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To not want to just divide the bill ...

(227 Posts)
GenerallyIndecisive Sat 02-Feb-13 16:43:20

Me and my DH had lunch today with some new friends. We have wanted to meet new people so have been making an effort to go to things and talk to new people so we were pleased when a couple we had been chatting to on and off for a few months suggested lunch. They picked quite a pricey pub but we had seen they did a few nice light bites and were happy to go there.

It was a nice lunch and we all got on really well but when the bill came the other couple just said to the waitress oh split the bill and handed over their card... Their food / drink was about £20 more though so we ended up paying £10 extra.

Money is really tight for us at present as I only get Maternity Allowance (was made redundant at 20 weeks pregnant and had only been there 1 year 11 months so no redundancy either).

My DH thinks I am being unreasonable to feel a bit upset and says that most people would just split the bill without giving it a second thought.

Am I being unreasonable?

redbobblehat Sat 02-Feb-13 17:52:42

invite tthem to yours next time, far cheaper than eatting out

if you wanted to pay seperate you should say at the start

nevermind its done now, chalk it up to experience and be clearer next time

TheCountessOlenska Sat 02-Feb-13 17:53:04

DH runs a restaurant and he says that you can guarantee that a table of men will always split the bill, whereas a table of women will always get out a calculator and divide up who had what down to the last penny!

andubelievedthat Sat 02-Feb-13 17:55:27

yup, from experience say "i am skinto, " no can affordo" "we are on our own on this one" and if nice people, or at least understanding peeps they will understand.

GenerallyIndecisive Sat 02-Feb-13 18:12:39

The bill was £70 including tip so £20 was quite a big percentage.

In a large group we always just split (but will try to order average priced items). With other couples if we've had differently priced things we will normally pay what we had be it more or less.

I only had soup and some crusty bread and one of them had steak so just felt a bit angry especially as I would have loved steak but we are pretty skint

ENormaSnob Sat 02-Feb-13 18:15:30

Oh that's awful then angry

They are very unfair.

TheMightyLois Sat 02-Feb-13 18:17:14

I'd have said something in that situation, that's just crappy of them.

countrykitten Sat 02-Feb-13 18:19:38

Next time say so upfront so that you are not put in this position. It's happened now so don't worry about it - your dh is right. Maybe somewhere less cheaper next time so you feel more comfortable?

Not applying this to you at all but in general it is really rude and churlish to try and just pay for yourselves after a meal - I think it's very bad manners in fact.

expatinscotland Sat 02-Feb-13 18:21:26

Okay, on that balance, tt was pretty crap of them, tbh. Decent people notice when there's such a discrepency in what they order and their friends. I'd have noticed, thought to myself, 'Oh, they might be skint,' and offered to pay for what I ordered.

greenpostit Sat 02-Feb-13 18:21:48

Think it's pretty obvious if one party had steak and other party had soup, it's pretty shit to split the bill.

sleepyhead Sat 02-Feb-13 18:26:33

I think it's very bad manners to see that a friend is having a bowl of soup and try to get them to pay for your steak hmm

But threads passim show this is an issue where there are two distinct views on what constitutes manners when it comes to the bill.

Snog Sat 02-Feb-13 18:32:36

you could have asked for your own bill at the start - and should have done really
I am always happy to split the bill and would be fine if someone wanted a separate bill at the beginning but am irritated if this happens at the end. Particularly if the person is also a non-tipper whereby I feel obliged to tip for them

pigletmania Sat 02-Feb-13 18:35:48

YANBU that is unfair you should not sub them. I guess lesson learnt, next time speak up and ask for somewhere cheaper as your on a budget

HoratiaWinwood Sat 02-Feb-13 19:39:11

My rule of thumb is that the richest/greediest should suggest paying own, and the poorest/sparingest should suggest splitting. Only it is more often the other way round, particularly if you go out for lunch with work people hmm

I agree it is "normal" to split the bill in half for two couples, but in any case sorting it out before you go, or before you order, is sensible.

Steak v soup though ... The bastards!

debbie1412 Sat 02-Feb-13 19:43:18

Trying to make new friends???? Split the bloody bill !

badtemperedaldbitch Sat 02-Feb-13 19:50:47

I never pay attention to what other people order or how much it costs. The information don't even look at how much mine costs.

We order what we are hungry for and split the bill.

BUT we go to reasonable/cheap places with like minded people. We are on a budget too and money is a. Ig deal for us....its just that's the way it's always been. If someone were to query how much they were paying I would be surprised.... But only because it's not what 'we' do.

simplesusan Sat 02-Feb-13 20:21:06

I think your friends were rude. They had steak, you had soup and they told the waiter to split the bill!

One of my friends always says to the waiter when we order, separate bills please. This ensures there are no ill feelings.

I'm with you all the way on this.

Fluffy1234 Sat 02-Feb-13 20:29:11

I'd give them one more chance but next time suggest somewhere cheaper as I think it can be hard to make new couple friends.

Viviennemary Sat 02-Feb-13 20:31:08

One had steak and you had soup and they suggested you split the bill. They seem a cheeky mean pair to me and I wouldn't bother with them in future. Let them go and sponge of someone else.

CloudsAndTrees Sat 02-Feb-13 20:41:52

If you don't want to split the bill, you have to say so at the start. If you don't, then you don't have the moral high ground that enables you to start complaining about it afterwards.

Default option will always be splitting the bill equally, so if you want to deviate from that, it's your responsibility to say so.

The other couple were less polite than they could have been, because they could have given you a courteous 'is that ok with you?', but then that's not without problems either. If you were so inclined, you could decide to be offended that they had insinuated that you couldn't afford it, or that you were too tight to split the bill, which is why the onus has to be on the person who doesn't just want to split.

I hate all that counting up of who paid what when people start to get calculators out when the bill arrives. It's just so uncivilised. Much better to just split the bill evenly, and if there is a big discrepancy in what people ordered, then the person who ordered significantly more should offer to pay the tip.

By complaining about it after the event, I think you are worse than the people who just went with the normal and easy way of splitting the bill.

LRDtheFeministDragon Sat 02-Feb-13 20:56:28


If these are new friends, you have no default expectations. It's not expected that you will split the bill - that would only be true if you'd built up that expectation before (or if you were all so rich it didn't matter, I suppose).

So I think you should just have said, no, sorry, we had these dishes for this price, we chose what we could afford and unfortunately we're skint.

It is very rude to assume people will subsidise your meal, but people do sometimes do it thoughtlessly, so you've got to say after the first meal or you will never stop them doing it.

LRDtheFeministDragon Sat 02-Feb-13 20:59:52

Btw, I don't know anyone who would automatically split the bill - I think it is quite unusual. But then we are not rich.

badtemperedaldbitch Sat 02-Feb-13 21:04:12

Lrd. I do. Did you not read my post?

Dominodonkey Sat 02-Feb-13 21:05:38

Of course YANBU. I agree with the other poster who said only the couple who spent less can say the bill would be split.
They sound like twats tbh. If they didn't want to calculate the bill exactly, they must be either very rich or very stupid to not realise how much extra theirs was and add an extra tenner to their half.

Astley Sat 02-Feb-13 21:06:59

Pretty much everyone I know would just split. I prefer not to as I am a little greedy and nearly always want a pudding too, so either feels guilty they are subbing me or pressured into not having a pudding so I don't feel the guilt.

If you just pay for yourself you can have whatever you want!

LRDtheFeministDragon Sat 02-Feb-13 21:08:36

bad - yes, why? confused

You're not the OP are you?

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