style may seem too lax or refreshing.
Gender Roles Are Progressive
Men have traditionally been the head of the household, and this remains the case in rural areas and in older families. However, things have changed in urban areas. In most cases, both men and women work, and each gender must take on responsibilities at home.
Yet despite advances in gender equality, women still find themselves bearing the brunt of child-rearing activities. It’s not uncommon for women to stop work when they have children until the kids go to school, even though childcare services are excellent in Austria.
But don’t get the wrong idea about Austrian men. They are generally dedicated to an equal division of labor at home, and they don’t shy away from sharing in household duties. They make excellent, involved fathers who want to form an integral part of their children’s lives. They’re also unlikely to object to their partner pursuing career interests.
Do’s and Don’ts in Austrian Culture
It’s vital to keep in mind that dating culture forms just one part of Austrian culture as a whole. Here are some helpful dos and don’ts in Austria to round out this guide to dating an Austrian man.
- Engage in enlightening conversations. Austrians love learning and sharing knowledge. An excellent way to connect with an Austrian man is to show an interest in something he’s passionate about. Similarly, sharing your thoughts on current events and topics of interest is a fantastic way to engage him.
- Talk about Austria’s regional diversity. Austrians feel a great sense of pride about their home regions and love talking about it, even if they’ve been gone for many years. Be sure to show your appreciation for Austria’s natural beauty.
- Be mindful of personal space. Austrians expect a certain level of physical and personal privacy with strangers. Wait until you’ve established a connection with the person to talk about personal matters and have more relaxed body language.
- Speak sensitively about WWII. Especially among older generations, WWII remains a sensitive topic. Use your judgment when speaking about events like the Holocaust.
- Equate Austrian culture to German culture. These two countries have distinct cultures, values, and customs, and many Austrians feel resentment towards Germans. Avoid comparing the countries, and never refer to an Austrian as German.
- Arrive late. As mentioned above, Austrians value punctuality. If you are going to be late, let them know (and apologize profusely). Avoid last-minute cancelations as well.
- Let modesty cloud your communication. The direct and straightforward communication style in Austria means this culture values honesty. Don’t be afraid to speak your mind.
Final Thoughts on Dating an Austrian Man
While we’ve covered some essential information to dating an Austrian man, perhaps the most vital thing to remember is to be respectful. Falling in love with someone from another culture is an enriching experience, but it comes with a unique set of challenges. Having an open mindset, listening to your love interest, and working through differences key to forming a long-lasting relationship.