Who pays what? Equality and flexibility govern the pleasure of invitations away from home. Whether they are complex and sumptuous or simple and festive
"Hello to all! I decided to organize a surprise party for my boyfriend's birthday. We should be roughly fifteen people. As a place I chose his favorite restaurant, where you eat fish. But a doubt came to my mind: since I thought and organized, should I pay for everyone or should everyone pay for themselves? .
This question, launched on the social group Socialgnock – Women Ignite Relationships (community founded in 2013 by Lorena Di Stasi and which today has almost 18,000 members), in three days it sparked hundreds of conflicting comments. Once the practice was clear: who invites, offers. Today the landscape is much more varied. It is likely that a young man who is already working has more resources than someone who is still studying law or medicine; A trader of a teacher is more likely to have more availability. And entering the minefield of money, we must remember that the true meaning of each «beautiful wayAre the nuances of respect for others, and an invitation is simply a ritual to share a happy moment. The premise is that we will study things in order to build a carefree, balanced, light parenthesis for our guests. Even from an economic point of view. Without overdoing it.
Is it a big party?
Are you eighteen, is it your degree?
In the South it is a big party, if not like that of a wedding, however luxurious as the family can afford. In the north, everything is more subdued: at the exit of the exam, for the graduate surrounded by a laurel wreath and his friends, there is lunch in one of the best restaurants in the city with a toast. And, from the bar to the restaurant, the parents of the birthday boy are paid in full.
Is this a normal party?
The most elegant solution is that it offers those who celebrate according to their possibilities. A double round of drinks after dinner will make happy (many) peers who save all week to afford the bar with friends on Saturday evening. ("We are all more displeased than our parents at the same age", the boys agree, from Milan to Palermo). A little more expensive but original is to focus on the new young places with creative cuts open from the morning, where you can celebrate with an English breakfast, or a limited brunch, or an alcoholic tea-time, or cocktail with reinforcement.
Surprise party: who pays?
The birthday boy is in the dark about everything. Meanwhile, friends have made a chat to choose a place that satisfies all tastes and budgets, often with tragicomic implications on which pluriennial partnerships are wrecked. Here it would be a mortal sin not to take into account the various economic resources. Then you do not choose the celebrated fish restaurant, as in the case of the question on social media, unless you are willing to take on all the costs. Happy solution is one of the new "quality trattorias", around 30-50 euros per person. Tips: agree the menu in advance and choose an "empty" day of customers, such as Monday or Tuesday, to check the best price.
Gift? Yes, no, ni
The golden rule is "cuius regio, eius religio", that is, we must accept the customs of the place with grace. From Rome downwards, those who invite offer (and are rather upset when, from Rome upwards, they are asked to hand over their quota); from Rome upwards, it divides. At this point the gift appears out of place. In addition to being obsolete. In case you can join forces for a funny subject cake design cake. Or, better, you can make a common cash to sign, with the name of the birthday boy, an offer to those who really need a gift.
Dinner with friends: who pays?
To try a new restaurant, because it is the season of truffles, strawberries and mushrooms. The expense is shared. But how? «Roman style, divided into equal shares, or «going dutch or «German style, each settling his own account? Here more than ever it is a question of civilization. Those who are more comfortable will avoid ordering particularly expensive wines or foods. In order not to charge the price of his choices on others, if you do "Roman"; in order not to humiliate those who cannot go beyond an (albeit excellent) Lambrusco by ordering a bottle of Château Latour, if they are "German". Unless you decide to offer Château Latour to everyone. Robin Hood, however, in the case of a "Roman-style" account, would suggest to the less comfortable to aim for the more expensive dishes, thus making pay – even if only pro quota – to those who have more what he usually cannot afford.