Author Topic: Asking for separate check at restaurant  (Read 1710 times)

Chesleygirl

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 387
Asking for separate check at restaurant
« on: October 10, 2017, 11:02:09 AM »
I always request a separate check when I dine out with friends. So there are no issues about "who owes what". If the other people I'm dining with want to share a ticket and tally up who owes what, that's fine, they can do that.  However I've heard some people think it's offensive when someone requests a separate check. This does not make sense to me. How can paying for my own meal separately matter to anyone?  I pay for everything else separately when I hang out with friends. I pay for my own movie ticket at the theater, buy my own stuff separately if we go shopping together, so why would paying for my meal separately bug them?

MDM

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6965
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2017, 11:10:31 AM »
Some people are too easily offended.

GuitarStv

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 9118
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2017, 11:14:27 AM »
It's offensive if you're planning on spending a lot and getting everyone else to subsidize your meal, or maybe if the group is sharing a large order of Nachos or something.  Otherwise . . . why care?

Psychstache

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 605
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2017, 11:30:25 AM »
This is also regional. In Texas, the server will automatically split checks as the default choice unless directed otherwise in about 99% of restaurants.

Sent from my Pixel using Tapatalk


Chesleygirl

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 387
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2017, 11:30:40 AM »
Typically, I don't do "sharing" at restaurant meals, like sharing appetizers and such. Not my thing. I just order an entree and glass of water. I'd prefer just to pay for what I order and leave a tip. Trying to figure out who owes what can be a hassle, separate check is easier for me.

patchyfacialhair

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 478
    • Journal
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2017, 11:39:11 AM »
I've found that in most situations, a waiter/waitress will ask if folks want separate checks if it looks likely they'll need it. If it's just me plus wife plus kid, often they just set one check in the middle, but if there are any other adults, or if it looks like 2+ non-romantically involved adults, they usually ask "one check or separate" before bringing it out.

I've never had a friend get offended by this. I'd venture to think that most people would prefer separate checks when out with friends, since, at least in the US, giving cash, or sending money to the person paying is more difficult than just paying your check yourself.


jezebel

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1289
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2017, 12:09:10 PM »
I always request a separate check when I dine out with friends. So there are no issues about "who owes what". If the other people I'm dining with want to share a ticket and tally up who owes what, that's fine, they can do that.  However I've heard some people think it's offensive when someone requests a separate check. This does not make sense to me. How can paying for my own meal separately matter to anyone?  I pay for everything else separately when I hang out with friends. I pay for my own movie ticket at the theater, buy my own stuff separately if we go shopping together, so why would paying for my meal separately bug them?

Does it actually bug your friends?  Or is your question based on second-hand info that is not related to you or your friends?  If it is the latter, stop worrying about it and do what you do.  If it is the former, you need to find out why it's bugging them. 

If people are offended in this situation, it is usually not because someone is merely requesting a separate check.   

Chesleygirl

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 387
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2017, 02:00:31 PM »
Does it actually bug your friends?  Or is your question based on second-hand info that is not related to you or your friends?  If it is the latter, stop worrying about it and do what you do.  If it is the former, you need to find out why it's bugging them. 

If people are offended in this situation, it is usually not because someone is merely requesting a separate check.

The reason I request separate checks is that one friend always gets mad and claims that someone didn't pay their fair share of a combined check for a restaurant meal. (Although she's almost always wrong). So to protect myself, I just request a separate check and pay only for what I specifically ordered and ate.

jezebel

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1289
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2017, 02:44:47 PM »
Does it actually bug your friends?  Or is your question based on second-hand info that is not related to you or your friends?  If it is the latter, stop worrying about it and do what you do.  If it is the former, you need to find out why it's bugging them. 

If people are offended in this situation, it is usually not because someone is merely requesting a separate check.

The reason I request separate checks is that one friend always gets mad and claims that someone didn't pay their fair share of a combined check for a restaurant meal. (Although she's almost always wrong). So to protect myself, I just request a separate check and pay only for what I specifically ordered and ate.

