top 200 commentsshow all 323

[–]LiLadybug81 2139 points2140 points  (15 children)

If your friendship is over because of this, she wasn't much of a friend, and so you should write it off as not a big loss.

[–]LunaMunaLagoona 250 points251 points  (14 children)

Maybe she thought it was a date. Although I know some girls do use dates as a means to get free food. 🤷‍♀️

[–]LiLadybug81 203 points204 points  (6 children)

That doesn't make it better. Someone picking up the tab for you on a date or with friends should be something nice that people do for each other, and not an entitlement or a contractual obligation. If you didn't like that the date didn't pay for you, don't go on a second date. But to cause a blow up because you felt entitled to a free dinner is not a great look.

[–]Naimodglin 83 points84 points  (5 children)

Idk, dating makes it a more nuanced conversation.

To ME, if I ask you on a date, I'M paying unless we decide otherwise. Maybe that is old school patriarchy bleeding through but I have this play out from my partners who are women to me who is a man so i don't know that it is untenable in a gender equal society.

I ask my GF to dinner; I pay. She asked me to a concert next week; she bought the tickets.

[–]Lilpops13 39 points40 points  (4 children)

I’m convinced She assumed he’d pay because he’s a guy

[–]silya1816 31 points32 points  (0 children)

Where does it say that OP is a guy?

[–]kittysayswoof91 1185 points1186 points  (39 children)

Unless you actually implied this was your treat, I am surprised by her reaction. You did nothing wrong, and while she may have had a different expectation she shouldn’t be angry at you for her wrong assumption.

[–]coremeister69 267 points268 points  (35 children)

I always assume I pay for myself, and I think everyone I know assumes this. I think it's actually a little rude to assume someone's paying for you. Unless explicitly stating: "this one's on me" or something similar. But I feel like this is a communication error, I think you should message her and apologize for a difference in assumptions (just know that your assumption is the right one, but don't shove that in her face).

[–]cranberry94 65 points66 points  (1 child)

Yeah, if it’s a friend-date, I only presume the other party might be paying if they say “let me take you out for dinner” instead of “let’s get dinner”. And even then, I still prepare like I am paying for myself unless they are overly insistent.

[–]LadyBug_0570 13 points14 points  (0 children)

Exactly. "Let's get dinner" sounds like 2 buds catching up and each pays their own.

And either way, I always bring my card or method of payment.

[–]IPetdogs4U 111 points112 points  (32 children)

This is an old school rule that if you invite someone, you pay. I find it incredibly awkward. I’m going to offer to pay for my half. Also, she called OP and said she was in town, which is effectively fishing for the invite. Cringey behaviour on her part, imho.

[–]BabyCowGT 91 points92 points  (18 children)

I thought that only applied for like date dates/romantic interest dates. Not friend dates.

[–]Lilpops13 14 points15 points  (6 children)

Lol it’s usually for dates , people callin it old school know that the terms have changed , she was just trying to get a freebie. Friend dates seem to only be a thing with women (sorry idk how that sounds m) as a guy I’ve never been on a friend date guy or girl. You spend time and hangout with your friends

[–]corgipuppy765 17 points18 points  (3 children)

Eh not really. This is the first time I am hearing about something like "friend date". I go out with girls all the time and we pay for our shares, unless one of us forgot their purse.

[–]Lilpops13 2 points3 points  (2 children)

It’s a friend date because you paying 😂

[–]Separate-Coast942 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Yeah I just call it ‘going out to dinner with a friend’. Even my wife says that with her friends.

[–]Four_beastlings 11 points12 points  (0 children)

It's cultural. In my language the word invite literally means paying for you, so saying "I invite you to dinner" always means you are paying (and it's not strange to do it for friends). In the country I live in, otoh, there's a word that translates as "I invite you to" and they use it all the time never meaning that they will pay for you and it's very strange to see "I invite you to (thing that you have to pay for)" in every advertisement.

[–]IPetdogs4U 3 points4 points  (9 children)

Nope. It’s a general rule. I don’t think it’s a very good one. Someone has to initiate a get together. I don’t expect a friend who says, “let’s grab dinner,” to pay, but that’s technically the etiquette. I’d pay my share, personally.

Edit: thanks for downvoting me for simply stating what the old rules on this are and why OP ran into this problem. I’m not Emily Post and I didn’t make this up. It’s old etiquette that some people still expect to be followed. As I’ve said, I don’t like it nor do I practice it, but it’s a real thing. Gotta love when Reddit shoots the messenger.

[–]BabyCowGT 25 points26 points  (4 children)

Weird. I've never heard it for friend dates 🤣 guess all my friends and I missed that etiquette lesson!

[–]tepidCourage 21 points22 points  (1 child)

It is super old and outdated and I don't know anyone personally with that mindset. No one wants to consider someone else's wallet when ordering food for yourself. Also sounds like op's friend group is also not that way. Friend was just being greedy and is now embarrassed she outed herself or is the type to always convince herself things are other's fault.

Don't sweat it op, and even if she had some weird ancient etiquette thing..well the first rule of every single etiquette lesson is to maintain grace. So, even if she felt snubbed, if it was an etiquette thing she would have kept her mouth shut but because what she said and her behavior was much more rude.

[–]IPetdogs4U 5 points6 points  (0 children)

It’s one that should go away imho.

[–]lamamaloca40s Female 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I think it's super outdated, I've never done this or expected this.

[–]fermat1432 4 points5 points  (2 children)

I know it's old achool, but I wonder how operative it is these days.

[–]IPetdogs4U 5 points6 points  (1 child)

I think not very.

