Post # 1
to pay for their own dinner? My friends and I do this all the time. We all go out to celebrate a friend’s birthday but we pay for our own meal and chip in for the friend’s meal. I’m just asking b/c my MIL’s birthday is next month and she’ll be turning 75. I wanted to do something nice for her and take her out to eat but invite her friends. Hubby and I would pay for her dinner but can’t afford to pay for everyone else (we are on one income). Would this be rude to expect or should we just take her out ourselves, without her friends? I thought I could write something in the invite/evite saying something but not sure what I would even say. Do you think this is rude for their generation (late 60’s/early 70’s) or does it not matter with generation, and it’s just rude in general? We just can’t afford to have a party and even if we tried, we live an hour away and most people (her friends) think it’s too far to drive. We also don’t want to have it at MIL’s house since that means she would have to do work to clean (we could get ready but she always likes to do things herself and I rather her not do any work at all). And feel rude asking her friends if we could use one of their houses. I thought taking her out to her favorite restaurant with friends would be something nice? Thanks in advance.
Post # 3
I have never been to a birthday dinner at a restaurant where someone else paid for me. I think you’re fine to invite people and let them take care of themselves.
Post # 4
No this is not rude at all! We always invite friends out for birthday dinners but dont pay for them!
Post # 5
Nope. It happens all of the time in my circle.
Post # 6
You can write “No Host Birthday Party” on the invitations. That implies everyone pays for themselves.
Post # 7
for my generation i dont think its rude but for a older person (ie 75yrs) there will be confusion so i think you need to spell it out plainly on the invitation that its a cost to the guest to attend and what the cost will be as some people are on limited budgets
i wouldnt do such a thing for my mother (age 71yrs) – its not how its done in her circle (she would want to die of shame if i tried this-italian background) but maybe its the norm for your MIL’s??
Post # 8
That’s normal for us. Maybe talk to the restaurant and see if they could to a prix fixe menu for your group and you could include that cost in your invite to make it clearer?
Post # 9
I don’t know, the generational thing might come in to play. I think invitation wording is key, here. If I got an invitation to someone’s birthday party that happened to be at a resturant, I wouldn’t expect to pay. For example, my Maid/Matron of Honor is throwing my shower at a resturant. I don’t think anyone is expecting to pay for their meal, since they likely wouldn’t be expected to pay for their food if the party was held at someone’s house instead. On the other hand, if I got an invitation saying something like “we’re taking grandma to dinner for her birthday and hope you can join us” I would assume I’d be paying my own way. In that case, I wouldn’t be going to a party, I’d just be joining grandma and her friends for dinner at a resturant.
A small distinction, but an important one in my opinion.
Post # 10
Yeah, I’ve done it many times. If you make invitations, maybe write “Let’s all take [MIL’s name] out for a birthday dinner.” I would assume that I would help pitch in to pay for the costs.
Post # 11
No, not rude at all. We go out often for friend’s birthdays or other special occasions and always pay for our food/drinks, and usually also chip in to cover the birthday’s person’s dinner. I would never go to a dinner and expect it to be free (except for a wedding reception held at a restaurant, unless they specified it was no-host).
Post # 12
That’s normal for me, I go out all the time for friends Bdays and always pay for myself and a portion of their dinner.
Post # 13
- Wedding: March 2010 - Calamigos Ranch
While that’s normal in my circle, I think it’s less common among older generations. As PP suggested, add “No host” to the invitation and everyone will know what to expect.
Post # 14
How nice of you! Just be careful with wording. If I got a birthday party invitation and it was being held at a restaurant I wouldn’t expect to pay. If instead I got an invitation that said everyone was getting together for dinner at a restaurant for someone’s birthday I would expect to pay. If you are inviting people somewhere formally, like with a written invitation I don’t think they would expect to foot the bill. So either do it by word of mouth, or for that age group just write on the invitation that everyone will be going dutch so that they can budget for it. Have fun!
Post # 15
@ttn133: This might be a good idea.
Post # 16
While I don’t think it’s rude at all, and totally do it with my friends, I think part of it is that we already have an understanding between my friends. I honestly don’t think it’s the same for the 60+ crowd.
In fact, last year, my sister and I had the same issue when planning my mom’s 70th. Ultimately, we decided that people would assume someone else was footing the bill and there wouldn’t be a non-ackward way to tell people of that generation, “pay your own way.” To avoid any confusion, we ended up having a small party at a restaurant/bar with just hor d’orves and limited alcoholic drinks (footed by us).