That doesn't answer my question - are they offended that you get a separate check?  If not, stop worrying about it.  It sounds like you have a good reason to go separate. 

stoaX

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 376
  • Location: SoCal
  • 'tis nothing good nor bad but thinking makes it so
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2017, 02:50:00 PM »
It wouldn't offend me.  It's rather rare that we got out with friends (we're entertain at home types) but if they suggested just splitting the single bill up or getting separate checks, I would just go with the flow.  Either option works for me.

calimom

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 435
  • Location: Northern California
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #10 on: October 10, 2017, 04:54:41 PM »
Does it actually bug your friends?  Or is your question based on second-hand info that is not related to you or your friends?  If it is the latter, stop worrying about it and do what you do.  If it is the former, you need to find out why it's bugging them. 

If people are offended in this situation, it is usually not because someone is merely requesting a separate check.

The reason I request separate checks is that one friend always gets mad and claims that someone didn't pay their fair share of a combined check for a restaurant meal. (Although she's almost always wrong). So to protect myself, I just request a separate check and pay only for what I specifically ordered and ate.

That doesn't answer my question - are they offended that you get a separate check?  If not, stop worrying about it.  It sounds like you have a good reason to go separate.


Actually your friends sound rather antagonistic. Who would care? It's likely a bit of extra work for a server to run numerous tickets, but it is their job. I like the kind of friends who have enough self awareness about what they order - say several glasses of wine and a more expensive entree - and pay up proportionately when the check comes. One way to avoid any awkwardness might be to go places where you order at a counter and then pay. I'd say the type of "friends" who try to stick you with extra expenses are not really friends at all.

chaskavitch

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 167
  • Age: 31
  • Location: Fort Collins, CO
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2017, 07:25:23 AM »
Does it actually bug your friends?  Or is your question based on second-hand info that is not related to you or your friends?  If it is the latter, stop worrying about it and do what you do.  If it is the former, you need to find out why it's bugging them. 

If people are offended in this situation, it is usually not because someone is merely requesting a separate check.

The reason I request separate checks is that one friend always gets mad and claims that someone didn't pay their fair share of a combined check for a restaurant meal. (Although she's almost always wrong). So to protect myself, I just request a separate check and pay only for what I specifically ordered and ate.

That doesn't answer my question - are they offended that you get a separate check?  If not, stop worrying about it.  It sounds like you have a good reason to go separate.


Actually your friends sound rather antagonistic. Who would care? It's likely a bit of extra work for a server to run numerous tickets, but it is their job. I like the kind of friends who have enough self awareness about what they order - say several glasses of wine and a more expensive entree - and pay up proportionately when the check comes. One way to avoid any awkwardness might be to go places where you order at a counter and then pay. I'd say the type of "friends" who try to stick you with extra expenses are not really friends at all.

In many places, if you let the server know that you would like separate checks BEFORE you place your order, it is significantly simpler than splitting up each entree and drink after the fact.

I get offended when people in a big group think it is easier to each pay 1/X of the bill, and then order sodas and appetizers and extra sides and the largest steak on the menu, and I end up paying for their additions even though I only ordered an entree and water. 

Chesleygirl

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 387
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #12 on: October 12, 2017, 01:19:09 PM »
We've had significant problems even when we did request a separate check.

One time we dined with some couples and we all had separate checks, so each couple paid separately for their meals. The next morning, 9 a.m. sharp, one of the couples we dined with called my husband, and said that my drink had gone on their dinner bill. They told us to mail them a check for the drink, in the amount of $4.50. They also emailed us about it that same day. They were very upset. We pulled out our bill from the restaurant, which showed that we had, in fact, paid for the drink I ordered, so if it went on their check it was duplicated by the restaurant somehow.  They later figured out that it was a mistake so they told us they figured out what happened. But they were not even embarrassed about their behavior. This couple were people we'd known for a long time and they'd come to our wedding and we'd been to theirs also. We knew they were kind of tight with money but didn't realize they would jeopardize a friendship over an amount less than $5.00.  And then not even apologize when they realized that it was their own mistake.

Psychstache

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 605
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2017, 10:27:22 AM »
We've had significant problems even when we did request a separate check.

One time we dined with some couples and we all had separate checks, so each couple paid separately for their meals. The next morning, 9 a.m. sharp, one of the couples we dined with called my husband, and said that my drink had gone on their dinner bill. They told us to mail them a check for the drink, in the amount of $4.50. They also emailed us about it that same day. They were very upset. We pulled out our bill from the restaurant, which showed that we had, in fact, paid for the drink I ordered, so if it went on their check it was duplicated by the restaurant somehow.  They later figured out that it was a mistake so they told us they figured out what happened. But they were not even embarrassed about their behavior. This couple were people we'd known for a long time and they'd come to our wedding and we'd been to theirs also. We knew they were kind of tight with money but didn't realize they would jeopardize a friendship over an amount less than $5.00.  And then not even apologize when they realized that it was their own mistake.

