Conversation · speaking

Let’s go Fifty-Fifty – Restaurant language

Let’s go Fifty Fifty 

Some dialogues for paying the bill

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Sometimes you want to invite your friend, your colleague or your client to lunch (or to dinner or just for a drink). In English-speaking countries it is custom that the person who invites the other person pays the bill.*

*Bill in the UK = check in the US

Your dialogue could run like this:

–          Would you like to have lunch this afternoon?

–          Sure, where do you want to go?

–          I thought we might try the new Italian Restaurant on Main Street. But if you have another idea it’s fine too. It’s my treat, OK?

–          OK, thanks. The Italian restaurant sounds lovely.

Dialogue 2

In some cases, your guest wants to pay the bill. Or he’s just saying that because he wants to be polite. In that case, you must insist to pay the bill. Insist means that you don’t give up, you’re stubborn.

This dialogue might go like this:

–          Well, this lunch was outstanding.

–          Yes, it was, and thanks for inviting me. How much did the bill come to?

–          No, no, no, this one is on me, I was the one who invited you.

–          Please, I insist.

–          I really think that I should pay for our lunch this time. You paid last time, and you’re my guest today.

–          All right, I understand. Thanks for buying me lunch.

Split the Bill

Some people may want to pay only for their own food and drink, so you’ll be required to pay your own part. Or they may suggest to go fifty fifty. Some people call this: going Dutch (because Dutch people are supposedly mean with money) or split the bill.

This dialogue might go like this:

–          I was glad you could meet me tonight.

–          Me too, we should do this more often. Listen, let’s just split the bill, okay?

–          If you give me 20 bucks for your wine and salad, I’ll take care of the rest.

–          Fine, thanks.

Exercise

Pick the right answer from the column to the right: the first one has been done for you.

1 Let’s split the bill. E A Thanks for inviting me.
2 Dinner is my treat, but I want you to pick the place, OK? B OK, if you insist. Thanks.

 

3 I’ve been promoted! Do you want to come to a restaurant with me? C Fine. What about Mikado?
4 It’s my turn to treat you to a movie. Are you free tomorrow night? D Sure, I’d love to.
5 I’ll take care of that. E No problem.
6 Put that away, your money is no good here. F Please, I insist.
7 I’m glad you could join me for lunch. G Sorry, I can’t tomorrow night.

Answers to the exercise: look underneath:

 

Answers:

1 Let’s split the bill. E A Thanks for inviting me.
2 Dinner is my treat, but I want you to pick the place, OK? C B OK, if you insist. Thanks.

 

3 I’ve been promoted! Do you want to come to a restaurant with me? D C Fine. What about Mikado?
4 It’s my turn to treat you to a movie. Are you free tomorrow night? G D Sure, I’d love to.
5 I’ll take care of that. F E No problem.
6 Put that away, your money is no good here. B F Please, I insist.
7 I’m glad you could join me for lunch. A G Sorry, I can’t tomorrow night.

Have a look at this Vocab Blast about Restaurants, too.

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