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Welsh Are Spending A Penny to Dodge Paying the Pounds


1 in 4 (24 per cent) in Wales know a ‘shirker’– the friend who has to take the ‘very important phone call’ when the bill arrives, and a quarter, have fallen out with a pal because of their stingy ways, with one in 8 (15 per cent) holding a grudge for a year or more.

50 per cent of Welsh consumers think ‘shirking’ is one of the most unappealing traits a friend can have, and mates who are tardy with paying back money are considered more annoying (30 per cent) than those who are always on their mobile on nights out (28 per cent) or constantly taking selfies (6 per cent).

The research from Pingit – the app that allows for fast, easy payments and bill-splitting with just a mobile number – comes just in time for the party season. The findings reveal that so-called shirking, or the avoidance of paying your fair share of the bill, is taking a toll on our wallets, too: Over half (53 per cent) of Welsh consumers claim they have lent money to pals, never to see it again, and on average, they’re down £97 over the past 12 months due to their frugal friends.

Whilst the Welsh are happy to let go an average debt of £17, it only takes an extra £6 for friendships to sour – friends get moody when ‘forgotten’ funds hit £23. As a consequence, over one in three (37 per cent) have avoided nights out with friends who never pay their share, whilst 10 per cent have ended a friendship altogether – all of this despite 30 per cent having been called out for shirking themselves.

The research has revealed the most-used bill-dodging tactics and our most common tactics to fight back. When it comes to avoiding the bill, the Welsh are most likely to:

  • Pay you back later (43 per cent)
  • Going to the toilet (25 per cent)
  • Forgotten wallet or purse (23per cent)

But the Welsh aren’t a ‘grin and bear it’ lot. When asked the best way to sidestep a shirker, responses included:

  • Gently teasing for being a “tightwad”(24 per cent)
  • Leaving them out of future drinks rounds(23 per cent)
  • Putting them on the spot in front of friends(16 per cent)

Pingit released the findings to highlight the ways the app, with bill-splitting capabilities for up to 20 people and the ability to request and track payments, can help nudge shirkers into contributing to the bill this festive season.

Darren Foulds, Managing Director of Pingit, said:

“As we head towards the party season, it’s inevitable that we’ll end up sharing rounds, meals and taxis with our loved ones – and sometimes settling up is not as easy as we’d hope. The research shows that we have a variety of ways to get mates to pay their share, but the last thing we want is to spoil the festive cheer. Apps like Pingit offer a simple and easy way to split the bill, which means you can spend less time worrying and more time enjoying the night.”