There’s something inherently special about dining in a restaurant instead of eating the usual meals at home. It could be the ambience, it could be the mouthwatering food, or it could be the fact that you’re being served and you don’t have to worry about cleaning the dishes afterwards. We all want that unique dining experience, but sometimes it gets far too expensive and we try to limit eating out as much as possible. This doesn’t have to be the case.
Whether it’s a buffet, a fast casual diner, a bar and grill, or a fine dining restaurant, eating out doesn’t have to ruin your budget. There are so many restaurant deals that you can take advantage of, and these deals give you the same food for a much lesser price. You can save a significant amount of money simply by making the most out of these restaurant deals, but the first step is to find them.
You don’t just walk in a restaurant and expect the deal to come at you, you have to come in prepared. But where exactly does one look for these deals? These are some places you can check:
Your email inbox
This may not seem like a likely spot to look for restaurant deals, but it’s definitely a good place to check. This is especially true if you happen to be a member of a certain restaurant chain, or if you have a loyalty card to your favorite restaurant. If you are, these restaurants would periodically email you if there are deals and promos available.
Some of these deals are exclusive to members only, so you should really check out your inbox. Most restaurants also have special treats for birthday celebrants, so make sure to check before your birthday. Additionally, there are e-newsletters that you can sign up for to get deals.
Discount coupons will take a big chunk off your bill, so you should take them seriously. You can go to SmartSource.com or Valpak.com to check what discount coupons they have available, and if you’re lucky, you might even find one for your favorite restaurant. It’s also the perfect place to find new restaurants that you haven’t tried before, or may not even be aware of.
With coupon sites, you pay for the discounted coupon in advance, print it out, and take it with you when you visit the place. Valpak even has a handy mobile app, so you don’t have to print out the coupon. All you need to do is simply display it on your phone when you get to the restaurant.
Discounted gift certificates
You can go to a website like Restaurant.com and search for the restaurants that you can visit in your area. Many restaurants provide discounted gift certificates through this website, so it’s really a good place to check. You can for instance buy a gift certificate worth $25 for only $10.
Before getting any kind of discounted gift certificate however, you must read the fine print properly. They often come with restrictions, requiring you to spend a minimum amount before availing of the gift certificate.
Websites that offer group deals are simply the best, and you can certainly find yourself a deal or two that involve your favorite restaurant. Group buying sites like Groupon or LivingSocial essentially buy things in bulk, for a lesser price, and this is why they can in turn offer it so much cheaper than normal.
Food is certainly not the only thing you can find in these group buying sites, which makes the ‘shopping’ experience even more fun. You’re basically joining forces with all the other buyers to get these special discounts. To make sure that you’re getting the most out of it, read the restrictions and expiration dates properly. Also make sure you sign up for their email newsletter so that you can find out about these deals even before visit the site.
Your favorite local restaurant could have special deals, which they often give to attract budget-conscious customers. You can access these deals by checking out their website or liking their social media pages. The great thing about deals with local restaurants is that you can easily take advantage of it as soon as you receive it, because of the proximity to your place.
You can also get the Entertainment Book if you want coupons for all kinds of establishments, including restaurants. This is applicable all over the country and all you have to do is enter your ZIP code or city. You’ll then get a list of all the restaurants in your area where you can get deals. You can pay for a one-time subscription of $35 or $5 monthly so you can subscribe to a mobile app that you can use for your area.