Sounds like someone needs to be mailed a box with 450 pennies.

zinnie

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 520
  • Location: California
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #14 on: October 13, 2017, 10:44:29 AM »
I totally see your point OP, but it is sometimes a pain to do separate checks, whether for the party or the server. I do frequent places that won't split more than four ways, for example. However, I haven't had a situation where bringing cash or using Venmo couldn't solve the issue. Even if the rest of the table wants to split evenly there is usually someone who is happy to use me as a personal ATM and charge my portion while taking my cash, or have me send my portion to them via Venmo. And when I fork over $13 cash and they realize their portion is $30, I've never had someone then fight to split evenly...

But yeah, I greatly prefer places where you order up front then take a seat. I've noticed that becoming more popular with brewery/food places near us. It's also nice that in this model, you don't have a server coming around constantly trying to get you to buy more :)

GuitarStv

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 9118
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #15 on: October 13, 2017, 10:50:07 AM »
We've had significant problems even when we did request a separate check.

One time we dined with some couples and we all had separate checks, so each couple paid separately for their meals. The next morning, 9 a.m. sharp, one of the couples we dined with called my husband, and said that my drink had gone on their dinner bill. They told us to mail them a check for the drink, in the amount of $4.50. They also emailed us about it that same day. They were very upset. We pulled out our bill from the restaurant, which showed that we had, in fact, paid for the drink I ordered, so if it went on their check it was duplicated by the restaurant somehow.  They later figured out that it was a mistake so they told us they figured out what happened. But they were not even embarrassed about their behavior. This couple were people we'd known for a long time and they'd come to our wedding and we'd been to theirs also. We knew they were kind of tight with money but didn't realize they would jeopardize a friendship over an amount less than $5.00.  And then not even apologize when they realized that it was their own mistake.

Sounds like someone needs to be mailed a box with 450 pennies.

I'd be inclined to go with 450 pennies . . . individually mailed .

Mississippi Mudstache

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1530
  • Age: 33
  • Location: Danielsville, GA
    • A Riving Home - Ramblings of a Recusant Woodworker
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #16 on: October 13, 2017, 11:04:37 AM »
We've had significant problems even when we did request a separate check.

One time we dined with some couples and we all had separate checks, so each couple paid separately for their meals. The next morning, 9 a.m. sharp, one of the couples we dined with called my husband, and said that my drink had gone on their dinner bill. They told us to mail them a check for the drink, in the amount of $4.50. They also emailed us about it that same day. They were very upset. We pulled out our bill from the restaurant, which showed that we had, in fact, paid for the drink I ordered, so if it went on their check it was duplicated by the restaurant somehow.  They later figured out that it was a mistake so they told us they figured out what happened. But they were not even embarrassed about their behavior. This couple were people we'd known for a long time and they'd come to our wedding and we'd been to theirs also. We knew they were kind of tight with money but didn't realize they would jeopardize a friendship over an amount less than $5.00.  And then not even apologize when they realized that it was their own mistake.

Sounds like someone needs to be mailed a box with 450 pennies.

I'd be inclined to go with 450 pennies . . . individually mailed .

Not so sure I'd be up for spending $200+ on stamps as revenge for a petty $5 request.
Never. Give up.

My Woodworking Blog

GuitarStv

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 9118
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #17 on: October 13, 2017, 11:24:53 AM »
We've had significant problems even when we did request a separate check.

One time we dined with some couples and we all had separate checks, so each couple paid separately for their meals. The next morning, 9 a.m. sharp, one of the couples we dined with called my husband, and said that my drink had gone on their dinner bill. They told us to mail them a check for the drink, in the amount of $4.50. They also emailed us about it that same day. They were very upset. We pulled out our bill from the restaurant, which showed that we had, in fact, paid for the drink I ordered, so if it went on their check it was duplicated by the restaurant somehow.  They later figured out that it was a mistake so they told us they figured out what happened. But they were not even embarrassed about their behavior. This couple were people we'd known for a long time and they'd come to our wedding and we'd been to theirs also. We knew they were kind of tight with money but didn't realize they would jeopardize a friendship over an amount less than $5.00.  And then not even apologize when they realized that it was their own mistake.

