I want to express a sentence.
The meaning is that we hope that someone will pay the bill for today's dinner or drink or something.
In response, someone will say "It's on my treat" .

I want to know can I use "Who pays today?"
Please guide me. Thanks a lot

  • 4
    I think only a non-native speaker would say "It's on my treat". The two standard usages are "It's my treat" and "It's on me". Dec 8, 2014 at 14:28
  • 1
    This question appears to be off-topic because it is about etiquette, not English language as such Dec 8, 2014 at 14:30
  • 1
    I would think that learning etiquette for matters like this is a very important part of learning English. Is there some rule against etiquette? The list of topics includes "practical problems you encounter while learning English". This question sounds like it is about a very practical problem involving English, which can be hard for an EFL learner to find good information about.
    – Ben Kovitz
    Dec 8, 2014 at 17:42

4 Answers 4


"Who pays today" would be slightly unusual but is certainly possible. "Who is paying today" or "Who'll pay today" are a little more idiomatic.

  • 2
    Also: Who's picking up the tab/bill today?
    – Adam
    Dec 8, 2014 at 21:42
  • Yes, there are countless ways this could be asked.
    – digitig
    Dec 11, 2014 at 12:04

Not sure that this is a language use question so much as it is a question of etiquette and manners.

In general terms if you invite someone then you should be ready to pay the bill and avoid a potentially awkward situation. You can either arrange with your server beforehand that you will pay the bill and they are not to bring it to the table, or simply be the first person to ask for the bill at the end of the meal.

If you have been invited then you should always be ready to pay your bill when the time comes.

Basically, politely decline if you can't cover yourself unless someone has specifically told you in advance that it's their treat.

If you go out for dinner with people and ask who's paying the bill it may seem a little ungrateful and invitations may stop coming!

However, it's certainly correct to ask "How will we split the bill?" or "How much do I owe for dinner?" If the bill has been given to one person (or one person has asked for it) then you should try to be subtle about this and go directly to that person and ask them.

  • Agree. It is a question of etiquette rather than language. And unless you are attending a party thrown in a restaurant or the person inviting has said "It's my treat", you should always assume you need to pay for yourself. If you are going to a work function, it is OK to ask whether it is company-sponsored, which would mean the company is picking up the bill.
    – michelle
    Dec 8, 2014 at 13:55
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    I think more is being read into the question than is actually there. I think what is being asked is "How do I phrase the question to ask who is going to pay the bill this time?". It seems to me like the asker is part of a group that goes out together and round robins the bill.
    – ColleenV
    Dec 8, 2014 at 14:58
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    Yeah,I just want to know how to express it.It's a game between friends. Dec 8, 2014 at 16:13

As you've mentioned in your question if you're asking for a decision, you can say;

Who's going to pay today?

If you're asking about who has been arranged to pay today (or Who is the person that must pay the bill today) you can say;

Who's paying today?


Yes, this IS a language use question. The person asking is not wanting to know etiquette, but how to express the etiquette in words. The proper way is: "It's on me," "It's my treat," or "I'm treating."

  • 2
    Actually, it's not the response they want to know but the question, e.g. "So, whose turn is it to pick up the bill?"
    – ColleenV
    Dec 8, 2014 at 14:55

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