What is ‘loud budgeting’ and why is Gen Z opting out of splitting the bill?

Author: Louise Millar, Strategy Director at Seed Marketing

Think of all the money you’ve wasted out of sheer awkwardness. The £750 Ibiza hen weekend you felt obliged to attend, because no one else seemed to raise an eyebrow at spending a month’s rent on a 48-hour trip to the Balearics. The time you agreed to split the restaurant bill, even though you ordered the salad while everyone else was eating steak. Now imagine if you’d just… explained your cash-flow situation and said “no”. Liberating, right?

That’s the rationale behind “loud budgeting”, a concept coined by TikTok creator Lukas Battle. It’s all about being vocal about your financial constraints and prioritising your savings goals (rather than spending money through gritted teeth on things you know you won’t enjoy). “It’s not ‘I don’t have enough’, it’s ‘I don’t want to spend’,” Battle said in his original post. “It was meant to be a silly idea that allows people to be financially transparent without feeling embarrassed,” the New York-based comedian later told the Evening Standard.

Louise Millar, strategy director at Gen Z-focused marketing agency Seed, states “There’s a much bigger focus on good financial health from Gen Z. They’re in a bad situation at the moment with the cost of living and they definitely know that some of those lifestyle milestones” – buying a house in their twenties or thirties, like their parents might have done, for example – “are way out of reach.” Plus, she continues, “they’ve witnessed some of the mistakes that millennials made in the last recession [in 2008] like credit card debt and 100 per cent mortgages… They basically know that there are no guarantees for them at all. Any standard expectations [they] could have about so many different things in life have been completely removed. So there’s this total change in attitude.” Many of them, she adds, have a DIY ethos when it comes to filling the gaps in their financial education. “And they share it with one another, because they believe in a much more democratic system.”

To read the full article, visit The Independent.