The Bitch of the Check After Dinner

June 10, 2008

Just read this neat article about behavioral economics and that dreaded dinner check at the end of a meal. The basic advice is to have one person pay everyone’s bill per meal, and then alternate that person. The logic is that any amount of paying the bill leads to some experience of ‘pain’ (nobody really likes parting with their money), but that pain isn’t really dose dependent: paying 10 dollars and 30 dollars are lead to something like a 20% increase in pain, not a 400%.

Interesting idea. And it certainly would clear up all the confusion when everyone tries to figure out how much to put in each time.

I’ll have to remember this the next time I go out to eat with my friends.

Though, I’ll be honest, I don’t see this flying well. “Dave, really, do you have to be SO contrarian.” But but but, the economists agree. :P


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