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View Poll Results: When Eating in a Group, How Do You Settle the Bill?
Divide and Conquer 40 53.33%
Folks put in their estimates, last person covers the rest 2 2.67%
Folks put in their estimates, last person puts in estimate, then the fun begins 7 9.33%
other 26 34.67%
Voters: 75. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-21-2016, 09:20 AM   #21
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Since retiring we mostly do separate checks. When I was w**king we would just throw in the credits cards and divide it up. Some of our friends would really make out on this as they would order more expensive meals and drink more. Did not bother me until I ER'ed.... I'm on a fix income now ... Surprisingly they now order less expensive meals and drink less ...
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Old 06-21-2016, 09:24 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by audreyh1 View Post
We don't generally go out to eat in groups. I don't enjoy the experience of eating with a large group in a restaurant. Exception - family.

If it's family, we often pick up the tab. It's turned into a bit of a game with who can pick up the tab first. Occasionally other family members will sneak away and take care of it before DH can get his hands on the bill.

If we meet a friend or friend couple for a meal, DH usually insists on picking picking up the tab.

For the very rare larger group we revert to the estimate of our portion or more often separate checks. Since we don't do work lunch groups anymore we don't run into the embarrassing not enough after estimates situation. Besides, we use credit cards so there isn't some cash pool. We haven't eaten anywhere in the last several years where the wait staff couldn't split the check. Anyway we absolutely won't eat out with a group larger than 8 unless it's been covered some other way. And I still find those tedious - even with a small tour group where I don't have to worry about the tab.
+1 on that - I get very little out of large group outings. I prefer to keep the crowd small (6 or less), so that everyone can actually participate in one conversation. To me, that's the whole point of dining together.
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Old 06-21-2016, 09:28 AM   #23
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We always ask for separate checks when ordering, and it all works out well.
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Old 06-21-2016, 10:39 AM   #24
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An article on the very topic:

Quote:
When you dine out with other people, do you pay for your own food and drink, or divide the bill so that everyone makes an equal contribution? Splitting a bill can be a source of conflict among friends, especially if one person is trying to avoid contributing at all. It can be difficult to split bills fairly, without antagonizing anyone in the process.

Money can be a touchy subject, and people don’t always react well when prompted for their contribution towards a bill. Now, more than ever, paying too much when dining out can be a financial burden. Although the amounts spent at restaurants may not seem like much, the meals can quickly add up to a significant amount of money. Over the course of a year, you can easily spend hundreds or thousands of dollars at restaurants, especially when you’re paying.
How to Split the Bill When Eating Out with Your Friends
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Old 06-21-2016, 10:51 AM   #25
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With family we typically pick up the bill unless one particular brother in law is there, then it's whoever gets the check first. It's an ego thing with him even though he knows we're financially more comfortable. He's refusing to go on a family cruise because we're paying for it. Other family members usually treat us to home cooked meals to contribute their share in the big picture.


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Old 06-21-2016, 10:55 AM   #26
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When I was working, I was out helping the sales guys a lot. If we didn't have a customer (entertainment, Co pays) then we would rotate.

I still do it like that.
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Old 06-21-2016, 11:30 AM   #27
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I selected divide and conquer since that is what we normally do. Once in a while one or two in a group don't drink while the others knock off a few bottles of wine. In those cases we make adjustments.
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Old 06-21-2016, 11:45 AM   #28
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I learned a long time ago that the drinkers are the ones that want to pay by equal division of the bill. I refuse to pay for people's drinks, not because I object to drinking, but because I don't drink and often their drinks exceed the cost of their meals.
We meet one couple for dinner every few months. They don't drink. We get to the restaurant a bit earlier than our scheduled meeting time, and get (and pay for) a drink at the bar before they arrive.
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Old 06-21-2016, 03:23 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Dash man View Post
With family we typically pick up the bill unless one particular brother in law is there, then it's whoever gets the check first. It's an ego thing with him even though he knows we're financially more comfortable. He's refusing to go on a family cruise because we're paying for it. Other family members usually treat us to home cooked meals to contribute their share in the big picture.


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Maybe the family member that didn't make as much money as you doesn't want to be told that every fricking time that you see them.
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Old 06-21-2016, 04:39 PM   #30
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Here in Canada the servers always ask how the bill should be split when there is a group of people. Unless I'm with a small group of friends where we normally take turns picking up the tab, I take care of my own bill and let others worry about theirs.
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Old 06-21-2016, 05:30 PM   #31
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Separate checks. If the restaurant does not allow that, then everyone estimates. Usually everyone estimates high, so the wait staff ends up getting a better than average tip.
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Old 06-21-2016, 05:53 PM   #32
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Maybe the family member that didn't make as much money as you doesn't want to be told that every fricking time that you see them.

Wow, a master of the obvious!
This BIL has rarely held a job for more than a year at a time. My SIL works her rear off to keep the family together and above water. We usually do the invite.


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Old 06-21-2016, 06:13 PM   #33
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How about if we all play nice? Thank you.
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Old 06-21-2016, 06:39 PM   #34
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Separate checks if possible otherwise do the math from the itemized bill (no estimate needed use actual amounts).
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Old 06-21-2016, 06:42 PM   #35
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I wasn't a regular watcher of Friends. But this is an appropriate clip.


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Old 06-21-2016, 06:57 PM   #36
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With family we take turns picking up the tab. We only go out with friends a few times a year, and on those occasions we either pick up the tab or just divide equally. (Around here that's called a "New York split")

The only time I spoke up against a New York split was when eating out with DD's youth basketball team and families. We travelled to an out of state tournament, and the four of us grabbed sandwiches at the beginning of our drive. Upon arriving at the hotel, we learned that everyone else was next door at dinner. We went over to socialize. Because we were a little hungry, and to not be awkward sitting with the group while everyone else ate, we ordered and split two soup & salads for the four of us. Each soup & salad was about eight bucks, we only had water to drink. The bill comes, and the team mom says "it's $20 per person". So she wants $80 from me for the $16 of menu items we ordered! I gave her $40 and told her that was almost double what we would've paid had we had separate checks. Some others were a little disgruntled to have to dig in their pockets again, but too bad.
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Old 06-21-2016, 08:26 PM   #37
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15 of us went to lunch after graduation ceremony. The waiter seemed to know the drill. He asked if we are doing 3 bills since obviously there were 3 families. So, 3 bills, 3 fathers paid. Seem fair.
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Old 06-21-2016, 10:38 PM   #38
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We used to always just split the bill, but more recently we get separate checks... it makes things easier, fairer and the waiters/waitresses don't seem to mind at all.
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Old 06-22-2016, 02:51 AM   #39
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We do all three. Sometimes we give the bill to a non-drinker and she figures out what we all owe. Often I pick up the cash and put it on my card. Sometimes it is too much and other times it is short. It seems to balance out. Mostly there are differing ideas for what the service is worth. We seldom find anyone short on the bill except for the odd math-challenged person. Usually it is the tip.
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Old 06-22-2016, 03:10 AM   #40
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I've had group meals where payment was by each of the poll options. However, lots of people are capable of calculating exactly what each person owes, it's not rocket surgery - surprised that wasn't a poll option. These days we just split evenly or ask for separate checks. Allowing people to estimate is our least favorite option - for whatever reason some diners "forget" or underestimate taxes and tips.
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