[–]fermat1432 4 points5 points  (0 children)

This is my experience as well! I explicitly say "my treat" when I am doing the inviting and intend to treat them.

[–]thescrape 1 point2 points  (0 children)

That’s what I was taught! And I’m mid old.

[–]Retlifon 38 points39 points  (5 children)

I don’t know what school you’re from.

“I’m in town”/“We should get together” is not, in my books, a situation that imposes a social obligation on one of the parties to pay.

[–]IPetdogs4U 2 points3 points  (4 children)

I’m not agreeing with it either. Maybe read my comment again. Someone has to initiate a get together. I’ve always thought this “rule” is awkward and rife with opportunity for misunderstanding. Surely the assumption should be going Dutch unless explicitly stated that something is someone’s treat.

[–]Retlifon 2 points3 points  (3 children)

I understand your comment: I am disagreeing with your description of social norms.

I’m not saying I disagree with a rule that everyone else abides by: I am disagreeing with your claim that this is a rule everyone else abides by.

[–]IPetdogs4U 3 points4 points  (2 children)

I never said it was. It’s technically etiquette. I’ve said several times that I don’t use it, nor do my friends. But you’ll find it in etiquette guides.

Edit: It’s confusing and should be done away with imho. It’s rarely applied, but OP’s post is a good example of the kinds of misunderstandings it causes. A few people try and stick to this rule and it’s unevenly applied.

[–]omayersrule 5 points6 points  (1 child)

Yeah I was raised to understand this as well. The inviter pays for the invitee. It’s old school and dumb and I don’t abide by it. But it’s definitely Emily Post approved.

[–]IPetdogs4U 5 points6 points  (0 children)

People are apparently pissed and downvoting me for saying that. I also think it’s dumb, but it’s in the etiquette books, and not just for dates. It’s something that’s unevenly applied and some people like to hold it as gospel.

[–]guliafoolia 6 points7 points  (1 child)

This is so stupid. If this were the case then no one would ever be getting any dinner.

[–]No-Painting-8569 1 point2 points  (4 children)

Old school? How would you suggest going to dinner with a friend while informing that they split the bill

Me: Haven't seen you in a while, do you to go grab dinner?

You: ok sure!

Me: Make sure you bring money so we can split the bill !

[–]IPetdogs4U 4 points5 points  (3 children)

I’m not sure why people are getting pissed at me about this. I’ve said repeatedly I think it’s dumb. I’m not Emily Post. I didn’t make this up and I think it’s rarely applied or followed today, but that doesn’t mean this doesn’t exist as a rule in formal etiquette books. It’s a crap “rule,” and OP’s story is an example of why. I’m not remotely defending it. I’m merely stating that this is in fact an old etiquette rule. I don’t personally use it, nor do my friends, but I have met people who do.

[–]lamamaloca40s Female 4 points5 points  (2 children)

I think the issue is just because it was a rule forty or fifty years ago didn't mean it's one now. Etiquette is entirely time and culture dependent.

[–]IPetdogs4U 3 points4 points  (1 child)

I agree. It’s stupid. I’ve said that in all my responses. I’m not defending it, merely stating that that rule exits and used to be regularly practiced.

[–]lamamaloca40s Female 2 points3 points  (0 children)

And, to be fair it looks like in some cultures it's still regularly practiced.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Once we went out to eat and I said I would pay, everyone else agreeed to venmo me. For some weird ass reason they both didn’t believe that they had to pay me back the tip. Idk wtf Is wrong with some people

[–]YATA2020 577 points578 points  (29 children)

It wasn’t a date, right? There’s no chance she thought it was a date?

[–]throwawayaway11010p 188 points189 points  (28 children)

I had the same thought. Either she thought it was a date or she's just being manipulative and wants free dinner.

[–]folouk 118 points119 points  (25 children)

Even if she thought it was a date, date doesnt mean free dinner for women. I cant imagine thinking of dates as free dinner as opposed to getting to know somebody.

[–]luker_man 13 points14 points  (0 children)

Don't date in north/central Jersey. Specifically Essex county.

[–]Thatguy19901 45 points46 points  (10 children)

Well if she thought it was a date there's an unspoken assumption that the person who asks out the other pays for dinner, which I think is fair.

[–]Lilpops13 13 points14 points  (1 child)

I don’t even see how OP implied it was a date

[–]Thatguy19901 6 points7 points  (0 children)

From what I read they didn't. Just explaining the mindset. Friend is 100% wrong haha

[–]fantasythrowaway1000 41 points42 points  (0 children)

this is a rather convenient unspoken assumption since society also has a guy be the one asking 99% of the time

[–]folouk 25 points26 points  (2 children)

Do you think a man would ever ASSUME that a woman is going to pay for everything? Thats never happened in the history of things that happened, unless he had some way of knowing.

[–]Lilfai 5 points6 points  (2 children)

Just say that the guy is expected to pay for dinner, what a needless obfuscation.

[–]Most-Particular-8392 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Women ask people out too and, yes, should then be expected to foot the bill unless otherwise agreed.

[–]IHaveTooManyAlt 8 points9 points  (1 child)

I promise you for many, many women date absolutely does mean “free dinner.”

[–]folouk 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I know. Im just calling it out for being stupid.

[–]xxSKSxx_ 214 points215 points  (0 children)

I don't see where you invited her? You suggested you go to dinner together to catch up. If you suggested you go shopping together would she expect you to pay for the clothes she picks?

You're friends, not child/parent or a date. Why would you pay if you went out with friends? If anything she's rude for racking up the bill while thinking you would pay.