Sounds like someone needs to be mailed a box with 450 pennies.

I'd be inclined to go with 450 pennies . . . individually mailed .

Not so sure I'd be up for spending $200+ on stamps as revenge for a petty $5 request.

It kinda makes it all the sweeter.

Car Jack

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 415
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #18 on: October 13, 2017, 12:48:41 PM »
I used to go out with work colleagues years ago.  We all knew to do separate checks OR at a Chinese buffet type restaurant, have all drinks separately paid for.  There was one guy in the group who would take full advantage if this wasn't the case and if he thought the group was splitting evenly, he'd have 6 or 8 beers. 

ketchup

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2630
  • Age: 26
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #19 on: October 13, 2017, 01:57:08 PM »
I used to go out with work colleagues years ago.  We all knew to do separate checks OR at a Chinese buffet type restaurant, have all drinks separately paid for.  There was one guy in the group who would take full advantage if this wasn't the case and if he thought the group was splitting evenly, he'd have 6 or 8 beers.
Or you could just do like my uncle and his buddies in college.  Once a week they would all go to a place like that, and whoever ate the least had to pay for the whole group.

Chesleygirl

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 387
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #20 on: October 13, 2017, 04:17:45 PM »
We've had significant problems even when we did request a separate check.

One time we dined with some couples and we all had separate checks, so each couple paid separately for their meals. The next morning, 9 a.m. sharp, one of the couples we dined with called my husband, and said that my drink had gone on their dinner bill. They told us to mail them a check for the drink, in the amount of $4.50. They also emailed us about it that same day. They were very upset. We pulled out our bill from the restaurant, which showed that we had, in fact, paid for the drink I ordered, so if it went on their check it was duplicated by the restaurant somehow.  They later figured out that it was a mistake so they told us they figured out what happened. But they were not even embarrassed about their behavior. This couple were people we'd known for a long time and they'd come to our wedding and we'd been to theirs also. We knew they were kind of tight with money but didn't realize they would jeopardize a friendship over an amount less than $5.00.  And then not even apologize when they realized that it was their own mistake.

Sounds like someone needs to be mailed a box with 450 pennies.

I'd be inclined to go with 450 pennies . . . individually mailed .

Not so sure I'd be up for spending $200+ on stamps as revenge for a petty $5 request.

Perhaps I should have put the pennies in a box and left it on their porchstep.  The $5 "request" was actually a demand. And  yes, we would have paid if it had been inadvertently put on their bill by the waiter, and I'm pretty sure the they would have taken us to small claims court if we didn't. It's kind of sad because they both kept wanting to stay friends with us and for us to hang out with them.

We don't hang out with them anymore. We send them a Christmas card every year and that's it.

NeonPegasus

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 299
  • Location: Metro Atlanta, GA
    • Neon Pegasus
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2017, 12:42:14 PM »
That's totally uncool. A $5 drink isn't worth being an ass. If I go out with friends and we split the tab evenly but I've eaten/drank more, I'll often offer to pick up the entire tip to even it out.

But most of the time, we request separate checks and it's just not an issue.

When appetizers are thrown in the mix, whoever ordered it pays for it and the people who ate it throw in some extra money.

Milizard

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 365
  • Location: West Michigan
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #22 on: October 15, 2017, 02:47:53 PM »
My current group of friends does separate checks, which I prefer.  I don't want to feel constrained if I want to order something more expensive on occasion, by other people wanting to split evenly.  Other times, I feel like I got the short end of the stick--thinking of a large group meal at a tapas place that was not cheap when the check was split evenly, but I left still feeling hungry because I didn't get much to eat at my little end of the table.  Otherwise, if you're just divvying up a check, the tip can be an issue--sometimes people under-contributing and sometimes over-tipping.

alsoknownasDean

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1602
  • Age: 33
  • Location: Melbourne, Australia
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #23 on: October 15, 2017, 06:41:18 PM »
Yeah a lot of restaurants here state 'no split bills'. Although if everyone has cash to pay for their share (by analysing the receipt) that's not such a big deal.

The restaurant is likely to receive a bit more of a tip that way (Australia doesn't really have a tipping culture like the US) as everyone rounds up their $28 share to $30.

And yeah, contacting about a $4.50 drink is cheap. Even if it was an error, that's where 'I'll shout you a drink next time' comes into play.

