Why do people eat where they eat?
When it comes to dining out, we are often faced with so many options and it’s easy to get overwhelmed with all the choices we have before us. Think of yourself standing in the middle of a street lined with all kinds of restaurants with different cuisines. How does one pick? How does one decide where to go?
There are many factors that can affect our decision of dining out. The fact that we chose to eat out in the first place already has underlying factors behind it. Maybe it’s a special occasion. Or maybe we want to try something new. Or maybe, we just got tired of cooking and we wanted to eat something special just this one time.
Whatever the reason, here are six of the most important factors you need to consider when dining out:
1. Type of Cuisine
The first question you need to ask yourself is: what kind of food do you feel like eating? Restaurants tend to specialize on cuisine type, so this should be chief in your mind. For instance, if you’re craving for something Italian, it wouldn’t make sense to visit Sakura or Ra Sushi. Some restaurants reveal the type of their cuisine from their names alone, but with many others, you need to do your research.
You’ll be happy to know though that there are many restaurants now that go for fusion and mix different types of cuisines. Take Cheesecake Factory for instance. Even with the ‘cheesecake’ in its name suggesting that you’ll find great desserts here, you can also get Italian-style Fettuccini Alfredo, American Cheeseburger, Japanese-style Seared Tuna Tataki Salad, Filet Mignon, Jamaican Black Pepper Shrimp, and Southern Fried Catfish.
2. Value for Money
Where you eat will also depend on how much you’re willing to spend for food. Consider your budget, and consider how many people are dining out. Eating out can be really expensive and this is why many people avoid it save for special occasions, but it can also be affordable if you know what restaurants to frequent with your budget in mind.
Remember that it’s not strictly about saving money and scrimping on dollars, but it’s really about getting the full value for what you’re spending.
3. Time of Day
There are restaurants that are open all day every day and serve wonderful things like an all-day breakfast for instance. With these restaurants, you can go ahead and visit any time you want.
However, there are also restaurants that help you save with the time of day that you’re visiting. Many restaurants have cheaper lunch combos that you can take advantage of and that are only available during the lunch hour.
There’s also the happy hour, when you get to save even more especially on drinks. Some restaurants have menu items that are only available on certain days, so you could watch out for this as well.
4. Service and Quality
When you eat out, you’re paying for the privilege of someone else cooking your meals. Part of what you’re paying for is the actual service of cooking that meal and getting it on your plate, and you don’t even have to worry about the dirty dishes afterwards.
Because you’re paying for all of this, it’s only reasonable to expect that you’ll get good service from the restaurant staff as well as good quality food that you’ll want to keep coming back for. If a restaurant gives you good service you tend to remember this experience and even suggest this to your friends.
5. Variety and Novelty
We all want to try something new, so there’s a higher chance for us to keep visiting a place if we can sample something unique each time we visit. When you dine out, you’re paying extra, so it wouldn’t really make sense to order something you can easily get at home – for so much cheaper.
The variety and novelty of the items on the menu is also important if you’re dining out as a group. Chances are you’ll have varying tastes, so a menu that can cater to all of those tastes would be ideal.
6. Ambience and The Overall Experience
Unless you just want to order takeout, you’re not just paying for the food and the service. You’re also paying for the actual experience of dining. Dining out can actually be fun and memorable, especially if it’s in a restaurant that has a special ambience. This is why people reserve dining out for special occasions, or for when they want to unwind.
The cleanliness and orderliness of the place is just one factor. You should also check if the physical restaurant – layout, lighting, décor, space, and most especially ambience – is conducive to the dining experience.