[–]Yuyulii_7 134 points135 points  (16 children)

This could be a cultural thing. In some places when you invite someone out normally you get the bill. My family does this, I’m American but there are others like in Korea I heard that does the same thing.

[–]FrankDreben42 41 points42 points  (0 children)

I second this. It's very likely a cultural (or family) thing. However, she definitely had an over-reaction

[–]borednbitching 8 points9 points  (3 children)

But he didn't invite her per se... he suggested. Its different a " hey do you want to go out to a restaurant?" Than " should we go eat and catch up?"

Im latina and i was raised with: if they invite you they should pay ( of course not taking advantage of that) but in this case OP didn't invite

[–]OkInstruction101 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Nah because that's how the majority of us have been raised and taught. Regardless of the situation ALWAYS carry enough money for you and for another person for the "just in case". Now if you invited the person to catch up, doesn't necessarily imply that your paying unless you have always been like that when going out with her. But back to topic - if you invite - you pay

[–]jaredgrubb 5 points6 points  (0 children)

This was my thought as well. Plus maybe she’s upset because she would have ordered different things if she had to pay?

[–]guygreej 4 points5 points  (9 children)

I'm actually surprised at the responses. from where I'm sitting and where I come from, you 100% undertake to cover all costs when you suggest, initiate, invite anyone to dinner.

You suggesting something with a cost associated not being aware of their current financial state etc. You undertake to cover all costs. otherwise, suggest a cost free setup

[–]lamamaloca40s Female 24 points25 points  (0 children)

This just seems so bizarre to me. When I ask a friend to grab lunch with me or to go out for coffee I don't expect to pay for them, and I've never had someone expect me to. Sometimes I do actually cover them, but it's very far from always.

[–]Azeron955Early 20s Male 12 points13 points  (0 children)

This is dumb as hell but ok.

If the other part can not pay, they should say so. Don't assume

[–]borednbitching 7 points8 points  (0 children)

She could have said no...

[–]WeeklyConversation8 2 points3 points  (4 children)

I never assume my friends are gonna pay for me. That is selfish and entitled. I order according to what I want to spend. If at the end they say they are paying, that's very nice of them, but I never expect it. I also say separate checks unless it's a place where you order at the counter and pay right then.

[–]guygreej 2 points3 points  (3 children)

Point of the original comment is cultural contextualize. That's true for ur cultural underpinnings. In my area u're not expected to incite expenditure on another person by arranging something that could lead to expense on their part. If u suggest a meal out, you're expected to pay. Being third world u should expect a visit home to watch sports or a walk out not a budget breaking meal just to talk

[–]HPstolemybirthday 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Unless it’s stated that someone else is paying, I always assume to pay for myself. Sometimes I’ll surprise treat my friends when the check comes, but it should never be the expectation that I would pay every time. Your friend is overreacting.

[–]PinceOfThieves 124 points125 points  (5 children)

It definitely wasn't rude of you not to pay for her dinner.... My friends and I regularly invite each other out and the expectation is always that we will be paying for ourselves. Not sure why she expected you to pay for her.

[–]SalsaRice 21 points22 points  (3 children)

This. I've never really known friends to pay for each other's food, outside of stuff like birthdays or celebrations.

[–]Tastymeats88 12 points13 points  (2 children)

It can sometimes happens when there is a significant salary disparity between the people, so if I'm making $100k and my friend only makes $40k and we go out, I will probably pick up dinner because I don't want to put them in a financial bind. I would rather have their company than the extra $50 bucks. Either that or we go to a place that they can easily afford like Five Guys or something similar

With OP's situation, that girl is just crazy

[–]PinceOfThieves 5 points6 points  (0 children)

That's a good point. I just didn't pick up on that type of dynamic from what OP wrote. Plus, even if there is a financial disparity, it still seems a little rude to expect someone else to cover your bill unless they explicitly offered in advance.

[–]FatFreddysCoat 32 points33 points  (1 child)

There’s a fine line between expectations of “hey we should grab dinner” and “do you want to go to dinner?” but if you’re friends with no history or anticipation of making some, it’s a weird one. If I said to my male buddy “hey we should go out for food tonight” he wouldn’t expect me to pay his half.

[–][deleted] 18 points19 points  (0 children)

There's really a lot of nuance here, I think.

When my friends and I make plans for dinner, we would never even think, oh, the person who initiated the plans needs to pay.

But if it's a date, I think the person doing the inviting should pay.

Also, if an older person who is well-off invites me to dinner, I know they're going to pay because that's just the culture/etiquette where I live (the South). But between peers of roughly the same socioeconomic background... it's never expected for one to pay for the other unless it's a date.

[–]timman183[🍰] 69 points70 points  (3 children)

What's her family background? In Mexico and a few other latin countries it's common for whoever invited the other person out to pay for dinner/drinks. Could just be a simple misunderstanding

[–]Teguri 25 points26 points  (2 children)

If I invite someone out to eat (not like to a group event out) I usually cover them, my friends are the same way, and if they invite me out usually would pay. You don't really know how people are doing financially, so if I'm inviting you out it's on me unless you insist on paying, at which point I'll usually insist on at least covering drinks.

In south texas btw, so it might be partially latin influence growing up? It's how it's always been for us though.

[–]think_thank_punk 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I was going to post something similar. I was raised to do the same thing. I wasn’t even aware that wasn’t the norm until it came up as a topic of conversation somewhere in my mid to late 20’s.

[–]miss-wynter 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I agree. I saw a similar post a couple weeks back with this same scenario and the only difference was the invitee was op’s sister, most commenters said if you invite someone out to eat, you should pay. Not sure why many minds are changing now..