Cassie

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3747
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #24 on: October 15, 2017, 06:51:34 PM »
No wonder you are not friends with those people anymore. That is so petty for 4.50. WE will split if everyone has ordered similar items.   If not we either get separate checks or just figure out individually how much we owe.

elaine amj

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1876
  • Location: Ontario
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #25 on: October 16, 2017, 08:53:07 AM »
I personally like separate checks. However, we don't do it as much as I would prefer with my friend group as we often like to pay for each other and then the other family treats at the next one or whatever. It works out in the end (none of us track it though) but I don't care for the uneven math. Love being generous but it does bug me a tiny little bit when split costs aren't split down to the penny. When I travel with my girlfriend, she knows I'm tracking every penny on an app or whatever and she'll get a detailed bill at the end of exactly what 50% each is. She recently asked me what her split cost for our last trip together was and I gave her the exact total ($72.50) - but then told her to call it a wash as her BF had kindly installed my sump pump for me for free.

Psychstache

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 605
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #26 on: October 16, 2017, 09:05:04 AM »
You could also solve this problem, and add some excitement and drama to your meal, with the credit card game:

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Credit%20Card%20Game

link is SFW

Elderwood17

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 527
  • Location: Western North Carolina
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #27 on: October 17, 2017, 02:23:16 PM »
You could also solve this problem, and add some excitement and drama to your meal, with the credit card game:

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Credit%20Card%20Game

link is SFW
We always call this Credit Card Roulette!  Lots of fun but my circle of friends don't eat out much and typically fight over who gets to pay!   When more casually friends go out no one ever minds separate checks.   Never once been an issue that I know of!

Psychstache

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 605
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #28 on: October 18, 2017, 01:38:56 PM »
You could also solve this problem, and add some excitement and drama to your meal, with the credit card game:

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Credit%20Card%20Game

link is SFW
We always call this Credit Card Roulette!  Lots of fun but my circle of friends don't eat out much and typically fight over who gets to pay!   When more casually friends go out no one ever minds separate checks.   Never once been an issue that I know of!

Nice! We would actually try and make it even more drama filled by having the server pick a card, and that card went back to the person who it belonged to. We would keep it up until there were only 1 card left in the server's hands and that was the loser. Not for the faint of heart in large groups.

jezebel

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1289
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #29 on: October 18, 2017, 08:40:49 PM »
You could also solve this problem, and add some excitement and drama to your meal, with the credit card game:

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Credit%20Card%20Game

link is SFW
We always call this Credit Card Roulette!  Lots of fun but my circle of friends don't eat out much and typically fight over who gets to pay!   When more casually friends go out no one ever minds separate checks.   Never once been an issue that I know of!

Nice! We would actually try and make it even more drama filled by having the server pick a card, and that card went back to the person who it belonged to. We would keep it up until there were only 1 card left in the server's hands and that was the loser. Not for the faint of heart in large groups.

Why? This sounds miserable.

elaine amj

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1876
  • Location: Ontario
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #30 on: October 18, 2017, 08:56:51 PM »
Amongst my older Chinese relatives, it's practically an art form to squabble over who pays the bill. It's a massive win to be able to win the argument to pay. It can get really loud and many times they sound very angry. So tough on the servers who often are forced to choose with several credit cards shoved at them. Sometimes it involves sneaking (DH's favourite technique is to sneak off to pay while everyone's eating). He got into trouble with his father once when another relative "one-upped" him by arranging to pay before we even got seated!

I don't like it but it's considered rude not to play (you appear stingy). Thankfully, DH is willing to play so I can stay out of it.

Sent from my STH100-1 using Tapatalk


Psychstache

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 605
Re: Asking for separate check at restaurant
« Reply #31 on: October 19, 2017, 08:07:21 AM »
You could also solve this problem, and add some excitement and drama to your meal, with the credit card game:

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Credit%20Card%20Game

link is SFW
We always call this Credit Card Roulette!  Lots of fun but my circle of friends don't eat out much and typically fight over who gets to pay!   When more casually friends go out no one ever minds separate checks.   Never once been an issue that I know of!

Nice! We would actually try and make it even more drama filled by having the server pick a card, and that card went back to the person who it belonged to. We would keep it up until there were only 1 card left in the server's hands and that was the loser. Not for the faint of heart in large groups.

Why? This sounds miserable.

To each their own. We found it entertaining.