Splitting the Bill?

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ShutterBug Posts: 1056
I have one group of friends and if we go for dinner we just split the bill evenly. Normally a few bottles of wine are drank and one or two that dont drink wine order their own drinks (still alcohol) so theres no questions. Another group of friends there is always arguments over who ate what, who ordered off the early bird menu and who didnt, who drank what. Then throw in the fact one of them says we should pay for the birthday girl/boy and it gets even more complicated to split it. Do the rest of us have to pay for the alcohol the birthday girl drank but the non drinkers dont contribute. It ends in a mess, and has led to people getting thick over it on more than one occasion. Now there could only be a fiver per head in the difference, but with people working and not working its always a touchy subject. If one person only had one glass of wine and another had two cokes should they just pay the same? What is the fairest way to split it that wont upset anyone? It has gotten beyond ridiculous that one or two dont bother going for dinner and just meet in the pub after. Some nights I would drink and some I wouldnt and I always say just split it because I feel in the grand scheme of things it will balance out. There are no complete non-drinkers but some nights one person would be driving so that night they wont want to pay for drinks. Youd nearly need a degree in maths to work out what everyone owes when going for dinner with this lot! ETA Nobody takes advantage with drink either so there wouldnt be huge amounts drank.
lux Posts: 6270
I've a mixed gang of mates, generally we split it, like there were three of us out on Friday, bill was split evenly. But when one girl comes with us, she whips out the phone and adds up what each of us had and it wreaks my head (and those of others!). She won't pay a cent more than she has too and puts in her share first (down to ten cent pieces, and also never chips in for a tip. She also handily leaves out service charges for her share, meaning WE have to look like the scabby ones asking her to contribute more. She's included less and less for dinner because we all dread her when the bill comes and she's tap, tap, tap on her phone calculator to add up what she'll pay! >:o( Wow, that was a rant I needed to get off my chest!
whoop whoop Posts: 1616
I have no problem splitting the bill these days, regardless of who had what, but WOW I remember when going out to dinner with a gang used to bring me out in a cold sweat back when I was poor! It would literally ruin the night for me wondering what would happen when the bill arrived! So I still have a LOT of empathy for that situation, and believe that the only fair way to do it is that everyone pays for what they had. Even nowadays, I think people tend to notice if someone is only having a starter or isn't drinking or whatever, so they might suggest each pays for their own cos they are aware some people are short of cash. I don't see how any other way is genuinely fair.
LittleLily Posts: 3682
Your huffy friend sounds very childish. Normally if theres a big group, the bill starts at the first person, they find their items then pop the money in the middle of the table, plus a bit extra for tip. Then it goes to the next person etc. This happens very naturally and normally we don't even break from our conversation. Easy peasy but we're all used to it at this stage. It was never decided this would be how we do it, it just worked out like that.
ShutterBug Posts: 1056
Whoop whoop I agree in some cases it can be terrible pressure on people, and when there is only 3 or 4 of us its fairly simple to tot up what people had and if one person hasnt really eaten much, its probably for the reason they cant afford it. But when there is 8 or 10 people its a nightmare trying to add up everything. And the bill is always left short so you have to go asking for more and everyone sits there looking to see who the cheap f€cker is that didnt pay their share. And what you want money for a tip too :eek Now Im only really speaking about 2 girls in our group that get like this. But they would drive you crazy
28-sept-10 Posts: 1832
we generally split the bill we meet up every second thursday for dinner and recently a new girl comes along and she takes out her phone like lux friend and adds everything up seperately, makes no sense its alot easier and less hassle to just split the bill, she nearly fell out last week over 2 euro :eek :eek i hate people being awkward over a few euro O:| O:|
ScarlettoHara Posts: 8442
I find in that situation the best thing to do is just have the food on the bill. Who ever wants a drink goes to the bar and gets it. Saves a multitude of arguing
ShutterBug Posts: 1056
[quote="LittleLily":n8z2zpx2] Normally if theres a big group, the bill starts at the first person, they find their items then pop the money in the middle of the table, plus a bit extra for tip. Then it goes to the next person etc. This happens very naturally and normally we don't even break from our conversation. Easy peasy but we're all used to it at this stage. It was never decided this would be how we do it, it just worked out like that.[/quote:n8z2zpx2] not a bad idea either, could work with them.
lux Posts: 6270
[quote="28-sept-10":26dnbqhs]we generally split the bill we meet up every second thursday for dinner and recently a new girl comes along and she takes out her phone like lux friend and adds everything up seperately, makes no sense its alot easier and less hassle to just split the bill, she nearly fell out last week over 2 euro :eek :eek i hate people being awkward over a few euro O:| O:|[/quote:26dnbqhs] God, this is so familiar! The last time we were out for dinner she decided not to have a starter, the rest of us did, and she had a dessert, which we didn't have. Similar priced mains and we had two bottles of wine between four of us. She nearly had a hissy fit when another mate said "So that's €55 each" and kept pointing out her dessert cost less! I'd nearly pay her the difference to shut her up! I wouldn't mind but the difference in price is always in her favour! If someone isn't drinking, we'd never include them in the overall bill, we take the booze out.
Twirl Posts: 5598
I would always just split the bill as one its handy and two i dont want to make a scene but we have one friend and it really bugs me, she and her partner will already have drank a bottle of wine at the restuarant before we meet up and then say we all get starters and mains and no one gets a desert, this person will get a desert and then get a baileys coffee and it generally would not bug me too much but one time when i was out of work and all me and DH had ordered was the cheapest main course and we had a glass of wine each,it ended up costing us a fortune and it annoyed me that this person so blatantly kept ordering and never once said look you two only give €50 or something ( or mains were €10 each ). Anyway, i got that off my chest. I generally pay no heed to what goes on at the table and dont mind splitting at all.