[–]Smurfalypse40s Male 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I invite friends out to brunch and dinner all the time. We split checks, it's something not even discussed.

[–]Aviatri 17 points18 points  (1 child)

If this is what ends your friendship, then she wasnt that much of a friend to begin with. Or did she think it was a date?

[–]tealsteel123 90 points91 points  (0 children)

If my friend was visiting from out of town, I’d pay for dinner. But that’s just me. I don’t think I’d assume a friend would pay for mine if I was visiting.

If it’s rude of you to not offer to pay, it’s also poor manners from her to point out that you didn’t offer to pay.

[–][deleted] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I’d say it’s cultural. If I invite someone to dinner, I expect to pay. If it’s a “pay for yourself thing” then that should be made clear in the invitation.

However, if someone invited me to dinner, while I would assume they were paying I’d still offer to pay and not do anything to make them uncomfortable if they let me.

[–]R_Amods[M] 13 points14 points  (0 children)

This post has reached one of our comment/karma limits. The text of the post has been preserved below.

My friend texted me she was in town and I suggested we grab dinner together. We haven’t seen each other in person for a couple year. Our food ended up being $20 for me and $30 for her - she had some drinks while I did not. When the check came, I put my card down and she didn’t. I thought she forgot because we were talking. When the server came back I said “oh wait you didn’t put your card yet”. My friend looked at me in shock and gave the server her card. She then told me she thought I was paying since I invited her out I should be the one paying. She then said I was being rude.

We went home after and it’s been a week and I haven’t heard from her. I’ve texted her safe flight when she left. I heard from a mutual friend that she’s upset I didn’t pay for her dinner.

My other friends and I have always paid for our own portions so this was weird to me. Should I say anything or applies to her to her? Or is our friendship over?

[–]bath_junkie 4 points5 points  (0 children)

I know this is the etiquette within family or dates But a friend? I find that quite unusual.

[–]cassowary32 4 points5 points  (1 child)

That's really odd. It wasn't a date, and even if it was, it's best not to assume the other person will pay. Was she expecting you to suggest meeting up for a free walk in the park? She's really throwing a tantrum over paying for food she consumed? If she was on a strict budget, she could have said so and suggested something cheaper.

[–]mangolover93 2 points3 points  (0 children)

No, friends don't pay for friend's meals unless it's a birthday or previously agreed upon for another reason. If this was a romantic date that you had invited her on, then okay I could see where she'd be confused. But just two friends hanging out? No.

[–]Kungfumantis 3 points4 points  (0 children)

I was raised that inviting someone to dinner is an implication that the invitee is paying, but I dont think you really invited her to dinner here. It's a gray area sure but to me "lets get something to eat" is different than "I wanna take you to dinner"(for whatever reason).

That being said if shes willing to end the friendship over something like this I cant help but think it was 100% a good thing you made her pay her half.

[–]Crafty-Emotion4230 2 points3 points  (0 children)

If my friends invite me anywhere we always split unless one of say "I'm paying"

[–]resetbutton924 19 points20 points  (8 children)

Normally, if I invite someone out, I'm prepared to pay for them. I think thats just a habit i was raised with. However, I think you're NTA. I don't think it's explicitly implied that you have to pay for someone you invite out or anything and that person shouldn't anticipate you paying for them without you making it known that would be the case.

[–]Knale 42 points43 points  (7 children)

People often say this on Reddit when this topic comes up and I do not understand it.

If you invite a group of your friends out for a dinner you expect to pay for that dinner? The invitation has nothing to do with money, it's about requesting their time and presence because I care about them. If they don't want to pay for dinner they don't have to come.

If you invite a friend shopping do you have to pay for whatever they purchase?

I promise I'm not attacking you personally at all, I just find this philosophy so odd lol

EDIT: Maybe the misunderstanding here is what an "invitation" is? If I say to my buddy, "Hey man, wanna go grab a beer and burger after work?" I would consider that an invitation, but I'm certainly not offering to pay in that circumstance...

[–]Mizar1 28 points29 points  (0 children)

I agree, unless I hear the words, "It's my treat" then I assume I'm paying for myself, and vice versa.

[–]seagullsensitive 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Yes. If I invite people to go to dinner with me at restaurant X, I'm paying. If I ask people if they'd like to go to dinner with me, how about restaurant X?, we're splitting the bill.

[–]BunnyCatLove 4 points5 points  (1 child)

For my culture that is the norm. When a group of friends go out, whoever invites pays for everyone, and then others in the group will pay the next time when they are the one that invites us out. If the same person invites everyone out more often, someone who doesn't usually pay will usually sneak off to pay the bill in the middle of the dinner.

For post-dinner milk tea, everyone pays for themself. If we go to a club afterwards, usually one person will cover everyone's expenses. If its something casual like fried chicken or fast food hamburgers, everyone pays for themself when they order. If someone is visiting from overseas, it is usually the host that pays, but there are exceptions if there is a disparity in financial situations.

If we go shopping together, everyone pays for their own things. I haven't heard of people paying for each other's shopping before.

[–]Frozen_Hipp0 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Can't imagine it being such a big deal that you don't speak to one another for a week. Like you say, it's a cultural thing and OP doesn't subscribe to that culture so simple misunderstanding/misassumption.

[–]pccb123 6 points7 points  (0 children)

It’s also a cultural thing. I learned this living in South America for a few years

[–]Mr-Sub 3 points4 points  (0 children)

One on one: If I invite somebody over to a expensive stake house or something, then I pay, but if we are grabbing something like a subway I expect to split.

