"You have to keep feeding them with meals out, little gifts, and so on, to keep them happy." At the end of any romantic dinner in Moscow, the waiter will automatically hand the bill to the man, and even if the woman wants to pay, it can be a problem.Olga, a 24-year-old journalist, explains that many of her friends keep their wallets in their handbags not out of stinginess but for the sake of their boyfriends' pride.At first sight, the reasoning seems fully justified.
Thus, we have two types of stable representations about marrying Russian women: positive, originated from dating and introduction agencies, and negative, raised by society.
The extravagant jewellery, furs and cars that oligarchs dole out to their women are the stuff of legend but the philosophy – if not the scale – is the same among ordinary Russians.
"I find Russian women to be a bit like Tamagotchi," says one British expatriate who moved to Moscow a year ago and has enjoyed playing Casanova in the city.
But for most, the answer to the question for now is still a resounding "no".
"When you go out with a guy, even if you're just friends and there's no romantic subtext, you would always expect him to pay," says Svetlana Kolchik, deputy editor of Russia's Marie Claire, which paid for the adverts.
The most fascinating product of studying abroad is the discovery of different mentalities in a culture.