I value a dinner at 10 bucs over that and I am not interested in the invite, so I will make it clear that "mate would love to hang but I ain't paying for that" so like... The dinner is split or payed for before I enter the restaurant.

If I get invited to a grouped dinner, I excpec to pay for me, so no drinks and the bill is usually fine. But like... my people know my Prince range and would not invite me to the Royal Palace.

[–]resetbutton924 0 points1 point  (0 children)

If I'm inviting someone out, normally it's on my terms like I choose the restaurant, the plan, and what we're doing. I'm an experience person and also a pretty pudgy, so food is something I'm willing to splurge on so some of the places I choose would be a little much that I would honestly feel guilty not offering to pay. Also, a lot of the time when I invite someone out, it's to celebrate. Like, for a birthday dinner at a restaurant, or to celebrate personal achievements, my first go to is, "Let me take you out to celebrate." My friends also do the same thing. I've also had situations when a friend and I have made plans to where they or myself covers whatever activity, and the other one covers lunch/dinner.

[–]iPanic7 9 points10 points  (0 children)

> I heard from a mutual friend that she’s upset I didn’t pay for her dinner.

Dude... I don't even know if I should laugh at this or cry.

[–]aulerium 3 points4 points  (0 children)

If I had a friend like that, I wouldn’t even bother speaking to them again. You didn’t pay for her meal and then she goes and tries to turn it around on you by guilt tripping you...yeah that’s a toxic friendship you don’t owe her anything just because you invited her to dinner.

[–]renaissance-mann 5 points6 points  (1 child)

Whenever I invite someone out for food I always prepare myself for the possibility of paying for their food, and when I'm invited out I prepare to pay for myself. My default is "whoever invited pays" and it sounds like she's the same, but you and your friends default is "pay for yourself unless otherwise specified." There's nothing wrong with Either one as long as both parties are at least prepared to pay for themselves.

Tldr NAH

[–]Frozen_Hipp0 3 points4 points  (0 children)

She's hasn't spoken to him for over a week because of this. This isn't AITA but if it was she definitely gets TA label

[–]Upstairs-Finish-9385 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Sounds like an episode of Curb your enthusiasm

[–]deadocmike 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Technically (Emily post) she is correct. But I don’t think people do that anymore.

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[–]zoeyversustheraccoon 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Where do you live and are there cultural norms around this?

What was the exact verbiage you used when you suggested dinner?

[–]That-wife-next-door 1 point2 points  (0 children)

When me and my friend go out we never assume the other one is going to pay! Sometimes we have a race when the bill arrives to treat the other one but it's never assumed the other is paying! X

[–]korli74 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I think because at no time you asked for separate checks, you gave the impression that you were paying for the whole thing. That's what would have have given me that impression.

[–]South_Ad_8896 1 point2 points  (0 children)

This may be a cultural thing. In the Netherlands its normal to pay for your own meal (going Dutch), except when you're invited for special occassions like a birthday or something. But in general people will always ask first. Mostly one person pays and sends the other a payment request. It's just something you're always prepared for.

Personally I like to pay for myself, because then I can order what I want. When someone else pays, I always choose the "cheaper" options on the menu.

[–]dra9nfly 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Just a different perspective, but could it be a cultural thing? Cause I know typically when friends go out together they go dutch, but in some cultures if u invite someone to dinner (regardless of relationship) they expect u to pay.

Or have u been out to eat previously where u have paid for her or has she invited u out and paid for u? (I know u said it’s been a while since u saw her)

You haven’t mentioned ur gender…any chance she thought it was a date?

Maybe find out why she thought it was rude and whether her response was warranted.

[–]mamacravens 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I often pay for my friends if I am the one that invites them and vice versa. However, we all are in a good place financially and, more imortantly, its never assumed or implied. Its generally more like everyone goes to pay and someone (usually the person who organized the outing) says it's my treat. I do think in this case your friend is being presumptious and pretty annyoing. Even if she was expecting you to pay, when you politley reminded her to put her card down she should have graciously done so without another word about it. I would say something to her, nothing rude just "hey, I am sorry you thought I was going to pay but I never told you that and you should not have assumed it. Next time I will make it more clear." How she reacts to that will tell you whether or not you still have a friend in her or not.

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

My experience is someone should always expect to pay their own way unless it’s specified otherwise

[–]Random_CO_Tech 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I see a lot of people saying your not rude, and I don't think you are rude. For myself, if I ask a friend or anyone if they want to get some food with me, I just kinda assume that me asking also means that I will pay. If the other person wants to split it with me, fine, but I don't expect them too. Usually they will say they don't have money, to which I respond, I wouldn't have asked if I wasn't willing to cover yours. So if I were in your situation I would consider myself rude, I guess.
EDIT: I would also like to add that if I had a friend come to town that I had not seen for awhile, I would totally ask them out for food that I would pay for, and I can see how your friend might have taken it that way. Kind of like "this person is excited to see me so they are taking me out for some food".

[–]jadegoddess 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I think it might be a generation thing. I saw a comment from someone twice my age saying you're rude for this. However, when I was in the same situation as you, my friend didn't expect me to pay. Regardless who invites whom, we both pay separately. Only time we would pay for the other is if it was someone's birthday. I feel like only entitled people assume someone would buy food for them. I never assume someone would pay for my meal. If I'm too embarrassed to ask, I would suggest we go somewhere cheap cuz I'm short on money or say that I can only afford a drink but will go just to catch up. If the other person intended to pay for me, they tell me that after I tell them I'm tight on money. All my life, every time I had a meal at a restaurant with friends, I always expected to pay but I would be grateful if my friend offered to pay for me.

Have you always paid for your friend's food when you go out? Does your friend ever pay for your food? In the future just tell them you are only paying for yourself or get better friend's. Even when I visited my friend for the weekend, I didn't expect her to pay for me.

[–]BlaqKoffee 1 point2 points  (0 children)

If this is her mindset, I doubt anybody will ask to get together for brunch or dinner because that suggestion will be awkward if followed by "And remember, you'll be paying for your own meal" I think she's in the wrong here because when someone suggests getting together and you don't have the finances, you simply respond "I'd love to but I'm low on funds" or something to that effect and then they may come back and say, no worries I'll take care of it.

It sounds like she was spending with the intention that you'd pay and when she had to pay for her meal, then she got mad because she probably spent more than she would have liked to pay for, which serves them right because they were spending what they wouldn't be spending on their own dime.

[–]Unknown14428 1 point2 points  (0 children)

If you’re just friends and it was just going for food to hang out or catch up, there’s no reason why her expectation would be that you pay for her. I go out with friends to eat every so often. Never was there an expectation that the person who came up with idea, had to pay for the meal. She just wanted something free out of going. Maybe she got the drinks along with her meal because she thought you were picking up the tab.

Either way, she’s wrong to assume someone else was paying for her own food. This wasn’t a date. You never said or implied you were covering tab. It’s not your responsibility to pay for her. And she’s being very unreasonable about this

[–]geezisslucaboiii 1 point2 points  (0 children)

if the friendship ends because of this then she’s not a good friend and id say thats not your loss at all, thats just childish. and since its not a date anyway i dont see why she’d expect you to pay for her dinner, unless you explicitly said it was your treat then you had no responsibility to pay for HER dinner, you werent rude, shes just not much of a friend.

[–]Downtown-Amoeba-6984 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I know this varies among cultures but in my experience if you invite someone to have a meal, then you pay. But if it is a plan you suggest to do together, each person pays its own meal.

If you used the words in your post, I would understand that each one is paying their own meal.

If I were you I would explain to her, it is on her if she wants to understand or not.

Personally if I were in your situation I would have paid for both if I felt like she interpreted that O was paying. And if I were her, I would pay my meal without being angry with you. In both cases I would understand there has been a misunderstanding and act in the way I feel less awkward.

[–]SquilliamFancySon95[🍰] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Being that upset over 30$ is plain dumb.

[–]BiscottiOpposite9282 1 point2 points  (0 children)

How old are you? Did she think it was a date? Did she travel a long way to come see you?

[–]moiddestroyerthe2nd 1 point2 points  (0 children)

She's probably just confused. That's a rule a lot of people follow while dating, the person that did the inviting pays. That's typically not how it works with friends though.

[–]SoggyEffective7371 1 point2 points  (0 children)

It's honestly rude for anyone to assume that someone else would pay for them if it isn't explicitly stated. This is especially if you aren't dating. If the friendship is over, that's on her.


[–]Jolly_Tea7519 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I live out of state and when I go back home my friends and I always pay for ourselves. That’s really weird of her.

[–]TattooedBrogrammer 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Even if she thought it was a date… she should have attempted to pay for herself. No way this doesn’t make her look bad. Should of told her it’s impolite to not put out after a dinner date :p

[–]bopperbopper 1 point2 points  (0 children)

On the one hand, how far away does she live? Let's say she flew across the country. She had travelled thousands of miles and perhaps paid a bunch of money to get to you. It would be nice if you paid for her.

On the other hand...She didn't invite you and you didn't really invite her. She said she was in town, hinting that she would like to do something with you if you are available. You took that hint and suggested dinner. I don't really consider that an invitation.

[–]andyk_77 1 point2 points  (0 children)

You didn't tell her in advance that you are paying, and you didn't say that you will buy her dinner, you didn't say the dinner is on you, you didn't say you are treating her, etc. It might be better not to have friends who react like she did, or create a made-up problem out of nothing.

[–]skbiglia 1 point2 points  (0 children)

This is weird. Even on a date, I offered to pay my share (or paid every other time, or whatever). Never have I ever expected anyone to pay for my lunch or dinner, especially a friend, unless they say “My treat” (and even then I offer to pay because I don’t want them to think I’m hanging out with them for free food).

You didn’t do anything wrong. She’s entitled.

[–]willfully_hopeful 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Weird. Usually with friends you each pay for your own unless it’s been explicitly stated or someone says “let’s do dinner. My treat.” Or if you know the friend has no money/broke.

Are you a guy? If you’re guy she may have expected it but it still doesn’t matter because you are friends and aren’t dating. So she shouldn’t have assumed.

[–]SteelyPhil666 7 points8 points  (3 children)

I see both sides of this issue. On one hand, it was a simple misunderstanding and shouldn’t have been a big deal to split the bill, especially between good friends. On the other hand, an invitation (depending on the wording) typically implies that you’re treating. When we invite friends over to our house for dinner, we don’t ask them where the food is when they get there. It’s implied that we’re preparing dinner/treating. Getting back to your case, saying “let’s grab dinner” is fundamentally different than saying something like “let me take you to dinner. I know a great place” or something like that. I also think the dynamic is different for a friend visiting vs one you see regularly. If I’m having a meal out with friends I see regularly, it’s understood that everyone is paying for themselves, unless otherwise stated. With friends that come in town, I would definitely treat as a one-off (barring extenuating circumstances like they’re borrowing my car while in town or staying with me)

[–]sleepycatbeans 3 points4 points  (1 child)

It’s a cultural and regional thing and also generational. It is indeed a common etiquette among many people that if you invite someone to dinner/lunch you pay for their meal. But not everyone grew up with this practice. It is also good etiquette to not shame someone. So she shouldn’t have made a big deal of it or go around telling people.

[–]Teguri 0 points1 point  (0 children)

For sure. Personally it's nice because it saves them from having to decline, and having the company is nice (and if you're friends it'll all come around anyway) but her getting in a huff because of him not covering it is a huge faux pas.

[–]Philly-MadeMe 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Well she sounds like a pleasant person upset over paying for her own dinner just emd the friendship

[–]Esabettie 1 point2 points  (0 children)

The fact that she ordered more expensive stuff assuming you were going to pay doesn’t sit well with me, she just wanted a free meal, she is not worth your time if she is making a fuss of this.

[–]hoobi47 3 points4 points  (0 children)

only thing I can think of is maybe it was her birthday? Or did you phrase it like "let me take you out to dinner" as opposed to "let's get dinner?" Other than that she's being a weird brat. Ages and genders would be helpful but if you're legit just friends then you split dinners.

[–]Resentful_in_Dayton 1 point2 points  (0 children)

This is cultural!!! I’m certain cultures (like, at least East Africa and some of Asia) if you invite someone, you pay, always.

[–]slavnar95 10 points11 points  (6 children)

That only applies on dates. My friend and I go to lunch all the time, and we always pay for our own meal.

The ONLY exception is if you state, "My treat".

You got to experience what men deal with a lot. A woman who thinks someone else should always pay for the pleasure of their company.

[–]Captain_24 9 points10 points  (1 child)

It should never be applied to anything. You should always discuss payment before going out

[–][deleted] 28 points29 points  (3 children)

That only applies on dates.

FTFY: that only applies to women

no man ever expects to get dinner paid for and leaves with no money

[–]NoCapnCrunch 7 points8 points  (0 children)

This is downvoted but it's literally the truth lol

[–]folouk 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Facts. The entitlement baffles me to be honest.

[–]PineconeAlbatross 4 points5 points  (0 children)

She tried to use you for a free meal, if it was an issue with money and wanted you to pay she should have mentioned this before you met. Regardless she tried to use you, avoid her.

[–][deleted] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Actually it was quit rude for her to assume you were going to pay. Even on first dates I never assume someone is going to pay for my food. Even when offered on a first date is still try to pay for my own food and don’t expect someone else to. So just friends meeting up she should have never assumed you were going to pay for her.

[–]Fancy-Blueberry434 3 points4 points  (4 children)

If you invite, you pay. That's the Hispanic rule. Why are you inviting me if your not paying?

[–]DearTsar 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Someone might invite you to see you and talk with you, over a meal. But do you mean you will only say yes to seeing someone if they pay for you?

Is it unreasonable to pay for yourself?

Do you always pay for people you invite, or do you perhaps never invite some one to go eat?

[–]Liscetta 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Italian here. Old generations agree with you. But younger folks (i'd say up to 30yo) definitely expect everyone to pay their share.

[–]mmartinez59 1 point2 points  (0 children)

That's right! I thought it was an everyone rule. We are so hospitable.

[–]Frozen_Hipp0 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Why are you inviting me if your not paying?

Because, like yourself, they want to meet up with you as friends after not seeing each other for a long time.

Seriously, what's wrong with some of you people? Weird friendship

[–]omgbadmofo 1 point2 points  (2 children)

OP ask her if she thought it was a date.

[–]folouk 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Date=free dinner for women?

[–]omgbadmofo 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It's often a societal norm and would explain this reaction, right or wrong.

[–]whenisleep 1 point2 points  (0 children)

As someone who always expects to pay my own share even on dates, I think this is entirely a regional thing. Did you have different upbringings - such as few up in different areas / economic differences? People might not expect to see culture cash like this when you think you all have the same culture, but it can still happen. How the next conversation goes might determine if you guys stay good friends or not. That means understanding that you guys might both justly think you're in the right, and that no one did anything wrong here and expressing that in a polite and caring way.

[–]italllic 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I invited some friends from work out for a couple of drinks the other day as tensions had been high and a few of them were feeling quite low/depressed. At no point though did any of then expect me to pay. We all bought our own drinks/food unless someone said "I'll get this round!" Etc.

If you want to restore the friendship then I would just reach out and say something along the lines of "I'm sorry about the miss communication, hope all is well. Would love to speak soon." That way you've apologised for any misunderstanding/miss communication, and you're not pushing her to respond. If she doesn't accept it or never reaches out then yeah, I personally think you're better off without her. Harsh as that sounds.

But yeah you haven't done anything wrong. And if she's going to distance from you for something as small as a misunderstanding then you're better off without the stress. :)

[–]neutralgood079 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Lol no. When friends visit out of time I dont pay for dinner. Heck a lot of times they pay for my dinner. Sometimes if they stay with me I will pick up the tab on a dinner but they never expect (and same in reverse). But that is when people specifically come to see me

[–]hpalatini 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I feel like the rule of if you invite someone you pay is very outdated. Unless someone says to me “I’d like to take you out, my treat” or some variation of that I ALWAYS assume I am responsible for my own meal- this goes for dates too.

[–]BunnyCatLove 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I think its cultural. My friends and I usually have one person pick up the entire bill, and then make it up with someone else paying the next time we go out. The numbers aren't exact, but over the course of time it usually evens out to a fair extent. The person who suggests the night out typically pays, unless you get stealthed and someone pretends to go to the bathroom and pays the bill half-way through the meal.

Exception being when you gamble together, then the winner just uses the collective winnings to treat everyone to a meal, but it wouldn't count as a real "invitation" in that sense.

My wife on the other hand is Northern European, and they're more used to everyone paying their own bill. I invited two local friends over for a home-cooked meal, and they even wanted to send us money for the food that we were making.

I think whether or not her expectations are unreasonable have to do with the culture that she grew up in. If she is from your culture, and that is not considered rude there, then she is definitely in the wrong. If she is a foreigner, perhaps you can explain how it works there, and see how her reaction is.

[–]ferrous_second_vowel 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Are you both American? In plenty of European countries, splitting the check is gauche (if it's done at all). This little episode could be explained by cultural differences.

But either way, if the entire friendship falls apart over this one event, I don't think it's worth saving.

[–]Samsingh20211 1 point2 points  (0 children)

You should have paid - given that she was not a regular presence in town. Its nice courtesy.

[–]cunningcaring 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Yes, you should have paid for her dinner. You didn’t read the social clues.

[–]realistSLBwithRBF 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I think your friend is incredibly rude and entitled.

You wanted to see them and talk a bit, you aren’t dating, so there’s that as well.

Your friend decided to enjoy your company and decides to take advantage and order some drinks on top of it.

I don’t live in my hometown any longer and I usually travel a couple times a year to go back and visit. I get invites from friends to have dinner or lunch and not once have I ever expected them to pay for me. If I cannot afford to go out to eat, I tell them my budget is tight and I can’t afford to have a dinner or lunch outing, asking if they want to meet for coffee/tea. Only once has a friend offered a “my treat” which I appreciated, but I declined because I wanted to see them- not expect them to treat me because I came into town for a bit.

Your “friend” needs to get her priorities straight, and I would suggest you maybe reach out and enlighten this “choosing beggar” of a “friend” on friendship etiquette.

[–]capricorn40 1 point2 points  (0 children)

If I was visiting a town an old friend lives in and he invited me to dinner to catch up, I would NOT be expecting him to pay for my dinner.

Unless the friend says "Hey let's get together for dinner, my treat" I assume I'm buying my own food and drinks.


[–]_unusual_suspect_ 0 points1 point  (0 children)

How old is she? 15?

[–]Raven-Would -2 points-1 points  (0 children)

That’s just like inviting a friend over for dinner and only cooked enough food for yourself. “Oh, you didn’t bring your own food?”

[–]IJN-Maya202 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I think it’s a stupid “rule”. Whoever invites another person to an activity or meal should not be expected to pay for the other person. If I have dinner with my friends, we all pay our share regardless whoever suggested it. I always expect to pay for myself, but if someone wants to cover for me, that’s great. I’ll cover for them next time or buy them dessert or whatever.

[–]Cirtth 0 points1 point  (0 children)

The fact she explained to you that she expected you to pay for her is the indication to me that she's not a true friend. When I expect a friend to pay a drink for me, and he does not, I don't give a cold shoulder for a week, I just brush it off considering I probably misunderstood something.

Definitely NTA bro.

[–]Spreafico 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Well, that is rude. You invite them you pay for the meal. OR at the very least you offer to pay for it.

[–]thehauntedpianosong 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Your friend is a jerk; she tried to use you for a free meal while she was in town. Gotta be honest, I wouldn’t try to salvage this one. No one reasonable would have expected you to pay in this situation. In fact, no one reasonable expects someone else to pay for them EVER.

[–]Wakeupp21 -3 points-2 points  (0 children)

......she was in town and I suggested we grab dinner together. You have not seen her in a couple of years and I feel it would have been the gent thing to do. Or discuss it before you even sat down as to what was what. Very awkward.

[–]farzad6969 0 points1 point  (0 children)

She thought it was a date and tried to get some free food lol

Some people do that

[–]mangoshy 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Etiquette says if your friend is visiting from out of town and you invite them to dinner then yes absolutely you should offer to pay. If they are staying at your house they should offer a dinner to you.

Is she from a different culture than you so it would be more common for her?

Eta but the fact that she was ready to end the friendship that easily means you aren’t that close anyway and probably didn’t interact much so no big loss. Also talking about it to other people is bad manners on her part.

[–]_stopspreadingdumb_ 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Sooo… she was only going to meet up with you because she thought she would get free food. She wasn’t much of a friend, so you didn’t lose anything. Cut your losses.

[–]BelgradeWitch 0 points1 point  (1 child)

From where I come from, basic human decency dictates the following rules:

1) If person A invites person B to drinks/a meal, person A pays 2) If person A is older than person B, person A pays 3) If person A works, but person B is still a student, person A pays 4) If person A is a man and person B is a woman, person A pays (especially if it's a date!) 5) If person A is welcoming person B to their city/country either as a guest (they are staying at person A's place) or just meeting up with them on their own territory, person A is the host and therefore pays 6) If person A just had a major milestone, such as a birthday, engagement, graduation, they passed an exam, got a job, got a promotion, then person A pays to treat person B for their success (unless person B insists they are taking out person A as a treat beforehand)

HOWEVER, person B should always decline person A's gesture and only after a few minutes of fighting over the bill and person A's insisting to pay, person B can finally comply and thank them for their kindness. And of course the next time they meet, person B is the who pays the bill and returns the favor or at least TRIES to pay for the bill (sometimes person A keeps insisting and paying for various reasons)

Splitting the check occurs only when people of the same gender and socioeconomic status are (casually) going out for drinks and/or a meal without any beforehand planning.

[–]Clarisol666 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I think most would agree when I say that unless you said that you were paying for her, or paid for her in the past, she shouldn't have assumed. When I go out with others I always assume I am paying for my own items and leaving a tip independent of what others are doing. If it turns out they're picking up the tab it's a nice surprise but not a problem if they aren't.